About the Project
Population growth combined with
increasingly limited resources of arable land and fresh water has resulted in a
need for alternative protein sources. Even today it is
estimated that roughly 1 out of 9 people in the world are undernourished, of
which the most important factor is protein-energy malnutrition (PEM). PEM can
be reduced by protein fortification, but increasing the production of animal
protein (e.g. meat and dairy) will have detrimental environmental impacts.
Plant based proteins therefore have an important role to play.
Microalgae are examples of under-exploited
“crops”. Microalgae do not compete with traditional food crops for space and
resources. Microalgae have been used as a source of human nutrition for
thousands of years. One of the main reasons for the high consumption is due to
their significant protein content, which is comparable to, or even greater
than, some plant sources. However,
processes to utilise proteins from algae and enable them to be added into foods
and beverages remain under-developed. Proteins must have functional characteristics
such as solubility, foaming and emulsification abilities, as well as masking
off-flavours, texture and smoothness.
In this PhD project, the student will
select and cultivate fast growing algal strains and quantify protein
productivity. Their characteristics such as molecular weight and structural
conformations will be characterised to evaluate their potential functional
properties and thereby guide processes to achieve the desirable texture,
stability and “mouthfeel” for inclusion into foods and drinks.
If English is not your first language then you must have International English Language Testing Service (IELTS) average of 6.5 or above with at least 6.0 in each component.
See: View Website
Online application link: View Website
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