• Cromore Road, Coleraine Campus

    BT52 1SA Coleraine

    United Kingdom

  • Source: Scopus
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Personal profile


Dr Maria Mulhern is currently a Lecturer in Food Science within the School of Biomedical Sciences at Ulster University where she leads the Biostatistics teaching across the School.  She obtained a BSc Hons Biomedical Sciences with Diploma in Professional Practice (Pathology) from Ulster along with Practitioner in Biomedical Sciences from the Institute of Biomedical Sciences.

In 2007, Dr Mulhern received her PhD from Ulster University in the area of nutrition, specialising in vitamin D in health and disease.  Following her PhD, she completed two postdoctoral research positions within the Nutrition Innovation Centre for Food and Health (NICHE) at Ulster (1) investigating the dietary requirements of vitamin D and associations with health outcomes and (2) risk-benefits of fish consumption during pregnancy on neurodevelopment as part of the Seychelles Child Development study, a project in which she continues to be a key researcher. 

Dr Mulhern remains an active researcher in the Nutrition Innovation Centre for Food and Health (NICHE) where she is a core member of the ‘Nutrition, Toxicology and Child Development’ and ‘Nutritional Immunology for Health and Disease’ subgroups.  Dr Mulhern has published >30 peer-reviewed papers in the areas of vitamin D in health & disease; pre and post-natal effects of nutrition on cognitive development and immune function; gene-nutrient & drug-nutrient interactions and has supervised a number of PhDs to completion across these research areas.

Dr Mulhern’s teaching interests include Biostatistics, Research Methodologies, Research Ethics and Governance & Food Product Development (including sensory analysis) at both undergraduate & postgraduate level (on-campus & Distance Learning).  Dr Mulhern uses a range of interactive technologies to enhance her teaching & learning and is a Nearpod Certified Educator & Associate Member of the Association for Learning Technology.  Dr Mulhern obtained a Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education Practice (2016), is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy & Fellow of the Institute of Biomedical Sciences. 

Dr Mulhern is Co-Chair of the School of Biomedical Sciences Ethics Filter Committee, and a Member of Ulster University Research Governance Committee and the University’s Human Tissue Act Working Group.  She is also an active Committee Member of the Institute of Food Science and Technology (IFST NI Branch) and acts as IFST University Contact.

Research Interests

Vitamin D in health and disease; Influence of nutrition on cognitive development and immune function; Nutritional status during pregnancy; Risk-benefits of fish consumption during pregnancy; LC-PUFA, selenium and iodine requirements for health

Admininstration: Member of Research Governance Steering Committee and Human Tissue Act Working Group; Chair of School of Biomedical Sciences Research Ethics Filter Committee

Teaching Interests

Biostatistics; Research Methodologies; Research Ethics and Governance; Food Product Development (including sensory analysis)

Administrative Roles: School Co-ordinator: Biostatistics; Module Co-ordinator: Food Product Development, Applied Research Methods; Acting Course Director for BSc Hons Biomedical Sciences (2018); University Contact for Institute of Food Science & Technology

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 14 - Life Below Water

Education/Academic qualification


Award Date: 27 Jun 2016

Institute of Biomedical Sciences

Award Date: 1 Sep 2014


Oct 2003Apr 2007

Award Date: 17 Dec 2007

The Higher Education Academcy

Award Date: 2 Jun 2006

Institute of Biomedical Sciences

Award Date: 1 Sep 2003


Sep 1999Jun 2003

Award Date: 30 Jun 2003

External positions

External Examiner, Letterkenny Institute of Technology


Communications and Events Coordinator & Website Manager (NI Branch), Institute of Food Science & Technology

2013 → …

University Contact, Institute of Food Science & Technology

2013 → …


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