Sabrina Sales Martinez

Commencement: Spring 2015, Ceremony 4

Degree: Ph.D. in Dietetics and Nutrition

Graduate of: Robert Stempel College of Public Health and Social Work

Sabrina Sales Martinez has dedicated the last few years of her life to conducting research on the effect nutritional status has on HIV.  Working alongside her mentors, Professors Marianna K. Baum and Adriana Campa, Sabrina traveled to Botswana, Africa, to work with locals infected with HIV who may have limited access to antiretroviral medication. The research she conducted contributed to a breakthrough discovery that found that taking a combination of multivitamins and selenium will stop the progression of HIV disease. These findings were then published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Sabrina is no stranger to the pain that HIV causes families. Her uncle and godfather, Eduardo Acosta, passed away as a result of HIV before effective medications were available.  Today, she carries out her research in his memory.

Sabrina was born in New York and moved to Miami when she was 10. As a child, science was always her favorite subject. Her parents ran a restaurant and food was always an important part of her family life. She decided to combine her two favorite things and pursue a degree in dietetics and nutrition.

During her undergraduate studies, Sabrina discovered that she was interested in nutrition research. She took the position of a research coordinator, working with Professors Baum and Campa, and found her true passion. This spring she is graduating with a Ph.D. in dietetics and nutrition.

After graduation, Sabrina hopes to obtain a position as a professor and/or researcher and continue her research with HIV and nutrition.