Penn Memory Center Physician Researchers

Soumya Bollampally, DO


Dr. Bollampally, of Wall Township, NJ, joined the Penn Memory Center in 2015 as an instructor in the Division of Geriatrics at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. She earned her B.A. in Health and Societies from the University of Pennsylvania, received her medical degree at the Rowan School of Osteopathic Medicine (formerly UMDNJ) and completed her Internal Medicine Residency and Chief Residency year at Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia. Dr. Bollampally completed her Geriatrics Fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania.

Roy H. Hamilton, MD, MS


Dr. Roy H. Hamilton is an Assistant Professor of Neurology at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine. He is board certified in neurology.

He graduated from Harvard University Medical School and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with degrees in Medicine and Health Sciences Technology. He completed residency in Neurology and a fellowship in Cognitive and Behavioral Neurology, both at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine.

In addition to evaluation and care he provides patients through the Penn Memory Center, Dr. Hamilton is actively engaged in neurology research. The central aim of his research is to define the mechanisms and limits of functional plasticity in the intact and injured adult human brain. As the co-director of the Laboratory for Cognition and Neural Stimulation at Penn, Dr. Hamilton uses a combination of behavioral measures and noninvasive brain stimulation techniques, including transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), to elucidate structure-function relationships related to normal cognition and to promote therapeutic reorganization of neural representations of cognitive functions in individuals who have suffered from stroke.

Outside of his research, Dr. Hamilton teaches medical students and neurology residents in multiple venues and is the associate director of Penn’s Clinical Neurosciences Training Program. Dr. Hamilton is also deeply involved in issues related to diversity in graduate and medical education, and has spearheaded curricular enrichment initiatives for underrepresented students and trainees at the post-doctoral, graduate, undergraduate, and high school levels.

Sanjeev Vaishnavi, MD, PhD


Sanjeev Vaishnavi, MD, PhD is an assistant professor of Neurology at the University of Pennsylvania, Perelman School of Medicine. He is board certified in Neurology, and has fellowship training in cognitive neurology with an emphasis on Alzheimer’s disease and related diseases.

Dr. Vaishnavi graduated from Georgia Institute of Technology with a B.S. in Applied Biology and then studied medicine (M.D.) and doctoral training (Ph.D. in Neuroscience) at Washington University in St. Louis as part of the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP). He then came to the University of Pennsylvania, Perelman School of Medicine to train in Neurology, including a UCNS-certified fellowship in Cognitive and Behavioral Neurology.

Dr. Vaishnavi specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of older adults with cognitive impairment and dementia, including Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative conditions, and training medical students, neurology residents, and fellows to be the next generation of leaders. His research has focused on using advanced imaging techniques including functional connectivity MRI and PET to understand learning and aging related changes in the resting human brain, and at the Penn Memory Center, he does clinical research to discover better ways to diagnose and treat neurodegenerative diseases, with an emphasis on early diagnosis and prevention.


Dr. Vaishnavi is accepting new patient appointments through the Penn Memory Center. To schedule an appointment, call 215-662-7810.

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Dawn Mechanic-Hamilton, PhD



Dr. Mechanic-Hamilton earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology with a concentration in Neuropsychology from Drexel University. She completed her internship at Brown University and postdoctoral fellowship in clinical neuropsychology at the University of Pennsylvania. She joined the Penn Memory Center as an Instructor in the Department of Psychiatry in 2012.

Dr. Mechanic-Hamilton’s research has focused on memory systems and functional imaging. Her clinical focus at the Penn Memory Center is on neuropsychological assessment and cognitive and behavioral intervention in patients with cognitive impairment. She is a co-facilitator of the Cognitive Fitness Program.

Neuropsychology Trainees

Emma Rhodes, MA


Emma is a doctoral student in clinical psychology, specializing in neuropsychology, at Temple University. She is currently completing a clinical practicum at the Penn Memory Center, performing neuropsychological assessments with clinical and research patients and helping to facilitate the Cognitive Fitness Program. Her research interests include the influence of sociocultural and health factors on cognitive aging, as well as executive dysfunction in older adults. She earned a BA in psychology from Kenyon College in 2007 and an MA in counseling psychology from Northwestern University in 2009.

Kara Rudisill, MS


Kara is a doctoral student in clinical psychology at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM). Kara is a practicum student at the Penn Memory Center for the 2016-2017 year, performing neuropsychological assessments with clinical and research patients under the supervision of Dr. Mechanic-Hamilton, Ph.D. Kara received a MS from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. Kara also completed neuropsychological practicum placements at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the Center for Brief Therapy at PCOM.

Shalom Shapiro, MA


Shalom is a doctoral candidate at Widener University’s Institute for Graduate Clinical Psychology. He is completing his pre-doctoral internship at PMC. As an intern, he performs neuropsychological assessments with clinical and research patients and assists with the Cognitive Fitness Program. After earning his undergraduate and graduate degrees in Talmudic Law from Ner Israel Rabbinical College in Baltimore, Shalom began his clinical psychology training at Widener and completed a concentration in school psychology. In addition, he has completed practicum placements at Tower Hill School in Wilmington, DE, Temple University’s Episcopal Campus Acute Psychiatric Unit, and Baldi Middle School in Northeast Philadelphia, as well as a neuropsychology internship at Widener University’s Neuropsychology Assessment Center. Shalom is interested in the relationship between personality and neuropsychological functioning, as well as in the integration of neuropsychological assessment and psychotherapy.

Kayci Vickers, MS


Kayci is a doctoral student at Drexel University studying clinical psychology, with a focus in neuropsychology. Her research has focused on consistency in decision making in adult populations and rehabilitation techniques to regain cognitive functioning after brain injury. In the future, she hopes to continue this line of research with the goal of improving rehabilitation outcomes and treatment recommendations for individuals experiencing cognitive decline. Prior to joining the Penn Memory Center as a neuropsychology practicum student, Kayci earned her master’s degree in clinical psychology from Drexel University and her bachelor’s degree in behavioral neuroscience at the University of Kansas.

Research Nursing

Marianne Watson, RN



Marianne Watson, senior research nurse, has been with the Penn Memory Center since 1993. Marianne conducts screening evaluations and assessments of research participants, handles a wide range of research recruitment, and provides patient and family support. She has extensive clinical experience with the dynamics of the Alzheimer patient and their family.

She manages key aspects of our NACC program including the normal control cohort, our brain donation program, and biological samples collection. She is also involved in various aspects of our diagnostic and investigational drug trial research.

Marianne’s commitment to research extends beyond her professional role at the PMC. She is a long-time participant in the Harvard Nurses Health Study II, the size, duration and scope of which is unmatched in the history of women’s health research.


Felicia Greenfield, MSW, LCSW



Felicia Greenfield is a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) and Director of Clinical Research Operations and Care Programs at the Penn Memory Center. She is also a part-time lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania in the School of Social Policy and Practice. Felicia earned a Master’s in Social Work from the Penn in 2008 and completed her clinical training, also at Penn, in the Section of Geriatric Psychiatry. Felicia’s clinical practice focuses on issues affecting older adults with a particular emphasis on dementia caregivers. She is a provider of individual, family and group therapy and teaches caregiving classes to spouses and adult children who support loved ones with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. Felicia supervises Master’s level students of Social Work from Penn’s Aging Concentration completing their year-long internship at the Penn Memory Center.

Affiliated Researchers

Amy Bleakley, PhD, MPH


Dr. Amy Bleakley is a senior research scientist at the Annenberg School for Communication. Her research focuses on investigating media effects on health risk behaviors and using theory to create evidence-based health interventions. Specific content areas of interest within mostly adolescent populations include sexual behavior, tobacco use, STD/HIV prevention, and obesity-related behaviors, as well as media use and exposure. Dr. Bleakley has methodological and statistical expertise in survey research, structural equation modeling, and theory testing. Dr. Bleakley’s research has been published in numerous academic journals, including American Journal of Public Health, Pediatrics, JAMA Pediatrics (formerly Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine), Journal of Sex Research, Journal of Health Communication, Health Education and Behavior, Journal of Adolescent Health, and Media Psychology. She received her M.P.H. and Ph.D. in Sociomedical Sciences from Columbia University. She is assisting with the Messaging study.

Karen Glanz, PhD, MPH


Karen Glanz, PhD, MPH is George A. Weiss University Professor, Professor of Epidemiology in the Perelman School of Medicine, Professor of Nursing in the School of Nursing, and Director of the University of Pennsylvania Prevention Research Center. She is a Senior Fellow of the Leonard Davis Institute on Health Economics, the Center for Public Health Initiatives, and the Penn Institute for Urban Research, and a Distinguished Fellow of the Annenberg Public Policy Center. She was previously at Emory University (2004-2009), the University of Hawaii (1993 to 2004), and Temple University.


Amy Jordan, PhD


Amy Jordan is the Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies and an adjunct full professor at the Annenberg School for Communication, where she teaches courses focused on communication behavior and children and media. Her expertise is in the area of media effects, with a particular interest in health outcomes.  Dr. Jordan is Director of the Communication and Dissemination Core for the UPenn Prevention Research Center, and Co-Principal Investigator for two CDC-funded projects focused on creating and testing culturally sensitive health-related media communications. She and Dr. Jason Karlawish lead PMC’s messaging study and Penn’s Healthy Brain Research Network Center.

Paul J. Moberg, PhD, ABPP


Dr. Moberg serves as the consulting faculty neuropsychologist for the Penn Memory Center / Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (ADRC). He is also consulting neuropsychologist at the Parkinson’s Disease Research, Education and Clinical Center (PADRECC) at the Philadelphia Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

Dr. Moberg is an Associate Professor of Neuropsychology in the Departments of Psychiatry, Neurology, and Otorhinolaryngology: Head & Neck Surgery at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He is the Director of Clinical Services for the Brain-Behavior Laboratory (BBL) in the Neuropsychiatry program and is the Co-Director of the Olfaction and Gustation Laboratory in the BBL.

He earned his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology/ Neuropsychology from the University of Health Sciences/The Chicago Medical School and completed an internship and postdoctoral fellowship in clinical neuropsychology at the University of Florida. Dr. Moberg is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association (APA), Division 40 (Clinical Neuropsychology) of APA, the Pennsylvania Psychological Association (PPA), and the National Academy of Neuropsychology (NAN). He is board certified in Clinical Neuropsychology by the American Board of Professional Psychology (ABPP).

Click here to learn more about Dr. Moberg’s research

Jessica Mozersky, PhD


Jessica Mozersky received her PhD in Anthropology from University College London. Her research explores the cultural and ethical implications of genomics for individuals and populations. Jessica is the author of Risky Genes: Genetics, Breast Cancer, and Jewish Identity (Routledge 2013) based on her doctoral dissertation, and has published articles in American Journal of Empirical Bioethics, Biosocieties, Genome Medicine, Genetics in Medicine, andSociology of Health and Illness.  She is currently a Mellon postdoctoral fellow at the New School for Social Research, and previously held a postdoctoral research position at the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for the Integration of Genetic Healthcare Technologies.  Jessica also has extensive experience working in international cancer genetic clinical trials, and is currently a Senior Associate in the American College of Physicians Center for Ethics, Professionalism and Human Rights. She is assisting Kristin Harkins on the SOKRATES study.

Shana Stites, PsyD, MA, MS


Dr. Shana Stites is a clinical psychologist and quantitative researcher.  She is a Senior Research Investigator within the Penn Project on Precision Medicine for the Brain (P3MB).  In this role, Dr. Stites works with P3MB investigators to lead and conduct studies addressing ethical, legal, and social challenges that arise in the context of precision medicine for neurological and psychiatric diseases. Dr. Stites earned a doctorate in clinical psychology from Chestnut Hill College and MA in Sociology from Lehigh University. She completed her internship at Corporal Michael J. Crescenz VA Medical Center. Her clinical concentration was in neuropsychology with special interests in multicultural competency and applied research.

John Q. Trojanowski, MD, PhD

Dr. John Trojanowski

Dr. John Trojanowski is the William Maul Measey-Truman G. Schnabel, Jr. MD Professor of Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine; Co-Director, Center for Neurodegenerative Disease Research (CNDR); Director, Institute on Aging & Director (IOA); Director, Alzheimer’s Disease Core Center; and Director, Penn Udall Center for Parkinson’s Research

In addition, he co-directs the Marian S. Ware Alzheimer’s Program established in 2004. He is the principal investigator on the Penn Biomarker Core of the NIH/NIA Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI), a landmark study launched by the National Institute on Aging to find methods for monitoring the progression of AD and improving methods of imaging, and the validation of biomarker data. Dr. Trojanowski is responsible for the neuropathology cores in several studies in collaboration with Alzheimer’s Disease Centers across the nation and Parkinson’s disease research projects.

Click here to learn more about Dr. Trojanowski’s research

Dr. Trojanowski’s work is exclusively neuropathology research-related; he does not conduct patient appointments.

Sharon Xie, PhD


Dr. Sharon Xie is an Associate Professor of Biostatistics in the Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, and Director of the Biostatistics Core of Penn’s Alzheimer’s DIsease Core Center (ADCC).

Click here to learn more about Dr. Xie’s research

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