Stanford ADRC Clinical Core

The Clinical Core of the Stanford Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (ADRC) recruits and follows patients with Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, and mild cognitive impairment; and healthy older volunteers without neurological disease or cognitive impairment.  Information that we collect supports innovative research on understanding fundamental causes of neurodegenerative disease and enabling early identification, effective treatment, and prevention.

We believe that research is most efficient when each volunteer is able to contribute multiple types of information. We refer to this strategy as “deep phenotyping.” Our research data come from neurological and neuropsychological assessments, brain imaging (PET scans and MRI scans), and molecular and genetic markers derived from blood, spinal fluid, skin fibroblasts, and stool.  All of these are ultimately tied to crucial diagnostic information obtained by brain autopsy through the ADRC Neuropathology Core.  Anonymous research data and some specimens and tissues are shared with researchers at Stanford and other universities.  Like other ADRCs, we provide Uniform Data Set measures to the  National Alzheimer’s Coordinating Center (Seattle, WA) and biological specimens to the National Centralized Repository for Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias (Indianapolis, IN).  We maintain strict confidentiality. The Clinical Core is led by Dr. Victor Henderson and Christina Wyss-Coray (Clinical Coordinator) and by Dr. Kathleen Poston (Lewy body disease), Dr. Sharon Sha (clinical trials), and Dr. Maya Yutsis (neuropsychology).

Victor W. Henderson, MD, MS
Professor of Epidemiology and Population Health
Professor of Neurology and Neurological Sciences
Clinical Core Leader

Dr. Henderson directs the Stanford ADRC and co-directs the Stanford master degree program in epidemiology and clinical research. His research emphasizes risk factors for cognitive aging, Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders, and therapeutic strategies to maintain and improve cognitive abilities affected by cognitive aging or dementia. Dr. Henderson obtained his medical degree from Johns Hopkins University and master's degree in epidemiology from the University of Washington School of Public Health. He trained at Duke University (internal medicine), Washington University (neurology), and Boston University (behavioral neurology). He has been a visiting scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, visiting professor at the University of Melbourne (Australia), and is Honorary Skou Professor at the University of Aarhus (Denmark). He has served in leadership roles concerned with late-life cognitive disorders (chair of the Geriatric Neurology Section of the American Academy of Neurology) and midlife cognitive health (president of the North American Menopause Society; general secretary of the International Menopause Society). He serves on editorial boards and scientific advisory boards, and he has authored more than 300 scientific articles and chapters.

John Barry, MD
Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Professor of Neurology and Neurological Sciences (by courtesy)

Dr. Barry, director of the Neuropsychiatry and Psychotherapy Clinics, has a special interest in neuropsychiatric problems of people with dementia. He directs the UCNS-accredited Stanford Neuropsychiatry Fellowship Program and is consultant to the Stanford Center on Memory Disorders and the Stanford Movement Disorders Center.

Ami Bhatt, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor, Medicine and Genetics

Humans are now understood to live in complex symbiosis with microbes. While the majority of interactions between the host and microbiota are considered to be symbiotic, alterations of the microbiota are associated with various disease states. It is hypothesized that perhaps the patients most susceptible to adverse outcomes of microbiota dysbiosis are patients whose immune systems are challenged. The goal of the Bhatt lab is to understand the interplay between the microbial environment in immunocompromised patients, especially those with hematological malignancies (leukemia and lymphoma). The laboratory focuses on (1) the use of next generation sequencing to define the microbiome and host immunologic features in patients with hematological diseases and (2) developing custom computational tools for the identification of novel human commensals and pathogens in these immunosuppressed patient populations, and (3) using statistical and functional biological methods to understand the interplay between the human microbiome and the development of immunological diversity.

Henry (Hank) Greely, JD
Deane F. and Kate Edelman Johnson Professor of Law and, Professor, by courtesy, of Genetics

Henry T. "Hank" Greely is the Deane F. and Kate Edelman Johnson Professor of Law and Professor, by courtesy, of Genetics at Stanford University. He specializes in ethical, legal, and social issues arising from advances in the biosciences, particularly from genetics, neuroscience, and human stem cell research. He chairs the California Advisory Committee on Human Stem Cell Research and the steering committee of the Stanford University Center for Biomedical Ethics, and directs the Stanford Center for Law and the Biosciences and the Stanford Program in Neuroscience and Society. He serves as a member of the NAS Committee on Science, Technology, and Law; the NIGMS Advisory Council, the Institute of Medicine’s Neuroscience Forum, and the NIH Multi-Center Working Group on the BRAIN Initiative. Professor Greely graduated from Stanford in 1974 and from Yale Law School in 1977. He served as a law clerk for Judge John Minor Wisdom on the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and for Justice Potter Stewart of the United States Supreme Court. He began teaching at Stanford in 1985.

Kathleen Poston, MD, MS
Professor, Neurology and Neurological Sciences
Associate Core Leader, Lewy Body Disease

Dr. Poston received her Bachelor's of Science in Bioengineering at the University of Pennsylvania, her Master's Degree in Biomedical Engineering and her MD at Vanderbilt University. She completed her Neurology residency training at UCSF, where she was Chief Resident. She also completed a fellowship in clinical Movement Disorders under the mentorship of Dr. Stanley Fahn at Columbia University and post-doctoral training in Functional Neuroimaging with Dr. David Eidelberg at the Feinstein Institute.

Dr. Poston's clinical expertise include Parkinson's Disease, atypical Parkinsonian disorders, Essential Tremor, Huntington's Disease, and tics. She also has interest in the treatment of dystonia and blepharospasm with botulinum toxin.

Dr. Poston's research focuses on the development of novel neuroimaging biomarkers to improve diagnostic accuracy and monitor the efficacy of investigational treatments for Parkinson's Disease and other movement disorders. She is also the Principle Investigator for clinical trials in movement disorders, such as Gene Therapy in Parkinson's disease.

Allyson C. Rosen, PhD, ABPP-CN
Clinical Associate Professor (Affiliated) of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

Dr. Rosen is Director of Dementia Education at the Mental Illness Research Education and Clinical Center (MIRECC) at the Palo Alto VAMC. She completed college at Brown University, a clinical psychology Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University, clinical neuropsychology internship at the Long Island Jewish Hospital in New York, clinical neuropsychology fellowship at the Medical College of Wisconsin and research fellowships at National Institute on Aging and Stanford. For the past decade Dr. Rosen provided dementia education in partnership with the Alzheimer’s Association and other community organizations. Dr. Rosen’s funded research has focused on applying cognitive neuroscience of aging to improve clinical practice in older adults by using cognitive measures, brain imaging, and noninvasive brain stimulation. Studies include using fMRI as an outcome measure for cognitive training, adapting transcranial magnetic stimulation to brain atrophy using fMRI, and using structural MRI to avoid postoperative cognitive decline and improve outcome from carotid vascular procedures

Nora Sakiz, BS
Clinical research coordinator associate

Nora Sakiz received her Bachelor of Science degree in biological sciences from the University of California, Irvine in 2018. She gained experience in psychometry with UCI Newport Neurology, an off-campus affiliate of the University of California, Irvine. She subsequently received a graduate certificate in medical neuroscience from Michigan State University before joining the Stanford ADRC. With interests in memory disorders, neuropsychiatry, and neuroethics, she hopes eventually to pursue a career in medicine.

Sharon Sha, MD, MS
Clinical Associate Professor, Neurology & Neurological Sciences
Associate Core Leader, Clinical  Trials

Dr. Sha received her Bachelor’s degrees in Cognitive Science and Molecular Cell Biology emphasizing in Neurobiology from UC Berkeley. She went on to obtain a Master’s degree in Physiology and MD from Georgetown University. She trained in Neurology at UCLA and Stanford University and completed a clinical and research fellowship in behavioral neurology at UCSF where she focused on identifying biomarkers for genetic forms of frontotemporal dementia and caring for patients with movement disorders and cognitive impairment.

Dr. Sha’s clinical expertise include Alzheimer’s disease, frontotemporal dementia, Lewy Body disease, corticobasal syndrome, progressive supranuclear palsy, Huntington’s disease, ataxia, multiple system atrophy, and other dementias. She is currently co-director of the Huntington’s disease and Ataxia clinic with Dr. Veronica Santini.

Dr. Sha’s non-clinical time is spent conducting clinical trials as the Director of the Memory Disorders Clinical Trials Program in order to identify disease modifying treatments for dementia. She has a special interest in genetic forms of dementia and the cognitive impairment in parkinsonian-related disorders. She is also director of the Stanford Behavioral Neurology and Neuropsychiatry Clinical Fellowship.

Irina Skylar-Scott, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor of Neurology and Neurological Sciences

Dr. Skylar-Scott received her medical degree from Yale University followed by postgraduate training at Yale (internship), Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (neurology residency), and Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Center for Alzheimer’s Research and Treatment (behavioral neurology fellowship).  She is a behavioral neurologist, whose clinical interests include the treatment of cognitive and behavioral impairment due to Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Lewy body dementia, posterior cortical atrophy, primary progressive aphasia, frontotemporal dementia, vascular dementia, primary age-related tauopathy, limbic-predominant age-associated TDP-43 encephalopathy, and other disorders of cognition and behavior.  Her research interests focus on clinical trials for Alzheimer’s disease and the investigation of how social and intellectual engagement can affect cognition.  She has received honors from the American Academy of Neurology and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

Kyan Younes, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor of Neurology and Neurological Sciences

Dr. Younes is a behavioral neurologist with expertise in the diagnosis and treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, frontotemporal dementia, primary progressive aphasia, Lewy body dementia, normal pressure hydrocephalus, and related cognitive and behavioral impairments.  One aspect of his research focuses on degeneration that affects the right anterior temporal lobe of the brain. This disorder affects person-specific knowledge and the ability to process emotions.  His research encompasses multimodal brain imaging (magnetic resonance imaging and positron emission tomography) and machine learning to improve the detection of neurodegenerative diseases.  He has also participated in clinical trials of new drug therapies.  Before Dr. Younes was recruited to Stanford University, he trained at Damascus University (medicine), Case Western Reserve University (epilepsy fellowship), the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston (neurology residency), and the University of California San Francisco (cognitive and behavioral neurology fellowship).

Maya V. Yutsis, PhD, ABPP-CN
Clinical Assistant Professor (Affiliated) of Neurology & Neurological Sciences
Associate Core Leader, Neuropsychology

Dr. Yutsis received her bachelor’s degree from San Francisco State University and her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the Palo Alto University, Pacific Graduate School of Psychology. She completed a clinical internship in neuropsychology at the Minneapolis VA Medical Center and a post-doctoral fellowship in neuropsychology at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.  Prior to coming to Stanford, she was the lead neuropsychologist at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System for the Polytrauma Transitional Rehabilitation Program and for the Geriatric Research Education and Clinical Center Telehealth Neuropsychology clinic. Dr. Yutsis's research interests are in cognitive aging and dementia and traumatic brain injury.

Maria-Lucia Campos, BA
Clinical Research Coordinator Associate

Maria-Lucia Campos earned her Bachelor’s degree in Biology at the University of Rochester in upstate New York. Before joining us at the ADRC, she worked at Boston Children’s Hospital as Clinical Research Study Coordinator, where she collaborated with team members across thirty-two sites in North America to implement a comprehensive and robust handoff program proven to decrease medical errors. She was also a Research Data Specialist for Dana Farber Cancer Institute and was involved in the coordination of several clinical trials. She is very passionate about research and quality improvement projects.

Nicole Caceres, BA
Clinical Research Coordinator Associate

Nicole Caceres graduated from Notre Dame de Namur University in 2018 with a Bachelor’s degree in psychology. She is currently earning her Master of Science in Psychology with a concentration in forensic psychology from Palo Alto University. Nicole previously assisted children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), developmental disorders, and emotional/behavioral disorders. In addition to working with children, she also volunteered as a sexual assault counselor and advocate at Rape Trauma Services.  

Jennie Clark, MA, CPG, CAEd, CMC, CDP, CMDCP
Gerontologist, Memory Support Program Manager

Jennie received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and Master of Arts degree in Gerontology from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. She is a Credentialed Professional Gerontologist, Board Certified in Alzheimer Education, a Certified Geriatric Care Manager, Certified Dementia Practitioner, and Certified Montessori Dementia Care Professional. Jennie manages the Memory Support Program of Aging Adult Services. She lectures and presents on the topics of person-centered dementia care and caregiving in dementia. She is published in academic journals and has co-authored clinical and research manuals.

Nicole Corso, MS
Clincal Research Coordinator Associate

Nicole Corso received her MS in Health Psychology from the University of Michigan-Dearborn in 2018. As a Master’s student, she worked in the Psychiatric Affective Neuroimaging Laboratory with Israel Liberzon, MD and in the Sleep and Chronophysiology Laboratory with J. Todd Arnedt, PhD in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Michigan. Using fMRI and electroencephalography (EEG), her work focused on attention and emotion regulation neurocircuitry in patients with mood and sleep disorders. She joined the Stanford Memory Lab led by Anthony Wagner, PhD and the Mormino Lab led by Elizabeth Mormino, PhD in June 2018 to explore the cognitive changes that occur in aging and Alzheimer’s Disease. She hopes to pursue a PhD to further explore these changes and the underlying pathology of Alzheimer’s Disease and related neurodegenerative disorders.  

James Kelbert, BA
Autopsy Coordinator
Clinical Research Coordinator Associate

James Kelbert received his Bachelor of Arts in both Neuroscience and Spanish from Pomona College in 2020. He contributed to research in the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine and in the UC Davis Department of Emergency Medicine. Within the ADRC, he coordinates brain donations and autopsies for ADRC participants and for volunteers in the Stanford Brain Bank Program. In this key role, he works closely with faculty and staff in the Clinical Core and Neuropathology Core.

T’Lesa Meadowcroft, BS
Clinical Research Coordinator Associate

T’Lesa Meadowcroft earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology with an emphasis in neuroscience from Westminster College in Salt Lake City, Utah.  She worked as a research assistant in psychology and, after graduation in 2010, as a neuropsychometrist at the University of Utah Center for Alzheimer’s Care, Imaging and Research.  In 2015, she became a Certified Specialist in Psychometry and moved to Stanford Health Care as a clinical psychometrist, before joining us at the ADRC.

Veronica Ramirez, BS
Clinical Research Manager

Veronica earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of New Orleans. She is currently earning her Master of Science in Neuroscience from Columbia University. Prior to joining Stanford ADRC, she worked as a neuropsychometrist and research assistant specializing in forensic neuropsychology. Her main area of interest includes statistical methodologies in neurodegenerative disease research.

Isabelle Yi, RN, BSN
Nurse Coordinator

Isabelle Yi is the nurse coordinator for the Stanford ADRC. She received her Bachelor of Science in nursing degree from New York University and has worked at Stanford Health Care in both inpatient and outpatient settings.  She has served as a registered nurse coordinator for several Department of Neurosurgery and Department of Neurology clinical teams.  She has been involved with quality improvement projects and serves at Stanford on the Neurosciences Ambulatory Shared Leadership Council and the Policy and Procedure Steering Committee.

Research Programs