Dr Carl Hulston BSc, MSc, PhD

Dr Carl Hulston

School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences
Associate Professor in Sport and Exercise Nutrition


  • BSc (hons) Sport Science and Biology (University College Worcester)
  • MSc Exercise Physiology (Loughborough University)
  • PhD Exercise Metabolism (University of Birmingham)


Carl obtained his PhD at the University of Birmingham (2005-2008) under the supervision of Professor Asker Jeukendrup. His thesis focused on nutritional strategies to enhance performance and training adaptation in elite endurance athletes. These studies utilized stable isotope tracers to assess changes in substrate metabolism in response to diet and exercise interventions. He then completed postdoctoral training at the Copenhagen Muscle Research Centre (2008-2010) where he was mentored by Professor Gerrit van Hall. There he learned clinical methods such as arterial-venous blood sampling to get a better handle on tissue-level metabolic flux. He also continued to develop his interest and expertise in analytical mass spectrometry. Since postdoctoral training, Carl has held academic positions at Brunel University (Lecturer, 2010-2012), Loughborough University (Lecturer, 2012-2018; Senior Lecturer, 2018-2020) and Newcastle University (Senior Lecturer, 2020-2023). Carl joined the University of Birmingham as an Associate Professor in Sport and Exercise Nutrition in 2023.


Carl coordinates a module in Sports Nutrition. He also supervises BSc and MSc student projects in areas aligned with his research interests.

Postgraduate supervision

Carl has successfully supervised 3 PhD students to completion and welcomes applications from potential postgraduate students with interests aligned to his research area.


Carl’s broad research interest is the role of diet and exercise in human health and performance, with a specific interest in skeletal muscle metabolism. He is currently investigating the metabolic consequences of overeating and inactivity, the role of protein intake in endurance exercise recovery, performance, and training adaptation, and the metabolic responses to different dairy proteins.


Selected publications:

  • Dewhurst-Trigg R, Wadley A, Woods R, Sherar L, Bishop N, Hulston C and Markey O. Short-term high-fat overfeeding does not induce NF-κB inflammatory signaling in subcutaneous white adipose tissue. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 105(7): 2162-2176, 2020 doi.org/10.1210/clinem/dgaa158
  • Naharudin M, Adams J, Richardson H, Thomson T, Oxinou C, Marshall C, Clayton D, Mears S, Yusof A, Hulston C and James L. Viscous placebo and carbohydrate breakfasts similarly decrease appetite and increase resistance exercise performance compared with a control breakfast in trained males. Br J Nutr. 124(2): 232-240, 2020 
  • Dewhurst-Trigg R, Hulston C and Markey O. The effect of quantity and quality of dietary fat intake on subcutaneous white adipose tissue inflammatory responses. Proceedings of the Nutrition Society. 79(4): 542-556, 2020. doi.org/10.1017/S0029665120000038
  • Whytock K, Parry S, Turner M, Woods R, James L, Ferguson R, Stahlman M, Boren J, Strauss J, Cocks M, Wagenmakers A, Hulston C and Shepherd S. A 7-day high-fat, high-calorie diet induces fibre-specific increases in intramuscular triglyceride and perilipin protein expression in human skeletal muscle. J Physiol. 598(6): 1151-1167, 2020. doi.org/10.1113/JP279129
  • Gomez I, Ward B, Souilhol C, Recarti C, Ariaans M, Johnston J, Burnett A, Mahmoud M, Luong L, West L, Long M, Parry S, Woods R, Hulston C, Benedikter B, Bazaz R, Francis S, Kiss-Toth E, van Zandvoort M, Schober A, Hellewell P, Evans P and Ridger V.  Neutrophil microvesicles drive atherosclerosis by delivering miR-155 to atheroprone endothelium.  Nature Communications. 2020. Jan 10; 11(1):214. doi.org/10.1038/s41467-019-14043-y
  • Willis S, Sargeant J, Yates T, Takamura T, Takayama H, Gupta V, Brittain E, Crawford J, Parry S, Thackray A, Varela-Mato V, Stensel D, Woods R, Hulston C, Aithal G, King J. Acute hyper-energetic, high-fat feeding increases circulating FGF21, LECT2 and fetuin-A in healthy men. J Nutr. 2020. Jan 9. doi.org/10.1093/jn/nxz333
  • Parry S, Turner M, Woods R, James L, Ferguson R, Cocks M, Whytock K, Strauss J, Shepherd S, Wagenmakers A, van Hall G and Hulston C. High-fat overfeeding impairs peripheral glucose metabolism and muscle microvascular eNOS Ser1177 phosphorylation. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2020. Jan 1;105(1): doi.org/10.1210/clinem/dgz018 
  • Patel S, Alvarez-Guaita A, Melvin A, Rimmington D, Datillo A, Miedzybrodzka E, Cimino I, Maurin A, Roberts G, Meek C, Virtue S, Sparks L, Parsons S, Redman L, Bray G, Liou A, Woods R, Parry S, Jeppesen P, Kolnes A, Harding H, Ron D, Vidal-Puig A, Reimann F, Gribble F, Hulston C, Farooqi S, Fafournoux P, Smith S, Jensen J, Breen D, Wu Z, Zhang B, Coll A, Savage D and O’Rahilly S.  GDF15 provides an endocrine signal of nutritional stress in mice and humans.  Cell Metabolism. 29(3): 707-718e8, 2019
  • James L, Stevenson E, Rumbold P and Hulston C. Cow’s milk as a post-exercise recovery drink: implications for performance and health. Eur J Sport Sci. 19(1): 40-48, 2019
  • Clayton D, Biddle J, Maher T, Funnell M, Sargeant J, King J, Hulston C, Stensel D and James L.  24-h severe energy restriction impairs postprandial glycaemic control in young, lean males.  Br J Nutr.  120(10): 1107-1116, 2018 
  • Hulston C, Woods R, Dewhurst-Trigg R, Parry S, Gagnon S, Baker L, James L, Markey O, Martin N, Ferguson R and van Hall G.  Resistance exercise stimulates mixed muscle protein synthesis in lean and obese young adults. Physiol Rep.  6(14): e13799, 2018.  doi.org/10.14814/phy2.13799 
  • Parry S, Woods R, Hodson L and Hulston C.  A single day of excessive dietary fat intake reduces whole-body insulin sensitivity:  the metabolic consequence of binge eating.  Nutrients.   9(8): 818, 2017.  doi.org/10.3390/nu9080818
  • Parry S, Smith J, Corbett T, Woods R and Hulston C.  Short-term, high-fat overfeeding impairs glycaemic control but does not alter gut hormone responses to a mixed meal tolerance test in healthy, normal weight individuals.  Br J Nutr.  117(1): 48-55, 2017 
  • Hulston C, Churnside A and Venables M.  Probiotic supplementation prevents high-fat, overfeeding-induced insulin resistance in human subjects.  Br J Nutr.  113(4): 596-602, 2015 
  • Bornø A, Hulston C and van Hall G.  Determination of human muscle protein fractional synthesis rate: An evaluation of different mass-spectrometry techniques and considerations for tracer choice.  J Mass Spectrom.  49(8): 674-680, 2014
  • Hulston C, Wolsk E, Grondahl T, Yfanti C and van Hall G.  Protein intake does not increase vastus lateralis muscle protein synthesis during cycling.  Med Sci Sports Exerc. 43(9): 1635-1642, 2011
  • Olsen N, Aachmann-Andersen N, Oturai P, Munch-Andersen T, Bornø A, Hulston C, Holstein-Rathlou N, Robach P and Lundby C.  Recombinant human erythropoietin in humans down-regulates proximal renal tubular reabsorption and causes a fall in glomerular filtration rate.  J Physiol. 589: 1273-1281, 2011 
  • Hulston C, Venables M, Mann C, Martin C, Philp A, Baar K and Jeukendrup A.  Training with low muscle glycogen enhances fat metabolism in well-trained cyclists.  Med Sci Sports Exerc. 42(11): 2046–2055, 2010
  • Bornø A, Aachmann-Andersen N, Munch-Andersen T, Hulston C and Lundby C.  Screening for recombinant human erythropoietin using [HB], reticulocytes, the OFFhr-score, OFFz-score and Hbz-score: status of the Blood Passport.  Eur J Appl Physiol. 109(3): 537-43, 2010
  • Hulston C and Jeukendrup A.  No placebo effect from carbohydrate intake during prolonged exercise.  Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 19: 275-284, 2009
  • Hulston C, Wallis G and Jeukendrup A.  Exogenous carbohydrate oxidation with glucose plus fructose intake during exercise.  Med Sci Sports Exerc. 41(2): 357-363, 2009
  • Hulston C and Jeukendrup A.  Substrate metabolism and exercise performance with caffeine and carbohydrate intake.  Med Sci Sports Exerc.  40(12): 2096-2104, 2008
  • Wallis G, Hulston C, Mann C, Roper H, Tipton K and Jeukendrup A.  Muscle glycogen synthesis with combined glucose and fructose ingestion following exhaustive exercise.  Med Sci Sports Exerc. 40(10): 1789-1794, 2008
  • Jeukendrup A, Hopkins S, Aragon L and Hulston C.  No effect of carbohydrate feeding on 16 km cycling time trial performance.  Eur J Appl Physiol. 104(5): 831-837, 2008
  • Venables M, Hulston C, Cox H and Jeukendrup A.  Green tea extract ingestion, fat oxidation, and glucose tolerance in healthy humans.  Am J Clin Nutr. 87(3): 778-784, 2008

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