President's Outstanding Faculty Award for Scholarship & Creative Activity
Dr. D’Anna-Hernandez is dedicated to bringing awareness to inequalities in perinatal health. Her academic research focuses on how exposure to such sociocultural stressors, such as acculturative stress and discrimination, during pregnancy places both the mother and developing fetus at risk for mental health disorders in the vulnerable Mexican and Mexican-American population.
She models these social factors in the laboratory mice using such techniques as communal nesting and exposure to fox odor. Thus, she is able to study the underlying neuromechanisms of stress during the perinatal period on both mothers and pups as well. While her work crosses disciplines, Dr. D’Anna-Hernandez is passionate about health disparities and is involved in multiple community-engaged projects to bring this work to the surrounding community. She is the recipient of the President’s Outstanding Scholarship/Creative Activity Award for 2018.