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Jennifer Hebert



I am interested in the effects of maternal prebiotic supplementation on offspring  behaviour and the brain using a combination of behavioral techniques and gene expression assays in mice. We have found that consuming a galactooligosaccharide prebiotic during pregnancy and breastfeeding results in reduced anxious and depressive behaviour in F1 as well as altered NMDA receptor expression in the frontal cortex and hippocampus. To understand the mechanisms of how maternal prebiotic feeding causes these changes, I am currently exploring immune function, metabolism, and gut microbiome composition in F1 and how those changes may be related to altered central gene expression and behaviour.