Dr. Sun Eun Lee, an assistant scientist in the department of international Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, received the 2018 Rainer Gross Award for Recent Innovations in Nutrition and Health in Developing Societies at the 18th Latin American Congress of Nutrition in Guadalajara, Mexico. Presented by the Hildegard Grunow Foundation, the award honors international nutrition scientists who generate and pursue innovative ideas and projects in nutrition and health in developing societies. The award is named for Dr. Rainer Gross, a renowned nutritionist who worked for years combating micronutrient deficiencies as a senior officer at UNICEF.
Dr. Lee was honored for her paper in the Journal of Nutrition, entitled, “The Plasma Proteome is Associated with Anthropometric Status of Undernourished Nepalese School-Aged Children“. The award recognizes the work of Dr. Lee, and her Bloomberg School colleagues, on plasma proteomics as a platform on which to assess micronutrient deficiencies and other aspects of malnutrition in low-income populations.
[Photo: Dr. Sun Eun Lee]
Proteomics, the study of proteins in the blood, has been shown to offer novel insights to the nutritional status of individuals. Development in proteomics has opened up enormous possibilities for measuring population-level nutritional deficiencies and excesses. While currently batteries of tests to assess these burdens in populations exist, they require extensive resources – both technological and financial – and often take years to assess, analyze and report. The development and refinement of proteomic technology offers a promising single platform that could produce similar assessments in months rather than years as typically occurs, and for a fraction of the cost and labor.