209A Alumni Hall
Area of Interest:
Biomedical anthropology, nutrition, human biology, early life determinants of body composition and obesity, infant and child feeding
Anthropology, Emory University, 2007
MPH Public Nutrition/Global Health, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University 2007
I am a biological anthropologist specializing in human growth and nutrition. My research focuses on understanding the biocultural and biomedical influences on growth and physiology during infancy and childhood. I am particularly interested in how early life nutrition and environmental exposures shape long-term health and obesity risk.
My research combines laboratory, anthropological and epidemiological approaches to explore the effects of early environments on growth, body composition, and reproductive development. My work focuses on: sex differences in the association between sex steroids, body composition, and feeding during infancy; the effects of early diet on the development of the intestinal microbiome as an underlying pathway linking infant feeding and the development of obesity; and the structural, social and maternal and infant characteristics contributing to the development of an obesogenic environment. I am currently examining the physical and social environments associated with the development of inflammation in Chinese children, adolescents, and adults through an NIH K award.
(in press) Thompson, AL, KM Houck, LS Adair, P Gordon-Larsen, S Du, B Zhang, and BM Popkin.
Associations between Pathogenic and Obesogenic Factors and Inflammation in Chinese children, adolescents, and adults. American Journal of Human Biology.
(in press) Thompson, AL Intergenerational impact of maternal obesity and postnatal feeding practices
on pediatric obesity. Nutrition Reviews.
(in press) Thompson, AL and ME Bentley, The critical period of infant feeding for the development of
early disparities in obesity. Social Science and Medicine. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.socscimed.2012.12.007.
2013 Thompson, AL and M Lampl Prenatal and postnatal energetic conditions and sex steroids levels
across the first year of life. American Journal of Human Biology. 25:643–654.
2013 Thompson, AL, LS Adair and ME Bentley. Pressuring and restrictive feeding styles influence
infant feeding and size among a low-income African-American sample. Obesity. 21(3): 532-571.
2013 Thompson, AL, LS Adair, and ME Bentley Maternal characteristics and perception of infant temperament associated with television exposure in African-American infants. Pediatrics 131(2): e390-e397.
2012 Thompson, AL. Developmental origins of obesity: early feeding environments, infant growth and
the intestinal microbiome. American Journal of Human Biology. 24(3): 350-360.
Affiliated and Emeritus Faculty