Kavita did her first degree and PhD in the Department of Psychology at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne. Her PhD research was concerned with the role of psychological stress in the progression of HIV infection. Her first post-doctoral position was in the Department of Medicine at the University of Wales in Cardiff. Here she examined emotional, cognitive and immunological responses to polio vaccination (an enterovirus) in patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Her interests in the role of psychological factors in health and disease outcomes continued in subsequent postdoctoral positions at the University of Bristol where she examined the effects of upper respiratory illness on mood and cognitive performance and the effects of chronic caregiver stress on vulnerability to infectious disease in older people.