Laia Blavi

Laia Blavi photo

My name is Laia Blavi and I am from Montblanc, a village near Barcelona, Spain. While pursuing a BS degree in veterinary sciences at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB), I discovered an interest in animal nutrition and swine.

After completing my BS degree, I decided to continue my education and pursue a Masters degree at Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Zaragoza (IAMZ) and the UAB with an emphasis on animal nutrition. During this program, my research focus was on maternal learning and creep-feeding.

After successfully defending my master’s thesis and earning my MS, I worked at the Animal Welfare and Nutrition Service (SNiBA) at the UAB for 6 months. While there, I worked on various projects related to the use of creep-feeding in piglets and testing new additives for the swine industry.

In 2014, I began my doctoral program after receiving a grant to study zinc nutrition in weaned pigs. My research at the UAB focused on zinc metabolism and the interaction of other minerals (such as calcium and phosphorus) in weanling piglets.

In January 2016, I came to Illinois to work with Dr. Stein to develop and carry out experiments as part of my dissertation work. My work here focused on utilizing pharmaceutical doses of zinc oxide, and its effect on the digestibility of calcium in growing pigs. I then returned to Barcelona to complete my Ph. D., and rejoined the Stein Lab in the spring of 2017 as a postdoc.

Master's thesis: 
Maternal learning and Creep-feeding: two strategies determining the post-weaning performance of piglets
Doctoral dissertation: 
Exploring dietary strategies to enhance feed intake and growth of piglets after weaning by a multidisciplinary approach