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Rhonda Perciavalle Patrick has a Ph.D. in biomedical science from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis TN and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Memphis TN. She also has a Bachelor’s of Science degree in biochemistry/chemistry from the University of California, San Diego. She has done extensive research on aging, cancer, and nutrition. She did her graduate research at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital where she investigated the link between mitochondrial metabolism, apoptosis, and cancer. Her groundbreaking work discovered that a protein that is critical for cell survival has two distinct mitochondrial localizations with disparate functions, linking it’s anti-apoptotic role to a previously unrecognized role in mitochondrial respiration and maintenance of mitochondrial structure. Her dissertation findings were published in the 2012 issue of Nature Cell Biology.
Dr. Patrick is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute with Dr. Bruce Ames. She investigates the effects of micronutrient (vitamins and minerals) inadequacies on metabolism, inflammation, DNA damage, and aging and whether supplementation can reverse the damage. In addition, she is investigating the role of vitamin D in brain function, behavior, and other physiological functions. In February of 2014 she published a paper in FASEB on how vitamin D regulates serotonin synthesis and how this relates to autism.
Dr. Patrick has also done research on aging at the Salk Institute for Biological Sciences. At the Salk she investigated what role insulin signaling played in protein misfolding, which is commonly found in neurodegenerative diseases.
Dr. Patrick is passionate about disseminating health-related information in a way that the general public can easily understand. She is a frequent speaker and writer on topics ranging from general health and wellness, to diet and aging, to vitamins and their effects. It is Dr. Patrick’s goal to challenge the status quo and encourage the wider public to think about health and longevity using a proactive, preventative approach.