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NIAAA Staff Profile


National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)

Lasker Clinical Research Scholar

Paule Valery Joseph, CRNP, Ph.D.

Dr. Paule Joseph

1 Cloister Ct
Building 60, Room 268
Bethesda, MD 20892

Focus Area

Clinical Research

Biographical Summary

Dr. Joseph is Lasker Clinical Research Scholar Tenure Track Clinical Investigator and Chief of the Section of Sensory Science and Metabolism (SenSMet) in Division of Intramural Clinical and Biological Research (DICBR) at the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism with a joint appointment at the National Institute of Nursing Research. Dr. Joseph is conducting preclinical, clinical, and translational studies to improve the diagnosis, prevention, and management of chemosensory disorders. The Section of Sensory Science and Metabolism (SenSMet) aims to understand neurological and molecular mechanisms underlying chemosensation (taste, smell & chemesthesis) and motivational pathways of ingestive behaviors how they might be different in individuals with obesity and alcohol and substance use disorders. We are particularly interested in studying how the brain incorporates chemosensory information from the external environment and its internal states to guide eating/ingestive behavior. To achieve this goal, our laboratory conducts clinical-translational inpatient and outpatient studies. We use a combination of biobehavioral and innovative validated psychophysical methods for human studies. We also use imaging brain techniques, such as fMRI for olfaction and gustation. To provide mechanistic insight into our clinical research, we are also conducting preclinical studies using rodent models to understand cellular and molecular mechanisms that influence how the brain perceives the chemical senses (taste, smell, chemesthesis) and feeding behavior in a state of disease (e.g., obesity and substance use disorders). The SenSMet lab is currently investigating the interplay among biological and behavioral components of chemosensation in the context of diseases, with a particular emphasis on metabolic disorders like obesity and brain diseases, particularly alcohol and substance use disorders, given that both obesity and alcohol and substance use disorders share common brain mechanisms associated with the chemical senses. Besides, due to reports of taste and smell loss from individuals affected by COVID-19, our lab began investigating chemosensation and COVID-19. We are focused on understanding the effects of the SARS-CoV-2 virus on the chemical senses.

After earning her Ph.D. in Nursing with a focus in Genomics from the University of Pennsylvania and conducting her research at The Monell Chemical Senses Center, Dr. Paule Joseph completed a Workforce Diversity Postdoctoral Fellowship at the NINR, in the laboratory of Dr. Wendy Henderson. Her postdoctoral research focused on combining clinical and basic research in a single research program by examining the brain-gut interactions related to gastrointestinal disorders (i.e., obesity and diabetes). In 2017, she was appointed as Assistant Clinical Investigator and Chief of the Sensory Science and Metabolism Unit (SenSMet) in the NINR Division of Intramural Research. Dr. Joseph has a Master's of Science as a Family Nurse Practitioner from Pace University, an AAS in Nursing at Hostos Community College, and a BSN from the College of New Rochelle. She is also a certified nurse practitioner.

Selected Publications

Joseph PV, Reed DR, Mennella JA. Individual Differences Among Children in Sucrose Detection Thresholds: Relationship With Age, Gender, and Bitter Taste Genotype. Nurs Res. 2016 Jan-Feb;65(1):3-12. doi: 10.1097/NNR.0000000000000138. PMID: 26633761; PMCID: PMC4679349.
Cooper KW, Brann DH, Farruggia MC, Bhutani S, Pellegrino R, Tsukahara T, Weinreb C, Joseph PV, Larson ED, Parma V, Albers MW, Barlow LA, Datta SR, Di Pizio A. COVID-19 and the Chemical Senses: Supporting Players Take Center Stage. Neuron. 2020 Jul 22;107(2):219-233. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2020.06.032. Epub 2020 Jul 1. PMID: 32640192; PMCID: PMC7328585.

Gerkin RC, Ohla K, Veldhuizen MG, Joseph PV, et al. Recent smell loss is the best predictor of COVID-19: a preregistered, cross-sectional study. Chemical Senses, bjaa081, PMID: 32743605; PMCID: PMC7386529. 

Joseph PV, Nolden A, Kober KM, Paul SM, Cooper BA, Conley YP, Hammer MJ, Wright F, Levine JD, Miaskowski C. Fatigue, Stress, and Functional Status are Associated With Taste Changes in Oncology Patients Receiving Chemotherapy. J Pain Symptom Manage. 2020 Nov 28:S0885-3924(20)30899-X. doi: 10.1016/j.jpainsymman.2020.11.029. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 33259906.
Joseph PV, Wang Y, Fourie NH, Henderson WA. A computational framework for predicting obesity risk based on optimizing and integrating genetic risk score and gene expression profiles. PLoS One. 2018 May 24;13(5):e0197843. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0197843. PMID: 29795655; PMCID: PMC5993110.
Joseph PV, Davidson HR, Boulineaux CM, Fourie NH, Franks AT, Abey SK, Henderson WA. Eating Behavior, Stress, and Adiposity: Discordance Between Perception and Physiology. Biol Res Nurs. 2018 Oct;20(5):531-540. doi: 10.1177/1099800418779460. Epub 2018 May 31. PMID: 29852756; PMCID: PMC6346320.
Joseph PV, Jaime-Lara RB, Wang Y, Xiang L, Henderson WA. Comprehensive and Systematic Analysis of Gene Expression Patterns Associated with Body Mass Index. Sci Rep. 2019 May 15;9(1):7447. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-43881-5. PMID: 31092860; PMCID: PMC6520409.
Hall KD, Ayuketah A, Brychta R, Cai H, Cassimatis T, Chen KY, Chung ST, Costa E, Courville A, Darcey V, Fletcher LA, Forde CG, Gharib AM, Guo J, Howard R, Joseph PV, McGehee S, Ouwerkerk R, Raisinger K, Rozga I, Stagliano M, Walter M, Walter PJ, Yang S, Zhou M. Ultra-Processed Diets Cause Excess Calorie Intake and Weight Gain: An Inpatient Randomized Controlled Trial of Ad Libitum Food Intake. Cell Metab. 2019 Jul 2;30(1):67-77.e3. doi: 10.1016/j.cmet.2019.05.008. Epub 2019 May 16. Erratum in: Cell Metab. 2019 Jul 2;30(1):226. Erratum in: Cell Metab. 2020 Oct 6;32(4):690. PMID: 31105044.
Kure Liu C, Joseph PV, Feldman DE, Kroll DS, Burns JA, Manza P, Volkow ND, Wang GJ. Brain Imaging of Taste Perception in Obesity: a Review. Curr Nutr Rep. 2019 Jun;8(2):108-119. doi: 10.1007/s13668-019-0269-y. PMID: 30945140; PMCID: PMC6486899.

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