Adaora Enumah

MSc student, Public Health and Health Systems

Adaora Enumah


MSc Public Health and Health Systems


John Mielke

My thesis

My research focuses on understanding the effects of psychosocial stressors on proteins related to learning and memory. With the use of animal models, my research explores how primary psychosocial stress (which refers to stress experienced directly), or secondary psychosocial stress (which is stress experienced through social interactions with an individual undergoing direct stress) may affect the Prefrontal cortex (PFC; a brain region responsible for executive functioning) in unique ways. Further, I am examining to see if the effects of these two types of psychosocial stress may vary by sex.

The results of my research would contribute significantly to what is currently known about the effects of stress on the PFC, an area of brain where very little work has been done so far. Interestingly, no one has previously studied how both types of psychosocial stressors might differ in their effects on the PFC, including if there are any sexual differences. Overall, my research has the potential to demystify some processes underlying physiological functions such as learning and memory, and pathologies like affective disorders. In addition, the results of this study will help inform pharmacological interventions to target specific protein residues, or sex-specific dosage needs.

My time at the School of Public Health Sciences (SPHS)

Thus far, “rewarding” is the first word that comes to mind. Despite these very peculiar times during the COVID-19 pandemic, the environment is set up to help you succeed, so much so it feels like forces are propelling and cheering you on to a glorious moment. I have enjoyed every moment of having a supportive team. For me, it started on a high note, being the recipient of the International Student Award of Excellence, this funding really helped offset some of my tuition. I am fascinated by how much I have grown in my knowledge of intercultural competence by working with people from diverse backgrounds. My time as the Chief of staff of the SPHS GSA, member of the SPHS Equity, Diversity and Inclusion committee, and participation in various programs and volunteer activities has truly given me the Canadian experience I once sought.

You can connect with Adaora Enumah on LinkedIn