staff_NiculescuDr. Mihai Niculescu joined the UNC Nutrition Research Institute (NRI) team in 2008 to study how maternal obesity influences children’s health in the long term. Niculescu specializes in the study of epigenetics and nutrition, which help to explain how diet sets the “switches” that control gene expression. One example of his current investigations is the role that a mother’s diet plays in her fetus’s brain development. Specifically, his interest focuses on the impacts of maternal obesity and omega-3 fatty acids upon fetal and postnatal brain development.
“The kind of nutrition research fostered at the NRI is a dream come true,” Niculescu said, “…in particular for everyone expecting a radical change in the way we understand the role of nutrition in health and disease.”
Dr. Niculescu obtained his M.D. degree from Carol Davila University of Medicine in Bucharest, Romania in 1995. He practiced medicine in Romania and was an assistant professor of Physiology at Transylvania University in Brasov, Romania from 1996 to 2000. In 2005 he obtained his Ph.D. in Nutritional Biochemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In addition to his appointment with the NRI, Niculescu also holds an appointment as assistant professor in UNC’s Department of Nutrition.
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Niculescu’s Research Team