Monday, February 22, 2021

Spotlight on Dhruvesh B. Patel, winner of the 2021 AOCS Health and Nutrition Division Student Excellence Award

The Health and Nutrition Division Student Award recognizes graduate students presenting an outstanding paper within the Health and Nutrition technical program at the AOCS Annual Meeting.

This spotlight will introduce you to Dhruvesh Patel, the 2021 award winner.

Provide a brief biography

I was born in India where I completed my high school education. I have lived in Canada for 8 years equally divided between Toronto and Edmonton. After completing a diploma in Fitness and Health Promotion I transferred to York University, Toronto for undergrad in Kinesiology. For my graduate studies, I moved to Edmonton where I started as a Masters student at University of Alberta and  later transferred to PhD in Nutrition and Metabolism. Currently, I am in my 4th year of PhD and plan to pursue research in Nutrition and Immunology after graduation. Living in Edmonton, I have started to like winter and winter activities. Recently, I had a chance to see Northern Lights. I love outdoor biking, hiking in Canadian Rocky mountains. Outside of work, I want to learn about nature photography.

Can you tell us about your current research?

Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids are essential nutrients but we don't know their importance for a normal immune system development, particularly in infants with genetic predisposition to atopic diseases. My research focuses on identifying the importance of functionally active omega-3 fatty acid, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and omega-6, arachidonic acid (ARA) in the development of immune system in infants. Using animal models, we study these fatty acids by supplementing them in animal diet during different periods of infancy. Part of my research has been published in Journal of Nutrition. Next, we plan to study oral tolerance of egg protein in allergic mouse models.

What was your reaction when you learned you had won the award?

I was very happy and honored to have received the H&N Division Student Award. To celebrate the achievement, I went to Jasper (Alberta) and spent a night watching starts and northern lights.

How has AOCS helped develop your career?

AOCS is a multidisciplinary group of elites with a keen interest in research and development. With this comes a plethora of knowledge and tools that new trainees like myself can access. AOCS though their webinar programs and annual events has provided me the opportunity to interact with researchers and obtain guidance to propel in the next step of my academic pursuits.

Meet our 2021 AOCS Health and Nutrition Division Student Excellence Award Winner

Dhruvesh Patel will be presenting his work which demonstrates that supplementing docosahexaenoic acid along with arachidonic acid during weaning period improves immune response in neonatal Brown Norway rats at the 2021 AOCS Annual Meeting & Expo, May 3-14, 2021

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