Head of the Sensory Evaluation Laboratory
Rutgers University, USA
Dr. Beverly J Tepper received her PhD in Nutrition from the Friedman School of Nutrition and Science Policy at Tufts University, Boston MA. Following a post-doctoral fellowship at the Monell Chemical Senses Center, Philadelphia, PA, she joined the faculty of Rutgers University New Brunswick, NJ. Dr. Tepper is currently a professor of chemosensory science in the Department of Food Science at Rutgers, where she heads the Sensory Evaluation Laboratory. She is also the co-founder and director of the Center for Sensory Sciences & Innovation (CSSI) at Rutgers that conducts basic and applied research in collaboration with industry clients. Broadly speaking, her research combines food sensory science with nutritional science and psychology to better understand the links between taste, diet and health. A major focus of her work is to understand how genetic variation in taste perception influences the pathways linking oral sensations to food preferences, diet selection and body weight. Current work examines common polymorphisms in the bitter taste gene TAS2R38 (PROP tasting), the oral fat sensor CD36, and the taste bud trophic factor, Gustin to identify individuals who may be at increased risk for obesity due to specific dietary behaviors. Clinical studies on the role of PROP tasting in weight loss in women are also being pursued. Other areas of interest include the role of salivary proteins in sensory perceptions and oral health, and the influence of personal traits and cultural differences on consumer behavior. Dr. Tepper is the author and co-author of numerous peer-reviewed articles and is co-author of a popular textbook (Nutrition and Behavior: A Multidisciplinary Approach) for university students. She has served on numerous boards and committees serving the profession including the Committee on Military Nutrition Research of the Food and Nutrition Board for the U.S. National Academy of Sciences. She is currently serving on the Research Committee for the American Heart Association. She receives funding from the National Institutes of Health, the National Cancer Institute, the American Heart Association, the U.S. Dept of Agriculture, the National Science Foundation and the food industry.