Saroja Voruganti, PhD

Assistant Professor, Nutrition
Genetic and environmental influences on disease risk

Saroja Voruganti, PhD, joined the UNC Nutrition Research Institute in 2013 as assistant professor in the Department of Nutrition, UNC-Chapel Hill. Dr. Voruganti’s research investigates how genetic and environmental (particularly diet and nutrients) factors impact hyperuricemia, gout, kidney and cardiovascular disease, with the goal of finding new treatment options.

Dr. Voruganti earned her B.Sc. degree with honors in Foods and Nutrition at The University of Delhi, India, and a post-graduate diploma in Dietetics and Hospital Food Service. She received a PhD in Nutritional Sciences from the University of Texas at Austin and did post-doctoral work in Genetic Epidemiology at the Texas Biomedical Research Institute.

She has conducted several studies involving minority populations such as Mexican Americans, American Indians, Western Alaska Natives and Hispanic children. Her focus in all these studies is to understand genetic and environmental influences on renal-cardiovascular disease risk.

Dr. Voruganti has published or has in press more than 75 scholarly papers and has authored chapters in two books: Handbook of Anthropometry: Physical Measures of Human Form in Health and Disease and Human Variation: From the Laboratory to the Field.



 Research Team


Brea Correll : <h4>Research Assistant, Voruganti Lab</h4>

Brea Correll

Research Assistant, Voruganti Lab

Brea received her degree in biotechnology from Rowan Cabarrus Community College in May 2017. Brea has been an intern in the Voruganti lab since May 2017, and joined the team as a research assistant in July.

Ruixue Hou : <h4>Doctoral Student in Nutrition, Voruganti Lab</h4>

Ruixue Hou

Doctoral Student in Nutrition, Voruganti Lab

Ruixue received her M.S. in Biochemical and Molecular Nutrition from Tufts University. She joined the NRI and Dr. Voruganti’s lab in September 2015 as a doctoral student in the Nutrition Department at UNC Chapel Hill.

Baba Mass : <h4>Research Technician, Voruganti Lab</h4>

Baba Mass

Research Technician, Voruganti Lab

Baba graduated from Gambia College School of Education with an AS in science and mathematics. He taught Junior Secondary School science for three years before migrating to the U.S. to pursue higher education. Baba joined the Voruganti lab as a student intern from RCCC before officially joining the team as research technician in July 2015.

Chinmayee Panda, PhD : <h4>Postdoctoral Research Associate, Voruganti Lab</h4>

Chinmayee Panda, PhD

Postdoctoral Research Associate, Voruganti Lab

Dr. Chinmayee Panda is passionate about research that benefits human health. She earned her PhD in Plant Biology from NCSU in August 2017, with a focus in genetics and molecular biology. She joined NRI thereafter as a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Voruganti Lab to investigate the interaction between genetic and environmental factors in influencing renal-cardiovascular disease risk. She is currently involved in a project that aims to characterize the nutrigenetic and nutrigenomic determinants of obesity and related comorbidities in children. She also hopes to characterize key phenotypes and environmental factors that increase susceptibility to metabolic diseases in genetically isolated population like Parsis in North America. In her spare time, she dabbles in food photography and blogging. She enjoys travelling with her husband.