17 June 2019

Growing Future Food

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    Future foods


    A brand new state-of-the-art health research and endoscopy centre, The Quadram Institute has been created to transform food and health research.

    It’s a ground-breaking collaboration that brings together our expertise, the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital and around 300 bioscientists working on strategic programmes supported by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council.

    This is where food scientists, clinical researchers and all kinds of experts come together to develop future foods, improve our diet, reduce foodborne illness and tackle malnutrition. Working on interdisciplinary projects, we explore the interface between food science, health and gut biology to improve human health and develop solutions to worldwide food-related disease.

    Working with partners around the world, including the John Innes Centre which is also based at Norwich Research Park, we’re exploiting new advances in crop genomics to create new varieties of food with enhanced nutritional qualities. One way we’re doing this is by developing new breeds of wheat with higher levels of resistant starch to reduce the impact of obesity-related conditions such as Type II diabetes.

    All sorts of projects are going on in the new laboratories. We’re developing bioactives. We’re looking at the structure of food and how our guts and our resident microbiome digest food and absorb nutrients. We’re helping the food industry to reduce the impact of microbes in the food chain. And we’re studying food with controlled glucose release profiles to better understand the factors that influence digestive processes and gut-brain signalling.

    At the heart of our mission is food innovation. We’re looking to develop future foods that will improve the health of people with age-related chronic diseases.

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    UEA perspectives

    “We’re working to develop a healthier wheat for people because one of the major health challenges worldwide right now is the growing prevalence of obesity and Type II diabetes. One way to tackle this problem is by reducing the dietary risk factors and improving the nutrition of the foods people eat every day. Widely grown, wheat provides 20% of calories consumed worldwide.” - Dr Brittany Hazard