School of Health and Human Sciences

Maryanne T. Perrin, Ph.D., M.B.A., R.D.N.

mtperrinAssistant Professor
Office:  336-334-3397
Curriculum Vitae

Globally, 15 million infants are born prematurely each year, greatly increasing their risk of morbidity and mortality.  Growing evidence supports the use of donor human milk with preterm infants to improve health outcomes and lower health care costs when mother’s own milk is unavailable.  Increasing access to safe donor milk is an important public health initiative supported by the US Surgeon General, the World Health Organization, and the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Dr. Perrin’s early research evaluated human milk composition in the second year postpartum to help inform evidence-based guidelines regarding exclusion criteria for donating to a milk bank.  In addition, she has used qualitative and mixed-methods research techniques to study the emergence of online peer-to-peer milk sharing communities and the experiences, knowledge, and attitudes of women who have shared their milk with a peer.


  • Ph.D., Nutrition Science, North Carolina State University
  • M.B.A., The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • B.S., Industrial Engineering, Purdue University

Research Interests

Developing evidence-based guidance to support the effective screening, handling, processing, distribution and use of expressed human milk.

Current Research

  • Temporal and dietary factors impacting compositional changes in human milk
  • The intersections of peer-to-peer milk sharing and human milk banking
  • Effects of storage and processing techniques on the integrity of expressed human milk

Selected Publications

  • Schlotterer H, Perrin MT. The effects of refrigerated and frozen storage on Holder pasteurized donor human milk: A systematic review. [accepted for publication at Breastfeed Med July 2018]
  • Perrin MT, Pawlak R, Dean LL, Christis A, Friend L. A cross-sectional study of fatty acids and brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in human milk from lactating women following vegan, vegetarian, and omnivore diets. [Eur J Nutr 2018]
  • Pawlak R, Shahab-Ferdows S, Hampel D, Allen LH, Perrin MT. Vitamin B12 content in breast milk of vegan, vegetarian, and non-vegetarian lactating women in the United States. [Am J Clin Nutr 2018]
  • Perrin MT. Donor human milk and fortifier use in United States level 2, 3, and 4 neonatal care hospitals. [J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr 2017]
  • Perrin MT, Fogleman AD, Newburg DS, Allen JC. A longitudinal study of human milk composition in the second year postpartum: Implications for donor milk banking [Maternal Child Nutr 2016]
  • Perrin MT, Goodell LS, Fogleman AD, Pettus H, Bodenheimer A, Palmquist A. Expanding the supply of pasteurized donor milk: Understanding why peer-to-peer milk sharers in the United States don’t donate to milk banks [J Hum Lact 2016]
  • Perrin MT, Goodell LS, Allen JC, Fogleman AD. A mixed-methods observational study of human milk sharing communities on Facebook [Breastfeed Med 2014]