People

Melanie Stephens, PhD

Assistant Professor

Dr. Melanie Stephens is an Assistant Professor of Neuropsychology at the UCSF Memory and Aging Center within the Department of Neurology.

Amelia Strom

Staff Research Associate

A Bay Area native, Amelia recently graduated from UC Santa Barbara with a degree in biopsychology. As an undergraduate, she investigated the neural representations of optical illusions using electroencephalography (EEG). After graduation, she returned to the Bay Area to join Dr. Gil Rabinovici’s lab at the Memory and Aging Center as a research associate, where she works with positron emission tomography (PET) to visualize amyloid, tau and glucose metabolism in neurodegenerative disorders.

Virginia Sturm, PhD

Associate Professor

Virginia Sturm, PhD, is the John Douglas French Alzheimer's Foundation Endowed Professor at UCSF. She is an Associate Professor in the Departments of Neurology and Psychiatry and the director of the Clinical Affective Neuroscience (CAN) Laboratory that is located in the UCSF Memory and Aging Center and affiliated with the UCSF Center for Psychophysiology and Behavior (CPB).

Swati Sudarsan

Clinical Research Coordinator

Swati Sudarsan is a clinical research coordinator in the ALBA Language Neurobiology Lab. Swati graduated from the University of Michigan in May 2015 with a BA degree in global health and Spanish. She completed her Masters of Science in Public Health at Johns Hopkins University in May 2017. During her time as an undergraduate, she worked in the Kovelman Lab, studying hemodynamic activation during language production in the bilingual brain.

Joey Tallakson

Clinical Research Coordinator

Working alongside Julia Glueck under Dr. Michael D. Geschwind, MD, PhD, Joey is an Assistant Clinical Research Coordinator involved in studies focused on Huntington’s disease (HD), spinocerebellar ataxia (SCA), and multiple systems atrophy (MSA) patients.

Jack Taylor

Research Study Coordinator

Jack Taylor is a staff research associate in the Clinical Trials team. He also participates in the hear/say oral history project to share the stories of aging and dementia.

Michael Terranova

Assistant Clinical Research Coordinator

Michael is a clinical research coordinator working on the rapidly progressive dementia (RPD) program led by Michael Geschwind, MD, PhD.

Marie Edouard Theodore

Fellow Coordinator, GBHI

Panos Theofilas, PhD

Assistant Professor

Dr. Theofilas is Assistant Professor at the Memory and Aging Center, UCSF. He obtained his bachelor and masters’ degrees in Neuroscience at the University of Edinburgh, UK, and his doctorate at the University of Bonn, Germany, studying apoptosis signaling pathways, mitochondria dysfunction and excitotoxicity in animal models of epilepsy.

Elisabeth Thijssen, MS, BS

Visitor (Graduate)

Lies works with the clinical trials team led by Dr. Adam Boxer. She develops assays and sample analyses of fluid-based biomarkers for neurodegenerative diseases with the aim to evaluate therapeutic response in clinical trials.

Gianina Toller, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Gianina Toller is a postdoctoral fellow from Switzerland, now working with the Social Function team led Dr. Kate Rankin. Dr. Toller completed her PhD degree in 2015 at the Swiss Epilepsy Center and the University of Zurich in Switzerland. Her thesis investigated the functional and structural correlates of socioemotional dysfunction in patients with refractory mesial temporal lobe epilepsy, and in patients with a very rare genetic disorder called Urbach-Wiethe disease.

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