Flavour research group
Adam Douch 96x113
Adam Douch

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Adam is second year PhD student developing a semi-model food system to explain the development of flavour in complex plant-based meat analogues. This is a joint PhD project with the University of Adelaide, under the supervision of Professor Ian Fisk and Doctor Sue Bastian. Adam completed both his BSc in Nutrition and, MRes in Bioscience at the University of Nottingham. While conducting his MRes he researched the Branch-Chain-Amino-Acid content of underutilised protein sources, as well as performing a proximal analysis on different preparations of Soy and Lupin (including tempeh and tofu). With a previous year of studying in Malaysia and work experience in China, he is interested in building a career based around underutilised protein sources in southeast Asia.  

Jing Feng 96x113
Jing Feng

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Jing’s project focusses on developing a multimodal training system using chewing gum, to help people with anosmia and parosmia in their flavour training. This is a BBSRC DTP PhD project in collaboration with TasteTech, started in 2021. Before joining the flavour team, she worked as a research executive in the food industry in China. She obtained her MSc degree of Food Technology (specialisation: sensory science) from Wageningen University & Research in the Netherlands, and worked as a sensory intern at FEAST Lab in Massey University in New Zealand in 2019.

Yu Guo 96x113
Yu Guo

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Dr Yu Guo is a sponsored researcher from Shanxi Agricultural University in China. She joined the group in April 2023. Her research is focussed on the flavour and off-note of foxtail millet and its products during storage.


Jonathan Heale 96x113
Jonathan Heale

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Jonathan is a first year BBSRC DTP PhD student, supervised by Paul Dyer, with Ian Fisk as a co-supervisor. His project involves looking at flavour variation of blue cheeses as a result of genetic variation in Penicillium roqueforti, with a particular focus on bitterness, using molecular, microbiological and flavour science methods. This genetic variation is particularly relevant due to the recent discovery of how to induce sexual reproduction in this species. By the end of his project, he hopes to have improved understanding of the causes of bitterness variations in this food, and to link this to the genes responsible, facilitating the production of better-tasting cheeses.

Jonathan graduated with an Integrated Master’s in Biology (MBiol) from the University of Oxford in 2022. He is interested in all aspects of fungal biology, with his Master’s thesis investigating fungal network responses to invertebrate grazing.

Laura Hill 96x113
Laura Hill

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Laura completed her undergraduate research project with the Flavour Group, using APCI-MS to understand how the trigeminal stimulant, capsaicin, may affect aroma release and perception. This inspired her to continue her research into trigeminal stimulants and her PhD research involves using trigeminal stimulants to design innovative and improved oral-care formulations.  This is a BBSRC DTP project in collaboration with Unilever, started in 2022. 

Laura completed her BSc (Hons) in Food Science and Nutrition at the University of Nottingham and worked as an intern in the Bakery and Confectionery Lab at International Flavours and Fragrances in 2021. Laura is interested in developing novel and sustainable products, and in 2022, led her team to success, winning the Ecotrophelia UK Finals with the development of savoury crackers, made with 40% fruit waste from fruit vinegar production. 

Gabby started her joint PhD between the University of Nottingham (UK) and University of Adelaide (Australia) in 2018. Her supervisor is Dr Rebecca Ford, and she is co-supervised by Professor Ian Fisk in the Flavour Group. Gabby's project is in collaboration with Unilever and aims to understand what is driving sensory differences in chocolate across different population groups. Before joining the University of Nottingham, Gabby worked as a New Product Development technologist in the confectionery industry, and completed her Food Science degree at the University of Reading.

Aidan 96x113 3rd year

Aidan Kirkwood

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Aidan is a final year PhD student within the Flavour group. He is researching the aroma of high-value Chinese herbal extracts and how different post-harvesting, processing and storage factors affect their flavour attributes. The project is an international collaboration with China (funded by GoldenKeys High-Tech Materials Co., Ltd), and will have a positive impact on the local economy through identifying the best plant extracts for commercial application.

Aidan obtained a BSc (Hons) in Biomedical Science at Edinburgh Napier University and an MRes in Mechanistic Molecular Toxicology at the University of Birmingham. Before joining the University of Nottingham, Aidan worked at Mondelez International. Aidan is serving as the Student Representative for the British Society of Flavourists Council. His passions are flavour and fragrance chemistry, and olfaction.

Tu Le 96x113
Tu Le

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Tu Le received a B.E in Chemical Engineering in 2018 and an M.E in Chemical Engineering in 2020 at Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology – VNU HCM (Vietnam). During his undergraduate years, he developed interests in catalytic processes, colloid chemical approaches to nanotechnology, and nanomaterials for environmental applications. In his previous thesis, he explored the different approaches to enhance the photocatalytic activity of semiconductors for environmental redemptions. Now, he is studying toward a Ph.D. at the University of Adelaide, under the supervision of Prof. Volker Hessel. His current research focuses on the potential of microfluidic technology in the preparation of smart-fertilizer for precision agriculture.

Alex Plant 96x113
Alex Plant

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Alex completed her BSc Chemistry degree at the University of Nottingham in 2017, where in her final year she completed three individual research projects related to organic, inorganic and physical branches of chemistry. During her undergraduate study she undertook modules relating to synthesis and spectroscopy, molecular biology, protein folding and biospectroscopy. She has worked for the University of Nottingham since 2018, most recently taking up the post of Senior Research Administrator in School of Biosciences in May 2021 where she developed an interest in food flavour research. She is now undertaking a part-time MRes investigating the formulation and flavour-generation pathways of plant-based meat analogues, under the supervision of Dr. Ian Fisk and Dr. Ni Yang, as well as maintaining her research administrator role within the school on a part-time basis.

Sam Riley 96x113
Sam Riley

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After completing his undergraduate degree in Plant Sciences (BSc) at the University of Nottingham, Sam stayed on in 2018 to pursue his PhD as part of the University of Nottingham (UK) and University of Adelaide (Australia) Joint Doctoral Training programme. His research is concerned with the detoxification of a highly drought tolerant leguminous crop, Vetch, through post-harvest food processing and repurposing the seed to that of a high protein human food source. Working between two global institutions has allowed him to develop a wide net of research expertise, encompassing flavour chemistry, microbiology and human neuronal cell culture. More information about the International partnership can be found at www.nottingham.ac.uk/global/partnerships/partnership-pages/adelaide.aspx

Luqman’s research focuses on using an imaging technique, Near-infrared Spectroscopy (NIR), combined with a broad spectral camera to predict protein content of wheat. He intends to apply this technique to screen and identify wheat varieties with high protein content. Before joining the University of Nottingham, Luqman worked as a research assistant at Quaid-i-Azam University from where he also graduated with ‘MPhil in Molecular Plant Breeding & Genetics’. During his stay there, he applied Genome-wide Association Study (GWAS) models to identify genetic variants for phosphorus utilisation efficiency, potassium use efficiency, cadmium & nickel uptake and stay green trait in wheat. 

Svenja completed her Bachelor and Master’s studies in Chemical Engineering at the Technical University of Berlin with study visits in Poland, Italy, Iran and Jordan. During her Bachelor thesis, she examined the potential of microemulsions as reaction systems for a hydroxycarbonylation of 1-dodecene, as part of the collaborative research project InPROMPT. Her Masters thesis (in cooperation with pharmaceutical and life science company Bayer) focused on a continuous, in-line sterilization of fermentation media. In 2020, Svenja joined the joint University of Adelaide (Australia)/ University of Nottingham PhD programme, with the goal of developing a microfluidic device that enables production of customized designer-beverages in space, thereby improving health and well-being during space missions.

Thitima is a first year PhD student designing novel flavour and nutritional systems for on-demand Asian rice porridge to offer bespoke levels of food product personalisation. This is a joint PhD project with the University of Adelaide, under the supervision of Prof. Volker Hessel and Professor Ian Fisk. Before joining the University of Nottingham, Thitima completed a BSc in Chemistry at Kasetsart University in Thailand, and an MSc in Food Technology - Quality Assurance at University of Reading, where she helped develop a method for the analysis of 7 volatile N-nitrosamines in pickled vegetables by HS-SPME–GC/MS and GC/Q-TOF. Thitima's career aspiration is to become a professional food scientist, conducting excellent research and creating healthier food products with high quality and high level of safety.

George Warne 96x13
George Warne

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George is a third year PhD student, who is developing non thermal processing technologies to improve the flavour and quality of long shelf-life foods for use in extreme environments such as space. This is a joint PhD project with the University of Adelaide to improve foods for use in space travel.

George obtained a first-class BSc (Hons) in Food Science and Technology from Cardiff Metropolitan University and a merited MSc in Applied Biomolecular Technology at the University of Nottingham. George has also worked as a freelance editor of scientific journal papers and worked on macro codes for image editing and GCMS data processing.

Flavour Research Group

The University of Nottingham
Division of Food, Nutrition and Dietetics
Sutton Bonington Campus
Loughborough, LE12 5RD

telephone: +44 (0) 115 951 6132
email: jennifer.drury@nottingham.ac.uk