Saydie is a Native American (Zuni Pueblo and Mescalero Apache) Ph.D. student in the Integrative Physiology program. She was born and raised in Colorado and received her bachelor’s and master’s degree at CU Boulder. Saydie is part of Dr. Christopher Lowry’s Behavioral Neuroendocrinology lab. Her research involves investigating alternative treatments for mental health problems using a soil bacteria strain, Mycobacterium vaccae NCTC 11659. Learning the basic mechanisms of how this soil bacteria reduces inflammation in the brain and other parts of the body will build a foundation for understanding the overall immunoregulatory of the gut microbiome and metabolite profile. Saydie wants to apply this research by helping her Native community with their health program initiatives for healthier lifestyles and reconnect with the ancestral lands by growing and eating traditional foods.
In addition to her research, she does many community outreach activities, such as teaching at the CU Upward Bound program, being an academic tutor for Native American high school students in the Boulder Valley School District, and mentoring underrepresented undergraduates. Saydie is passionate about giving back to her Native American community and wants to educate people about the importance of microbiome health and how it can heal the debilitating health problems in Indigenous communities