Dr Sarah Spencer has a growing national and international profile in the research fields of stress and perinatal programming of disease.
She is interested in the impact of psychological stress on brain pathways that control or contribute to the body’s stress responses. At the University of Calgary, Dr Spencer explored neuroimmune interactions, examining the effects of a neonatal immune challenge on adult animals’ responses to further inflammatory insults. Since returning to Australia, she has combined her research backgrounds in stress, neuroinflammation, and developmental physiology to investigate effects of early life dietary manipulations on the stress and metabolism in the adult animal. Dr Spencer was awarded a Vice-Chancellor’s Senior Research Fellowship in 2011 and is based in the School of Health and Biomedical Sciences.