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Saurabh

Mehta

Associate Professor of Global Health, Epidemiology, and Nutrition
314 Savage Hall
Ithaca, New York

Division of Nutritional Sciences

Biography

I am a physician and an epidemiologist with expertise in infectious disease, nutrition, maternal and child health, and diagnostics. The central theme of my research is the interplay between nutrition and infection, including facilitating field-friendly assessment for both, and elucidating how nutrition can be used as a modifiable risk factor for infections and associated outcomes, often in the context of pregnancy and early childhood. This is achieved through a combination of active surveillance programs, invention of point-of-care diagnostics for nutrition and infection, and randomized controlled trials primarily in resource-limited settings in India, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Latin America. 

I am currently the Principal Investigator on two large randomized efficacy trials to determine the effect of delivering micronutrients through biofortified crops on nutrition and immune function in infants in India. David Erickson and I are also the co-inventors of the Cornell NutriPhone and FeverPhone, a NSF- and NIH-funded platform for point-of-care diagnosis of nutritional status and infections. In Ecuador, I have been focusing on neglected tropical diseases such as dengue virus infection and am currently the Principal Investigator on an NIH R01 focusing on the development of FeverPhone for differential diagnosis of acute febrile illnesses. 

I also serve as a consultant to the World Health Organization on topics such as tuberculosis, nutrition, and diagnostic test accuracy. This also involved recently serving as the external expert on Emergency Guideline Development Meeting for Zika virus and publishing the first systematic review on mother to child transmission of Zika virus, that served as the basis for the current guidelines on this topic. 

 

Peer-reviewed Publications 

  1. Finkelstein JL, Haas JD, Mehta S. Iron-biofortified staple food crops for improving iron status: a review of the current evidence. Curr Opin Biotechnol. 2017 Jan 25;44:138-145. doi: 10.1016/j.copbio.2017.01.003. [Epub ahead of print] Review. PubMed PMID: 28131049. 

 

  1. Park H, Brannon PM, West AA, Yan J, Jiang X, Perry CA, Malysheva O, Mehta S, Caudill MA. Maternal vitamin D biomarkers are associated with maternal and fetal bone turnover among pregnant women consuming controlled amounts of vitamin D, calcium, and phosphorus. Bone. 2017 Feb;95:183-191. PubMed PMID: 27939956; NIHMSID: NIHMS837394; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5222782.

 

  1. Srinivasan B, Lee S, Erickson D, Mehta S. Precision nutrition - review of methods for point-of-care assessment of nutritional status. Curr Opin Biotechnol. 2016 Dec 30;44:103-108. PubMed PMID: 28043002.

 

  1. Toko EN, Sumba OP, Daud II, Ogolla S, Majiwa M, Krisher JT, Ouma C, Dent AE, Rochford R, Mehta S. Maternal Vitamin D Status and Adverse Birth Outcomes in Children from Rural Western Kenya. Nutrients. 2016 Dec 7;8(12)PubMed PMID: 27941597; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5188449.

 

  1. Lee S, Mehta S, Erickson D. Two-Color Lateral Flow Assay for Multiplex Detection of Causative Agents Behind Acute Febrile Illnesses. Anal Chem. 2016 Sep 6;88(17):8359-63. PubMed PMID: 27490379. *joint corresponding author 

 

  1. Natamba BK, Mehta S, Achan J, Stoltzfus RJ, Griffiths JK, Young SL. The association between food insecurity and depressive symptoms severity among pregnant women differs by social support category: a cross-sectional study. Matern Child Nutr. 2016 Aug 9;PubMed PMID: 27507230.

 

  1. Park H, Brannon PM, West AA, Yan J, Jiang X, Perry CA, Malysheva OV, Mehta S, Caudill MA. Vitamin D Metabolism Varies among Women in Different Reproductive States Consuming the Same Intakes of Vitamin D and Related Nutrients. J Nutr. 2016 Aug;146(8):1537-45. PubMed PMID: 27335139; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4958290.

 

  1. Herman HS, Mehta S, Cárdenas WB, Stewart-Ibarra AM, Finkelstein JL. Micronutrients and Leptospirosis: A Review of the Current Evidence. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2016 Jul 7;10(7):e0004652. PubMed PMID: 27387046; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4936698.

 

  1. Lee S, Srinivasan B, Vemulapati S, Mehta S, Erickson D. Personalized nutrition diagnostics at the point-of-need. Lab Chip. 2016 Jul 7;16(13):2408-17. PubMed PMID: 27272753. *joint corresponding author 

 

  1. Lee S, O'Dell D, Hohenstein J, Colt S, Mehta S, Erickson D. NutriPhone: a mobile platform for low-cost point-of-care quantification of vitamin B12 concentrations. Sci Rep. 2016 Jun 15;6:28237. PubMed PMID: 27301282; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4908584. *joint corresponding author 

 

  1. Huey SL, Mehta S. Stunting: The Need for Application of Advances in Technology to Understand a Complex Health Problem. EBioMedicine. 2016 Mar. 10.1016/j.ebiom.2016.03.013 

 

  1. Murphy RA, Yu EA, Ciappio ED, Mehta S, McBurney MI. Suboptimal Plasma Long Chain n-3 Concentrations are Common among Adults in the United States, NHANES 2003-2004. Nutrients. 2015 Dec 9;7(12):10282-9. PMID: 26690213 PMCID: PMC4690086  

 

  1. Serina P, Riley I, Stewart A, Flaxman AD, Lozano R, Mooney MD, Luning R, Hernandez B, Black R, Ahuja R, Alam N, Alam SS, Ali SM, Atkinson C, Baqui AH, Chowdhury HR, Dandona L, Dandona R, Dantzer E, Darmstadt GL, Das V, Dhingra U, Dutta A, Fawzi W, Freeman M, Gamage S, Gomez S, Hensman D, James SL, Joshi R, Kalter HD, Kumar A, Kumar V, Lucero M, Mehta S, Neal B, Ohno SL, Phillips D, Pierce K, Prasad R, Praveen D, Premji Z, Ramirez-Villalobos D, Rampatige R, Remolador H, Romero M, Said M, Sanvictores D, Sazawal S, Streatfield PK, Tallo V, Vadhatpour A, Wijesekara N, Murray CJ, Lopez AD. A shortened verbal autopsy instrument for use in routine mortality surveillance systems. BMC Med. 2015 Dec 16;13:302. PMID: 26670275 PMCID: PMC4681088 

 

  1. Serina P, Riley I, Stewart A, James SL, Flaxman AD, Lozano R, Hernandez B, Mooney MD, Luning R, Black R, Ahuja R, Alam N, Alam SS, Ali SM, Atkinson C, Baqui AH, Chowdhury HR, Dandona L, Dandona R, Dantzer E, Darmstadt GL, Das V, Dhingra U, Dutta A, Fawzi W, Freeman M, Gomez S, Gouda HN, Joshi R, Kalter HD, Kumar A, Kumar V, Lucero M, Maraga S, Mehta S, Neal B, Ohno SL, Phillips D, Pierce K, Prasad R, Praveen D, Premji Z, Ramirez-Villalobos D, Rarau P, Remolador H, Romero M, Said M, Sanvictores D, Sazawal S, Streatfield PK, Tallo V, Vadhatpour A, Vano M, Murray CJ, Lopez AD.Improving performance of the Tariff Method for assigning causes of death to verbal autopsies. BMC Med. 2015;13(1):291. PMID: 26644140 PMCID: PMC4672473 

 

  1. Mehta S, Yu EA, Ahamed SF, Bonam W, Kenneth J. Rifampin resistance and diabetes mellitus in a cross-sectional study of adult patients in rural South India. BMC Inf Dis. 2015;15(1):451. PMID: 26496855 PMCID: PMC4620627 

 

  1. Ogolla S, Daud I, Asito A, Sumba O, Ouma C, Vulule J, Middeldorp J, Dent A, Mehta S, Rochford R. Reduced transplacental transfer of Epstein-Barr virus specific maternal antibodies to neonates of mothers with Plasmodium falciparum malaria infection during pregnancy. Clin Vaccine Immunol. 2015 Nov;22(11):1197–205. PMID: 26376931 PMCID: PMC4622112 

 

  1. McBurney MI, Yu EA, Ciappio ED, Bird JK, Eggersdorfer M, Mehta S. Suboptimal Serum α-tocopherol Concentrations Observed Among Younger Adults and those Depending Exclusively upon Food Sources, NHANES 2003-2006. PLoS One 2015;10:e0135510. PMID: 26287975 PMCID: PMC4546010 

 

  1. Finkelstein JL, Mehta S, Udipi SA, Ghugre PS, Luna SV, Wenger MJ, Murray-Kolb LE, Przybyszewski EM, Haas JD.A Randomized Trial of Iron-Biofortified Pearl Millet in School Children in India. J Nutr, 2015. PMID:25948782 Jul;145(7):1576–81.*joint first author 

 

  1. Finkelstein JL, Gala P, Rochford R, Glesby MJ, Mehta S. HIV/AIDS and Lipodystrophy: Implications for clinical management in resource-limited settings. J Int AIDS Soc 2015 Jan 15;18(1):19033. PMID: 25598476. 

 

  1. Natamba BK, Achan J, Arbach A, Oyok TO, Ghosh S, Mehta S, Stoltzfus RJ, et al. Reliability and validity of the center for epidemiologic studies-depression scale in screening for depression among HIV-infected and -uninfected pregnant women attending antenatal services in northern Uganda: a cross-sectional study. BMC Psychiatry. 2014 Nov 22;14(1):303. PMCID: PMC4260190 

 

  1. Erickson D, O’Dell D, Jiang L, Oncescu V, Gumus A, Lee S, Mancuso M, Mehta S. Smartphone technology can be transformative to the deployment of lab-on-chip diagnostics. Lab Chip 2014;14:3159-64. PMCID: PMC4117816  

 

  1. Ahmed S, Finkelstein JL, Stewart AM, Kenneth J, Polhemus ME, Endy TP, Cardenas W, Mehta S. Micronutrients and Dengue: A Review of the Current Evidence. Am J Trop Med Hyg 2014;91(5):1049-56. PMCID: PMC4228873 

 

  1. Lee S, Oncescu V, Mancuso M, Mehta S, Erickson D. A smartphone platform for the quantification of vitamin D levels. Lab Chip 2014;14:1437-42. PMID: 24569647 

 

  1. Murray CJ, Lozano R, Flaxman AD, Serina P, Phillips D, Stewart A, James SL, Vahdatpour A, Atkinson C, Freeman MK, Ohno SL, Black R, Ali SM, Baqui AH, Dandona L, Dantzer E, Darmstadt GL, Das V, Dhingra U, Dutta A, Fawzi W, Gómez S, Hernández B, Joshi R, Kalter HD, Kumar A, Kumar V, Lucero M, Mehta S, Neal B, Praveen D, Premji Z, Ramírez-Villalobos D, Remolador H, Riley I, Romero M, Said M, Sanvictores D, Sazawal S, Tallo V, Lopez AD. Using Verbal Autopsy to Measure Causes of Death: The Comparative Performance of Existing Methods. BMC Med 2014;12:5. PMCID: PMC3891983 

 

  1. Mehta S, Mugusi FM, Bosch RJ, Aboud S, Urassa W, Villamor E, Fawzi WW. Vitamin D status and TB treatment outcomes in adult patients in Tanzania. BMJ Open 2013;3:e003703. PMCID: PMC3840339 

 

  1. Fataki M, Kisenge RR, Sudfeld CR, Aboud S, Okuma J, Mehta S, Spiegelman D, Fawzi WW. Effect of Zinc Supplementation on Duration of Hospitalization in Tanzanian Children Presenting with Acute Pneumonia. J Trop Pediatr 2014;60:104-11. PMCID: PMC3967446 

 

  1. Hawkins C, Christian B, Ye J, Nagu T, Aris E, Chalamilla G, Spiegelman D, Mugusi F, Mehta S, Fawzi W. Prevalence of Hepatitis B co-infection and response to antiretroviral therapy among HIV-infected patients in urban Tanzania. AIDS 2013;27:919-27. PMID: 23196935 

 

  1. Finkelstein JL, Manji KP, Duggan C, Hertzmark E, Mehta S, Msamanga GI, Spiegelman D, Fawzi WW. Predictors of incident tuberculosis in HIV-exposed children in Tanzania. East Afr Med J 2012;89:183-192. 

 

  1. Finkelstein JL, Mehta S, Duggan CP, Manji KP, Mugusi FM, Aboud S, Spiegelman D, Msamanga GI, Fawzi WW. Maternal Vitamin D Status and Child Morbidity, Anemia, and Growth in Human Immunodeficiency Virus-exposed Children in Tanzania. Pediatr Infect Dis J 2012;31:171-175. PMCID: PMC3813463 

 

  1. Shet A, Arumugam K, Rajagopalan N, Dinakar C, Krishnamurthy S, Mehta S, Shet AS. The prevalence and etiology of anemia among HIV-infected children in India. Eur J Pediatr. 2012;171:531-540. PMID: 22009132 

 

  1. Finkelstein JL, Mehta S, Aboud S, Duggan CP, Kupka R, Spiegelman D, Msamanga GI, Fawzi WW. Predictors of Anemia and Iron Deficiency in HIV-infected Pregnant Women: A potential role for vitamin D and parasitic infections. Public Health Nutr 2012;15:928-937. PMCID: PMC3366262 

 

  1. Mehta S, Mugusi FM, Bosch RJ, Aboud S, Chatterjee A, Finkelstein JL, Fataki M, Kisenge R, Fawzi WW. A Randomized Trial of Multivitamin Supplementation in Children with Tuberculosis in Tanzania. Nutr J 2011;10:120. PMCID: PMC3229564 

 

  1. Mehta S, Mugusi FM, Spiegelman D, Villamor E, Finkelstein JL, Hertzmark E, Giovannucci EL, Msamanga GI, Fawzi WW. Vitamin D Status and its Association with Morbidity including Wasting and Opportunistic Illnesses in HIV-infected Women in Tanzania. AIDS Patient Care STDs 2011;25:579-585. PMCID: PMC3183700 

 

  1. Murray CJ, Lopez AD, Black R, Ahuja R, Mohd Ali S, Baqui A, Dandona L, Dantzer E, Das V, Dhingra U, Dutta A, Fawzi W, Flaxman AD, Gomez S, Hernandez B, Joshi R, Kalter H, Kumar A, Kumar V, Lozano R, Lucero M, Mehta S, Neal B, Ohno SL, Prasad R, Praveen D, Premji Z, Ramirez-Villalobos D, Remolador H, Riley I, Romero M, Said M, Sanvictores D, Sazawal S, Tallo V. Population Health Metrics Research Consortium Gold Standard Verbal Autopsy Validation Study: Design, Implementation and Development of Analysis Datasets. Popul Health Metr 2011;9:27. PMCID: PMC3160920 

 

  1. Liu E, Spiegelman D, Semu H, Hawkins C, Chalamilla G, Aveika A, Nyamsangia S, Mehta S, Mtasiwa D, Fawzi WW. Nutritional Status and Mortality Among HIV-infected Patients Receiving Antiretroviral Therapy in Tanzania. J Infect Dis 2011; 204:282-90. PMID: 21673040 

 

  1. Mehta S, Fawzi WW. Editorial Commentary: Micronutrient Supplementation as Adjunct Treatment in HIV-infected Patients. Clin Inf Dis. 2010;50:1661-1663. PMID: 20455704 

 

  1. Mehta S, Spiegelman D, Aboud S, Giovannucci EL, Msamanga GI, Hertzmark E, Mugusi FM, Hunter DJ, Fawzi WW. Lipid-soluble vitamins A, D, and E in HIV-infected pregnant women in Tanzania. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2010;64:808-17. PMCID: PMC3078753 

 

  1. Mehta S, Giovannucci E, Mugusi FM, Spiegelman D, Aboud S, Hertzmark E, Msamanga GI, Hunter D, Fawzi WW. Vitamin D status of HIV-infected women and its association with HIV disease progression, anemia, and mortality. PLoS One 2010;5:e8770. PMCID: PMC2808247 

 

  1. Franke MF, Spiegelman D, Ezeamama A, Aboud S, Msamanga GI, Mehta S, Fawzi WW. Malaria Parasitemia and CD4 T-cell count, Viral Load, and Adverse HIV Outcomes among HIV-infected Pregnant Women in Tanzania. Am J Trop Med Hyg 2010;82:556-562. PMCID: PMC2844563 

 

  1. Mugusi FM, Mehta S, Villamor EV, Urassa W, Saathoff E, Bosch RJ, Fawzi WW. Factors associated with mortality in HIV-infected and uninfected patients with pulmonary tuberculosis. BMC Public Health 2009;9:409. PMCID: PMC2779816 

 

  1. Mehta S, Hunter DJ, Mugusi FM, Spiegelman D, Manji KP, Giovannucci EL, Hertzmark E, Msamanga GI, Fawzi WW. Perinatal Outcomes, Including Mother-to-Child Transmission of HIV, and Child Mortality, and Their Association with Maternal Vitamin D Status in Tanzania. J Inf Dis 2009;200:1022-1030. Accompanied by an Editorial Commentary: Spector SA. Vitamin D Earns More Than a Passing Grade. J Inf Dis 2009;200:1015-1017. PMCID: PMC2758703 

 

  1. Shet A, Mehta S, Rajagopalan N, Dinakar C, Ramesh E, Samuel NM, Indumathi CK, Fawzi WW, Kurpad AV. Anemia and growth failure among HIV-infected children in India: a retrospective analysis. BMC Pediatr 2009;9:37. PMCID: PMC2702283 

 

  1. Mehta S, Manji KP, Young AM, Brown ER, Chasela CC, Taha TE, Read JS, Goldenberg RL, Fawzi, WW. Nutritional indicators of adverse pregnancy outcomes and mother-to-child transmission of HIV among HIV-infected women. Am J Clin Nutr 2008;87:1639-49. PMCID: PMC2474657 

 

  1. Wig N, Sakhuja A, Agarwal SK, Khakha DC, Mehta S, Vajpayee M. Multidimensional health status of HIV-infected outpatients at a tertiary care center in north India. Indian J Med Sci 2008;62:87-97. PMID: 18376081 

 

  1. Mehta S, Ding EL, Fawzi WW, Giovannucci EL. Influence of Estrogen Therapy on Effects of Calcium and Vitamin D for Colorectal Cancer Prevention. Int J Cancer 2008;122:1690-4. PMID: 18092326 *joint first author 

 

  1. Mehta S, Fawzi W. Effects of Vitamins, Including Vitamin A, on HIV/AIDS Patients. Vitam Horm 2007; 75: 355-383. PMID: 17368322 

 

  1. Sohal DPS, Garg N, Singh D, Mehta S, Anand K, Kapoor SK. Antibiotic prescription practice at primary and secondary level hospitals of a medical college. Indian Practitioner 2006;59(12):789-94. 

 

Manuscripts in Press/in Review 

  1. Colt S, Garcia-Casal M, Peña-Rosas J, Finkelstein JL, Rayco-Solon P, Mehta S. Transmission of Zika virus through breast milk and other breastfeeding-related bodily-fluids: a systematic review. In review. 

 

  1. Wood MR, Yu EA, Mehta S. Tuberculosis and the Microbiome. Am J Trop Med Hyg. In press. 

 

  1. Boy E, Haas JD, Petry N, Cercamondi C, Gahutu JB, Mehta S, Finkelstein JL, Hurrell RF. Iron-Biofortified Crops. African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development Impact. In press. 
  2. Stewart-Ibarra AM, Kenneson A, King CA, Abbott M, Barbachano A, Beltrán-Ayala E, Borbor-Cordova MJ, Cárdenas WB, Cueva C, Finkelstein JL, Lupone CD, Jarman R, Berry IM, Mehta S, Polhemus M, Silva M, Ryan SJ, Endy TP. The high burden of dengue and chikungunya in southern coastal Ecuador: Epidemiology and phylogenetics from a prospective study in Machala in 2014-2015. In review. 

 

Book 

Mehta S, Finkelstein JL, eds. Nutrition and HIV: Epidemiologic Evidence to Public Health Practice. CRC Press. In preparation. (Invited book) 

 

Book Chapters and Technical Papers 

  1. Yu EA, Finkelstein JL, Mehta S. HIV and Micronutrients. Editors: Pammi M, Vallejo JG, Abrams SA. Taylor and Francis Books, Inc.: Boca Raton, FL. Nutrition-Infection Interactions and Impacts on Human Health 2014. 

 

  1. Finkelstein JL, Mugusi FM, Mehta S, Fawzi WW. HIV/AIDS and Nutrition in the HAART Era: Programmatic implications for HIV/AIDS care and treatment in resource-limited settings. Editors: Marlink RG, Teitelman SJ. Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation: Washington, DC. From the Ground Up: Building Comprehensive HIV/AIDS Care in Resource-Limited Settings 2009. 

 

  1. Mehta S, Finkelstein JL, Fawzi WW. Micronutrient status and pregnancy outcomes in HIV-infected women. Editors: Lammi-Keefe CJ, Couch SC, Philipson, E. Humana Press: Baton Rouge, LA. Handbook of Nutrition and Pregnancy 2008; 23: 355-365. 

 

  1. Mehta S, Fawzi WW. Hunger and HIV and Tuberculosis. Technical paper for the World Hunger Series 2007. World Food Programme, Rome, Italy. 

 

  1. Mehta S, Finkelstein JL, Fawzi WW. Nutritional Interventions in HIV-Infected Breastfeeding Women. Ann Nestlé [Engl] 2007; 65: 39–48. 

 

Cochrane Protocols and World Health Organization Reviews in Progress 

  1. Mehta S, Huey SL, Yu EA, Peña-Rosas JP. Oral vitamin D supplementation among infants and children younger than five years of age for stunting and other health outcomes. Title Registered. 

 

  1. Mehta S, Yu EA. Nutrition and Tuberculosis: A Manual for Health Professionals. In review at the WHO. 

 

  1. Yu EA, Peña-Rosas JP, Mehta S. Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D as a marker of vitamin D status. Diagnostic Test Accuracy Review. Title Registration in process. 

 

  1. Colt SC, Garcia-Casal MDLN, Peña-Rosas JP, Mehta S. Use of serum retinol for assessing vitamin A status in populations. Diagnostic Test Accuracy Review. Title Registration in process. 

 

  1. Colt SC, Finkelstein JL, Peña-Rosas JP, Garcia-Casal MDLN, Rayco-Solon MP, Prinzo ZW, Mehta S. Transmission of Zika virus through breast milk and other breastfeeding-related bodily-fluids: a systematic review of evidence. Registered at PROSPERO. 

 

  1. Mehta S, Herman HS, Peña-Rosas JP, Finkelstein JL. Iron supplementation for iron deficiency anemia in children. Title Registered in process. 

 

Letters to the Editor 

  1. Finkelstein JL, Mehta S, Fawzi WW. Letter to the Editor in response to comments on: Finkelstein JL, et al. Predictors of Anemia and Iron Deficiency in HIV-infected Pregnant Women: A potential role for vitamin D and parasitic infections. Public Health Nutr 2012;20:1. [Epub ahead of print]. 

 

  1. Mehta S, Fawzi WW. Letter to the Editor in response to comments on: Mehta S, et al. Perinatal Outcomes, Including Mother-to-Child Transmission of HIV, and Child Mortality, and Their Association with Maternal Vitamin D Status in Tanzania. J Inf Dis. 2010;201:1951. 

 

Thesis

 

Mehta S. Vitamin D, HIV disease progression, and perinatal health in HIV-infected pregnant women in sub-Saharan Africa. Thesis (Doctor of Science)--Harvard School of Public Health, 2009. http://discovery.lib.harvard.edu/?itemid=|library/m/aleph|012044247 

 

NS 3060 - Nutrition and Global Health 

NS 6580 - Advanced Epidemiology: Theory and Practice 

 

M.B.B.S. - All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India - 2003 

M.S. (Epidemiology) - Harvard University, Cambridge MA - 2004 

Sc.D. (Epidemiology and Nutrition) - Harvard University, Cambridge MA - 2009 

Member, Faculty Search Committee, Faculty searches in Global and Public Health Nutrition; and Nutritional Chemistry, DNS 

Provost’s Task Force on Infection Biology, Office of the Provost, Cornell University 

Faculty Advisory Board for Information Technology, College of Human Ecology, Cornell University

Strategic Planning Committee, Division of Nutritional Sciences, Cornell University

 

twitter.com/MehtaRG 

twitter.com/INSiGHTCornell