Nutritional Bioengineering

Industrialisation of food supply has led to a greater reliance on food processing, with profound consequences for human health and animal production. Beneficial food components, such as fibre have been reduced, with healthy complex carbohydrates replaced with processed simple sugars.

This has changed the nature and digestibility of carbohydrates in the diet, and their balance with respect to the other two macronutrients: proteins and fats.

LISAF aims to tackle the intersection between food supply and health, by bringing together leading researchers in plant carbohydrate structure and function, nutrition and dietetics, food science, gut microbiology, computational modelling and bioengineering to find the best possible nutritional outcomes when diet, microbes in the gut and the host system combine.

The challenge

This domain focuses on two major research challenges:

  • Better understanding of food-related health impacts at the molecular level
  • Identifying consumers' needs, expectations, and readiness to embed new food products in their diet

Our mission

To develop an integrated ‘systems based’ research program to unravel the best quality and functionality aspects of plant biology that will enable us to design and manufacture foods for optimal digestion and nutritional value.

Our research initiatives

  • Enhancing and diversifying the nutritional content and quality of our major staple crops to lower the impeding ‘calorie gap’.
  • Seeds – Human Nutrition:  By developing “fit-for-purpose seeds” we can generate connectivity between the traditionally disparate fields of agriculture, food processing and nutrition/health. This approach maximises opportunities for socioeconomic impact at both ends of the agri-food supply chain by simultaneously addressing improved nutritional outcomes and premium quality seeds for Australian agriculture.

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