Congrats to HELI Alum Dr. Lesliam Quirós-Alcalá!


Congratulations to Lesliam Quirós-Alcalá, PhD, one of our HELI 2016 alumni, on her recent K01 grant award from the NIH!

Dr. Quirós-Alcalá is an assistant professor in the School of Public Health, Maryland Institute of Applied Environmental Health, University of Maryland, College Park. She is a HELI 2016 alum and her K01 that was recently funded was the subject of a mock review session conducted at HELI 2016.

Dr. Quirós-Alcalá’s K01 application to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), “Antimicrobial Agents & Asthma Morbidity Among African American Children with Asthma” is funded with a start date of August 1, 2017. Her primary mentors are Stephen B. Thomas, PhD, University of Maryland School of Public Health and Nadia Hansel, MD, MPH, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Other mentors from both institutions include Elizabeth Matsui, MD, MHS, Meredith McCormack, MD, MHS, Gregory Hancock, PhD, and Donald Milton, PhD.

What is the study about?

Asthma is the leading chronic pediatric disease in the United States, affecting 6.3 million children, and disproportionately affecting African American children. This study will be the first to test the hypothesis that exposure to antimicrobial agents in personal care products increases the risk of asthma morbidity among African American children. The proposed work has the potential to inform future research, and the development of effective public health interventions to improve the quality of life among those suffering from asthma.

Per Dr. Quirós-Alcalá: “I am thrilled to be working with an amazing team of mentors and experts from Johns Hopkins University, UC Berkeley (CERCH), Harvard University, and the University of Maryland, and to conduct important work in an understudied and underrepresented pediatric population in public health research. Through this work, I hope to fill current knowledge gaps in children’s environmental health research and help us understand why exposures to certain environmental contaminants are higher in select minority pediatric populations so that we may reduce the risk of any potential adverse effects and health disparities. This work is also important because the chemicals we will be focusing on may also be related to other adverse health effects. I’m thankful for my family, HELI, ALL of my academic mentors, and NHLBI who made this possible!”

Congratulations & strong work, Lesliam! Your HELI family is very proud of you!


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