Dr Daniel Hwang

Research Fellow

Institute for Molecular Bioscience

Affiliate Research Fellow

The University of Queensland Diamantina Institute
Faculty of Medicine
d.hwang@uq.edu.au
+61 7 344 37976

Overview

Dr Daniel Liang-Dar Hwang is a UQ research fellow at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience. He studied Biochemistry as an undergraduate at the National Taiwan University and a Masters in Biotechnology at the University of Pennsylvania. Following graduation, he conducted research at the Monell Chemical Senses Center where he first developed a keen interest in genetics and the perception of smell and taste. Later he secured a scholarship from the University of Washington to complete a Masters in Nutrition and a QIMR Berghofer PhD scholarship to complete a PhD in Genetic Epidemiology. Dr Hwang applies statistical methodologies to twins and large-scale genetic data to understand how genes influence human perception, dietary behaviour and related chronic disorders (e.g., obesity, cardiometabolic disease and cancer). He has published in top-tier journals, including the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, International Journal of Epidemiology, and PLOS Genetics, with a total of >30 peer-review publications. See Daniel's work in The Conversation. He is on the editorial boards of the Twin Research and Human Genetics, the Frontiers in Genetics and the Frontiers in Psychiatry. Dr Hwang's current research focuses on developing statistical genetic methods for personalized intervention and family-based Mendelian randomization. He also works with clinicians to study cancer treatment-induced taste distortion with an aim to improve patients' quality of life. Dr Hwang co-chairs the translation team in the Global Consortium for Chemosensory Research where he coordinates the translation of online surveys on the COVID-19 pandemic, which have been available in >30 languages and completed by >50k participants around the world. Dr Hwang aims to translate research findings into practice. His work has been referred in a major U.S. health policy guideline and a WHO report for the intervention of childhood obesity and cited in an international patent for personalized wine selection.

Qualifications

  • Doctor of Philosophy, The University of Queensland
  • Master of Science, University of Washington

Publications

View all Publications

Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

View all Supervision

Available Projects

  • This project aims to identify genetic markers for human olfaction using genotype and phenotype data from an Australian adolescent twin cohort. We will use a similar study desgin from a previous study (https://www.pnas.org/content/116/19/9475) with larger sample size and extra methods to idenitfy the best combination of genetic variants for predction. We will then investigate whether these genetic markers can be used to predict psychiatric disorders in larger biobank studies.

  • Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) suggested that the main factor influencing an individual's coffee intake is the ability to metabolize caffeine. This project will apply recently developed statistical methods to large-scale GWAS summary statistics to investigate factors contributing to coffee consumption other than caffeine metabolism.

  • This project will assess the influence of the genetic predisposed "supertaster" status on cancer pateints' dietary intake after chemo-/radiotherapy.

View all Available Projects

Publications

Journal Article

Conference Publication

  • Cuéllar-Partida, Gabriel, Lundberg, Mischa, Campos-González, Adrian I., Kho, Pik Fang, D’Urso, Shannon, Hwang, Liang-Dar, Ngo, Trung Thanh and Rentería, Miguel E. (2019). Complex-Traits Genetics Virtual Lab: A community-driven web platform for post-GWAS analyses. American Society of Human Genetics (ASHG) 69th Annual Meeting, Houston, TX United States, 15–19 October 2019.

  • Ngo, Trung Thanh, Lundberg, Mischa, Campos-González, Adrian, Kho, Pik Fang, D’Urso, Shannon, Hwang, Liang-Dar, Rentería, Miguel and Cuéllar-Partida, Gabriel (2019). Genetic epidemiology of back pain: Examining causality with Complex Traits Virtual Lab. Australasian Epidemiological Association 2019 Annual Scientific Meeting — 'Epidemiology in the real world', South Brisbane, QLD Australia, 23–25 October 2019.

  • Evans, David, Warrington, Nicole, Partida, Gabriel Cuellar and Hwang, Daniel (2019). Using Mendelian randomization to estimate the causal effect of maternal (intrauterine) exposures on late onset offspring outcomes. 49th Annual Meeting of the Behavior Genetics Association (BGA), Stockholm, Sweden, 26-29 June, 2019. New York, NY, United States: Springer New York LLC. doi: 10.1007/s10519-019-09973-8

  • Long, Elizabeth, Ong, Jue-Sheng, Hwang, Liang-Dar, Savage, Jeanne E., Edwards, Alexis, Prom-Wormley, Elizabeth, Salvatore, Jessica E., Kendler, Kenneth S., Vassileva, Jasmin and Gillespie, Nathan A. (2018). F271. The Moderating Roles of Parental Monitoring and Peer Group Deviance on Polygenic Risk for Alcohol Use Across Adolescence. 2018 Annual Meeting of the Society of Biological Psychiatry, New York, United States, 10-12 May 2018. Philadelphia, PA, United States: Elsevier. doi: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2018.02.885

  • Hwang, Liang-Dar, Gharahkhani, Puya, Zhu, Gu, Gordon, Scott D., Breslin, Paul A. S., Martin, Nicholas G., Reed, Danielle R. and Wright, Margaret J. (2018). Replication and discovery of genetic variants influencing human bitter taste perception. 39th Annual Meeting of the Association for Chemoreception Sciences, Bonita Springs, FL, United States, 26 - 29 April 2017. Oxford, United Kingdom: Oxford University Press. doi: 10.1093/chemse/bjy003

  • Hwang, Liang-Dar, Breslin, Paul A., Reed, Danielle R., Zhu, Gu, Martin, Nicholas G. and Wright, Margaret J. (2016). Is the Association between Sweet and Bitter Perception due to Genetics?. 38th Annual Meeting of the Association-for-Chemoreception-Sciences (AChemS), Bonita Springs Fl, Apr 20-23, 2016. OXFORD: OXFORD UNIV PRESS.

  • Hwang, Liang-Dar, Reed, Danielle, Breslin, Paul, Zhu, Gu, Martin, Nicholas and Wright, Margaret (2016). GWAS of bitter taste perception in Australian adolescents. 46th Annual Meeting of the Behavior-Genetics-Association, Brisbane Australia, 20-23 June 2016. New York, NY, United States: Springer.

  • Mennella, Julie A., Lowenthal, Elizabeth D., Mathew, Phoebe, Roberts, Kristi, Mansfield, Corrine, Hwang, Liang-Dar, Lin, Cailu and Reed, Danielle R. (2016). The Molecular Basis of Individual Differences in the Taste of an HIV Treatment Drug. 38th Annual Meeting of the Association-for-Chemoreception-Sciences (AChemS), Bonita Springs, Fl United States, 20-23 April 2016. Oxford, United Kingdom: Oxford University Press.

  • Reed, Danielle R., Lipchock, Sarah V., Evans, Emily, Mansfield, Corrine, Hwang, Liang-Dar, Spielman, Andrew and Mennella, Julie A. (2015). Epigenetics of the human TAS2R38 gene. 37th Annual Meeting of the Association-for-Chemoreception-Sciences (AChemS), Bonita Spring, FL, United States, 22-25 April 2015. Oxford, United Kingdom: Oxford University Press. doi: 10.1093/chemse/bjv029

  • Hwang, Liang-Dar, Zhu, Gu, Wright, Margaret J., Martin, Nicholas G., Reed, Danielle R. and Breslin, Paul A. S. (2015). Genetic Modeling of Human Intensity Ratings of Four Sweeteners. 15th Scientific Meeting of the Australasian Association for ChemoSensory Science (AACSS), Brisbane, QLD Australia, 03-05 December 2014. Oxford, United Kingdom: Oxford University Press. doi: 10.1093/chemse/bjv008

Other Outputs

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

Possible Research Projects

Note for students: The possible research projects listed on this page may not be comprehensive or up to date. Always feel free to contact the staff for more information, and also with your own research ideas.

  • This project aims to identify genetic markers for human olfaction using genotype and phenotype data from an Australian adolescent twin cohort. We will use a similar study desgin from a previous study (https://www.pnas.org/content/116/19/9475) with larger sample size and extra methods to idenitfy the best combination of genetic variants for predction. We will then investigate whether these genetic markers can be used to predict psychiatric disorders in larger biobank studies.

  • Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) suggested that the main factor influencing an individual's coffee intake is the ability to metabolize caffeine. This project will apply recently developed statistical methods to large-scale GWAS summary statistics to investigate factors contributing to coffee consumption other than caffeine metabolism.

  • This project will assess the influence of the genetic predisposed "supertaster" status on cancer pateints' dietary intake after chemo-/radiotherapy.