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Oklahoma State University

Graduate Student Bios

Catherine DeFreitas

Degree Program: M.S.

Dietetic Intern

Advisor: Dr. Gail Gates

Email: catherine.defreitas@okstate.edu

Research Interest: My research interests are within dietetics education and how it can be improved. For my thesis, I am exploring what research literature says about the use of medical simulation labs in undergraduate dietetics programs.

Education:

Degree  Institution Area of Study
B.S.        Oklahoma State
University
Nutritional Sciences: Dietetics
A.S.         Tulsa Community
College
Nutritional Sciences: Dietetics

 


 

Bryant Keirns

Degree Program: Ph.D. 

Advisor: Dr. Brenda J. Smith

Research interest: Impact of diet on gut inflammation and subsequent effects on other tissues.

Education:

Degree  Institution Area of Study
B.S. Oklahoma Christian University Biology

 

Joel Joshua Komakech

Degree Program: Ph.D.

Advisor: Dr. Deana Hildebrand

Email: joel.komakech@okstate.edu 

Research interests: Joel's research interests lie within three interrelated aspects; (1) Maternal, Infant and young child feeding amongst households of rural and displaced persons; (2) general community nutrition with a view to socio-behavioral change & household nutrition security. (3) Sustainable community approaches towards household food & nutrition security in rural and emergency communities such as post conflict zones. The basis for his interests is attributed to undernutrition still as a going concern especially in developing countries and the need for multi-sectoral approaches to addressing community nutrition challenges. The potential of these research interests seeks out to influence programming for state and non-state actors, informing policies for general country, bilateral and multilateral interventions notwithstanding the contribution to academia for reference with other communities in similar contexts.

Education: 

Degree  Institution Area of Study
M.S.  Kyambogo University, Kampala - Uganda Household food Security and livelihoods in rural communities as a public health concern in Uganda
B.S.  International Health Sciences University, Uganda Community Nutrition

 

Babajide Ojo

Degree Program: Ph.D. 

Advisor: Dr. Edralin A. Lucus 

Email: babajide.ojo@okstate.edu    

Research interest: Impact of functional foods on the gut microbiome and gut immunity in models of obesity and type 2 diabetes.

Education:

Degree  Institution Area of Study
M.S. Oklahoma State University Nutrition
B.S.(Hons) Ekiti State Univeristy, Nigeria Biochemistry

 


 

Gabriela Puche

Degree Program: M.S. 

Advisor: Dr. Gail Gates

Research Interest: Anything related to T2DM, CVD, post-prandial responses, gut microbiome/health, and behavior/cognition.

Education:

Degree   Institution Area of Study
B.S. Texas Woman's Univeristy Nutrition

 


 

Hasina Rakotomanana

Degree Program: Ph.D. 

Advisor: Dr. Barbara Stoecker

Email: hasina.rakotomanana@okstate.edu 

Research interest: I am interested in Global Nutrition, specifically child undernutrition and the nutrition interventions aiming to address this issue in developing countries. Specifically, my research interests are:
-Determinants of child undernutrition in developing countries
-Nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive interventions (including agriculture, education, women empowerment and WASH indicators)
-The linkages between agriculture and child undernutrition

Education:

Degree   Institution Area of Study
M.S. Oklahoma State University Nutritional Sciences
M.S. Université d’Antananarivo, Madagascar Applied Chemistry
Focus: Organic Chemistry
B.S./M.S. Université d’Antananarivo, Madagascar Agronomy
Focus: Agricultural and Food Science and Technology

 

 


 

Christina Sciarrillo

Degree Program: M.S.

Dietetic Intern

Advisor: Dr. Sam Emerson

Email: christina.sciarrillo@okstate.edu

Research Interest: Nutrition is a young science that is evolving, changing, and advancing discovery across the board. My research interests include human metabolism & metabolic syndrome, epigenetics, mitochondria, oncology, inflammation, the gut microbiome, oxidative stress, and immunology. I love to explore innovation and solve problems related to nutrition and disease. I hope to make nutrition a more contributing field of science and research.

Education:

Degree  Institution Area of Study
B.S. University of Louisiana at Lafayette Dietetics

 

 


 

Christine Walters

Degree Program: Ph.D.

Advisor: Dr. Barbara Stoecker

Email: christine.n.patella@gmail.com

Research interest: I am interested in how maternal mental health influences infant and young child feeding practices in low-income countries.

Education:

Degree  Institution Area of Study
M.S. Oklahoma State University Nutritional Sciences
B.S. The Ohio State University Medical Dietetics

 

 

 


 

Eric White

Degree Program: M.S. 

Advisor: Dr. Gail Gates

Email: elwhite@okstate.edu  

Research Interest: Sports/Athletic Nutrition; sufficient dietary needs for both amateur and professional athletes; child and adolescent nutritional needs.

Education:

Degree  Institution Area of Study
M.S. University of Central Oklahoma Nutrition & Food Management
B.S. Norfolk State University Exercise Science and Nutrition

 


 

Lei Wu

Degree Program: Ph.D.

Advisor: Dr. Dingbo Lin

Email: lei.wu@okstate.edu

Research interest: My research interest focus on understanding how BCO2 function on mitochondrial and immune-metabolism, which can provide future directions on findings out new therapeutic methods to treat chronic diseases, including diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and obesity.

Education:

Degree  Institution Area of Study
Ph.D. Oklahoma State University Nutritional Sciences
M.S. Oklahoma State University Nutritional Sciences
B.S. Nanjing Agricultural University Microbiology