Animal models for human metabolism, nutrition and health

This research theme focuses on the use of alternative animal models for studying human health and physiology. Research areas include:

Using animal models for human health and disease, nutrition, and toxicology research, and functional food development.

  • Pigs as a relevant model for studying basic animal biology, human health, nutrition, functional foods and toxicity studies
  • Rainbow trout as a sensitive model to determine the mechanism of toxicity (and/or resistance) of mycotoxins.

Evaluating the health consequences of consuming animal products using animal models.

  • Strategies to enrich milk proteins with Se by manipulating the diet of dairy cows, and then studying the consequences, in rodent models of cancer and diabetes, of consuming the Se-enriched milk proteins

Stem cell research using comparative animal models.

  • The study of germ cell potential of skin-derived stem cells and the factors involved in the induction of differentiation.

Understanding the impact of environment and early life experience on the neuroendocrine-immune development using comparative animal models.

  • Sheep as a developmental model to evaluate the effects of early life stress on the developmental neuroendocrine and immune systems.
  • Ruminant models to study genetic susceptibility to stress-associated and inflammatory diseases.
  • Animal models for understanding the effects of environment and early experience on behavioural development and brain function