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Sheila Isanaka, Sc.D.

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Sheila Isanaka conducts large-scale epidemiological studies in complex settings, using both observational and randomized designs, to inform practice and policy in global nutrition. Her research is intentionally developed with and for practitioners and policy makers and aims to bring the best in study design and data analysis to challenging settings. This approach delivers the most solid scientific evidence possible to the most appropriate audience and assures that findings can be translated to shape programs, policy, and research.

Since 2007, Sheila's work has focused on the study of severe acute malnutrition (SAM), informing practice around diagnosis, estimation, treatment and prevention. Over 52 million children worldwide suffer from acute malnutrition, with 875,000 deaths in children < 5 years annually attributable to this condition. Her work also spreads more widely across disciplines to explore the interaction between malnutrition and infectious disease and the role of maternal nutrition in child health and development.

Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.
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PMC Citations indicate the number of times the publication was cited by articles in PubMed Central, and the Altmetric score represents citations in news articles and social media. (Note that publications are often cited in additional ways that are not shown here.) Fields are based on how the National Library of Medicine (NLM) classifies the publication's journal and might not represent the specific topic of the publication. Translation tags are based on the publication type and the MeSH terms NLM assigns to the publication. Some publications (especially newer ones and publications not in PubMed) might not yet be assigned Field or Translation tags.) Click a Field or Translation tag to filter the publications.
  1. Isanaka S, Andersen CT, Cousens S, Myatt M, Briend A, Krasevec J, Hayashi C, Mayberry A, Mwirigi L, Guerrero S. Improving estimates of the burden of severe wasting: analysis of secondary prevalence and incidence data from 352 sites. BMJ Glob Health. 2021 Mar; 6(3). PMID: 33653730.
  2. Madzorera I, Ghosh S, Wang M, Fawzi W, Isanaka S, Hertzmark E, Namirembe G, Bashaasha B, Agaba E, Turyashemererwa F, Webb P, Duggan C. Prenatal dietary diversity may influence underweight in infants in a Ugandan birth-cohort. Matern Child Nutr. 2021 Feb 17; e13127. PMID: 33595899.
    Citations:    Fields:    
  3. de Kok B, Moore K, Jones L, Vanslambrouck K, Toe LC, Ouédraogo M, Ganaba R, de Pee S, Bedford J, Lachat C, Kolsteren P, Isanaka S. Home consumption of two fortified balanced energy protein supplements by pregnant women in Burkina Faso. Matern Child Nutr. 2021 Jan 06; e13134. PMID: 33405368.
    Citations:    Fields:    
  4. Hitchings MDT, Cummings DAT, Grais RF, Isanaka S. A mixture model to assess the the immunogenicity of an oral rotavirus vaccine among healthy infants in Niger. Vaccine. 2020 12 03; 38(51):8161-8166. PMID: 33162202.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:HumansCells
  5. Madzorera I, Isanaka S, Wang M, Msamanga GI, Urassa W, Hertzmark E, Duggan C, Fawzi WW. Maternal dietary diversity and dietary quality scores in relation to adverse birth outcomes in Tanzanian women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2020 09 01; 112(3):695-706. PMID: 32651998.
    Citations: 2     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  6. Jones L, de Kok B, Moore K, de Pee S, Bedford J, Vanslambrouck K, Toe LC, Lachat C, De Cock N, Ouédraogo M, Ganaba R, Kolsteren P, Isanaka S. Acceptability of 12 fortified balanced energy protein supplements - Insights from Burkina Faso. Matern Child Nutr. 2021 01; 17(1):e13067. PMID: 32757351.
    Citations: 2     Fields:    
  7. Isanaka S, Andersen CT, Hanson KE, Berthé F, Grais RF, Briend A. Energy needs in the treatment of uncomplicated severe acute malnutrition: Secondary analysis to optimize delivery of ready-to-use therapeutic foods. Matern Child Nutr. 2020 10; 16(4):e12989. PMID: 32144946.
    Citations: 1     Fields:    
  8. Maataoui N, Langendorf C, Berthe F, Bayjanov JR, van Schaik W, Isanaka S, Grais RF, Clermont O, Andremont A, Armand-Lefèvre L, Woerther PL. Increased risk of acquisition and transmission of ESBL-producing Enterobacteriaceae in malnourished children exposed to amoxicillin. J Antimicrob Chemother. 2020 03 01; 75(3):709-717. PMID: 31821452.
    Citations: 1     Fields:    
  9. Isanaka S, Grantz KH, Berthé F, Schaefer M, Adehossi E, Grais RF. Extended Follow-up From a Randomized Clinical Trial of Routine Amoxicillin in the Treatment of Uncomplicated Severe Acute Malnutrition in Niger. JAMA Pediatr. 2020 03 01; 174(3):295-297. PMID: 31930369.
    Citations: 1     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  10. Frison S, Angood C, Khara T, Bahwere P, Black RE, Briend A, Connell N, Fenn B, Isanaka S, James P, Kerac M, Mayberry A, Myatt M, Dolan C. Prevention of child wasting: Results of a Child Health & Nutrition Research Initiative (CHNRI) prioritisation exercise. PLoS One. 2020; 15(2):e0228151. PMID: 32049994.
    Citations: 1     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  11. Isanaka S, Hedt-Gauthier BL, Salou H, Berthé F, Grais RF, Allen BGS. Active and adaptive case finding to estimate therapeutic program coverage for severe acute malnutrition: a capture-recapture study. BMC Health Serv Res. 2019 Dec 16; 19(1):967. PMID: 31842870.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
  12. Tang K, Berthé F, Nackers F, Hanson K, Mambula C, Langendorf C, Marquer C, Isanaka S. Hand hygiene compliance and environmental contamination with gram-negative bacilli in a rural hospital in Madarounfa, Niger. Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg. 2019 12 01; 113(12):749-756. PMID: 31608960.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:HumansCellsPHPublic Health
  13. Wells JCK, Briend A, Boyd EM, Berkely JA, Hall A, Isanaka S, Webb P, Khara T, Dolan C. Beyond wasted and stunted-a major shift to fight child undernutrition. Lancet Child Adolesc Health. 2019 11; 3(11):831-834. PMID: 31521500.
    Citations: 11     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  14. Isanaka S, Berthé F, Nackers F, Tang K, Hanson KE, Grais RF. Feasibility of engaging caregivers in at-home surveillance of children with uncomplicated severe acute malnutrition. Matern Child Nutr. 2020 01; 16(1):e12876. PMID: 31336045.
    Citations: 1     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  15. Isanaka S, Kodish SR, Mamaty AA, Guindo O, Zeilani M, Grais RF. Acceptability and utilization of a lipid-based nutrient supplement formulated for pregnant women in rural Niger: a multi-methods study. BMC Nutr. 2019; 5:34. PMID: 32153947.
  16. Isanaka S, Hitchings MDT, Berthé F, Briend A, Grais RF. Linear growth faltering and the role of weight attainment: Prospective analysis of young children recovering from severe wasting in Niger. Matern Child Nutr. 2019 10; 15(4):e12817. PMID: 30903806.
    Citations: 3     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  17. Isanaka S, Barnhart DA, McDonald CM, Ackatia-Armah RS, Kupka R, Doumbia S, Brown KH, Menzies NA. Cost-effectiveness of community-based screening and treatment of moderate acute malnutrition in Mali. BMJ Glob Health. 2019; 4(2):e001227. PMID: 31139441.
    Citations: 5     
  18. Isanaka S, Hanson KE, Frison S, Andersen CT, Cohuet S, Grais RF. MUAC as the sole discharge criterion from community-based management of severe acute malnutrition in Burkina Faso. Matern Child Nutr. 2019 04; 15(2):e12688. PMID: 30194814.
    Citations: 4     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  19. Madzorera I, Duggan C, Berthé F, Grais RF, Isanaka S. The role of dietary diversity in the response to treatment of uncomplicated severe acute malnutrition among children in Niger: a prospective study. BMC Nutr. 2018; 4:35. PMID: 32153896.
  20. Oldenburg CE, Guerin PJ, Berthé F, Grais RF, Isanaka S. Malaria and Nutritional Status Among Children With Severe Acute Malnutrition in Niger: A Prospective Cohort Study. Clin Infect Dis. 2018 09 14; 67(7):1027-1034. PMID: 29522089.
    Citations: 7     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  21. Clermont A, Kodish SR, Matar Seck A, Salifou A, Rosen J, Grais RF, Isanaka S. Acceptability and Utilization of Three Nutritional Supplements during Pregnancy: Findings from a Longitudinal, Mixed-Methods Study in Niger. Nutrients. 2018 Aug 12; 10(8). PMID: 30103529.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
  22. Isanaka S, Hedt-Gauthier BL, Grais RF, Allen BGS. Estimating program coverage in the treatment of severe acute malnutrition: a comparative analysis of the validity and operational feasibility of two methods. Popul Health Metr. 2018 07 03; 16(1):11. PMID: 29970172.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
  23. Rosen JG, Clermont A, Kodish SR, Matar Seck A, Salifou A, Grais RF, Isanaka S. Determinants of dietary practices during pregnancy: A longitudinal qualitative study in Niger. Matern Child Nutr. 2018 10; 14(4):e12629. PMID: 29956458.
    Citations: 3     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  24. Coldiron ME, Guindo O, Makarimi R, Soumana I, Matar Seck A, Garba S, Macher E, Isanaka S, Grais RF. Safety of a heat-stable rotavirus vaccine among children in Niger: Data from a phase 3, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Vaccine. 2018 06 14; 36(25):3674-3680. PMID: 29752026.
    Citations: 5     Fields:    Translation:HumansCellsCTClinical Trials
  25. Gicevic S, Gaskins AJ, Fung TT, Rosner B, Tobias DK, Isanaka S, Willett WC. Evaluating pre-pregnancy dietary diversity vs. dietary quality scores as predictors of gestational diabetes and hypertensive disorders of pregnancy. PLoS One. 2018; 13(4):e0195103. PMID: 29614105.
    Citations: 5     Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
  26. Fung TT, Isanaka S, Hu FB, Willett WC. International food group-based diet quality and risk of coronary heart disease in men and women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2018 01 01; 107(1):120-129. PMID: 29381797.
    Citations: 14     Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimals
  27. Isanaka S, Djibo A, Grais RF. Heat-Stable Oral Rotavirus Vaccine. N Engl J Med. 2017 07 20; 377(3):302. PMID: 28723322.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:HumansCells
  28. Isanaka S, Kodish SR, Berthé F, Alley I, Nackers F, Hanson KE, Grais RF. Outpatient treatment of severe acute malnutrition: response to treatment with a reduced schedule of therapeutic food distribution. Am J Clin Nutr. 2017 05; 105(5):1191-1197. PMID: 28404577.
    Citations: 1     Fields:    Translation:HumansCTClinical Trials
  29. Isanaka S, Guindo O, Langendorf C, Matar Seck A, Plikaytis BD, Sayinzoga-Makombe N, McNeal MM, Meyer N, Adehossi E, Djibo A, Jochum B, Grais RF. Efficacy of a Low-Cost, Heat-Stable Oral Rotavirus Vaccine in Niger. N Engl J Med. 2017 03 23; 376(12):1121-1130. PMID: 28328346.
    Citations: 40     Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimalsCellsCTClinical Trials
  30. Isanaka S, Menzies NA, Sayyad J, Ayoola M, Grais RF, Doyon S. Cost analysis of the treatment of severe acute malnutrition in West Africa. Matern Child Nutr. 2017 10; 13(4). PMID: 27921381.
    Citations: 6     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  31. Isanaka S, Boundy EO, Grais RF, Myatt M, Briend A. Improving Estimates of Numbers of Children With Severe Acute Malnutrition Using Cohort and Survey Data. Am J Epidemiol. 2016 12 15; 184(12):861-869. PMID: 27856446.
    Citations: 11     Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
  32. Isanaka S, Adehossi E, Grais RF. Amoxicillin for Severe Acute Malnutrition in Children. N Engl J Med. 2016 07 14; 375(2):191-2. PMID: 27410938.
    Citations: 1     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  33. Isanaka S, Langendorf C, Berthé F, Gnegne S, Li N, Ousmane N, Harouna S, Hassane H, Schaefer M, Adehossi E, Grais RF. Routine Amoxicillin for Uncomplicated Severe Acute Malnutrition in Children. N Engl J Med. 2016 Feb 04; 374(5):444-53. PMID: 26840134.
    Citations: 32     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  34. Isanaka S, Guesdon B, Labar AS, Hanson K, Langendorf C, Grais RF. Comparison of Clinical Characteristics and Treatment Outcomes of Children Selected for Treatment of Severe Acute Malnutrition Using Mid Upper Arm Circumference and/or Weight-for-Height Z-Score. PLoS One. 2015; 10(9):e0137606. PMID: 26376281.
    Citations: 14     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  35. Grellety E, Krause LK, Shams Eldin M, Porten K, Isanaka S. Comparison of weight-for-height and mid-upper arm circumference (MUAC) in a therapeutic feeding programme in South Sudan: is MUAC alone a sufficient criterion for admission of children at high risk of mortality? Public Health Nutr. 2015 Oct; 18(14):2575-81. PMID: 25805273.
    Citations: 19     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  36. Abioye AI, Isanaka S, Liu E, Mwiru RS, Noor RA, Spiegelman D, Mugusi F, Fawzi W. Gender differences in diet and nutrition among adults initiating antiretroviral therapy in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. AIDS Care. 2015; 27(6):706-15. PMID: 25562355.
    Citations: 4     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  37. Sudfeld CR, Isanaka S, Mugusi FM, Aboud S, Wang M, Chalamilla GE, Giovannucci EL, Fawzi WW. Weight change at 1 mo of antiretroviral therapy and its association with subsequent mortality, morbidity, and CD4 T cell reconstitution in a Tanzanian HIV-infected adult cohort. Am J Clin Nutr. 2013 Jun; 97(6):1278-87. PMID: 23636235.
    Citations: 14     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  38. Isanaka S, Mugusi F, Fawzi WW. Standard-dose vs high-dose multivitamin supplements for HIV--reply. JAMA. 2013 Feb 13; 309(6):546. PMID: 23403671.
    Citations: 1     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  39. Sudfeld CR, Isanaka S, Aboud S, Mugusi FM, Wang M, Chalamilla GE, Fawzi WW. Association of serum albumin concentration with mortality, morbidity, CD4 T-cell reconstitution among tanzanians initiating antiretroviral therapy. J Infect Dis. 2013 May 01; 207(9):1370-8. PMID: 23319741.
    Citations: 20     Fields:    Translation:HumansCTClinical Trials
  40. Schaefer M, Miskoc van Gulik C, McMillan S, Isanaka S. Thinking outside the hospital for effective paediatric care: The Médecins Sans Frontières viewpoint. J Paediatr Child Health. 2012 Dec; 48(12):1053-5. PMID: 23217039.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
  41. Sudfeld CR, Giovannucci EL, Isanaka S, Aboud S, Mugusi FM, Wang M, Chalamilla G, Fawzi WW. Vitamin D status and incidence of pulmonary tuberculosis, opportunistic infections, and wasting among HIV-infected Tanzanian adults initiating antiretroviral therapy. J Infect Dis. 2013 Feb 01; 207(3):378-85. PMID: 23162137.
    Citations: 27     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  42. Isanaka S, Mugusi F, Hawkins C, Spiegelman D, Okuma J, Aboud S, Guerino C, Fawzi WW. Effect of high-dose vs standard-dose multivitamin supplementation at the initiation of HAART on HIV disease progression and mortality in Tanzania: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA. 2012 Oct 17; 308(15):1535-44. PMID: 23073950.
    Citations: 21     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  43. Isanaka S, Elder G, Schaefer M, Vasset B, Baron E, Grais RF. Bridging the gap from knowledge to delivery in the control of childhood diarrhoea. Bull World Health Organ. 2012 Sep 01; 90(9):635-635A. PMID: 22984303.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
  44. Isanaka S, Aboud S, Mugusi F, Bosch RJ, Willett WC, Spiegelman D, Duggan C, Fawzi WW. Iron status predicts treatment failure and mortality in tuberculosis patients: a prospective cohort study from Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. PLoS One. 2012; 7(5):e37350. PMID: 22606361.
    Citations: 26     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  45. Isanaka S, Spiegelman D, Aboud S, Manji KP, Msamanga GI, Willet WC, Duggan C, Fawzi WW. Post-natal anaemia and iron deficiency in HIV-infected women and the health and survival of their children. Matern Child Nutr. 2012 Jul; 8(3):287-98. PMID: 22236211.
    Citations: 3     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  46. Isanaka S, Mugusi F, Urassa W, Willett WC, Bosch RJ, Villamor E, Spiegelman D, Duggan C, Fawzi WW. Iron deficiency and anemia predict mortality in patients with tuberculosis. J Nutr. 2012 Feb; 142(2):350-7. PMID: 22190024.
    Citations: 38     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  47. Isanaka S, Grais RF, Briend A, Checchi F. Estimates of the duration of untreated acute malnutrition in children from Niger. Am J Epidemiol. 2011 Apr 15; 173(8):932-40. PMID: 21378127.
    Citations: 9     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  48. Isanaka S, Roederer T, Djibo A, Luquero FJ, Nombela N, Guerin PJ, Grais RF. Reducing wasting in young children with preventive supplementation: a cohort study in Niger. Pediatrics. 2010 Aug; 126(2):e442-50. PMID: 20660552.
    Citations: 18     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  49. Isanaka S, Duggan C, Fawzi WW. Patterns of postnatal growth in HIV-infected and HIV-exposed children. Nutr Rev. 2009 Jun; 67(6):343-59. PMID: 19519675.
    Citations: 33     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  50. Isanaka S, Nombela N, Djibo A, Poupard M, Van Beckhoven D, Gaboulaud V, Guerin PJ, Grais RF. Effect of preventive supplementation with ready-to-use therapeutic food on the nutritional status, mortality, and morbidity of children aged 6 to 60 months in Niger: a cluster randomized trial. JAMA. 2009 Jan 21; 301(3):277-85. PMID: 19155454.
    Citations: 40     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  51. Isanaka S, Villamor E, Shepherd S, Grais RF. Assessing the impact of the introduction of the World Health Organization growth standards and weight-for-height z-score criterion on the response to treatment of severe acute malnutrition in children: secondary data analysis. Pediatrics. 2009 Jan; 123(1):e54-9. PMID: 19117847.
    Citations: 12     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  52. Isanaka S, Mora-Plazas M, Lopez-Arana S, Baylin A, Villamor E. Food insecurity is highly prevalent and predicts underweight but not overweight in adults and school children from Bogotá, Colombia. J Nutr. 2007 Dec; 137(12):2747-55. PMID: 18029494.
    Citations: 44     Fields:    Translation:Humans
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Funded by the NIH National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences through its Clinical and Translational Science Awards Program, grant number UL1TR002541.