Dr. Simin Nikbin Meydani, D.V.M., Ph.D., serves as the Director of the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University. She is professor of nutrition and immunology at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy and the Tufts Sackler Graduate Program in Immunology. Dr. Meydani’s scientific interests include the impact of nutrition on the aging process and age-associated diseases, the role of nutrition on immune and inflammatory responses and predisposition to infectious diseases in developed and less developed countries, on which she has published extensively. Her honors include the American Aging Association Denham Harman Lifetime Research Achievement Award; American Society of Nutrition (ASN) Herman Award in clinical nutrition; ASN Lederle Award in Human Nutrition Research; Fellow of Hedwig van Amerigen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine; American College of Nutrition Grace Goldsmith Award; International HERMES Vitamin Research Award; International Nutritional Immunology Group Award; Iowa State University Distinguished Alumni Lifetime Achievement Award. She is the President of the American Society of Nutrition and has served the academic/clinical community as: President of the American Aging Association; member of NIH Geriatric Rehabilitation Study Section, Aging Systems and Geriatrics Study Section, and Cellular Mechanism of Aging and Development Study Section; member of USDA Human Nutrient Requirements for Optimal Health Program Grant Review Panel; member of United Nations FAO/WHO Expert Panel on Nutritional Requirements of the Elderly; member of NIH-funded Consortium Lipid Maps Scientific Advisory Committee, NIA Primate Calorie Restriction Project Advisory Board; Gerontological Society Nutrition Steering Committee; Scientific Steering Committee of the Sackler Institute Monitoring and Evaluation Group, NYAS; member of the editorial boards of several journals; chair of several FASEB summer conferences and other international meetings.
Allan Walker is the Conrad Taff Professor of Nutrition and Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School. After completing medical school at Washington University of St. Louis, he trained in Pediatrics and Immunology with Dr. Robert Good at the University of Minnesota before coming to Massachusetts General Hospital (Harvard Medical School) to train in Gastroenterology and Nutrition with Dr. Kurt Isselbacher. Dr. Walker joined the faculty of Pediatrics in 1971 and became Professor in 1982. He established the first Pediatric Gastroenterology Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital in 1973 and became Director of a Combined Program in Pediatric Gastroenterology at Boston Children’s Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital in 1982. He currently is Director of Nutrition at Harvard Medical School and an Investigator in the Mucosal Immunology and Biology Research Center at Massachusetts General Hospital for Children. His research interests include the development of mucosal immune function and the role of breastfeeding, protective nutrients and initial colonization in the ontogeny of intestinal host defense. He has received numerous honors in recognition of his research including the Shwachman Award from NASPGHAN and the Hugh Butt Award from the AGA for mucosal immunologic research and a R-37 (MERIT) Award from the National Institutes of Health for outstanding investigation in breast milk immunology. Recently, Dr. Walker’s laboratory has defined the cellular mechanism of probiotic protection in necrotizing enterocolitis.