Naima Moustaid-Moussa

College of Human Sciences, Department of Nutrition, Hospitality & Retailing

Naima Moustaid-Moussa

Naima Moustaid-Moussa was recruited as a senior strategic hire in the College of Human Sciences at Texas Tech University. She has primarily been conducting basic and integrated nutrition and obesity research, with emphasis on the endocrine function of adipose tissue in obesity, diabetes, inflammation, and metabolic disorders using cell and animal models. Her secondary research interest is in childhood obesity. Her areas of expertise include:

  • nutrient-gene interactions in health and disease
  • nutritional and hormonal regulation of metabolism
  • mechanisms linking adipose and systemic inflammation to insulin resistance and metabolic disorders
  • the adipocyte renin angiotensin system, inflammation and insulin resistance
  • bioactive components of food (such as omega-3 fatty acids and isoflavones) and prevention of metabolic disorders and inflammation

She taught both undergraduate and graduate courses, including Physiological Chemistry/Biochemistry, Physiological Basis for Diet and Chronic Diseases, Nutrient-Gene Interactions, Advanced Topics in Obesity, and Physiology of Hormones.

She is originally from Morocco, where she started her undergraduate research and completed her B.S. at the University of Paris XI, Orsay, France. She received her M.S. and Ph.D. in endocrinology from the University of Paris, P & M Curie, France, in 1986 and 1989, respectively. After a postdoctoral fellowship in molecular nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston (1990-1993), she joined the faculty in the Nutrition Department at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. She also held during that time adjunct appointments with the Interdisciplinary Physiology Program then the UT-ORNL Genome Science and Technology Program. Before moving to Texas Tech University, she was professor in animal science at the UT Institute of Agriculture (2008-2012). She also co-founded and served as co-director of the UT Obesity Research Center (2007-2012).

She published more than 80 peer-reviewed papers, is co-inventor on two U.S. patents, and co-edited two books (CRC Press and Marcel Dekker) on nutrition and gene expression and on genomics, proteomics and nutrition, respectively. Her research has been funded by federal and foundation agencies (including USDA, NIH, AHA and ADA).

She received several awards, including a 2012 Outstanding Investigator Award from the Nutrient-Gene Interactions Research Interest Section (RIS) of the American Society of Nutrition (ASN); a University of Tennessee Chancellor's Award for Research and Creative Achievement (2007); a Fulbright Scholarship (2004-2005); and Invited Professorship at The University of Bordeaux, France (2005 and 2007); a Career Development Award from the American Diabetes Association (ADA) in 1997; and an Established Investigator Award from The American Heart Association (AHA) in 2001.

She is an active member and fellow of The Obesity Society (TOS), previously served on the TOS Nominating Committee, and is currently serving on the TOS council representing basic/experimental research. She is also an active member of The American Society of Nutrition (ASN), previous chair of the Nutrient-Gene Interactions RIS and continues to serve on the steering committee/advisory board of this RIS. She was also recently appointed as a nutritional sciences council representative on the Scientific and Education Programs Oversight Committee.

She co-organized in 2005 the FASEB Summer Research Conference on nutrient control of gene expression and signaling, and chaired and co-chaired numerous sessions and symposia at Experimental Biology, FASEB summer conferences and TOS scientific meetings.

She also served on several peer review committees/study sections for NIH, USDA, the Fulbright Program and the AHA (in 2012 as co-chair of the AHA lipids section). She is currently member of editorial boards for four journals: The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, Frontiers in Fatty Acid and Lipid Physiology, Frontiers in Nutrigenomics and The Journal of the Metabolic Syndrome.