Dr Siobhan 'Alisia Tu'akoi
Bachelor of Health Sciences (First Class Honours)
Siobhan completed a Bachelor of Health Sciences (Hons) with the School of Population Health, the University of Auckland before completing a PhD with the Liggins Institute. Her doctoral research investigates relationships between early-life environmental factors and later adolescent health within the Cook Islands, as well as exploring ways of improving public awareness regarding the importance of early-life nutrition for lifelong health.
Research | Current
The DOHaD paradigm links adverse experiences in early-life stages to chronic diseases later in life. Despite having some of the highest rates of NCDs and related risk factors worldwide, there is a lack of DOHaD research within Pacific Islands. Siobhan’s doctoral research was based in the Cook Islands and aimed to address this gap. In partnership with the Cook Islands Ministries of Health and Education, her research investigated relationships between early-life factors and later metabolic risk factors in adolescents. She has also worked in partnership with local leaders, health professionals and the wider community to co-construct a local early-life nutrition resource, aiming to empower Cook Island families towards healthier futures. She hopes to contribute to improving health outcomes for Pacific Island populations and for future generations to come.
Tu’akoi, S., Tamarua-Herman, N., Tairea, K., Vickers, M. H., Aung, Y. Y. M., & Bay, J. L. (2020). Supporting Cook Island communities to access DOHaD evidence. Journal of Developmental Origins of Health and Disease, 1-9.
Tu’akoi, S., Vickers, M. H., & Bay, J. L. (2020). DOHaD in low-and middle-income countries: a systematic review exploring gaps in DOHaD population studies. Journal of Developmental Origins of Health and Disease, 1-7.
Tu’akoi, S., Vickers, M. H., Tairea, K., Aung, Y. Y. M., Tamarua-Herman, N., Ofanoa, M., & Bay, J. L. (2018). The significance of DOHaD for small island developing states. Journal of Developmental Origins of Health and Disease, 9(5), 487-491.
- 2019 DOHaD World Congress Taking DOHaD to the people of the Cook Islands
- 2019 DOHaD Trainee Workshop DOHaD in LMICs: A systematic review exploring gaps in DOHaD studies
- 2019 U21 Health Sciences Oraanga Meitaki: Early-life health for lifelong wellbeing in the Cook Islands
- 2019 Cook Islands Health Conference Supporting awareness of early-life nutrition concepts
- 2018 U21 Health Sciences Early-life NCD risk in Rarotonga, Cook Islands
- 2018 U21 Health Sciences Panel Unique perspectives of PhD students in indigenous research
- 2018 Cook Islands Health Conference The significance of DOHaD for small island developing states
Grants & Funding
- 2019 DOHaD Society DOHaD Conference Trainee Travel Award 2019
- 2018 University of Auckland Postgraduate International Networks Mobility Fund
- 2017 Health Research Council Pacific Health Research Knowledge Translation Grant
- 2017 Health Research Council Pacific Health Research PhD Scholarship
- 2016 Ministry of Health ANIVA Scholarship
- 2015 University of Auckland Summer Research Scholarship
- 2013 University of Auckland Chancellor's Award for Top Maori and Pacific Island Scholars
- 2019 DOHaD Society DOHaD Society Trainee Award
- 2019 Liggins Institute Best Doctoral Student Oral Presentation Award
- 2019 University of Glasgow Universitas 21 Top Presentation Award
- 2018 University of Melbourne Universitas 21 Outstanding Presentation Award
- 2018 University of Auckland Runner up, Open Heat Three Minute Thesis
- 2017 Liggins Institute First Place, Three Minute Thesis
- 2017 HealtheX Conference Second runner up, Elevator Pitch
Areas of expertise
- Pacific health
- DOHaD in small island developing states
- Community-based participatory research
- Knowledge translation
Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)
- Tu'akoi SA, Vickers, M., Tamarua Herman, N., Tairea, K., Aung, Y. Y. M., & Bay, J. (2019). Supporting early-life health and wellbeing in the Cook Islands communities. Paper presented at 21st Annual Cook Islands Health Conference 2019, Rarotonga, Cook Islands. 10 July - 12 July 2019. Related URL.
Other University of Auckland co-authors: Mark Vickers, Jacquie Bay