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Jennifer T. Smilowitz, Ph.D.

Director of Scientific and Strategic Development
International Milk Genomics Consortium
Associate Director, Foods for Health Institute
Faculty Affiliate, Department of Food Science & Technology
UC Davis

IMGC Team: Management


Dr. Smilowitz became the IMGC’s Director of Scientific and Strategic Development in April 2019. She attended the first IMGC Symposium in Napa California in 2004 as a graduate student and participated in several IMGC Symposia. She has engaged in active collaborations with IMGC scientists and demonstrated clinical safety and efficacy for several new products either in or on their way to the marketplace.  Dr. Smilowitz is a faculty affiliate in the Department of Food Science and Technology and Associate Director of the Human Studies Research Program for the Foods for Health Institute at the University of California Davis. She holds a doctoral degree in Nutritional Biology with an emphasis in Endocrinology and completed her postdoctoral fellowship in Food Science from the University of California Davis. She has a well-established career in lactation and milk science, particularly human milk and clinical nutrition.  Dr. Smilowitz has spent much of her career solving complex problems with the use of cross-disciplinary and multi-collaborative methods. She has published more than 60 scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals on lactation, milk and microbiome across all life stages. She was instrumental in the clinical and regulatory dossier development of B. infantis bacterium in breastfed infants. She is a fellow of the University of California Davis School of Management which was instrumental in shifting her research toward translation to make a greater impact on human health. As a lactation education counselor Dr. Smilowitz supports breastfeeding and researches dietary solutions that support the health of the mother-infant dyad. She regularly gives lectures on the benefits of breastfeeding and its impact on the infant gut microbiome to health-care practitioners across northern Californian hospitals, clinics and Women Infants and Children (WIC) staff and an invited guest lecturer for various undergraduate and graduate-level courses in lactation, microbiology, infant-maternal nutrition, nutrition and food science at University of California Davis. Her bibliography is publicly available here.