The EDESIA: Plants, Food and Health PhD programme is funded by Wellcome Trust to advance major aspects of plant-based nutrition and health, from crop to clinic. The programme draws on the world-class, interdisciplinary research expertise of the Norwich Research Park (UEA, John Innes Centre, Quadram Institute and Earlham Institute).
The EDESIA programme combines scientific excellence with a commitment to improving the working environment and transition support towards future employment for trainees.
Through a four-year, rotation-based PhD, EDESIA students will have the opportunity to train in a wide range of disciplines across the translational pathway of nutrition research, ranging from plant science and the mechanistic understanding of nutrition, to clinical trials, population-based studies and public health.
The single geographical location of our partnership provides doctoral researchers with access to an exceptionally wide range of expertise and facilities for research into plant-based food and health, including:
- Metabolic engineering of plants which enhance or optimize concentrations of specific nutrients
- State of the art approaches to breeding and genome editing of crops
- The function of the gut microbiome in the absorption of plant-based foods and their further metabolism by human tissues
- Use of the latest ‘omics’ technologies to measure changes in metabolism and gene expression
- Biochemical, genetic, cell biological and functional analysis of plant metabolites
- in vitro analysis of the biological activity of key metabolites in model tissues and cell cultures
- Investigation of mechanisms of action in animal models of disease
- Innovative approaches to bioinformatics, mathematical biology and metagenomics
- Complex statistical analyses of large prospective cohort datasets
- Human intervention studies