Margaret Morris, Professor and Head of Pharmacology at UNSW (The University of New South Wales) Sydney, has a PhD in Medicine (Monash) and postdoctoral training in neuroscience. Morris leads the Environmental determinants of obesity research group within the School of Medical Sciences, where she investigates the impact of adverse early life events and lifestyle factors on chronic disease risk.
Her research focuses on the intergenerational transmission of obesity through both maternal and paternal lines and the psychology of eating, e.g. how does provision of a varied, energy rich diet override the regulatory control mechanisms that should maintain body weight? Her lab investigates the impact of a palatable, western diet, and the contributions of sugar and fat, to cognitive decline and the relationship with changes in composition of the gut microbiota. The ultimate goal is to harness better understanding of the gut-brain axis to develop new approaches to CNS disorders.