Pooja Pandey

Encapsulation of Lactic Acid Bacteria and γ-Amino Butyric Acid using Exopolysaccharides for Food Applications

Research Summary:

My current research focuses on the micro encapsulation of lactic acid bacteria (LAB)and γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) using Exopolysaccharides (EPS) as wall materials, its survivability in different conditions and development of food products using encapsulated powder. EPS like dextran and inulin are demanding as prebiotics by treating bowel disease, cancer, reduce blood cholesterol levels. Prebiotics acts as wall material to increase the viability of cell and produce the symbiotic effect. Different encapsulation techniques like spray drying, freeze drying and double emulsion using ultrasonication have been studied.

My research aims to elucidate an encapsulated powder which would give probiotic, prebiotic and bioactive effect in single capsules.  The perfect blend of LAB and GABA will improve nutritional value of food, control intestinal infections, improve digestion of lactose, control types of cancer, and control serum cholesterol levels. GABA may also be helpful in preventing diabetes, diuretic and tranquilizer effects or may act as brain boosters. These scientific innovative formulations of food will have great impact as these are healthy alternative to junk foods.

Project Duration: 2017-2021


GR Student Profile:

I started my PhD at the University of Melbourne, Department of Chemical Engineering in December 2018 under Melbourne India Postgraduate Academy Program (MIPA) and I was enrolled as research scholar at Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, Department of Agricultural and Food Engineering in July 2017.

I have completed by Master’s degree in Food Process Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur in 2015. I have also received a Bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Engineering from G. B. Pant University of Agriculture and Technology in 2011.

Two years industrial experience in Tractors and Farm Equipment limited (TAFE), 2011 – 2013, and two years of teaching and research experience in Assocom Institute of Bakery Technology and Management (AIBTM), 2015-2017, further intensified my interest in research and academics. I am looking forward to continuing my research in food processing with an aim to contribute to the health of the poor and backward people by providing them with healthy and nutritious food at lower cost. I would like to develop ready to eat food products with better shelf life and make it available to malnourished people.

In my free time I like to read books, travel and listen to music.