As Vice Provost for Research (VPR), Dr. Simin Nikbin Meydani works with faculty and university leadership to develop and help implement strategic research priorities at Tufts, advocates for the research and scholarship mission of all disciplines across all schools, facilitates strategies to enhance extramurally supported research across the schools from all sources, accelerates interdisciplinary initiatives, and promotes university research accomplishments. She oversees pre-award and post-award development and administration of grants and contracts; protection, management, and licensing of the University’s intellectual property; the use of human subjects and laboratory animals in research; biosafety; and the implementation of the University’s policies on conflict of interest in research and scientific integrity in research and scholarship. The Office of the Vice Provost for Research (OVPR) works with other administrative offices at Tufts to create an environment at the University that encourages and facilitates both disciplinary and interdisciplinary research. The OVPR strives to provide high quality services to the faculty and to increase the funding available to support research while protecting the University’s interests and assuring that Tufts is in compliance with all relevant laws and regulations.
Dr. Meydani joined the Tufts academic community over 30 years ago, first as a scientist at the JM-USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging (HNRCA) and eventually as an HNRCA lab director. Since 2009 and until her appointment as VPR in 2016, she served as Director of the HNRCA. As VPR, she continues to serve as the Director of the Nutritional Immunology Laboratory at the HNRCA. Additionally, she is a Professor of Immunology at the Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, and a Professor of Nutrition at the Gerald J. and Dorothy R. Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy. Prior to Tufts, she conducted research at Brandeis and Harvard University. Throughout her career, she has mentored many students, junior scientists and faculty.
Dr. Meydani’s scientific interests include the basic mechanisms of aging, impact of nutrition on the aging process and age associated diseases, role of nutrition on immune and inflammatory responses, and predisposition to infectious diseases in developed and less developed countries. Her research is multidisciplinary and expands from cell and molecular to animal and clinical investigations. She is an internationally recognized scholar with more than 300 publications and continuous NIH, USDA, industry and foundation research funding as principal investigator or co-investigator and serves/has served on several NIH study sections, industry and foundation grant application review committees and advisory boards.
Dr. Meyandi’s honors include the American Aging Association Denham Harman Lifetime Research Achievement Award; American Society of Nutrition (ASN) Herman Award in clinical nutrition; ASN Lederle Award in Human Nutrition Research; American College of Nutrition Grace Goldsmith Award; She was the President of the American Society for Nutrition (2014- 2015) and President of the American Aging Association (2005-2006).
Dr. Meydani holds a D.V.M. (Tehran University), an M.S. in Nutrition (Colorado State University), and a Ph.D. in Nutrition (Iowa State University).
Vice Provost for Research-at-a-Glance
Simin Nikbin Meydani
Vice Provost for Research
D.V.M. from Tehran University (1975), an M.S. in Nutrition from Colorado State University (1977), a Ph.D. in Nutrition from Iowa State University (1981).
Center Director, JM-USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging
Lab Director, JM-USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging
Senior Scientist, JM-USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging
Professor, Gerald J. and Dorothy R. Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University
Professor, Immunology, Tufts University Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences
Selected Professional Affiliations
American Society of Nutrition, Past President and Board Member
American Aging Association, Past President and Board Member
American Association of Immunologists
Nutrition, lifestyle and prevention of age-related diseases and disabilities with particular focus on immune and inflammatory diseases, basic mechanisms of age-related changes in immune and inflammatory responses.
Selected Representative Publications
Meydani, SN, Das, SK, Pieper, CF, Lewis, MR, Klein, S., Dixit, W, Gupta, AK, Villareal, DT, Bhapkar, M, Huang, M, Fuss, P, Roberts, SR, Holloszy, JO,Fontana, L. Long-term moderate calorie restriction inhibits inflammation without impairing cell-mediated immunity: a randomized controlled trial in non-obese humans. Aging, 2016, DOI: 10.18632/aging.100994.
Barnett JB, Dao MC, Hamer DH, Kandel R, Brandeis G, Wu D, Dallal GE, Jacques PF, Schreiber R, Kong E, Meydani SN. Effect of zinc supplementation on serum zinc concentration and T cell proliferation in nursing home elderly: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2016 Jan 27 (Epub ahead of print; DOI: 10.3945/ajcn.115.115188); 2016, 103: 942-951.
Bou Ghanem EN, Clark S, Du X, Wu D, Camilli A, Leong JM, Meydani SN. The alpha-tocopherol form of vitamin E reverses age-associated susceptibility to Streptococcus pneumoniae lung infection by modulating pulmonary neutrophil recruitment. J Immunol, 2015, 194(3): 1090-9. PMID: 25512603. *Equal contributors
Gay RT, Belisle S, Beck MA, Meydani SN. An aged host promotes the evolution of an avirulent coxsackievirus into a virulent strain. PNAS, 103: 13825-13830, 2006.
Meydani SN, Leka LS, Fine BC, Dallal GE, Keusch GT, Singh MF, Hamer DH. Vitamin E and respiratory infections among elderly nursing home residents: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA, 292:828-836, 2004.
Wu D, Marko M, Claycombe K, Paulson KE, Meydani SN. Ceramide-induced and age-associated increase in macrophage COX-2 expression: role of NF-kappaB. J Biol. Chem., 278: 10983-10992, 2003.