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Our Team

Whitney Wharton, PhD
Cognitive Neuroscientist
Principal Investigator

Dr. Wharton is a cognitive neuroscientist specializing in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and related disorders. She received her BA from the University of Texas at Austin and went on to complete her doctoral training at The George Washington University in Washington DC. She completed her postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. Her research focuses on the influence of vascular risk factors on Alzheimer’s biomarkers in individuals who are at risk for the disease due to a parental history. She conducts both observational and clinical trials that investigate the extent to which blood pressure and blood pressure medications act on brain systems known to be involved in AD neuropathology. Dr. Wharton is currently conducting an NIH/NIA funded study investigating the influence of peripheral arterial function on AD biomarkers by measuring beta-amyloid levels and blood flow in the brain in individuals at risk for AD. She is also conducting a clinical trial which will determine the effects of an FDA approved blood pressure medication on Alzheimer's Disease biomarkers in African Americans. Her secondary area of research involves the influence of sex hormones and hormone therapy on cognition and AD neuropathology.

Whitney Wharton

Danielle D. Verble, MA
Clinical Research Coordinator II

Danielle joined Emory as a Clinical Research Coordinator in March 2016 following Research Recruiter and Coordinator positions with the University of Pittsburgh, a pharmaceutical contract research organization (CRO) and University of Central Florida. Danielle received her B.A. in Psychology from Stetson University and M.A. in Mental Health Counseling with the University of Central Florida. Her research background includes the HHS funded Supporting Healthy Marriage project, NIMH funded Pittsburgh Girls Study, and numerous Phase One pharmaceutical studies.  

Danielle Verble

Hannah Pak
Clinical Research Coordinator I

Hannah is an experienced Certified Medical Assistant with a demonstrated history of working in the hospital and healthcare industry. Upon graduating from the University of Georgia with a B.F.A.C.S in Nutrition Science, she began working at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta as a Clinical Nutrition Technician. Then she proceeded to work as a CICU Support Technician. After several years of clinical experience, she progressed in her career as a Certified Medical Assistant at Emory University Hospital Midtown before joining Emory University as a Clinical Research Coordinator for Alzheimer Disease.

Andrea Kippels, MSN, BSN
Nurse Practitioner

Andrea Kippels earned a BSN from Northwestern State University of Louisiana, MSN (Nursing Education, Psychiatry/Geriatrics) and Post-Masters Certificate (FNP) from Emory University. She has 20 years of experience as a Nurse Practitioner in Geriatrics and Cognitive Disorders. Since 2003, Andie has provided clinical management, education, and support for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease, Lewy Body Dementia, and Frontotemporal Dementia. She has facilitated educational support groups with Mild Cognitive Impairment clients and their families. She coordinates clinical trials for Alzheimer’s disease and FTD.

Andrea Kippels

Alexandra Brown
Undergraduate Research Assistant

Alexandra is a fourth-year undergraduate student at Emory University from Princeton, New Jersey. She is a declared neuroscience and behavioral biology major and global health minor with the plan to receive a bachelor of science. Alexandra is also a member of Emory’s Varsity Women’s Swimming and Diving Team. After receiving her undergraduate degree at Emory, she plans to attend either graduate school or medical school.

Alex Brown

Sonum Tharwani
Undergraduate Research Assistant

Sonum is a fourth-year undergraduate student at Emory University from Cary, North Carolina. She is majoring in Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology and plans to graduate with a Bachelor of Science. After receiving her degree at Emory, she is taking a gap year to conduct public health and clinical research in resource-limited areas. Following her gap year abroad, Sonum plans to attend medical school.

Sonum Tharwani

Ryan Shin
Undergraduate Research Assistant

Ryan is a third-year undergraduate student at Emory University from Johns Creek, Georgia. He is majoring in Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology, minoring in Music, and plans to graduate with a Bachelor of Science. After attending Oxford College for 2 years, he has continued to the Atlanta campus to finish up his last 2 years as an undergraduate. Ryan is also a part of the Emory a cappella group, No Strings Attached. He plans to attend medical school after receiving his undergraduate degree at Emory.

Ryan Shin Bio

Kayla Hamilton
Undergraduate Research Assistant

Kayla is a second-year undergraduate student at Emory University from Baltimore, Maryland. She is majoring in neuroscience and behavioral biology and is interested in learning more about the connections between the neuronal circuits involved in food intake and behavioral responses due to mental health conditions, as well as neurodegenerative disorders. Kayla has also worked as a summer research intern at the NIH’s National Institute on Drug Abuse where she presented topics on varying behavioral effects.

Kayla Hamilton Photo

COLLABORATORS:

Felicia Goldstein, PhD
Website
Felicia Goldstein Ihab Hajjar, MD, MS Ihab Hajjar
Patrick Kehoe, PhD
Website
Patrick Kehoe Henrik Zetterberg, MD, PhD
Website
Henrik Zetterberg
Malu Tansey, PhD
Website
Malu Tansey William Hu, MD, PhD
Website

William Hu

LAB ALUMNI:

Veronique King
Clinical Research Coordinator

Alexandra Nutaitis
Research Assistant