Research at Group FIT

FIT is meant to conduct high quality research aiming at enhancing the functionality, quality, safety and nutritional value of food, together with the integration of advanced technologies into food production, using a biotechnology-based approach and having in mind the challenges posed by Industry 4.0.

The group research activities are aligned with novel and emergent aspects of food production covering four main interdisciplinary thematic areas:

Research Labs

1 The Macro, micro and nano scale structures from food-grade materials for innovative applications

2 The Electric field processing in the food industry

3 The Functionality, bioavailability and toxicity of food systems

4 The Ready-to-use knowledge for food industry innovation

Research Areas

1 Encapsulation of bioactive compounds

2 Mass transfer in macro/micro/nano structures e.g. gas permeabilities and compound release

3 Relationship between microstructure, rheology and thermal behaviour of the developed structures using nanoindentation; Quartz Crystal Microbalance; microcalorimetry; capilar rheometry, extensional and shear rheometry

4 Stimuli-responsive structures to pH, temperature

5 Evaluation of the effects of moderate electric fields on molecular, structural and functional aspects of food proteins

6 Development of micro and nanosystems e.g. thermal set-hydrogels, cold set hydrogels and emulsions

7 Production of structured systems, such as packaging and coating materials using food-grade materials e.g. polysaccharides and proteins

8 Enhancement of mass transfer operations due to electrical and thermal permeabilization of vegetable, fruit tissues and cell membranes i.e. microalgae

9 In vitro gastrointestinal digestion using both static and dynamic models that reproduce the compartments of the human stomach and small intestine

10 Evaluation of cytotoxicity/cytocompatibility of the produced micro and nano scale structures from food-grade materials using in vitro cell line models (such as, Caco-2)

11 Ready-to-use knowledge for food industry innovation