I can link my current research interests in nutrition and metabolism to two key events that occurred during my fourth year of undergraduate studies at Acadia University. The first was taking an elective introductory nutrition course and the second was my laboratory-based honours biology research project. These actions revealed my love for both nutritional sciences and research. Combining these interests led me to the University of Alberta where I did my Ph.D. focused on nutrition, immunology, and cancer. Following this, I came to the University of Guelph where I held an NSERC Postdoctoral Fellowship to study carbohydrate metabolism in insulin resistant states, such as obesity and diabetes. It was this work that led to my current research program focused on understanding the roles and regulation of cytokines secreted from adipose tissue (‘adipokines’) in obesity-related chronic diseases. I’m particularly interested in diet and exercise regulation of adipokines and their roles in communication among key metabolic tissues in health and chronic diseases.
My laboratory is currently funded by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) as well as an infrastructure grant from the Canadian Foundation for Innovation.
B.Sc. - Acadia University Ph.D. - University of Alberta
The general focus of my research program is the integration of diet and exercise in mediating metabolic processes in health and chronic disease.
I am interested in understanding the physiological roles and regulation of adipose tissue and skeletal muscle-derived cytokines in mediating metabolic processes in the body. I am particularly interested in the mechanisms by which dietary factors and/or exercise modulate various cytokines and inflammatory mediators implicated in insulin resistance, a key characteristic of obesity and type 2 diabetes.
Current Research Projects
Regulation of adipose tissue-derived cytokines in integrative metabolism
Effect of n-3 and n-6 fatty acids in the presence and absence of LPS on adipocyte secretory factors and underlying mechanisms
Effect of dietary fatty acids on pro-inflammatory markers in an in vitro murine adipocyte macrophage co-culture model