Dannon names Eimerbrink winner of Yogurt, Probiotics Fellowship

March 9, 2016

Dannon has announced Micah Eimerbrink, a doctoral candidate at Texas Christian University, as the winner of the 2015–2016 Dannon Yogurt and Probiotics Fellowship. Chosen from an impressive pool of applicants, Eimerbrink is focusing on a unique and emerging area of research—the impact of probiotics and the gut microbiota on the brain and psychological function.

“We are proud to offer the Fellowship grant, now in its fourth consecutive year, to such a deserving candidate,” said Miguel Freitas, vice president of health affairs at Dannon. “We have long discussed the benefits of probiotics on digestive and immune functions, meanwhile, research surrounding its role in psychological functions is still in the early stages. We were immediately excited by Micah’s research and look forward to seeing his results regarding probiotics’ potential impact on the mind-gut connection.”

Since 2013, Eimerbrink’s doctoral studies have focused on understanding factors that influence behavior and the physiological influences that motivate these changes. To date, his research, which has focused on animal models, has indicated that ingestion of probiotics is linked to certain psychological functions. Eimerbrink has also participated in several lectures and poster sessions, and his research has been published in various scientific journals.

“As a doctoral candidate, my original research provided further support for the idea that there is a significant relationship between the gut and its influence on environmental perceptions of it as it relates to anxiety and fear,” said Eimerbrink. “With this grant, I will hopefully be able to further understand the relationship between the mind and the gut in a human population, and explore the role of probiotics in this complex connection. The potential impact of a human-based study is extremely motivating for me.”

As part of the Fellowship, Eimerbrink will receive $25,000, payable to Texas Christian University, to support his research during the 2015–2016 academic year.

Press release