Cognitive neurologist joins Banner Health team

Dr. Alireza Atri

Atri named Sun Health director

Banner Health has announced Dr. Alireza Atri, MD, PhD, as the new medical director of their Sun Health Research Institute, according to a news release.

Mr. Atri, a leading clinician, researcher and educator in the area of Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders, started May 31.

In his role Mr. Atri will oversee research, clinical care, and education and training programs on the BSHRI campus, work closely with colleagues at both BSHRI and Banner Alzheimer’s Institute to further develop clinical and research programs on the Sun City campus, and continue to advance the understanding, treatment and prevention of Alzheimer’s disease and other age-related disorders. In addition, he will help to grow Banner’s leadership role in the effort to find effective Alzheimer’s disease prevention therapies, and work closely with partners at Banner, Sun Health Foundation, and other stakeholders in the Sun Cities community.

“We are extremely excited about the chance to benefit from Dr. Atri’s leadership role at BSHRI and in the Sun Cities community,” Eric Reiman, MD, Banner Research CEO, stated in the release. “We look forward to helping him and our BSHRI colleagues to advance the fight against Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and related disorders, leverage their existing strengths, and have the greatest possible impact on patients, caregivers and their families.”

Mr. Atri is a cognitive and behavioral neurologist who earned his undergraduate, masters and doctoral degrees (Biomathematics) at UCLA and Harvard Medical School, and his medical degree at UC San Francisco. He served as a longstanding clinician-researcher and educator at Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard; moved to San Francisco to become The Ray Dolby Endowed Chair in Brain Health Research at California Pacific Medical Center; and continues to teach at Harvard Medical School as a Lecturer in Neurology.

“It is a great honor, privilege and opportunity to join the Banner Sun Health Research Institute, and the Banner Health research teams, to support a vision of paving the path to successful brain aging now, and to finding an end to Alzheimer’s disease and related neurodegenerative disorders for the next generations,” Mr. Atri said. “I am very energized to join like-minded and committed colleagues to foster partnerships with the community to support and expand current programs.”

Mr. Atri sees BSHRI as a regional and national hub for dementia education and clinical best practices and is looking forward to collaboration with colleagues at the Banner Alzheimer’s Institute and other Arizona institutions to develop the next generation of novel interventions for neurodegenerative conditions. “These are therapies so desperately needed to help patients and families now,” he said.

“Sun Health is proud to support the work done at this vital community resource and we look forward to working with Dr. Atri,” said Sharon Grambow, Sun Health’s interim president and CEO. “The Banner Sun Health Research Institute has been and continues to be an important focus of Sun Health Foundation donors.”


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