Faculty willing to give educational talks in Boston and surrounding communities about prevention, brain health, warning signs for Alzheimer’s disease and opportunities for clinical trials.
Rebecca Amariglio is a clinical neuropsychologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the Massachusetts General Hospital and Assistant Professor in Neurology at Harvard Medical School. Her work focuses on using sensitive subjective and objective cognitive tools in the early detection of Alzheimer’s disease. After completing her doctoral degree at the University of New Mexico, she trained as an intern at Yale School of Medicine and as a post-doctoral fellow at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital. Her work is funded by the NIH and the Alzheimer’s Association.
Translational Neurology Head of the Interdisciplinary Brain Center, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School.
Dr. Steven E. Arnold is Translational Neurology Head of the Interdisciplinary Brain Center at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. After receiving his M.D. from Boston University, Dr. Arnold completed residency training in Psychiatry at the New York State Psychiatric Institute / Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center in New York and residency training in Neurology at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City. He also completed fellowship training in Behavioral Neurology / Cognitive Neuroscience and was a post-doctoral associate in Neuroanatomy in Iowa. Dr. Arnold is board certified in both neurology and psychiatry. After his training, Dr. Arnold joined the faculty at the University of Pennsylvania where he was Professor of Psychiatry and Neurology until his move to Massachusetts General Hospital in 2015. At Penn, he was Director of the Penn Memory Center, Associate Director and Clinical Core Leader of the Alzheimer’s Disease Core Center, Director of the Geriatric Psychiatry Section in the Department of Psychiatry, Director of the Cellular and Molecular Neuropathology Program in Psychiatry, and Associate Director of the University of Pennsylvania’s Institute on Aging.
Dr. Arnold has conducted longstanding research on neurodegenerative disease pathology and molecular biomarkers in relation to cognitive decline and psychiatric syndromes in late life and has led broad clinical and translational research programs. He has authored over 250 scientific articles, reviews and chapters. Specific scientific interests include biomarkers for clinical trials in aging and dementias, metabolic and vascular risk factors for dementia and protective factors that account for cognitive resilience in aging.
Department of Psychiatry, Brigham and Women's Hospital
The Harvard Aging Brain Study, Massachusetts General Hospital
Kelsey D. Biddle is a clinical research coordinator in the Department of Psychiatry at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH). After completing her bachelor’s degree in Neuroscience at Dartmouth College, Kelsey began working as a research assistant at BWH and Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) where she performs clinical assessments for the Harvard Aging Brain Study. She also assists with the research of Nancy J. Donovan, M.D., a geriatric psychiatrist whose work focuses on the detection of neuropsychiatric symptoms and social behavioral changes in preclinical Alzheimer’s disease. Kelsey’s research with Dr. Donovan has investigated the relationship of social activities with cognitive outcomes in cognitively normal older adults. Kelsey plans to pursue a career in medicine and specialty training in neuropsychiatry.
Katie Brandt is a nationally known advocate, educator and trainer for families and professionals caring for individuals with Alzheimer’s Disease, Frontotemporal Dementia (FTD) and related disorders. Katie harnesses the power of her personal experiences as a dementia caregiver to highlight the unique challenges that families face when dementia is present at a young age. Katie is the Director of Caregiver Support Services and Public Relations for the Massachusetts General Hospital Frontotemporal Disorders Unit, a member of the National Alzheimer’s Project Act (NAPA) Advisory Council, and a co-facilitator of the Boston-area FTD Support Group. Through these roles, she has the honor of working with clinicians, researchers, program directors, and policy makers who have dedicated their professional careers to improving life for those living with dementia. Katie is certified as an Alzheimer’s Care Manager in Massachusetts and as a trainer for the Habilitation Therapy model of care for persons living with dementia.
Outreach Research Assistant II
Orett joined the Center for Alzheimer Research and Treatment (CART) at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital during the summer of 2017 after graduating and studying biology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He was interested in learning more about Alzheimer’s after his grandmother became bedridden due to this disease. For two years, he worked as a clinical and outreach research assistant which involved administering electrocardiograms (ECGs), drawing blood, taking vital signs and many other tasks. Also, he participated or presented at outreach events in the Boston area to help educate underserved communities about this disease and preventative measures. In June of 2019, he wanted to spend more time in the community, so in June of 2019, he was promoted to outreach research assistant II. In his current role, he presents more in underserved communities, conducts a research project which will help clinicians find more patients that could be eligible for research, and other tasks such as program development. With this experience, he intends to use everything he has learned about medicine, how to communicate with participants and the importance of listening to people’s concerns in the community as he plans on attending medical school.
Fun Fact: He played basketball collegiately at Dickinson College (Div. III) and his team made it to the Elite 8 in 2013. Also, he is notoriously known for only eating the same food item at each restaurant, in his defense, he often says, “Why disappoint yourself?”
Attending physician and scientist, Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital
Assistant in Neurology, Harvard Medical School.
Jasmeer Chhatwal is a research-oriented neurologist who is fascinated by the complex neurobiology that underlies human memory and the manner in which advanced age and neurodegenerative disease both diminish our capacity to form memories and recall information. He studied biology and philosophy at Yale University, neuroscience and medicine at Emory University, and clinical investigation at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Chhatwal has been based at Massachusetts General and Brigham and Women’s Hospitals since 2009, when he started as a resident in Adult Neurology. He is now an attending physician and scientist in the MGH Department of Neurology, and an assistant in neurology at Harvard Medical School.
Dr. Chhatwal’s central interest is to deepen our understanding of how neurodegenerative diseases degrade cognitive neural networks and to apply this knowledge to help patients with memory disorders. His current research uses multi-modal neuroimaging (PET, functional and structural MRI), pharmacology, and genetics to better understand what differentiates individuals aging normally from those early on the pathway to neuro degeneration and severe cognitive decline. He has a particular interest in genetic susceptibility to Alzheimer’s disease, and serves as the MGH/BWH site leader for the Dominantly Inherited Alzheimer’s Network (please see www.dian-info.org for more information).
Brad Dickerson, M.D., is the Director of the Massachusetts General Hospital Frontotemporal Disorders Unit and Neuroimaging Lab in Boston. He holds the Tom Rickles Chair in Progressive Aphasia Research, and is a behavioral neurologist in the MGH Memory Disorders Unit and Leader of the Neuroimaging Core of the MGH Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center. He is an Associate Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School.
Dr. Dickerson runs a busy weekly clinic caring for patients with various forms of cognitive impairment and dementia, as well as providing training for clinical and research fellows. His research employs quantitative structural, functional, and molecular neuroimaging techniques, in addition to quantitative behavioral assessments, to investigate dementias as well as normal aging. He has published more than 130 articles in peer-reviewed scientific journals as well as many book chapters, and has edited two books on dementia. He is active in teaching, leading an annual course on Cognitive Neurology at the American Academy of Neurology and co-directing the annual Harvard Dementia Course. He is Chair of the Medical and Scientific Advisory Council of the Massachusetts Alzheimer's Association and is a member of the medical advisory council of the national Association for FTD. He has won a number of awards, including the American Academy of Neurology’s Norman Geschwind Award in Behavioral Neurology.
Associate Neurologist, Brigham and Women’s Hospital
Study Physician and Investigator, Center for Alzheimer Research & Treatment (CART), Brigham & Women's Hospital
Instructor in Neurology, Harvard Medical School
Seth Gale, MD is a behavioral neurologist at Brigham and Women's Hospital, with interests in a broad spectrum of cognitive/behavioral disorders. His clinical focus is in the degenerative dementias, including Alzheimer disease and frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD). Dr. Gale has research interests in the organization and practice of behavioral neurology as a neurologic sub-specialty, the optimization of dementia clinical care, and “office-based” cognitive assessment in clinical practice. At CART, Dr. Gale works as an investigator in multiple studies along the spectrum of Alzheimer's disease. Dr. Gale graduated from the Medical College of Virginia at VCU, completed a neurology residency at Tufts Medical Center, and a Behavioral Neurology and Neuropsychiatry Fellowship at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
Assistant Psychiatrist in the Division of Geriatric Psychiatry, McLean Hospital, Massachusetts General Hospital
Instructor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School
Jennifer R. Gatchel is an Assistant Psychiatrist in the Division of Geriatric Psychiatry at McLean Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital and an Instructor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School (HMS). She studied at The University of Texas-Austin, where she obtained a B.S. in Molecular Biology and a B.A. in honor liberal arts in 1999, and went on to earn a M.D. and Ph.D in Neuroscience at Baylor College of Medicine. She completed her residency in adult psychiatry in the Massachusetts General Hospital/McLean Hospital residency program, followed by the Partners Healthcare Geriatric Psychiatry Clinical Fellowship Program. She is a board certified psychiatrist.
Dr. Gatchel served as a chief resident and received the Thomas P. Hackett Award during her final year of residency. Stemming from her doctoral work on neurodegeneration, her clinical and research interests lie at the interface of mood and cognitive decline in aging. She has over eight years experience investigating mechanisms of brain-behavior relationships, which has led to publications, presentations, and Travel Fellowships (Society for Biological Psychiatry, American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, American Association of Geriatric Psychiatry).
Dr. Gatchel is a former P.R.I.T.E. Fellow and was recognized as an Honors Scholar (American Association of Geriatric Psychiatry) and Webb Fellow (Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine), and is the recipient of the 2016 American Association of Geriatric Psychiatry Member in Training Research Award. She is the recipient of the HMS Psychiatry Dupont Warren Fellowship and Livingston Award to carry out research investigating the neurobiology of depression in late life and early Alzheimer’s disease. She serves in leadership roles in resident geriatric psychiatry education.
Jess joined MGH Neurology as Dr. Steven Arnold’s Research Program Manager. She oversees protocol start-up activities for studies primarily focused on the identification and prevention of Alzheimer’s Disease. In addition, Jess is the Program Manager for the newly formed MGH Interdisciplinary Brain Center. The IBC is both a state of the art Clinical and Translational Research Unit and an academic collaboration between the MGH Departments of Neurology, Psychiatry and MGH Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging. Jess is also helping to develop a common assessment that all subjects participating in research at the CTRU could take part in; eventually she will help organize access to this data for researchers from all over the globe.
Jess’s original education and professional development were in the field of manufacturing engineering; however, all along she had an interest in integrative health and decided to pursue a career as an acupuncturist. After owning a clinic in which she saw 60+ patients per week, she transitioned over to the MGH Martinos Center and got her start in research as a research acupuncturist. Her role was to provide acupuncture therapy services to subjects enrolled in ongoing clinical and basic research studies both inside and outside the MRI scanner; and she continues to consult on NIH Program Project Grants and other clinical trials for the Martinos Center as needed. Jess also sees acupuncture patients at the BWH Pain Center.
Jess looks forward to continued collaborations with researchers of all backgrounds to further support the MGH IBC mission which is to facilitate and synergize research for brain disorders.