Foods for Health Announces Seed Grant Recipients
In 2021, Foods for Health offered two new funding mechanisms. INNOVATE Awards provide up to $50,000 in funding over a two-year period to support new collaborations and new lines of research. STRENGTHEN Awards provide up to $20,000 for a one-year period to support the completion of critical studies needed for extramural submissions. A total of $170,000 was awarded, supporting four new teams across five colleges and nine departments. A special thanks to our interdisciplinary grant review team for their thoughtful input and scoring of proposals.
INNOVATE Award Recipients
Dietary Approach to Improve Human Muscle Mitochondrial Function.
PI: Dr. Kedryn Baskin, Assistant Professor, Physiology and Cell Biology
Dr. Baskin and team will analyze the impact of dietary linoleic acid on mitochondrial function. Using diet to improve mitochondria function will expand dietary therapies that prevent or reverse detrimental impacts of obesity, diabetes and aging on muscle wasting disorders that plagueboth children and adults.
Development of Affordable Artificial Intelligence (AI)-Enhanced Automation to Increase Reproducibility of Multi-Omic Workflows
PI: Dr. Rachel Kopec, Assistant Professor, Human Sciences
Consistency in scientific results is crucial for both the public and scientists to have faith in reported discoveries. Dr. Kopec and team will utilize novel machine learning techniques to train a robot to complete the procedures involved in extracting lipids from human blood plasma. Improved efficiency, data quality, and reproducibility within scientific discoveries will enhance human health and help prevent chronic disease.
Investigating the role of diet quality and nutritional status in chemotherapy-related cognitive impairment (CRCI) in breast cancer survivors
PI: Dr. Tonya Orchard, Associate Professor, Human Sciences
Cancer-related cognitive impairment impacts a significant number of breast cancer survivors treated with chemotherapy. Dr. Orchard and her team will explore the role of diet in protecting the brain from the toxic side effects of treatment and use results to develop effective dietary interventions.
STRENGTHEN Award Recipient
Machine Learning and AI to Advance Whole Wheat Acceptance
PI: Dr. Xia Ning, Associate Professor, Biomedical Informatics, Computer Science and Engineering
Whole grains are considered to be a key component of a healthy diet, but less than 2% of the American population consumes the recommended daily amount, with a primary issue being taste and smell aversion to whole grain food products. This project will identify chemical signatures that best predict consumers’ ratings of liking bread flavor and aroma, and to reveal the correlation between aroma and flavor ratings.