Design rules for nutritionally-functional grains (2016–2019)
This project has two main objectives. One is to define the features of starch molecules, granules and their plant tissue environment which determine their rate of enzymic digestion and therefore the fraction of starch which survives digestion in the small intestine (termed resistant starch) and pass to the large intestine. The second is to define the microbial fermentation of resistant starch fractions in terms of fermentation rate, bacterial population shifts, and fermentation end products in a model for the large intestine. Together, results from the two objectives aim to provide the most comprehensive design specifications yet derived for enhancing the nutritional value and health-modulating properties of starch in grain-based foods.