Dr Michael Netzel

Senior Research Fellow

Centre for Nutrition and Food Sciences
Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation
+61 7 344 32476


Understanding in vitro bioaccessibility (matrix release and availability for intestinal absorption) as well as the much more complex in vivo bioavailability and metabolism (including microbial degradation in the gut) of dietary phytochemicals are crucial in understanding and predicting their bioactivity and potential health benefits in humans.

Dr Michael Netzel is a graduate of the Justus-Liebig University Giessen, Germany (Master and PhD). Before joining QAAFI as a Senior Research Fellow in August 2013, he was a Research Scientist at CSIRO. Other previous academic and professional positions held by Dr Netzel include, Feodor Lynen Research Fellow (Alexander von Humboldt-Foundation) at Food Science Australia (2005 and 2006-2007), Visiting Research Scientist at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (2005) and Research Team Leader at the Friedrich-Schiller University Jena, Germany (1999-2006). He is an Editor of the ‘Journal of Food Composition and Analysis’ (Elsevier), a Review-Editor of ‘Frontiers in Nutrition’ (Scientific Direct) and a Member of the Editorial Board of ‘Food Research International’ (Elsevier). Dr Netzel was also a Co-Editor of ‘Acta Horticulturae (1106) 2015’ (Proceeding of the 6th International Symposium on Fruits & Vegetables for Human Health – FAVHealth2014) and ‘Technology for Food Quality’ (The Queensland Government, 2012). He has strong collaborative links to the Technical University of Munich, Germany (Prof. Michael Rychlik, Chair – Analytical Food Chemistry), which is one of UQ’s strategic partners in Europe.

Research Interests

  • Phytochemicals and Health
    My main research interests are related to phytochemicals (polyphenols (bound & free), carotenoids and vitamins), their analytical determination, binding characteristics within the plant (food) matrix, structural modifications/degradation during processing and digestion, bioaccessibility as well as bioavailability and metabolism (”from the raw produce to the absorbed and metabolised bioactive compound”). Assessing the “nutritional value” of biofortified produce such as the anthocyanin-rich Queen Garnet plum, “dark” strawberries, high-zeaxanthin sweet-corn and polyphenol-rich sorghum as well as the phytochemical profiling of unexploited tropical fruits grown in Australia, are the current research focus.


  • Doctor of Philosophy, Justus Liebig University Giessen


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Featured Publications


  • Dharini Sivakumar, Yasmina Sultanbawa and Michael Netzel eds. (2022). Handbook of phytonutrients in indigenous fruits and vegetables. Boston, MA, United States: CABI. doi: 10.1079/9781789248043.0000

  • Yasmina Sultanbawa, Michael Erich Netzel , Dharini Sivakumar and Olivia Renee Louise Wright eds. (2022). Food and nutrition security: underutilized plant and animal-based foods. Frontiers Research Topics, Lausanne, Switzerland: Frontiers Research Foundation. doi: 10.3389/978-2-88974-532-6

  • Michael E. Netzel and Yasmina Sultanbawa eds. (2020). Foods of plant origin. Basel, Switzerland: MDPI. doi: 10.3390/books978-3-03928-567-9

Book Chapter

  • Thi Phan, Anh Dao, Sivakumar, Dharini, Cozzolino, Daniel, Netzel, Michael E. and Sultanbawa, Yasmina (2022). Gumby Gumby (Pittosporum angustifolium). Handbook of Phytonutrients in Indigenous Fruits and Vegetables. (pp. 11-26) London, United Kingdom: CABI. doi: 10.1079/9781789248067.0002

  • Akter, Saleha, Thi Phan, Anh Dao, Netzel, Michael and Sultanbawa, Yasmina (2022). Kakadu Plum (Terminalia ferdinandiana). Handbook of Phytonutrients in Indigenous Fruits and Vegetables. (pp. 189-203) London, United Kingdom: CABI. doi: 10.1079/9781789248067.0012

  • Seididamyeh, Maral, Thi Phan, Anh Dao, Netzel, Michael E. and Sultanbawa, Yasmina (2022). Lillypilly/Riberry (Syzygium spp.). Handbook of Phytonutrients in Indigenous Fruits and Vegetables. (pp. 204-218) London, United Kingdom: CABI. doi: 10.1079/9781789248067.0013

  • Netzel, Gabriele, Wright, Olivia, Sultanbawa, Yasmina and Netzel, Michael E. (2022). Red Bush Apple ( Syzygium suborbiculare ). Handbook of Phytonutrients in Indigenous Fruits and Vegetables. (pp. 228-237) GB: CABI. doi: 10.1079/9781789248067.0015

  • Srivarathan, Sukirtha, Thi Phan, Anh Dao, Wright, Olivia, Cozzolino, Daniel, Sultanbawa, Yasmina and Netzel, Michael E. (2022). Saltbush (Atriplex sp.). Handbook of Phytonutrients in Indigenous Fruits and Vegetables. (pp. 1-10) London, United Kingdom: CABI. doi: 10.1079/9781789248067.0001

  • Nguenha, Rafael, Seidi Damyeh, Maral, Phan, Anh D. T., Hong, Hung T., Chaliha, Mridusmita, O’Hare, Tim J., Netzel, Michael E. and Sultanbawa, Yasmina (2022). Effect of photosensitization mediated by curcumin on carotenoid and aflatoxin content in different maize varieties. Antimicrobial substances in plants: discovery of new compounds, properties, food and agriculture applications, and sustainable recovery. (pp. 47-65) edited by Daniela Gwiazdowska, Krzysztof Ju´s and Katarzyna Marchwi´ nska. Basel, Switzerland: MDPI. doi: 10.3390/books978-3-0365-4426-7

  • Wright, Olivia R. L., Phan, Anh Dao Thi, Hong, Hung Trieu, Netzel, Gabriele, Sultanbawa, Yasmina and Netzel, Michael E. (2020). Bioactive anthocyanins in selected fruits – a foodomics approach. Reference module in food science. (pp. 1-28) Amsterdam, Netherlands: Elsevier. doi: 10.1016/b978-0-08-100596-5.22785-6

  • Fyfe, Selina, Chaliha, Mridusmita, Netzel, Michael E. and Sultanbawa, Yasmina (2020). Ethnic foodomics: metabolomics studies of ethnic foods. Reference module in food science. (pp. 1-13) Amsterdam, Netherlands: Elsevier. doi: 10.1016/b978-0-08-100596-5.22794-7

  • Fanning, Kent, Stanley, Roger, Topp, Bruce, Russell, Dougal and Netzel, Michael (2016). Plum, prune, and ume juices. Handbook of functional beverages and human health. (pp. 501-512) edited by Fereidoon Shahidi and Cesarettin Alasalvar. Boca Raton, FL, United States: CRC Press. doi: 10.1201/b19490-47

  • Ahmed, Faruq, Fanning, Kent, Schuhmann, Holger, Netzel, Michael and Schenk, Peer M. (2013). Microalgae: a valuable source of natural carotenoids with potential health benefits. Carotenoids: Food Sources, Production and Health Benefits. (pp. 143-164) edited by Masayoshi Yamaguchi. Hauppauge, NY, USA: Nova Science Publishers.

  • Netzel, M., Fanning, K., Netzel, G., Frank, T., Zabaras, D., Russell, D. and Stanley, R. (2012). Urinary pharmacokinetics of Queen Garnet plum anthocyanins in healthy human subjects. Emerging Trends in Dietary Components for Preventing and Combating Disease. (pp. 375-392) edited by Bhimanagouda S Patil. Washington DC, United States: ACS Publications. doi: 10.1021/bk-2012-1093.ch021

  • Allmann, S., Strass, G., Kranl, K., Frank, T., Bitsch, I., Bitsch, R. and Netzel, M. (2005). Bioactivity and bioactive compounds of seabuckthorn fruit juice. Seabuckthorn (Hippophae L.): A Multipurpose Wonder Plant, Vol. II: Biochemistry and Pharmacology. (pp. 402-412) edited by Virendra Singh, Yang B, Kallio H, Bala M, Sawhney RC, Gupta RK, Moersel JT, Rongsen L and Tolkachev ON. New Dehli, India: Daya Publishing House.

  • Bitsch, I. and Netzel, M. (2005). Ernaehrungswissenschaften. Taschenbuch für Lebensmittelchemiker, 2. Aufl. (pp. 1001-1022) edited by Wolfgang Frede. Berlin & Heidelberg, Germany: Springer. doi: 10.1007/3-540-28220-3_42

  • Netzel, M., Allmann, S., Strass, G., Kranl, K., Aman, R., Schieber, A., Carle, R., Bitsch, I. and Bitsch, R. (2005). Stabilty of hydrophilic and lipophilic antioxidants of seabuckthorn under different storage conditions. Seabuckthorn (Hippophae L.): A Multipurpose Wonder Plant, Vol. II: Biochemistry and Pharmacology. (pp. 331-336) edited by Singh, V., Yang, B., Kallio, H., Bala, M., Sawhney, R. C., Gupta, R. K., Moersel, J. T., Rongsen, L. and Tolkachev, O. N.. New Dehli, India: Daya Publishing House.

  • Netzel, M., Strass, G., Janssen, M., Bitsch, I. and Bitsch, R. (2000). Bioavailability of blackcurrant anthocyanins in humans. Dietary Anticarcinogens and Antimutagens. (pp. 76-79) Norwich, England: Elsevier. doi: 10.1533/9781845698188.2.76

  • Netzel, M., Shahrzad, S., Winter, A. and Bitsch, I. (2000). Gallic acid in black tea and its bioavailability for man. Dietary Anticarcinogens and Antimutagens: Chemical and Biological Aspects. (pp. 80-83) edited by Johnson, I. T. and Fenwick, G. R.. Norwich, England: The Royal Society of Chemistry.

  • Bitsch, I., Netzel, M., Ziems, M. and Wenisch, S. (1998). Untersuchungen zur neuroprotektiven Wirkung von Benfotiamin. Benfotiamin in der Therapie von Polyneuropathien. (pp. 35-38) edited by Gries, F. A. and Federlin, K. F.. Stuttgart, Germany: Georg Thieme Verlag.

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