Who We Are

KU Alzheimer's Disease Center

We are the University of Kansas Alzheimer’s Disease Center. We’re about 50 (and counting) brilliant brain experts with two missions:

1 – Cure Alzheimer’s

2 – Prevent Alzheimer’s

(nothing too ambitious)

Best of the Best

We're one of only 32 Alzheimer's centers that are designated and funded by the NIH. It's pretty competitive, and we're proud to have earned our spot.

Resource for Kansas and Kansas City

We're the only NIH designated Alzheimer's center in Kansas and Kansas City. We provide services like LEAP! to our area and beyond.

Unique Research

We study how lifestyle and energy production affect your brain health. We're known for our exercise research, and we're currently studying the LEAP! program.

Our Fearless Leaders

A mid-40s, white male in a white lab coat in front of a medical building

Jeffrey Burns, MD, MS

Co-director of the ADC. Director of the Frontiers Clinical and Translational Science Unit. Director of the KU Alzheimer's & Memory Clinic. Edward H. Hashinger Professor of Medicine. He also created LEAP! to make sure you get all the best brain health information he has to offer. Fun fact - his Bachelor's degree was in English and Japanese!

A mid-40s, white male with glasses in a white lab coat in front of a medical building

Russell Swerdlow, MD

Director of the ADC. Director of the KUMC Neurodegenerative Disorders Program. Gene and Marge Sweeney Professor of Neurology. Professor at the KU School of Medicine. He studies mitochondria (the cell's powerhouse) in a lab, along with many other things. Fun fact - he is nerdy enough to have once considered having his license plate say "mitoman!"

The LEAP! Team

A late 20s white female in front of a red brick wall

Rachel Sandoval, MS, RDN

Registered dietitian nutritionist. LEAP! Coordinator for the Kansas City area. Food as medicine aficionado. Passionate about all things healthy living. Rachel's favorite part of running the LEAP! program is talking with every LEAP! participant about practical brain-healthy living.

An early 30s white female in front of a red brick wall

Erin Blocker, PhD

Exercise physiology guru. LEAP! Coordinator for rural Kansas and Missouri. Coach and trainer extraordinaire. Erin loves teaching and coaching groups on brain-healthy living and exercise. Her passion is reaching rural communities with the hope and strategies to reduce Alzheimer's risk.

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