Chief Science Officer
George Perry, Ph.D.
Professor of Biology and Chemistry
Chief Scientist, Brain Health Consortium
Semmes Foundation Distinguished University Chair in Neurobiology
University of Texas at San Antonio
George Perry, Ph.D., is Dean of the College of Sciences and the Semmes Foundation Distinguished University Chair in Neurobiology at the University of Texas at San Antonio. He obtained his Ph.D. from Scripps Institution of Oceanography in 1979 and received a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Cell Biology at Baylor College of Medicine where he laid the foundation for his observations of abnormalities in cell structures. Dr. Perry is distinguished as one of the top Alzheimer’s disease researchers with over 1,000 publications, one of the top 100 most-cited scientists in neuroscience and behavior, and one of the top 25 scientists in free radical research. He is editor for numerous journals and is editor-in-chief for the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.
Internationally recognized, he is a Foreign Correspondent Member of the Spanish Royal Academy of Sciences, the Academy of Science Lisbon, and a Foreign Member of the Mexican National Academy of Sciences. He is also a recipient of the National Plaque of Honor from the Republic of Panama Ministry of Science and Technology. Dr. Perry’s research is primarily focused on how Alzheimer’s disease develops and the physiological consequences of the disease at a cellular level. He is currently working to determine the sequence of events leading to damage caused by and the source of increased oxygen radicals along with routes to provide more effective treatment.
Daniel Amen, M.D.
Director of the Amen Clinics
Costa Mesa, CA
Dr. Amen has helped millions of people change their brains and lives through his health clinics, best-selling books, products and public television programs. . Amen is one of America’s leading psychiatrists and brain health experts. He has authored or coauthored 70 professional articles and more than 30 books, including New York Times mega-bestseller Change Your Brain, Change Your Life . He has appeared on numerous television shows including Dr. Phil, Larry King, Dr. Oz, The Doctors , and The View .
His breakthrough public television programs on brain and mental health have made him well loved by millions of viewers seeking guidance on memory, attention, other cognitive functions, emotional issues, behavior, and more.
The Washington Post has called Dr. Amen “America’s most popular psychiatrist” because of his wildly popular clinics which have over 4,000 patient visits a month and has the world’s largest database of functional brain scans relating to behavior, totaling over 130,000 scans on patients from 111 countries. His work has been featured in Newsweek, Time, Huffington Post, ABC World News, 20/20, BBC, London Telegraph, Parade Magazine, New York Times, New York Times Magazine, Washington Post, LA Times, Men’s Health, Bottom Line and Cosmopolitan .
Ma Gloria Borras-Boneu, M.D.
GRD Health Institute
Dr. Borras-Boneu graduated from the Medical School of Barcelona in 1980. She developed her research in Immunology and Enzymes in Chronic Diseases, and specialized in Women’s Health. She stayed at the MD Anderson Cancer Center at Houston, University of Texas, and afterwards as Research Fellow in Harvard Medical School, to work in Endocrinology and Immunobiology of human neoplasms. At Harvard University she started the disciplines of mind and body coordination, with breathing, movement and mental focusing.
By 1990 she came back to Barcelona and worked as a hospital medical doctor, where she taught and participated in research. She kept up her oriental practice which allowed her to receive training as a Kundalini Yoga and Sat Nam Rasayan Meditation Teacher.
After 2000 she developed her practice in the Corachan Clinic and started the Consciousness, Health and Medicine program in the GRD Medic Health Institute. She is a member of the Scientific Advisory Council for the Alzheimer’s Research and Prevention Foundation in Tucson (USA). She collaborates in the GRD Centre for Medicine and Humanology Foundation in Espanola (USA), and is a member of the section for Natural Medicine in COMB and the Medical Sciences Academy of Catalonia and Balearic islands.
Hiroko H. Dodge, Ph.D.
Director; Kevreson Research Professor of Neurology
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Oregon Health & Science University
Dr. Dodge has been directing two Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) Centers’ Data Cores jointly: the NIA-funded Layton Aging and Alzheimer’s Disease Center (ADC) at Oregon Health &Science University (OHSU) and the Michigan ADC. She has over 20 years of experience working as a statistician in the field of dementia research. In addition to her statistical expertise, her research interests cover a wide range of areas, including epidemiology of dementia, cross cultural comparisons on healthy aging between Okinawa, Japan and Oregon collaborating with the Okinawa Centenarian Study project, application of demographic methods to clinical research, longitudinal data analyses and clinical trial methods. She recently created a Professional Interest Area (PIA) entitled “Clinical Trials Advancements and Outcomes” in the International Society to Advance Alzheimer’s Research (ISTAART, an international AD research organization sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Association). This PIA creates an international researchers’ forum where innovative clinical trial approaches, developments of outcomes sensitive to trial effects, and unique non-pharmacological trials are being introduced and discussed. Her most recently completed NIA funded R01 examined whether stimulations through social interactions using modern communication technologies (pc, webcams and Internet) could improve cognitive functions. She holds Fellow status at the Gerontological Society of America and serves as a statistical editor for several dementia-related journals.
Elissa Epel, Ph.D.
Department of Psychiatry
University of California San Francisco
Dr. Epel’s research aims to elucidate mechanisms of healthy aging, and to apply this basic science to scalable interventions that can reach vulnerable populations. She is the Director of the Aging, Metabolism, and Emotions Center, and the Center for Obesity Assessment, Study, & Treatment (COAST), and Associate Director of the Center for Health and Community. She studies psychological, social, and behavioral pathways underlying chronic psychological stress and stress resilience that impact cellular aging.
She also studies the interconnections between stress, addiction, eating, and metabolic health. With her collaborators, she is conducting clinical trials to examine the effect of self regulation and mindfulness training programs on cellular aging, weight, diet, and glucose control. Dr. Epel studied psychology and psychobiology at Stanford (BA), and clinical and health psychology at Yale (Ph.D). . Epel has received several awards including the APA Early Career Award, the Academy of Behavioral Medicine Research Neal Miller Young Investigator Award, and the 2017 Silver Innovator Award from the Alliance for Aging Research. Her research has been featured in venues such as TEDMED, NBC’s Today Show, and in many science documentaries. She co-authored “The Telomere Effect” (2017) with Elizabeth Blackburn, Ph.D., a NYT bestseller under the category of Science.
Karen Innes, MSPH, Ph.D.
Professor, Department of Epidemiology
Robert C. Byrd Health Sciences Center
WVU School of Public Health, Morgantown, WV
As an epidemiologist and clinical researcher, Dr. Innes’ work focuses on the etiology, prevention, and management of chronic, age-related disorders linked to stress, sympathetic activation, and metabolic dysregulation. Her current research includes clinical trials to investigate the potential utility of yoga in the prevention and management of chronic insulin resistance conditions, funded by grants from the NIH National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine and the Office of Research on Women’s Health, as well as research initiatives regarding the potential benefits of mind-body interventions in adults with early stage Alzheimer’s disease (and their caregivers), Parkinson’s disease, restless legs syndrome, and osteoarthritis.
Additional research projects include investigations regarding the determinants, distribution, and sequellae of sleep impairment in both adolescents and older adults, including the role of sympathetic activation and metabolic dysregulation in the etiology and progression of specific sleep disorders, and more recently, the relation of specific environmental pollutants to the development of chronic, proinflammatory, age-related conditions, including cancer, diabetes, and osteoarthritis.
Richard S. Isaacson, M.D.
Director, Alzheimer’s Prevention Clinic
Weill Cornell Medical College New York, NY
Dr. Isaacson specializes exclusively in Alzheimer’s Disease risk reduction and treatment, mild cognitive impairment due to Alzheimer’s, and pre-clinical Alzheimer’s. His research focuses on nutrition and the implementation and longitudinal assessment of dietary intervention for Alzheimer’s management. Dr. Isaacson’s research has been presented at scientific meetings nationally and internationally, and he was awarded the 2009 AAN A.B. Baker Teacher Recognition Award.
Dr. Isaacson has chaired the AAN Undergraduate Education Subcommittee working group in dementia and in turn received the AAN Education Research Grant for “Evaluating the effectiveness of Continuum: Dementia as a teaching tool for medical students” which was published in Neurology. Dr. Isaacson also has experience with the personal side to this disease– as several of his family members have had Alzheimer’s. This has been a driving force behind his dedication and passion towards preventing AD through a comprehensive, multi-modal approach. Dr. Isaacson is the author of two-best selling books for parents, caregivers, and patients: Alzheimer’s Treatment Alzheimer’s Prevention: A Patient & Family Guide; The Alzheimer’s Prevention Diet: A Step-by- Step Nutritional Approach for Memory Loss Prevention & Treatment.
Sat Bir Singh Khalsa, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Harvard Medical School
Sleep Disorders Research Program, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, MA
Sat Bir Singh Khalsa, Ph.D., the KRI Director of Research, received his doctorate in human physiology and neuroscience at the University of Toronto and has conducted research in neuroscience, biological rhythms, sleep and sleep disorders for more than 25 years. He has been involved in the practice of yoga for more than 35 years and is a KRI certified Kundalini Yoga. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School in the Division of Sleep Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.
His current research is both basic and clinical and centers on the effectiveness of yoga and meditation practices; he is currently conducting clinical research trials evaluating a yoga treatment for insomnia funded by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine of the National Institutes of Health. In active collaboration with the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health, he directs their research team and is involved in a current project that evaluates the benefits of yoga for professional musicians, among others. He has additional collaborations examining the role of yoga as a therapeutic treatment for conditions such as diabetes, stress, and cardiovascular disease.
Dr. Khalsa has established relationships with fellow yoga researchers in the US as well as in Europe and India, where he routinely attends and presents at international yoga research conferences. He also teaches Mind Body Medicine at Harvard Medical School, which provides medical students with direct exposure to Kundalini Yoga.
Tejinder K. Khalsa, M.D., M.S., FRCP
Fellow, General Internal Medicine
Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN
Dr. Tej K. Khalsa is completing her fellowship at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, in the Division of General Internal Medicine. She is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Canada, previously completing Internal Medicine Residency at the University of Calgary and her Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of British Columbia. Dr. Khalsa has a background in gender analysis, and a Master of Science in Gender, Development and Globalization from the London School of Economics. Dr. Khalsa has won national and international public health awards, including the Rising Star Award in Public Health Promotion from the World Hypertension League, where she served as a project coordinator for the International Consortium for Quality Research on Dietary Sodium.
Dr. Khalsa’s peer-reviewed journal articles focus on her ongoing interest in the importance of prevention and control in the treatment of hypertension. Related projects include curriculum and course development, authoring and illustrating electronic media presentations, and teaching at the Mayo Clinic.
Miia Kivipelto, M.D., Ph.D.
Professor of Clinical Geriatric Epidemiology at Karolinska Institute
Deputy Head of the Aging Research Center
Miia’s research focuses on prevention, early diagnosis and treatment of cognitive impairment, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Through epidemiological studies she has identified midlife vascular and lifestyle risk factors for later dementia/AD and aims to build on these observations to improve knowledge transfer and public awareness and to design intervention trials to mitigate these factors including lifestyle manipulations, such as exercise interventions. Miia is principal investigator for the population-based study Cardiovascular Risk Factors, Aging and Dementia (CAIDE) and the Finnish Geriatric Intervention Study to Prevent Cognitive Impairment and Disability (FINGER), one of the first multi-domain intervention studies in the world aimed at preventing or postponing dementia. She is also part of a Europe’s first-ever European Dementia Prevention Initiative (EDPI).
Miia leads a group of multidisciplinary researchers that includes 4 postdocs and 9 doctoral students. Her group has close connections with the University of Eastern Finland and the National Institute of Health and Welfare in Helsinki and this collaboration has led to the development of the Nordic Brain Network (NBN), which has increased the utilization and exchange of resources and information about aging. She is also involved in many international networks and scientific/steering committees. Miia has received several awards including: Junior Chamber International: Ten Outstanding Young Persons of the World 2011; Academy of Finland Award for Social Impact 2009; The Association of European Psychiatrists and European Bristol-Myers Squibb Prevention Award in Psychiatry 2007 and Martti Hämäläinen’s Award for Young Researcher 2002.
Karen Koffler, M.D.
Osher Center for Integrative Medicine
University of Miami, FL
Dr. Karen Koffler works with patients on a consultative and longitudinal basis to provide Integrative Care. She received her medical degree at the University of Miami and completed her training in Internal Medicine in Chicago and the University of Colorado. She began her career as an emergency room physician in a variety of settings and helped to develop the first Hospitalist program for Kaiser Permanente in Denver.
Dr. Koffler was accepted into the first class of physicians trained by Dr. Andrew Weil at the University of Arizona. After a 2-year fellowship focused on expanding her conventional training to include nutrition, herbs, vitamins, and supplements, mind-body therapies, spirituality, Chinese medicine and acupuncture, and other alternative approaches to healing, she was recruited to Evanston Northwestern Healthcare in Chicago to design and run an Integrative Medical Clinic. In her 7-year tenure there, she proved to be a resource to the community through her influence on pharmacies in carrying supplements, educational programs and research. In 2006, she joined Canyon Ranch to spearhead their new Health and Wellness Department at Canyon Ranch Miami Beach. As the director, she saw how effective lifestyle changes were in addressing common diseases and in creating well-being. She oversaw a staff of multiple integrative clinicians who worked together to optimize an individual’s health.
She is one of a small group of physicians in the country certified in Functional Medicine, boarded in Integrative Medicine and is on the teaching staff of the Institute for Functional Medicine.
Helen Lavretsky, M.D.
UCLA Semel Institute and Resnick Neuropsychiatric Hospital
Los Angeles, CA
Helen Lavretsky, MD, is a Professor of Psychiatry in the Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at UCLA, and the Semel Scholar in Integrative Mental Health. She directs a research program in Late-life depression, stress, and wellness program at the Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior at UCLA. Dr. Lavretsky is a recipient of the career development and other research awards from National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) and the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH), and other research grants. Her current research interest is in developing mind-body approaches to treatment and prevention of mood and cognitive disorders in older adults using medications, memory training, exercise, Tai-Chi, yoga and meditation.
After receiving her Medical Degree from the Moscow Medical Institute, Dr. Lavretsky performed her residency in Psychiatry at UCLA-San Fernando Valley Residency Program, followed by the UCLA Fellowship in Geriatric Psychiatry, and the national VA Research Fellowship in Neurosciences. She received her Degree of Master of Science in Clinical Research from UCLA in 2004. She is Board-certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology with added Geriatric Qualifications, and by the American Board of Holistic and Integrative Medicine. She is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association and a Fellow of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology.
Nancy Emerson Lombardo, Ph.D.
Adjunct Research Assistant Professor of Neurology
Boston University, School of Medicine
Alzheimer’s Disease Center, Boston, MA
Dr. Nancy Emerson Lombardo is a passionate advocate for people with Alzheimer’s and other brain diseases. She co-founded the Alzheimer’s Association and Alzheimer’s Disease International. These non-profit organizations enhance support for patients and families, educate, and promote research and public action on prevention and treatment. Currently, she serves on the Medical Scientific Advisory Committee for the MA/NH Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association.
Dr. Emerson Lombardo is Adjunct Research Assistant Professor of Neurology at Boston University School of Medicine, and BU Alzheimer’s Disease Center and recipient of an Alzheimer’s Association grant to study a combination of nutritional supplements. She is Founder and President of the Brain Health and Wellness Center which promotes over 11 evidence-based brain healthy lifestyles. Using modern nutritional neuroscience techniques, Dr. Emerson Lombardo integrated the results of hundreds of scientific studies into the Memory Preservation Nutrition® (MNP™) program. Following the MPN program can promote cognitive and emotional brain health for people at every age. She has developed menus for stronger minds with her delicious, science-based recipes.
Dr. Nancy Emerson Lombardo delivers presentations nationally and internationally advocating on behalf of integrative science and medicine towards healthy brain aging. She offers consultations and coaching to individuals and organizations, including guidance on customizing and implementing the Memory Preservation Nutrition program.
Lisa Mosconi, Ph.D.
Associate Director, Alzheimer’s Prevention Clinic
Weill Cornell Medical College
New York, NY
Dr. Lisa Mosconi founded and was the director of the Nutrition & Brain Fitness Lab at New York University School of Medicine (NYU). She was also an Assistant Professor of the NYU Department of Psychiatry, where she served as the director of the Family History of Alzheimer’s disease research program.
Dr. Mosconi holds a Ph.D in Neuroscience & Nuclear Medicine, and is certified Integrative Nutritionist and holistic healthcare practitioner. She is well known for her research on the early detection of Alzheimer’s disease in at-risk individuals using brain imaging techniques such as PET and MRI scans. She is passionately interested in how the risk of memory loss and Alzheimer’s disease can be mitigated, if not prevented through the combination of appropriate medical care and lifestyle modifications involving diet, nutrition, physical and intellectual fitness.
Dr. Mosconi has published over 100 peer-reviewed papers in prestigious medical journals. She has also served as guest editor for several peer-reviewed, international medical journals. Her research has received both grants and several awards, such as the Young Investigator in Neurosciences Award. Dr. Mosconi has presented at over 80 international conferences leading to press releases involving TV and radio networks world-wide.
Andrew Newberg, M.D.
Director, Marcus Institute of Integrative Health
Myrna Brind Center Jefferson University Hospital
Dr. Andrew Newberg is the director of research at the Marcus Institute of Integrative Health and a physician at Jefferson University Hospital. He is board certified in internal medicine and nuclear medicine.
Dr. Newberg’s research now largely focuses on how brain function is associated with various mental states—in particular, religious and mystical experiences. In fact, he has written several highly acclaimed books on this subject. His research has included brain scans of people in prayer, meditation, rituals, and trance states, as well as surveys of people’s spiritual experiences and attitudes. Dr. Newberg has also evaluated the relationship between religious or spiritual phenomena and health, and the effect of meditation on memory. He believes that it is important to keep science rigorous and religion religious.
Dr. Newberg has also used neuroimaging research projects to study aging and dementia, Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy, depression, and other neurological and psychiatric disorders. He is a pioneer in the neurological study of religious and spiritual experiences, a field known as “neurotheology.”
Arti Prasad M.D., FACP
Chief of Medicine, Hennepin Medical Center
Professor/ Vice Chair of Medicine, University of Minnesota
Dr. Arti Prasad has special interests in integrative health and culturally-inspired patient care, inter-professional education, community engagement, and physician well-being.
Her career path was influenced by the world’s worst industrial disaster at the time involving Union Carbide in Bhopal in 1984 during her final year of medical school. She moved to the United States in 1988 and began her residency training in Internal Medicine at SUNY Health Science Center in Syracuse before moving to the University of New Mexico to complete her training. She also completed a fellowship in Integrative Medicine at the University of Arizona Medical Center and a leadership training called Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine at Drexel University.
While at the University of New Mexico as a faculty member, she developed the Center for Life, a center for patient care, learning, and community education. The Center for Life has received national recognition for its patient-centered clinical care and outcomes, innovative teaching programs, and wellness initiatives.
Katerina Sheardova, M.D.
Head of the Memory Center by ICRC/FNUSA Brno
International Clinical Research Center
St. Anne’s Teaching Hospital, Brno, Czech Republic
Dr. Sheardova’s principal research interests are to further the understanding of the epidemiology of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. A primary focus of her research is the identification of biomarkers for the diagnosis and related lifestyle factors specifically spirituality in prediction and/or progression of Alzheimer’s disease. As a neurologist, Dr. Sheardova works with patients who have a wide range of memory disorders and preforms clinical trials studying Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders.
Michelle Sierpina, Ph.D.
Founding Director, UTMB Osher Institute for Lifelong Learning
University of Texas Medical Branch
Dr. Michelle Sierpina, Founding Director of Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at (UTMB) in Galveston, Texas, began her work in eldercare in the 1960’s. She developed a series of lifestory writing and sharing group modalities which, taken together, form The Pentimento Project. Combining lifestory with Visible Lives storyboard intervention, and TimeSlips©, storytelling group modality for those with dementia, she offers facilitator training in UTMB’s Creativity Continuum to health care professionals, lay persons, and volunteers in Texas and around the country. She guides others in forming and leading lifestory groups from New York to Nevada and New Zealand to Greece and recently Italy and Russia.
She has taught at UT Houston Center on Aging, University of Nevada, Reno, St. George’s Medical University in Grenada, and at conferences around the nation, as well as in UTMB’s Institute for the Medical Humanities and School of Nursing Graduate Program. Sierpina has published peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on topics in gerontology, spirituality, and creativity in elders. Continuing her research on lifestory writing and sharing groups, she studies and nurtures creativity among elders across the entire continuum of functional capability.
Under her leadership, OLLI at UTMB has received three consecutive $100,000 annual grants from the Bernard Osher Foundation and a $1 million endowment (with $50,000 bridge funding) in 2008.