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Undeland Lab

​Our overall aim is to add value to underutilized marine raw materials (fish, shellfish, algae) by stabilizing and/or isolating valuable lipids, proteins and antioxidants. Marine lipids are mostly known for their high content of long-chain n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC n-3 PUFA, or “omega-3”) which have been demonstrated to prevent e.g. cardiovascular diseases. Unfortunately, LC n-3 PUFA are very prone to oxidation which results in loss of nutritional value and so called “rancidity”. We therefore develop new strategies to protect the marine lipids against oxidation. When it comes to marine proteins, these generally have a high level of essential amino acids, high bioavailability and excellent technical functionality, which makes them a strong player in the ongoing protein shift. It is however important to think beyond the classic fish fillet when considering marine proteins. We develop protein isolates and ingredients from e.g. seafood co-products and seaweed to stimulate a sustainable use of our marine resources.

Our research group participates in several projects on lipid oxidation in fish on national and EU basis. Important research questions are for instance how compositional differences caused by geography, season, processing method or specific tissue part affect lipid oxidation in marine raw materials. Other projects address how natural antioxidants from algae or terrestrial plants can prevent the development of lipid oxidation in fish or protein isolates thereof. Another major focus area are fish hemoglobins, which are key catalysts for lipid oxidation in fish. We are currently investigating new strategies for hemoglobin-removal during the early steps of the fish processing chain. Further, we focus on oxidation of marine lipids during the gastrointestinal (GI) passage. In vitro, we have seen that reactive aldehydes can develop from both fish oils and fish during gastric and intestinal conditions. This could affect the beneficial effects of LC n-3 PUFA, something which is investigated in an intestinal cell model.

On the marine protein side, we have several projects addressing how these can be isolated from complex raw materials like whole fish, fish co-products or algae, using the so called ”pH-shift method”. In addition, we focus on recovery of proteins from seafood process waters, and a series of different flocculation and concentrating methods are evaluated. Lately, we also investigate methods for extaction of collagen and collagen peptides e.g. from starfish and jellyfish. Proteins/peptides from the different mentioned sources and techniques are then characterized on a molecular level, but also out from their technical functionality (gelation, emulsification etc.), nutritional profile, digestibility and bioavailability; the latter in collaboration with Scheers lab. Many of our marine protein projects are carried out in close collaboration with industry.

Professor Ingrid Undeland
Researcher Mehdi Abdollahi
Researcher Bita Forghani
Researcher Haizhou Wu
Post Doc Naveen Kumar
PhD-student Mursalin Sajib
PhD-student Semhar Ghirmai
PhD-student Jingnan Zhang
PhD-student Joao Trigo
Doktorand John Axelsson
Doktorand Mal Vall-Ilosera

Master students
Bovie Hong
Pearly Teo Huiyi
Eline Van Berlo
Myriam Houlon

Visiting Masterstudent
Xueqing Lei
Technical staff:
Dr Karin Larsson
Dr Rikard Fristedt

Page manager Published: Mon 05 Jul 2021.