Elizabeth J. Parks, PhD

I am a tenured Professor in the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology and in the Department of Nutrition and Exercise Physiology, both in the School of Medicine at the University of Missouri, Columbia. I received a B.S. in Exercise Physiology at the University of Wisconsin and then became a research assistant, working in laboratories of Drs. Russell Ross and B. Greg Brown in the field of atherosclerosis research, at the University of Washington in Seattle. I completed doctoral studies under the direction of Barbara Schneeman at UC-Davis, an expert in postprandial lipid metabolism, and completed a postdoctoral fellowship with Marc Hellerstein at UC-Berkeley in the use of stable isotopes to investigate in vivo metabolism.

Over the past 13 years, the influences of these two thought leaders in nutrition resulted in my development of new techniques to study the metabolism of food in obesity and insulin resistance. Our lab was the first to demonstrate the significant contribution of the diet to the development of obesity-related, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) through both dietary fat and carbohydrate.

Professionally, I have held multiple leadership positions in the American Society for Nutrition - serving as chair of the writing group for the Obesity Platform (statement of ASN research goals), as a member of the nominating committee for awards, advising the new Early Career Group, and am now on the Publications committees.

Nationally, I have been a standing member of the NIH review committee (Clinical and Integrative Diabetes and Obesity), served as an ad hoc reviewer for multiple study sections and special emphasis committees, and have co-chaired an NIH symposium on the health impacts of dietary fructose.

At TOS, I have been a member for 15 years and a Fellow since 2007. I have served on the Scientific Program Committee (Track 1 Chair), been highly active in mentoring activities for graduate students, Fellows and junior faculty, and I currently serve as an At-large member of the TOS Leadership Council.

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