Edgar Diabetes and Obesity Research Centre (EDOR) members were among the experts that featured at the Otago Spotlight Series on child health research, held in Wellington on Tuesday 12 September, 2017.
Professor Barry Taylor has interests that include paediatric endocrinology, sudden unexpected death in infancy and sleep disorders of children. With the rapidly increasing child obesity rates a national problem, a significant part of Professor Taylor's research now focuses on prevention and management of this issue. As Co-Director of A Better Start National Science Challenge, Professor Taylor gave an overview of how this Challenge seeks to address important child health issues in New Zealand.
Associate Professor Louise Signal is a social scientist working in the field of health promotion. Dr Signal has worked to translate research findings in a number of ways over the last 25 years, including acting as Senior Advisor (Health Promotion) for the New Zealand Ministry of Health. Her research interests include tackling inequalities in health, healthy public policy, health impact assessment, and healthy eating and healthy action. Her recent work using cameras to document the obesogenic world of children was the focus of her presentation.
Professor Gerald Tannock investigates the bacterial community living in our guts, and what that means for our health across the duration of our lives. The human gut is home to a bacterial collection of amazing biodiversity. This self-regulating community of bacteria is often referred to as the ‘microbiota’. Dr Tannock's research aims to understand how the members of the microbiota function in the gut, and the consequences of this association for health in children and adults.
Associate Professor Barbara Galland investigates the impact of sleep disorders in children and adolescents on daytime functioning. She measures sleep and breathing, cognitive development, and learning through clinic-based studies focusing on specific problems such as obesity, as well as community-based studies focusing on early childhood development. Her ongoing work in obesity aims to elucidate the connection between child / adolescent sleep and obesity.
Otago Spotlight Series: Child Health Research
Tuesday, 12 September 2017, 9am–3.30pm
University of Otago, Wellington, Nordmeyer Theatre, 23A Mein St, Newtown