Cultural Perinatal Health Lab

Researcher - Dr. Kimberly D'Anna-Hernandez

The Research 

Our long-term research objective is to use both behavioral and psychological measures to assess the impact of the prenatal environment (stress, discrimination, mood, neuroendocrine regulation, access to health care) on subsequent developmental trajectories of offspring related to the vulnerability of depression in the mother/child dyad. Community-engaged research is used to address perinatal mental health disparities in Latina women and their children. Studies in the lab involve both graduate and undergraduate researchers as investigators, presenters, and authors.

Current Studies Include

  • The MOMS study:

      Longitudinal analysis of the impact of sociocultural stressors in the prenatal environment (discrimination, racism, neighborhood, acculturative stress) on risk for depression, both symptoms and biology (cortisol, immune makers, epigenetics), in the mother/child dyad of Mexican descent.
  • Culturally-Informed Interdisciplinary Prevention Program for Perinatal Depression:

      Assessing the needs within the Milwaukee community regarding perinatal (pregnancy and postpartum) mental health among Latinas. Multicultural Perinatal Mental Health Collaborative // Research and Innovation // Marquette University

Collaborating to support the mental health of new and expecting moms | Marquette Today

  • Mood, Stress and Health Care Experiences:

      Examining the role of obstetric racism and health care experiences on perinatal outcomes and stress biology in Latinx and Black women
  • Developmental origins of emotional and epigenetic resilience among children

Graduate Students

  • Alexandra Gonzalez-Van Wart, B.S.
  • Esmeralda Lezama Ruiz, B.S.

Current Undergraduate Students

  • Analise Segarra, Senior, Cognitive Science major
  • Oliver Pacheco, Senior, Psychology Major
  • Mariana Gonzalez-Torres, Senior, Psychology Major
  • Zabdiel Price-Green, Junior, Biomedical Sciences Major
  • Damisola Awosika, Junior, Medical Laboratory Studies Major

Former Undergraduate Students

  • Valeria Zendejas, B.A.
  • Ricardo Hidalgo, B.A.
  • Andrea Coria, B.A.
  • Jaylin Rivas Rodriguez

Interested in being a member of our Research Lab? 

... please email at for an application.    


Lab Photos

                  KDH Lab Group 2023

                          Student at Poster Presentation     

                   Poster Presentation

                      Poster Presentation


               Poster Presentation