Julia Newsom MSc.
event_seat PhD Student


inbox j.newsom@maastrichtuniversity.nl
phone +31-43-3883986
account_balance UNS50 F4.102


Julia Nicole Newsom was born on January 31st in Houston, Texas, USA. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Houston with a Bachelor of Science in Human Nutrition & Food. During her studies, she also contributed to biochemistry undergraduate research.

Following her bachelor’s, she was accepted into the University of Texas Medical Branch’s combined Masters & Dietetic Internship program. She gained clinical experience in nationally renowned hospitals such as TIRR Memorial Hermann and Texas Children’s Hospital, which focused heavily on medical nutrition therapies for conditions such as traumatic brain injury, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, inborn errors of metabolism, gastrointestinal diseases, neurological diseases, and intensive care.

Her master’s program also emphasized nutrition research. At TIRR, she generated immediately translatable findings on the long-term efficacy of a specialized amino acid mixture on wound healing in hospitalized patients. At UTMB’s Center for Addiction Research, she characterized a novel neuronal pathway in an animal model to elucidate the underpinnings of “food reinforcement”, an intervention-resistant, behavioral driver of obesity. At UTMB’s Center for Rehabilitation, Physical Activity, and Nutrition, she authored a publication where she assessed the role of local inflammation on muscle dysfunction in patients with chronic kidney disease.

For her work, her graduate faculty nominated her into the Alpha Eta Honor Society. Following graduation, she sat for her board exams and received her Registered Dietitian certification.

Next, she moved to Trondheim, Norway, where she worked as a guest researcher in partnership with the Norwegian University of Science and Technology and St. Olav’s Obesity Clinic. Her work focused on appetite and metabolism, specifically the role of neuroendocrine hormones on weight regain. There, she conducted a study that challenges a current theory which aims to explain the mechanisms of weight recidivism.

In October 2018, Julia began working as a PhD student in the Toxicogenomics department of Maastricht University. She will conduct a human dietary intervention study (CombiChem) that investigates the synergistic effects of a combination of fruits and vegetables on human health. Health effects will be evaluated on the level of phenotypic markers of disease risk, in combination with whole genome gene expression analyses taking into account genetic variability between subjects. This research will provide more insight into the underlying molecular mechanisms by which different combinations of phytochemicals and bioactive compounds in fruits and vegetables exert their chemopreventative effects. In addition, the results of this study will provide more insight into what is the optimal combination of phytochemicals to protect the body against oxidative stress and DNA damage (which occur in diseases like cancer, diabetes type II mellitus, cardiovascular disease, etc.). Finally, it will explain why subjects respond differently to different dietary interventions and will identify a genotypic subgroup which benefits more from a particular composition. This information can be utilized to progress the field of personalized disease prevention strategies.

Associated Projects

MiFood - Personalized Nutrition

Evaluation of personalized preventive strategies based on synergistic effects between vioactive compounds present in fruits and vegetables More »