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MHSc PhD(Otago)

Christine Thomson

Professor Christine Thomson has over 40 years research in selenium and iodine in human nutrition. She has now retired from all research and teaching.

Christine Thomson is Emeritus Professor in Human Nutrition. She has been teaching in the Department of Human Nutrition since 1987, and prior to that was on the research staff from 1973. Her qualifications include BHSc in Nutrition and Chemistry, MHSC (Hons) in Nutrition and PhD from the University of Otago. Her post-graduate research included the metabolism and nutritional importance of selenium. Research in this area has continued along with iodine research and interactions between selenium and iodine.

Christine Thomson's research involves studies of the nutritional importance of selenium and iodine for New Zealand residents, which has gained international recognition. The studies include the estimation of selenium requirements, the role of selenium as an antioxidant in the protection against cardiovascular disease, the relationship between our low iodine status, thyroid status and thyroid volume, and the relationship between selenium status and thyroid function. Her research in iodine identified a re-emergence of mild iodine deficiency in New Zealand. She also has had an interest in a number of sports nutrition research topics, and more recently has been involved in the 2008-2009 Adult Nutrition Survey.

Christine's teaching has included trace elements, in particular selenium and iodine, energy balance and various sport and exercise nutrition topics.



Jody Miller. Effect of selenium supplementation on clinical outcomes in high-risk patients with coronary artery disease. 2011.

Woravimol Krittapol (Pharmacy). The influence of gut microflora on selenium bioavailability and metabolism in the rat. 2010.

Kavitha Menon. Micronutrient status of pregnant women in India, 2010.

Sheila Skeaff. The prevalence of iodine deficiency disorders (IDD) in three vulnerable segments of the NZ population: pregnant women, neonates and schoolchildren. 2004.

Elaine Paterson. Role of Se as an antioxidant in the protection against cardiovascular disease. 2000.

Anna Duffield, Selenium requirements of New Zealanders. 1999.

Master of Science

Will Payne. Post-exercise glycaemic and insulinemic response to nutritional beverages with differing glycaemic index in adolescent competitive swimmers. 2009.

Jennifer Campbell. Effect of iodine and selenium intervention on thyroid status of older New Zealanders. 2007.

Amy Pettigrew. Iodine status of N.Z. pregnant women. 2006.

Taryn McLeod. Carbohydrate-protein vs carbohydrate beverages on recovery after glycogen depleting exercise.

Kyle Doel. Energy expenditure in Southern Traverse athletes as measured using doubly labeled water. 2005.

Tony Mottershead. The effect of glucosamine sulphate supplementation on functional recovery, and osteoarthritis progression in knee-injured individuals. 2003.

Sarah MacLachlan. Selenium status of mothers and babies in New Zealand. 2002.


Daniels, L., Haszard, J. J., Gibson, R. S., Taylor, R. W., Fleming, E. A., Miller, J. C., Thomson, C. D., & Heath, A.-L. M. (2023). Selenium intakes and plasma selenium of New Zealand toddlers: Secondary analysis of a randomised controlled trial. British Journal of Nutrition, 129, 1193-1201. doi: 10.1017/s0007114522002379 Journal - Research Article

Thomson, C. D. (2017). Trace elements 10.4: Selenium. In J. Mann & A. S. Truswell (Eds.), Essentials of human nutrition. (5th ed.) (pp. 179-186). Oxford University Press. [Contribution]. Chapter in Book - Research

Skeaff, S., & Thomson, C. D. (2017). Trace elements 10.3: Iodine. In J. Mann & A. S. Truswell (Eds.), Essentials of human nutrition. (5th ed.) (pp. 172-178). Oxford University Press. [Contribution]. Chapter in Book - Research

Houghton, L. A., Parnell, W. R., Thomson, C. D., Green, T. J., & Gibson, R. S. (2016). Serum zinc is a major predictor of anemia and mediates the effect of selenium on hemoglobin in school-aged children in a nationally representative survey in New Zealand. Journal of Nutrition, 146(9), 1670-1676. doi: 10.3945/jn.116.235127 Journal - Research Article

Miller, J. C., MacDonell, S. O., Gray, A. R., Reid, M. R., Barr, D. J., Thomson, C. D., & Houghton, L. A. (2016). Iodine status of New Zealand elderly residents in long-term residential care. Nutrients, 8(8), 445. doi: 10.3390/nu8080445 Journal - Research Article

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