Every year a great quantity of students participate in the projects of CeSSIAM with its headquarter in Guatemala City and local branch in Quetzaltenango. Thus, CeSSIAM facilitates for these young scientists studying disciplines like Nutritional Science, Medicine or Anthroplogy direct insights into research and intervention possibilities in a country of the global South with its genuine problems and sociocultural background. Find out more about their research:
Brynne Burrows is a native Californian, through and through, having been raised in state’s capital in Sacramento, attending a Jesuit high school. Most recently in May, she graduated from UCLA University in Los Angeles, heading now into its Master of Public Health program. She studied the body size, dimensions and composition of rural highland adults aged 35 – 39 years. Coincidentally, the parish priest assisting the project in Santa Maria Chiquimula is a member of the Jesuit order. Here you will find the final report: Seminar presentation – Brynne Burrows
Timothy Mikulski is an M.D. candidate at the Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston, Massachusetts. Originally from Little Silver, New Jersey, Tim completed his Bachelor of Science in Science-Business at the University of Notre Dame in 2020. This cross-sectional study is aimed at assessing the prevalence of sarcopenia in a group of elders (aged 60+) in the town of Santa María de Chiquimula, Guatemala, as well as its relationship to stunting among this population. Here you will find the final report: Seminar presentation – Timothy Mikulski
Naomi Ruchugo is a native of Winston-Salem, North Carolina. She is an alumna of Appalachian State University in Boone, NC where she received a bachelor’s in biology and she is currently pursuing a Masters in Public Health at Tufts University School of Medicine. This project is derived from anthropometric measurements of 100 elderly men and women from Santa Maria Chiquimula, Totonicapan, Guatemala. Results were compared with anthropometric data of elderly adults in Nahuala, and Xela. Here is her final report: Seminar presentation – Naomi Ruchugo
Cesia Camila Alvarado Tzul is a Guatemalan nutritionist graduated from the Rafael Landívar University of Quetzaltenango. She previously collaborated with CeSSIAM in the development of her graduate thesis entitled “APPLICATION OF THE NOVA SYSTEM FOR THE CLASSIFICATION AND QUANTIFICATION OF THE ENERGY INTEGRATION OF PROCESSED AND ULTRAPROCESSED FOODS CONSUMED BY SCHOOL CHILDREN IN THE RURAL AREA OF QUETZALTENANGO, GUATEMALA”. She is currently working with on a project based on physical growth and body proportions in older adults in the municipality of Santa María Chiquimula in the department of Totonicapán. Here is her final report: Seminar presentation – Cesia AlvaradoJolie Stocki is a candidate for Master of Public Health and Medical Doctor degrees from Tufts University in Boston, Massachusetts. She is a Michigan native and completed her undergraduate studies at the University of Michigan. She assisted on the environmental heavy metal project with water and chicken egg collections across Guatemala, with a concentration on sample collection around Lake Atitlán. She also designed a study on the detection of asymptomatic bacteriuria in pregnancy with a novel potential screening tool, the AquagenxTM system, previously used by CeSSIAM in water quality studies. Her final report on her asymptomatic bacteriuria work can be found here: Seminar presentation – Jolie Stocki
Sandra F Rodriguez Quintana has a doctorate degree in Medicine from the Universidad Autónoma de Guadalajara and is currently completing her Master`s in Public Health in Family and Child Health at the University of Arizona. Being passionate about child development and breastfeeding promotion she is now learning more about the complexity that affects vulnerable communities of mothers and children from an interdisciplinary perspective. For more details please see the final report of Sandra F Rodriguez Quintana and Ruth Forsten: Seminar presentation – Sandra Rodriguez & Ruth Forsten
Ruth Forsten is currently pursuing a Master of Science degree in Molecular Life Sciences with a focus on Molecular Medicine at the University of Hamburg, Germany. As an intern at CeSSIAM she is experiencing research beyond the laboratory, including the sociocultural components of designing and carrying out projects and the impact of research on underserved populations. For more details please see the final report of Sandra F Rodriguez Quintana and Ruth Forsten: Seminar presentation – Sandra Rodriguez & Ruth Forsten
In 2021 the pandemic restrictions in Guatemala still impeded the ability for international university students to conduct research projects for their graduation requirements with CeSSIAM. Fortunately, CeSSIAM was able to assist two local students in writing their thesis.
Daniela Massiel Miranda Velásquez is a student in nutrition at the Rafael Landivar University in Quetzaltenango, who assisted with a CeSSIAM-based project on the cultural aspects of maternal eating practices during breastfeeding among three ethnic groups from eastern Guatemala as her graduation research project. Here is her final report: Seminar presentation – Daniela Massiel Miranda Velásquez
Cesia Camila Alvarado Tzul studied nutritional sciences at the Rafael Landivar University in Quetzaltengo, Guatemala. Her research report was based in the classification of the habitual diets in a database of CeSSIAM from schoolchildren in a suburan village of Quetzaltenango along the NOVA system of dietary quality classification, as developed in Brazil by epidemiologist, Dr. Carlos Monteiro. Here is the final report: Seminar presentation – Cesia Camila Alvarado Tzul
The restrictions imposed by the corona pandemic prevented international students from participating in CeSSIAM research projects in 2020. Taking into account the extremely difficult situation, the CeSSIAM team succeeded in supporting Guatemalan students in writing their theses.
Daniela María Tánchez Sandoval studies nutritional sciences at the Rafael Landivar University in Quetzaltenango. Her aspects of the research focused on physical growth, anthropometric measures and proportions of the skeleton in diverse populations of the western highlands of Guatemala. For more details please see her final report: Seminar presentation – Daniela María Tánchez Sandoval
José Alfonso Castillo Miranda is a student in nutrition at the Rafael Landivar University in Quetzaltenango, who performed a thesis project on Sugar-sweetened beverages consumption patterns among school-age children from rural Quetzaltenango, Guatemala. Here you will find the final report: Seminar presentation – José Alfonso Castillo Miranda
Grace Robbins, Kayla Hui and Eileen María Fabián Rivera: This team of international and national students presented the combined methods and collective conclusions from a multi-faceted research activity in a multi-ethnic town on the Caribbean coast of Guatemala involving lactation biology, breast milk composition, body composition, hydration and the role of fish and seafood in local diets. It is presented here: Seminar presentation Grace Robbins, Kayla Hui and Eileen M. F. Rivera
Eileen María Fabián Rivera is a Guatemalan-born nutritionist, who is included here as she was a full participant in the research projects of the international students. She had graduated in nutrition from the Universidad de San Carlos in 2018 and has been with the CeSSIAM staff since then. She is an equal participant in the field studies with the exchange students. She has documented fish consumption among households on the inland Lake Atitlán, and this summer she turned her attention to a similar inquiry in a marine coastal community with three distinct ethnic groups sharing the same ecosystem. Here you will find her final report: Seminar presentation – E. M. F. Rivera
Grace Robbins is a candidate for a Master of Public Health degree at the Boston University School of Public health in Boston. A native of Cleveland, Ohio, USA, she did her undergraduate studies at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. The Project described is derived from the anthropometric measurements and a part of the bioelectrical impedance studies conducted in 41 lactating women of three ethnic groups in the coastal township of Livingston in the Izabal Province on the Caribbean Sea. For more details please see her final report: Seminar presentation – Grace Robbins
Kayla Hui is a candidate for a Master of Public Health degree at the Boston University School of Public health in Boston. A native of Chicago, Illinois, USA, she did her undergraduate studies at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. The project described is derived from the self-reported data from 12 transcripts among a total of 50 interviews to collect information on the perceptions of the women from distinct ethnic groups, in this instance, 6 Garifuna women and 6 Q’eqchi women on maternal food consumption and infant feeding and caring in the coastal township of Livingston. Here is her final report: Seminar presentation – Kayla Hui
Hannah Young is a university graduate of the University of Wisconsin in Madison, USA. She is a candidate for Masters of Public Health and Medical Doctor degrees at the Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston. Her project used an innovative field test kit for pathogenic bacteria (Escherichia coli) in water to examine the association of barnyard animals with water contamination in households in the La Esperanza suburb of Quetzaltenango. Here is her final report: Seminar presentation – H. Young and also her poster which was presented at the Tufts University School of Medicine summer-student research fair competition: Poster – H. Young
Abi Cherry is a native of the State of Utah in the USA. She is a senior student at the Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, USA. At Cornell, she is affiliated with the Ilana Brito Laboratory in the Department of Biomedical Engineering, a laboratory dedicated to the study of the fecal microbiome. She coordinated a collaborative project between Cornell and CeSSIAM on the effects of oral iron supplementation on the fecal microbiota in healthy medical students in Quetzaltenango. For more details please see her final report: Seminar presentation – Abi Cherry
Yolitzín Hernández is a Mexican citizen and native of Querétaro City. She had completed her research and writing on her Masters of Science degree in Nutrition on the effects of food-selection education for overweight children on their body mass and eating patterns in the Faculty of Natural Sciences of the Autonomous University of Querétaro in Mexico. Working in the CeSSIAM Annex in Quetzaltenango, she involved herself in a potpourri of projects and analyses including the execution of the fecal microbiome study and qualitative research from archival data. Here is her final report: Seminar presentation – Yolitzín Hernández
Lisanne Bergsma is a Dutch nutrition and health master student at the Wageningen University (WUR) in the Netherlands. She compared 40 lactating women living on the tropical Caribbean Coast (annual temperature of 26 degrees) with 40 lactating women living in Quetzaltenango (annual temperature of 14 degrees) with indicators of hydration including urine color, urine specific gravity, urine osmolality and by TBW and ECW variables from BIA. For each of the four variables, hypohydration was more common in the tropics than in the highlands. Here is her final report: Seminar presentation – Lisanne Bergsma and her student masters thesis: MSc thesis – Lisanne Bergsma
Eva Gfesser is a student at the Martin Luther University in Halle, Germany. She completed two Germany-wide cohort studies. The first was concerned with the causes of chronic diseases and the second with an integrated research and treatment for obesity diseases. She was involved in the following CeSSIAM-projects: 1) Fat-soluble nutrients in breast milk in the Caribbean coast of Guatemala, 2) Relation of Omega-3 fatty acids and frequency of fish and seafood consumption and 3) Exposure to persistent pesticides and toxic metals via breast milk in neonates living in the Lake Atitlán watershed. For more details see her final report: Seminar presentation – Eva Gfesser
Rubeen Guardado is a native of San Diego, California, USA, of Mexican and Salvadoran ancestry. As university graduate of San Diego State University, he is a candidate for a Masters of Public Health degree at the Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston. In his field project in Nahualá municipality, he used the same anthropometry and photo-images as previously employed in 2017 in the town: Formerly, with women over the age of 59 years, and now with men in the same age range. This has been extended with the application of the RJL Systems QUANTUM V bioelectrical impedance analysis instrument, with the capacity for both total-body and segmental body composition analysis. Novel insights into body symmetry and muscle density in the limbs are presented. His final report: Seminar presentation – Rubeen Guardado and his presentation at the Tufts University School of Medicine: Presentation – Rubeen Guardado
Eileen María Fabián Rivera is a Guatemalan-born nutritionist, who is included here as she was a full participant in the research projects of the international Students. She had graduated in nutrition from the Universidad de San Carlos three months prior to joining in on this umbrella project to assess the degree of longitudinal growth of upper extremities during the stunting process due to retarded lower extremity growth. Her aspects of the research focused on 1) the description of the nutritional/growth status of the communities involved, and 2) the inter-rater reliability of anatomic measurements made from photographic images. Here you will find her final reports: Departure seminar – Eileen Rivera I and Departure seminar – Eileen Rivera II
Jifan Wang is a combined Master Public Health and Master of Science major at the Tufts University, originating from the People’s Republic of China. She was one of three students in the team of the umbrella project to assess the degree of longitudinal growth of upper extremities during the stunting process due to retarded lower extremity growth. Her particular aspects of the research were in the assessment of body segments (trunk, legs) with the use of sagittal photographic images; the assessment of upper-extremities; and an innovative inquiry into the relative elongation of arms vs legs. She also made a first-time compilation of how close to the theoretical 1.000 value of are the values in these diverse populations in the ages of record. Here you will find her final report: Seminar presentation – Jifan Wang
Nicole Stephan is a final-year student at the University of Wisconsin with an undergraduate concentrations in molecular neurobiology and global health. She was part of the umbrella project team to assess the degree of longitudinal growth of upper extremities during the stunting process due to retarded lower extremity growth. Her aspects of inquiry were related to a novel approach to photography, that is, a frontal image. She examined the projection of the forearm below the level of the pelvic ridge, in relation to the height of the image as further assessment of the proportionality of arm-length growth. Also from the frontal image, she derived a relative measurement of pelvic with (at the level of the iliac crest), compared it across boys and girls, and related it to the abdominal circumference measure in the same children. Her final report: Seminar presentation – Nicole Stephan
Amelia Givan is an entering senior at the West Lafayette High school in Indiana, currently taking advanced-placement courses at Purdue University in the same community. She was a 2018 recipient of a Borlaug – Ruan summer fellowship from the World Food Program of Des Moines, Iowa, USA in association with the Hormel Foods Corporation of Austin, MN, USA. She had two research projects. One related to the sensory studies and the relative preference for hot creamed soups, cold creamed soups and milk-based smoothies, consumed with or without whey concentrate as a dietary protein supplement. The second related to the comparison of estimated height of the trunk of men by standard sitting-height studies and by the novel sagittal photographic image approach. Here you will find her final report: Seminar presentation – Amelia Givan
Pleun van Iersel is a Dutch student at the Wageningen University (WUR) in the Netherlands. She has finished her three-year university degree in nutrition and is in a gap-year before continuing with the MSc in Human Nutrition at the WUR. She participated in a series of active field projects in Antigua and Quetzaltenango, as well as an analysis of archival data. Here you will find the presentation of the potpourri of activities: Seminar presentation – Pleun van Iersel
Olga López-Torres PhD has a doctoral degree from the Polytechnic University of Madrid. She is an Associate Professor, teaching in the same university and participating in research Department of Health and Human Performance. During the summer of 2018, she came to CeSSIAM on an exchange mini-sabbatical. Her research in Guatemala concerned the geographic variation in breast milk fatty acids across five villages on the shores of Lake Atitlan, each with its different culture of fish consumption using the collection technique of dried milk spots on a cardboard card. Here you will find her final report: Seminar presentation – Olga López-Torres
Jifan Wang, Nicole Stephan and Eileen María Fabián Rivera: This team of international and national students presented the combined methods and results of their study on standard and photographic anthropometry preschool children in a consolidated seminar presentation. It is presented here: Seminar presentation – Jifan – Nicole – Eileen
Heike Rolker is a graduate in nutrition of the Wageningen University, Netherlands. She will shortly enter the masters program of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Her participation at CeSSIAM was with the measurement of birth length of newborns with photo-imaging and collection of breast milk samples for dried human milk spots on a card for fatty acid profile, with emphasis on the omega-3 fatty acid, DHA. Here you will find her final report with the title “Essential Fatty Acids in Human Breastmilk” Seminar Presentation – Heike Rolker
Alyssa Dougherty is a nutrition student at Iowa State University, USA. Her projects were on: 1) the potential to have women consume creamy varieties of soups both for hydration and for supplementing with fortified Whet Protein; and 2) selecting though methodological options toward the most pratical and accurate method to measure the length of the upper extremities; and 3) the proportions of standing height to vertical arm-span in preschool children. Here you will find her final report with the title “Rule of creamy soups in the diet & Methods to measure arm-length”: Seminar Presentation – Alyssa Dougherty
Chinonso Nduaguba studies medicine in his second year at the Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston, USA. He devoted himself to the research on body size and body segments among children and adolescents from the coastal community of Livingston on the Caribbean Sea in the Izabal Provice of Guatemala. There is an original ethnic group of African and Caribe ascent (Garifuna) combined with more recent immigrant groups, primarily of Mayan ascent, allowing for an inter-ethnic comparison. Here you will find his final report with the title “Body Composition, Stunting and Obesity among Adolescents in Livingston, Guatemala”: Seminar Presentation – Chinonso Nduaguba and also his poster which was presented at the Tufts University School of Medicine summer-student research fair competition: Tufts summer-student research fair competition
Marlou-Floor Kenkhuis studies at the Wageningen University, Netherlands, with a major in Nutrition and Health. Her project focused on the issue of adult body composition and stunting in woman aged 35 and above in Quetzaltenango and Nahualá, Guatemala. The study aimed to investigate certain anthropometric measures in an effort to better understand the effect that the Double Burden of Malnutrition has on health indicators like BMI, WC, WtHR and Torso/Leg Ratios in women. Here you will find her final report with the title “Adult Body Composition and Stunting in women aged 35 and above in Nahualá, Guatemala”: Seminar Presentation – Marlou-Floor Kenkhuis
Isabelle Gallagher is a student at the University of Wisconsin, USA, and studies Neurobiology and Global health for her bachelor’s degree. She was involved in the following CeSSIAM projects 1) compostion of breastmilk and hydration status in women of different lactation stages; and 2) omega-3 study with mothers from different locations and social classes; and 3) the project with the title “2 Liter Challenge”. Here you will find her final report: Seminar Presentation – Isabelle Gallagher
Ruijia Niu is a Public Health Master-student at the Tufts University School of Medicine (TUSM) in Boston, USA. She devoted herself to the following projects 1) nutrition content in breastmilk, body compostion and hydration status of mothers with different postpartum days in Xela; and 2) omega-3 fatty acids content in breastmilk of mothers living in different geographic locations of Guatemala; and 3) sensitivity test of SECA BIA on immediate ingestion of 2 liter water. Here you will find her final report: Seminar Presentation – Ruijia Niu
Vruj Patel is a senior undergraduate student at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, USA, with an academic concentration in physics. Vruj is member of the Mehta Research Group on the interaction of nutrition with diabetes and tuberculosis at Cornell. His group leader, Prof. Saurabh Metha, is the winner of the VI Rainer Gross Prize of the Hildegard Grunow Foundation.
Benjamin Chomitz is a graduate in Biology major, Chemistry and Anthropology minors, of the University of Vermont in Burlington, USA. He was a summer-exchange student with CeSSIAM in Quetzaltenango in 2013.
The work of Vruj and Benjamin was based in the Province of Solola, Guatemala. The research interests were the validation or calibration of the estimation of birth length of newborn infants by photographic image analysis as compared to measurement with conventional, standardized infantometry and the assessment of body composition and hydration status of local men using the advanced SECA mBCA 525 system of bioelectrical impedance. Here you will find their final report with the title “Photo-imaging of birth length and body composition of Solola men”: Seminar Presentation – Vruj Patel and Benjamin Chomitz
Maaike Visser, graduate of the undergraduate program in nutrition at Wageningen University in the Netherlands. She is on her gap year abroad before finishing her MSc year. Both worked with studies on arm-length measurement in children and body-segments and their proportion in Guatemalan and foreign adults.
Here you will find their final report with the titles “New applications of physical measurements in children and adults: Antigua studies” and “Body Ratios in Children from Guatemala”: Seminar Presentation – Kelly Siverhus and Maaike Visser
During the course of the year 16 students were working on collecting and/or analyzing data from CeSSIAM projects, 14 with a presence in Guatemala and 2 in Montreal, Canada. Three were Guatemalan nationals studying at the Universidad Rafael Landivar (Guatemala), Louisiana State University (USA) and the Universidad de Granada (Spain). Eight students were from graduate schools (PhD or MSc candidates), five from professional schools (MD or MPH), two from undergraduate programs, and a high-school graduate. The institutional bases for the international students were: Tufts University School of Medicine (6); McGill University in Canada (3); Wagenigen University in the Netherlands (2); University of California, Davis (1); and Kellogg High School, Newton, IA (1).
Four student affiliates received PhD degrees. These included Maria Jose Soto-Mendez (Universidad de Granada) and Anne-Marie Chomat and Hilary Wren (McGill University). Gabriela Montenegro-Bethancourt was a professional with CeSSIAM until 2012, when she earned a doctoral fellowship of the Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (DAAD) to study at the University of Bonn and the Dortmund Child Nutrition Institute. She defended her thesis in November 2015. She holds an Affiliated Investigator appointment with CeSSIAM, with her primary position at the Universidad Rafael Landivar of Guatemala.
Heike Rolker, German nutritionist currently studying in Wageningen, Netherlands, stayed for 8 weeks at CeSSIAM. She was involved in several projects and statistical analyses, including a project to measure breast milk osmolality and the hydration status of lactating women. Presentation of her results
Jenny McManus and Brian Engle, summer exchange medical students, raised anthropometric measurements in elderly, especially focusing on waist circumference (WC) and the detection of stunting in this age group . In order to do this in a culturally-sensitive manner, the female student examined the women and the male student worked with the men. Presentation of their study
Reeve Bright. Public Health Master-student at the Tufts University School of Medicine (TUSM) in Boston, USA. He participates in a field study in Quetzaltenango organized by CeSSIAM and tackles the question, if liquid ingestion modifies the osmolality of human milk. First findings suggest that lactating women, who come from more rural communities, are substantially hypohydrated in the basal state. Culturally based beliefs influence their drinking habits in an adverse way. The problem of hydration in lactation among more rural, indigenous women seems to be a public health issue that should be answered by interventions to improve hydration with beverage promotion. Presentation of first results
Anna Barr stayed in Guatemala for 8 weeks and was involved in several projects. See her blog about her Guatemala experience.
Adriana Gaitán, Guatemalan PhD-student at the School of Nutrition and Food Sciences, Louisiana State University, USA joined a field study at CeSSIAM in order to complete her studies on human breast milk. The HGF sponsored her internship.
Joni Beintema studying Health Science with a major in Nutrition and Health at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is incorporated in a study to optimize the measurement of anthropometric parameters. The idea of Joni’s project is measurement by photographic imaging. It seeks to validate the estimation of standing height (vs direct measurement) and a more interesting component of the trunk-to-height ratio (for which waist markers are necessary).
During her 4 months stay Joni will be working first in Solola and then in Quetzaltenango. See Joni’s report on her first impressions of her stay at CeSSIAM:
Kimberly Shiu studies a public health major at Boston University, with projects at CeSSIAM involving self-reporting of household pets and production animals and body-segment biological anthropometry by photoimaging. See her final report.
Windy Mulia Liem studies “Nutritional Physiology and Health Status” at the Wageningen University, Netherlands, and worked for four months at CeSSIAM on the anthropometry of body circumferences, including head, waist and neck circumferences. She presented her experiences in her departure seminar.
Mallika Gopal is a student at the Boston University School of Medicine, USA, focused on body composition and stature in women in Quetzaltenango.
Sandi Chen studies medicine in her third year at the University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine, USA. At CeSSIAM her investigation interests lay in aflatoxins in breast milk and maize in the Mam Mayan culture.
Alana Platte is a college student in Iowa and her internship was sponsored by the World Food Prize Foundation in Des Moines, Iowa, USA. She devoted herself to circumference measurements, accompanied the work of the company Hormel and determined the usage of INCARPARINA. This is her final report and also her summer report.
Andrew Wuu studies medicine in his third year at the University of New England, College of Osteopathic Medicine, and also holds a Bachelor of Arts in Molecular Cellular and Developmental Biology of the University of Colorado in Boulder, USA. His final presentation summarizes his work on aflatoxin in corn.
Lydia Kim is a candidate in medicine (MD) and public health (MPH) at the Tufts University School of Medicine (TUSM) in Boston. She came to CeSSIAM for both a clinical and research experience. She worked with a local neonatologist on deliveries and immediate newborn care at the provincial hospital, clinically, while setting up the infant and maternal anthropometry process for the Xela-Babies project, and translating the rotating menu for day-care center meal plans of the Secretariat of the Beneficent Works of the First Lady (SOSEP) into English prior to nutrient scoring. She was referred and co-supervised by Dr. Odilia Bermúdez, Associate Professor in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Public Health at TUSM.
Ilse van Beusekom was a candidate for the Master’s degree in Nutrition and Infection in the Institute of Health and Care of the Vreije Universiteit (Free University) of Amsterdam (VU). She came as part of a contingent of four VU students of the same major under the co-supervision of Dr. Colleen Doak, Associate Professor of Nutrition in the Institute. She formed part of the anthropometry team for Xela-Babies, and classifying the early feeding patterns of infants into their 6th month of life as exclusively breast feed, predominantly breast fed or mixed fed according to the definitions of the World Health Organization.
Marieke Reurings was a second Masters candidate in the VU quartet, forming part of the anthropometry team and examining the determinant variables of extreme short stature (stunting) in the infants of the Xela-Babies Project.
Robine van der Starre was a third Masters candidate in the VU quartet, forming part of the anthropometry team and examining the role of the ritual fluids (aguitas) administered and the illness experience of the infants within the the Xela-Babies Project.
Leonie Peters was a final Masters candidate in the VU quartet, helping to coordinate the qualitative, key-informant anthropological investigations of practices and perceptions of early infant feeding, with a special emphasis on ritual fluid consumption.
Juliana Casimiro de Almeida is a Masters candidate in nutrition in the Center Institute for Nutrition and Food Research of the Technische Universitaet of Muenchen in Freising, Germany, co-supervised by Prof. Dr. Klaus Schuemann. Her project was to examine the validity for non-invasive measurement, by trans-cutaneous projection of white light, from two commercial devices (one from Germany and another from Israel), in adult subjects in rural areas and across a spectrum of hemoglobin values ranging from anemic to plethoric. The gold standard was whole blood, measured by a reference laboratory method.
Linda Oyesiku is an MPH candidate at the Boston University School of Public Health, referred to CeSSIAM by Prof Davidson Hamer of the Program in Global Health. She formed part of the anthropometry team and is examining both the body composition and body mass classification of the mothers of Xela-Babies in relationship to lactation duration and the association of excess body weight of the mother and linear growth faltering in the infants. She also participated in the cross-calibration of the two non-invasive devices for trans-cutaneous hemoglobin estimation and its validation against a whole blood standard.
Natasha Irving is a candidate in medicine (MD) and public health (MPH) at the TUSM who was referred by Dr. Bermudez. She formed part of the Xela-babies anthropometry team and analyzed the nature of the complementary foods and ritual fluids offered during the 1st through the 6th month of infant life
Janiece Alvey is a recent graduate of the University of California at Los Angeles in anthropology, referred by former CeSSIAM exchange student, Dr. Dena Herman. She forms part of the Xela-babies anthropometry team and is entering, coding and analyzing the data on nutrient intakes from the non-human milk foods and beverages offered through the first 6 months of life.
Oscar Padilla, MSc came to CeSSIAM at the conclusion of his Master of Science studies in neurobiology at the TUSM. He returned from Guatemala to Boston to perform a defense of his Master’s thesis. He forms part of the Xela-babies anthropometry team. He also works with Licda Rosario García on the analysis and interpretation of tape-recorded key informant interviews and focus-groups as part of the qualitative research component to determine cultural meaning and perceptions for decisions in early life feeding of infants and toddlers in Quetzaltenango.
Anne-Marie Chomat MD, MPH is a doctoral candidate in parasitology at the Institute of Pathology and School of Environmental Sciences of McGill University in Montreal, Canada, under the co-supervision of Associate Professor Marilyn E. Scott. The student had done exchange studies while pursuing her MPH and board certification in infectious disease medicine, with three prior visits to Guatemala. Her dissertation protocol on the effects of maternal stress on morbidity, lactation and growth of infant offspring has been approved at her home institution. She undertook a 6-week period to refine and examine the feasibility of interview formats and questionnaire instruments and to determine the acceptability, handling and diagnostic utility of physical and laboratory variables in a pilot reconnaissance, prior to definitive field collections.
Hilary Wren MSc is a doctoral candidate in nutrition at the School of Nutrition and Dietetics of MacDonald College of McGill University in Montreal, Canada, under the co-supervision of Associate Professor Kristine Koski. She was primarily responsible for the lactation biology, nutritional status and dietary intake aspect of the pilot field project during the summer of 2011.
Joseé Methot is a Masters candidate in environmental studies at the School of Environmental Sciences of McGill. Dr. Scott serves on her thesis committee. Her project involved a description of environmental systems analysis of the interaction between two forms of agriculture – subsistence farming and horticultural crop cultivation for export (broccoli) – in small holding in the foothills of the Sierra Madre mountain range in the Baja Verapaz.
Lauren Burgunder is an MPH candidate at the TUSM, working under the supervision of Assoc. Prof. Janet Forrester. Her project, in the eastern region of Guatemala’s “dry corridor” in the El Progreso Province was to assess the sources of potable water and formats for human excreta disposal rural households of the region, and explore attitudes toward newer formats of water purification (solar UV exposure) and to ecologically geared waste disposal (urine diverting toilets).
Ilse van Beukesom (Dutch, master degree candidate, 2011) was a student in the Infection and Nutrition program of the Vrije Universiteit (VU) who completed her international practicum requirement within the Xela-Babies project on the topic of defining exclusive breast feeding duration up to 6 months from different information sources.
Leonie Peters (Dutch, master degree candidate, 2011) was a student in the Infection and Nutrition program of the Vrije Universiteit (VU) who completed her international practicum requirement within the Xela-Babies project on the topic of use of and attitudes toward the ritual fluids, agüitas in infancy.
Robine van der Starre (Dutch, master degree candidate, 2011) was a student in the Infection and Nutrition program of the Vrije Universiteit (VU) who completed her international practicum requirement within the Xela-Babies project on the topic of early agüitas consumption and later growth.
Marieke Reurings (Dutch, master degree candidate, 2011) was a student in the Infection and Nutrition program of the Vrije Universiteit (VU) who completed her international practicum requirement within the Xela-Babies project the interaction of infant and toddler morbidity, growth and stunting risk.
Linda Oyesiku (Nigerian-American, MPH candidate, 2011) was a candidate for an MPH at the Boston University School of Public Health who completed her overseas practical experience with in the anthropometry measurements of Xela-Babies, data analysis from that study, and participation in the validation studies for non-invasive determination of hemoglobin concentration.
Natasha Irving (Jamaican-American, MD-MPH candidate, 2014) is a medical student at Tufts Medical School performing a concurrent MPH degree. Her international practical experience was conducted with the Xela-Babies project with a focus on anthropometry.
Juliana Casamiro de Almeida (Brazilian, master’s degree candidate, 2011) was a candidate for a master degree in nutrition at the Technische Universitaet Muenchen who performed her thesis studies on a study examining the comparative validity of the digital signal of two non-invasive, light-probe device for the measurement of hemoglobin concentration.
Jeniece Alvey (American, 2011 university graduate in anthropology) is a graduate of UCLA in anthropology who has been a volunteer at CeSSIAM in the anthropometry measurements of Xela-Babies, and analyzing data on the early introduction of formula milk in that population. In a second phase of participation, she worked on the specimen collections in the SOSEP HCs project.
Carolina Luzón (Peruvian, master degree candidate, 2012) was a candidate for a master degree in nutrition at the Technische Universitaet Muenchen who performed her thesis studies on a study examining the test-retest stability of digital hemoglobin registration in young children, recorded with the two brands of non-invasive devices using small sensors designed for small hands.
Zsofia Zambo (Canadian, master degree candidate, 2013) is a candidate for a master degree in nutrition in the School of Dietetics and Human Nutrition of the MacDonald College of McGill University. She was a summer volunteer with the lactation component of the Mam-Mamas and in a project related to rapid assessment of vitamin A concentration in table sugar and dairy products.
Caitlin Crowley (American, master degree candidate, 2013) is a candidate for master degree in nursing clinical practitioner at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She was a summer volunteer in the Mam-Mamas project to gain experience in the clinical evaluation in women’s health.
Cindy Stoffel (American, master degree candidate, 2013) is a candidate for master degree in midwifery at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She was a summer volunteer in the Mam-Mamas project with a focus on the pregnancy and delivery aspects of the cohort.
Mariah Kincaid (American, MD-MPH candidate, 2015) is a medical student at Tufts Medical School performing a concurrent MPH degree. Her international practical experience was conducted with the Mam-Mamas project with a focus on health-seeking behavior related to infections and parasites. She was the recipient of competitive travel fellowships from the Infectious Disease Society of America and the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.
Olivia Russell (American, MD-MPH candidate, 2015) is a medical student at Tufts Medical School performing a concurrent MPH degree. Her international practical experience was conducted with the Mam-Mamas project with a focus on maternal dietary practices, preferences and avoidances during pregnancy and lactation.
Christine Whang (American, master degree candidate, 2013) is a candidate for a master degree in medical sciences at the Tufts Medical School who performed a thesis project on vitamin A content of human milk in specimens from later lactation in the Mam-Mamas project. It includes a description of the breast milk vitamin A values of mothers, the differences between milk collected by breast-pump and by manual extraction and the effects of short-term freezing on vitamin A levels.
Eleanor Platt (American, diplomate in anthropology, 2012) is a post-undergraduate student, having finished diploma studies in anthropology at New York University, participating in the Mam-Mamas project.
Lucy Manchester (Canadian, MD student, class of 2013) is a final year medical student at McGill University School of Medicine participating in the Mam-Mamas project.