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Melissa Bates

Melissa BatesCooperating Doctoral Program: Food Science

EITS Track: Biomedical Toxicology

Education: B.S., MSU, Food Science

Research Interests:
It is widely acknowledged that development of autoimmune disease in an individual is dependent not only on genetic factors, but also environmental factors. In our laboratory, we are investigating the exacerbation of autoimmune disease following intranasal exposure to crystalline silica. Due to its physical properties, crystalline silica is widely used in various industrial practices including hydraulic fracturing, and occupational exposure to crystalline silica has been linked to development of autoimmune diseases including systemic lupus erythematosus and rheumatoid arthritis. We are further investigating the impact of diet supplemented with the omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) on preventing the exacerbated disease phenotype seen with exposure to crystalline silica.

Major Professor: Jim Pestka, Food Science and Human Nutrition