Felicia Wu

Felicia Wu

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John A. Hannah Distinguished Professor in Food Safety, Toxicology, and Risk Assessment & University Distinguished Professor
Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics



PhD, Carnegie Mellon University
AB, SM, Harvard University

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Selected Publications

Felicia Wu, John A. Hannah Distinguished Professor, joined the faculty of MSU in 2013 with a joint appointment in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition and the Department of Agricultural, Food and Resource Economics. Previously, she was an associate professor of environmental and occupational health at the University of Pittsburgh. 

Wu’s research examines the national and global burden of foodborne disease, how improved nutrition can counteract the harmful effects of toxins, and how cost-effective strategies can improve food safety in the United States and worldwide. Recently, her work has expanded to examine the risk of antimicrobial resistance from antibiotic use in livestock production, as well as how we can curb these risks. For her research on the impact of aflatoxin regulations on global liver cancer, Wu was awarded a U.S. National Institutes of Health EUREKA Award. She was commissioned by the World Health Organization (WHO) to estimate the global burden of disease caused by aflatoxin and arsenic in food, and co-authored the WHO 2015 report on the Global Burden of Foodborne Disease.  

Currently, Wu serves as an expert adviser to the Joint Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives of the United Nations. She is an area editor for three journals: Risk Analysis, World Mycotoxin Journal, and Archives of Environmental and Occupational Health. Recently, she was on the U.S. National Academy of Sciences panel on the future of animal sciences research for global food security. Currently, she serves as an invited reviewer for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. She has also been selected to serve on the MSU Presidential Search Committee. Wu earned her A.B. and S.M. in applied mathematics and medical sciences at Harvard University, and her Ph.D. in engineering and public policy from Carnegie Mellon University.

Research and Outreach Interests

  • Global burden of disease caused by food contaminants
  • World food trade and the impact of food safety regulations
  • Mycotoxins: Economic and health impacts worldwide
  • Transgenic crops: Mycotoxin reduction, and insect resistance to transgenic pest-protected plants
  • Risk assessment and risk communication
  • Social network models and agent-based models applied to population health and trade

Research and Teaching

Fields:  Food Safety, Toxicology, Mycotoxins, Food Security, Nutrition, Global Health and the Environment, Agricultural Health, Agricultural Biotechnology, Public Health, Climate Change, Indoor Air Quality

Methods:  Mathematical Modeling, Quantitative Risk Assessment, Risk Management, Risk Communication, Economics, Policy Analysis

Courses Taught

            FSC 891: Food and Environmental Risk Assessment
            FSC 890: Concepts in Agricultural Health
            HNF 823: Research Methods in Human Nutrition (guest lecture in Bioinformatics)
            CEP 991B: Social Networks
            Coca-Cola Webinar on Food Safety Risk Assessment