Researcher biography

Dr Daniel Liang-Dar Hwang is a genetic epidemiologist and statistical geneticist by training. His research interests include sensory nutrition, causal modelling, and personalized nutrition. Dr Hwang applies statistical models to big data to understand genetic and environmental factors contributing to individual differences in taste and olfactory perception, their relationship with dietary behaviour and chronic conditions (See his research on taste perception in The Conversation). He develops methods for increasing statistical power for gene discovery, estimating intergenerational causal relationships, and personalized intervention. He also works with clinicians to investigate impaired chemosensory perception in patients with cancers and COVID-19.

Daniel has a B.Sc from the National Taiwan University, majoring in Biochemical Science and Technology, and a M.Biotech from the University of Pennsylvania. Following graduation, he worked as a research technician in Danielle Reed' lab at the Monell Chemical Senses Center where he first developed a keen interest in genetics and chemosensory perception. Later he was awarded scholarships to complete a M.Sc in Nutrition at the University of Washington, under the supervision of Glen Duncan, and a Ph.D in Genetic Epidemiology at the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, under the supervision of Nicholas Martin and Margaret Wright. He then joined David Evans's group at the University of Queensland Diamantina Institue (now the Frazer Institute) as a postdoc. Dr Hwang is currently a research fellow at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience.

Dr Hwang has published more than 35 peer-review publications. His work has been referred in international health policy guidelines and a WHO report for the intervention of childhood obesity and in an international patent for personalized wine selection. He is on the editorial boards of BMC Medicine and Twin Research and Human Genetics. Dr Hwang is a Leadership Team member of the Global Consortium for Chemosensory Research, a global initiative to understand the relationship between smell loss and COVID-19 and foster the advancement of chemosensory science at large. He currently drives an international collaborative project to investigate the impact of COVID-19 vaccinations on long-COVID symptoms. Dr Hwang is a member of the National Committee for Nutrition of the Australian Academy of Science where he contributes to the implementation of the decadal plan for the science of nutrition in Australia.