Portrait of Cristal M. Hill, PhD outside the USC Leonard Davis School

Cristal M. Hill, PhD

Assistant Professor of Gerontology

Expertise: Nutrition/Metabolism, Mechanisms of aging, Nutrigenomics


  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Pennington Biomedical Research Center – LSU, Baton Rouge, LA, 2022
  • PhD, Molecular Biology, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, IL, 2016
  • MS, Animal and Poultry Sciences, Tuskegee University,Tuskegee, AL, 2010
  • BS, Animal Sciences, Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, AL, 2007


  • Biology of aging
  • Nutrient sensing
  • Tissue-specific metabolic targets
  • Macronutrients effects on health-span and lifespan


The central focus of the Hill Lab investigates the distinctive impact of dietary protein on adipose tissue function. Commonly known as body fat, adipose tissue is a critical regulator of energy and glucose homeostasis. However, aging and obesity contribute to various impairments within adipose tissue that are detrimental to optimal health. Diets that either reduce caloric (CR) intake or alter the intake of amino acids, including dietary protein restriction (DPR) defends against the detriments of aging and obesity. Our lab uses a model of DPR to determine the adaptive response of adipose tissue. Likewise, we aim to determine the impact of DPR on adipose-specific, distant from liver, transcriptional programs that regulate metabolic and endocrine health during aging.

Email: cristalh@usc.edu

Office Location: GER 356C

Publications and links:


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Curriculum Vitae