The Faculty of Health Sciences is delighted to announce that Professor Chibuike Udenigwe, of the School of Nutrition Sciences, has been awarded the University Research Chair in Food Properties and Nutrient Bioavailability.
Professor Udenigwe began his independent academic career in 2012 as an assistant professor in the Department of Plant, Food and Environmental Sciences at Dalhousie University, where he was promoted to tenured associate professor in 2014. He rapidly secured funding from NSERC and the Canadian Foundation for Innovation (CFI) and built a research-intensive environment that examines the biophysical properties of food components and matrices. In the summer of 2016, he joined the newly established School of Nutrition Sciences in the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Ottawa as an associate professor.
Building on his extensive experience in protein and peptide chemistry, structure and function, Professor Udenigwe will chair a research program that supports the development of innovative approaches to the use of plant-derived proteins and peptides in the food industry. His research addresses the needs and demands of both the food industry and consumers by searching for alternative and sustainable sources of protein with nutritional qualities and health benefits. In partnership with industry, he will explore novel ways for these nutrients to enhance the fundamental structure and quality of food products.
The scope of this research requires a multidisciplinary approach that draws on expertise in food science, chemistry, biochemistry, physiology, metabolism, bioinformatics, and policy development.
Professor Udenigwe’s appointment is in line with uOttawa’s strategic goals in the fields of health research development, and more specifically, in human development and health promotion. It also supports the strategic goals of, and significant investments in, research initiatives that link food to health outcomes set by the Faculty of Health Sciences and its School of Nutrition Sciences.