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Brain, Biome & Behaviour Change - The first 1,000 days and life long health - Speakers announced on 8 October 2019


posted by Research Admin 1 on 10 July 2019

University of Auckland,
School of Population Health,
Tamaki Campus

261 Morrin Road

Auckland 1072

The Healthy Start team are delighted to offer a new one-day seminar for health practitioners: explore the developmental origins of health and disease and learn new skills to empower your patients to make positive behaviour change.
Register now for this exciting one day seminar and learn more about:

• How the path for chronic lifestyle disease is laid down in early life, the first 1,000 days.

• The role of the gut microbiome in life course health. A vast community of bacteria inhabit your gastro-intestinal tract and have a major influence on your metabolism, immunity, mood and more.

• The science of behaviour change to support you in your role as an agent of change.

Healthy Start training brings you a range of renowned speakers and  practitioners from the University of Auckland, to share their expert knowledge on brain, biome and behaviour change.

The Expert Speakers;

Dr Jacquie Bay, is the founding Director of LENScience, an innovative Developmental Origins of Health and Disease (DOHaD) knowledge translation programme that facilitates school-science partnerships. Jacquie has a PhD in Health Sciences and a MEd (Hons) in Science Education, is a Principal Investigator at the Liggins Institute and leads DOHaD knowledge translation research with an emphasis on adolescent populations. She is a past president of the Biology Educators' Association of New Zealand and a recipient of the NZASE Peter Spratt Medal for sustained contribution to science education in New Zealand.

Professor Wayne Cutfield, Professor of Paediatric Endocrinology, Liggins Institute, the University of Auckland. Prof Cutfield leads clinical research examining the impact of environmental influences in early life on childhood growth and development. He is also Director of the National Science Challenge: A Better Start - a cross-institution research programme looking at better ways to predict, prevent and treat obesity, learning and mental health problems in children and teenagers.

Professor Cutfield's talk: The Microbiome and Us - This talk will explore the critical role our gut plays in our overall health, immunity, through to weight management. Understanding this role is vital in the management of lifestyle disease.

Professor Mark Vickers, Associate Director–Academic, Liggins Institute, University of Auckland. Prof Vickers has a primary interest is in the developmental origins of health and disease (DOHaD), with a particular focus on the association between poor maternal nutrition and the development of obesity and cardiometabolic disorders in offspring in later life.

Professor Vickers will cover the latest evidence linking early life nutritional adversity, to later life health outcomes in offspring. It will draw on work from pre-clinical models and also examine possible avenues for intervention to reverse such "developmental programming".

Dr Clare Wall, Director of the MHSc Nutrition and Dietetic Programme at the University of Auckland. Dr Wall's main research focus is the interrelationship between the determinants of nutritional status and health outcomes in the paediatric population. The nutritional environment is the new frontier for human adaptation because more and more people are living in environments which are not conducive of good nutrition practices and which are becoming increasingly more challenging. She has been researching this topic by examining the relationship between nutritional status, dietary intake and health in early life.

Dr Wall's talk: Does my baby need probiotics?

This presentation will explore how diet in early life influences the development of the microbiome and if differences in the microbiome structure and function affect health outcomes. The presentation will also discuss how we can support parents/caregivers decision making around the use of pre and probiotics.

Dr Anna Serlachius, Health psychologist whose focuses include, self-management interventions; mental health interventions; research in diabetes, obesity and gout; social support and health; positive psychology.

Dr Serlachius will explore some of the key myths of behavior change and the skills required for health professionals to better support patients with long-term conditions. This presentation will also cover some of the key concepts related to client-centered techniques.

Professor Chris Bullen, primary area of research expertise is in tobacco control, in particular, intervention-focused research on how to help more people who smoke to quit for good. Co-director of a programme of strategic and innovative tobacco control research (the NZ Tobacco Control Turanga) that is aiming to inform dramatic reductions in tobacco use prevalence in New Zealand.

Special interest in the association of tobacco smoking with both non-communicable and communicable diseases (such as TB), and the inclusion of tobacco control in health professional training (both at the undergraduate and postgraduate curricula levels).

Miss Jessica McCormack, Research Assistant at the National Institute of Health Innovation (NIHI) and is a Doctoral Candidate - Doctor of Philosophy - Psychology Faculty of Science at the University of Auckland.

Dr Bullen will be joined by Jessica McCormack and their talk will explore smoking and drinking in pregnancy. What we know and what you can do.

Register today, seats are strictly limited. If you prefer to be invoiced email us at

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