Inflammation, physical performance, and changing iron status in an iron-biofortification efficacy trial in Rwandan women.

The three aims of my dissertation are as follows:

  1. To investigate the relationship between iron status and physical performance in an iron-deficient population
  2. To investigate the relationship between irons status and physical activity in an iron-deficient population
  3. To test how inflammation affects measurement of iron status

Briefly, my experiments are designed 1) to analyze how physical performance and activity change after an iron intervention, 2) to quantify the extent of bias that is introduced to measurements of iron status by inflammation, and 3) to analyze the extent to which repeated physical activity induces inflammation in human subjects. Preliminary results show that iron biofortification does improve iron status in iron deficient Rwandan women. The functional outcomes of physical performance, while difficult to analyze, do seem to improve over the course of the intervention.

This research was funded by HarvestPlus, the Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research, the Human Ecology Alumni Association, Division of Nutritional Sciences and Cornell’s Graduate School.