Dr. Maya Nadimpalli, an alumna of the University of North Carolina Gillings School of Global Public Health’s Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering, has focused much of her work on eradicating antibiotic resistance among children in developing nations – efforts that recently were featured in Nature magazine’s Career Q&A.
In “A battle against antibiotic resistance,” Dr. Nadimpalli discusses how she became interested in the ways antibiotic resistance is impacting young children in low-income countries.
From 2015 to 2018, Dr. Nadimpalli led a field study on food and the spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in Cambodia. An epidemiology postdoctoral scholar and Gillings Global Health Fellow at the Pasteur Institute in Paris at the time, she uncovered risk factors for human exposure by conceptualizing epidemiological approaches for the analysis of bacterial whole genome sequencing data.
“Working on this type of research required a whole range of skill-sets, including microbiology, epidemiology and community outreach,” Dr. Nadimpalli says. “I was lucky enough to have wonderful mentors at the Gillings School to help me approach this topic from these multiple perspectives, with the end goals of helping people and raising awareness.”
Now a research fellow at the Center for Integrated Management of Antimicrobial Resistance at Tufts University, Dr. Nadimpalli is interested in seeing if antibiotic-resistant bacteria from industrial animal food farms could be colonizing or infecting healthy people in nearby communities.
“My goal,” she says, “is to identify ways we can prevent this.”Friday Letter Submission, Publish on October 11