Dr. Martínez Costa is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Valencia with healthcare links as the Head of the Pediatric Service at the Hospital Clínico Universitario in Valencia. She is the President of the Clinical Nutrition and Dietary Commission at the Hospital Clínico Universitario in Valencia.
She combines her teaching with research as the Principal Investigator of INCLIVA’s Pediatric Nutrition Research Group.
She is currently the Co-chair of the World Health Organization’s Topic Advisory Group for Nutrition, and is working on the classification and terminology of nutritional disorders for the eleventh version of the ICD (International Classification of Diseases). In March 2014 she took a month’s sabbatical stay at the WHO headquarters in Geneva to complete this work.
In the gastroenterology and pediatric nutrition fields she has worked widely on developing artificial pediatric nutrition (parenteral and enteral) both in-hospital and at home, and is a member of the corresponding working groups for the Spanish Society of Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Pediatric Nutrition (SEGHNP; Sociedad Española de Gastroenterología, Hepatología y Nutrición Pediátrica) and Spanish Society of Enteral and Parenteral Nutrition (SENPE; Sociedad Española de Nutrición Enteral y parenteral) scientific societies. She participated in the development of the clinical guidelines for artificial nutrition which are used as a reference in the field, and on the Outpatient and Home Pediatric Enteral Nutrition registry (NEPAD; Nutrición Enteral Pediátrica Ambulatoria y Domiciliaria), the first pediatric registry of enteral nutrition in Spain and only the second in Europe.
During her service she has promoted an outpatient artificial nutrition program and developed the breast milk cold-conservation system, as well as a prevention and treatment program for children and adolescents at risk of cardiovascular disease. She has been recognized for completing three six-year terms in office as a researcher, has participated in several continuous research projects, and is the co-author on many different articles, books, and publications.
She belongs to various scientific societies and has participated in national and international conferences, having published more than 150 communications for conferences, 24 invited speeches (national and international), and 28 invited presentations forming course sections.
She is a reviewer for the journals Nutrición Hospitalaria, Anales Españoles de Pediatría, the Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics, the Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal, and PLOS ONE, among others. She was also the coordinator of the third unit of the “Core Curriculum for Pediatric Nutritional Support” (Core Currículum Pediátrico en Apoyo Nutricional) in its last two Spanish editions in 2010 and 2011; additionally, she also coordinates the training course in pediatric nutrition promoted by the Spanish Society of Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Pediatric Nutrition (SEGHNP; Sociedad Española de Gastroenterología, Hepatología y Nutrición Pediátrica) which is endorsed by the American Society of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASPEN), and participates as an author of the Virtual Master’s degree in Pediatric Nutrition at the University of Granada.
• In the cardiovascular line of research: vascular changes measured by Doppler ultrasound have been correlated with metabolic alterations in children at risk of cardiovascular disease.
• In line of research regarding factors providing defense in breast milk: norovirus-specific antibodies have been quantified; these factors appear to be able to block norovirus activity by preventing pseudo-viral particles from binding to Caco-2 and/or saliva cells. These results have been related to the ABO blood type, the mother’s secretory phenotype, and the Lewis antigen. The microbiota in breast milk have also been analyzed.
• In the pediatric artificial nutrition research line: the nutritional response to home-support has been analyzed using systems validated to measure their repercussion on the quality of life of the patients and their caregivers.