Sarah Spencer is a Professor of Neuroscience of RMIT University. She has around 16 years’ experience investigating the impact of the perinatal environment on brain and behaviour. She has a particular interest in the brain’s immune system and how it governs neurological function.
She completed her undergraduate in Physiology at Otago University in New Zealand and then a PhD in 2004 in Neuroscience at the University of Queensland. She followed this with a three-year postdoc at Calgary University in Canada, studying how exposure to immune challenges in critical programming windows of early life lead to long-term changes in immune regulation and the brain. She then moved back to Australia to Monash University and then RMIT University in Melbourne where she leads her team in the investigation of perinatal programming of long-term brain function.
Sarah has authored and co-authored around 100 scientific publications, including two translating primary scientific studies into articles for children. She is an Associate Editor of one of the top neuroscience journals, Brain Behavior and Immunity, and an Academic Advisory Board member for the Sanfilippo Children’s Foundation, promoting scientific research into this devastating childhood disease.