Nutrition during pregnancy is perhaps the most influential non-genetic factor for fetal development and lifelong health thereafter. Global rates of obesity are increasing at an alarming rate and with that, an increase in obesity during pregnancy. Children of obese mothers have an increased lifetime risk of developing cardiometabolic problems and psychiatric disorders. My PhD work will explore how maternal obesity affects immune activity to disrupt nutrient partitioning capabilities in the placenta. Through this, I hope to elucidate the mechanisms by which maternal obesity impacts fetal growth and offspring metabolism in order to develop targeted interventions for affected children. Developmental programing, reproductive health, and diet during pregnancy as a modifiable risk factor are internationally relevant science communications and public health issues. Knowledge must move from the laboratory into policy in order to reach health services. What’s more, relevant audiences have to understand and correctly apply this information. For these reasons, I am an active proponent to improving scientific literacy and access to education and dedicate my community development initiatives to creating such educational resources.
University of Toronto Reproductive Physiology 2020
University of Western Ontario Medical Sciences 2018