Diets and Disease: How Dietary Choices and Food Contaminants Affect Our Health

The annual Robert Leader Endowed Lecture Series was held at the Kellogg Hotel & Conference Center on June 11, 2019 and featured guest speaker Felicia Wu, PhD. Dr. Wu's presentation was titled "Diets and Disease: How Dietary Choices and Food Contaminants  Affect Our Health."

Dr. Wu is a John A. Hannah Distinguished Professor of Food Science & Human Nutrition and Agricultural, Food, & Resource Economics. Her research examines the national and global burden of foodborne disease, how improved nutrition can counteract the harmful effects of toxins, and how cost-effective strategies can improve food safety in the United States and worldwide. 

Recently, her work has expanded to examine the risk of antimicrobial resistance from antibiotic use in livestock production, and how we can curb these risks. For her research on the impact of aflatoxin regulations on global liver cancer, Dr. Wu was awarded a US National Institutes of Health (NIH) EUREKA Award. She was commissioned by the World Health Organization (WHO) to estimate the global burden of disease caused by aflatoxin and arsenic in food, and co-authored the WHO 2015 report on the Global Burden of Foodborne Disease.

Dr. Wu serves as an expert advisor to the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) of the United Nations. She is an area editor for three 

journals: Risk Analysis, World Mycotoxin Journal, and Archives of Environmental and Occupational Health.  Recently, she served on the US National Academy of Sciences (NAS) panel on the future of animal sciences research for global food security. Dr. Wu serves as an invited reviewer for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC: 2007 Nobel Peace Laureate) Sixth Assessment Report. She has also been selected to serve on the MSU Presidential Search Committee. 

Dr. Wu earned her A.B. and S.M. in Applied Mathematics and Medical Sciences at Harvard University, and her PhD in Engineering and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University.