Faculty

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Photo of Charlie Bamforth

Charlie Bamforth

Anheuser-Busch Endowed Professor of Malting & Brewing Sciences, Department of Food Science & Technology

Dr. Bamforth specializes in the science of malting and brewing. His current research program focuses primarily on the wholesomeness of beer, including studies on the psychophysics of beer perception, on polyphenols and on the residues from non-starchy polysaccharide digestion that constitute soluble fiber and potential prebiotics in beer. Research in the laboratory also embraces the…

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Daniela Barile

Associate Professor and Chemist, Department of Food Science & Technology

Dr. Barile research is centered around glycomics, proteomics and peptidomics, in particular, her analytical lab is set up to investigate the structure and chemical properties as well nutritional, technological and health impacts of peptides and oligosaccharides formed in fermented food products. Dr. Barile has already published her research methods for the isolation, characterization, and quantification…

Photo of Charlotte Biltekoff

Charlotte Biltekoff

Associate Professor, Departments of American Studies and Food Science & Technology

Dr. Biltekoff’s research focuses broadly on the beliefs and values that inform American eating habits and specifically on the cultural aspects of dietary health. Her current research project entails in depth interviews aimed at understanding the factors that drive subjects’ food choices and how those factors interact with subjects’ conceptualizations of “a healthy diet” and “good…

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Steve Boucher

Associate Professor, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics

Dr. Boucher worked with the National Coffee Federation in Columbia to study the feasibility of developing index-based crop insurance for coffee producers in Columbia. He is interested in researching risk management for small-holder coffee producers, benefits to coffee growers of participating certification programs, and consumer willingness to pay for certifications and other traits.

Photo of Roger Boulton

Roger Boulton

Stephen Sinclair Scott Endowed Chair in Enology and Professor

Dr. Boulton studies the chemical and biochemical engineering aspects of winemaking and distilled spirits production. His work involves fermentation and reaction kinetics; physical and chemical stability of wines; the mathematical modeling, computer simulation and control of enological operations; winery design (winemaking equipment selection, winery design and layout) and the economics of investment and operation. His…

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Patrick Brown

Professor, Department of Plant Sciences

Dr. Brown is interested in addressing the need to train individuals in corporate responsibility and sustainability programs related to the specialty coffee industry. He is also interested in plant nutrition, biostimulants, and conducting research to optimize nutrient applications in coffee to maximize yield and quality, as well as disease resistance and minimal ecological disruption.

Photo of Dario Cantu

Dario Cantu

Associate Professor and Systems Biologist, Department of Viticulture & Enology

Dr. Cantu’s research group uses systems biology, comparative genomics and quantitative genetics to understand how plants interact with their environment and with pathogenic and beneficial microorganisms. Current objectives of Dr. Cantu’s research include the development of (i) immunization protocols for protecting plants from bacterial diseases, (ii) early detection tools for fungal diseases, (iii) new plant genotypes with durable genetic resistance to fugal diseases, and (iv) methods to…

Photo of Irwin Ronaldo Donis-Gonzalez

Irwin Ronaldo Donis-Gonzalez

Assistant Professor, Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering

Dr. Donis-Gonzalez’s research focuses on post-harvest engineering, handling (storage, drying, etc.), traceability, and processing of agricultural commodities with a goal of reducing energy consumption while ensuring food quality and safety. These are critical issues for the fresh market fruit and vegetable, dried fruit, tree nut, and rice industries in California and the World.

Photo of Zhiliang (Julia) Fan

Zhiliang (Julia) Fan

Associate Professor, Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering

Dr. Fan’s primary research interests are in advancing technologies for production of fuels and chemicals from renewable resources, including metabolic engineering and biocatalyst development; fermentation process development and modeling; biological and chemical process design and economic evaluation. Current research is focused on novel processes for ethanol and isobutanol production from cellulosic materials.

Photo of Bruce German

Bruce German

Professor and Chemist, Department of Food Science & Technology

Dr. German researches the role of fats and other components in the diet. He developes ways to assess health and metabolism in response to foods. Milk is the model he uses as a genetic blueprint for foods to support health. Milk evolves for the purpose of nourishing growing mammals and this evolutionary logic is the…

Photo of Jean-Xavier Guinard

Jean-Xavier Guinard

Professor and Sensory Scientist, Department of Food Science & Technology

Dr. Guinard is a sensory scientist and consumer researcher, and co-director of the U.C. Davis Coffee Center. His research focuses on the sensory properties of foods and beverages, how humans perceive them, and how they affect food choice and food intake and consumer behavior.

Photo of Linda Harris

Linda Harris

Cooperative Extension Specialist in Microbial Food Safety and Professor, Department of Food Science & Technology

Dr. Harris’s research program is in the area of microbial food safety with a focus on the microbiology of fresh fruits and vegetables and nutmeats. My research team has worked to develop and validate standard methods for inoculation and recovery of pathogens from a range of produce items. We have used these methods to evaluate…

Photo of Hildegard Heymann

Hildegard Heymann

Distinguished Professor and Enologist, Department of Viticulture & Enology

Dr. Heymann has worked in all areas of sensory science and has evaluated numerous food and non-food products including wine, meat, ice cream, cereals, juices, cat litter, soap, and toothpaste. At UC Davis Dr. Heymann has continued her work with descriptive analysis methodology and multivariate data analyses. She has also worked on spirits such as…

Photo of Tonya Kuhl

Tonya Kuhl

Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering

Dr. Kuhl is co-director of the UC Davis Coffee Center and co-instructor of “The Design of Coffee.” Her research focuses include: Direct Measurements of Biological Membrane-Membrane Interactions Ligand-Receptor Interactions Polymer Thin-Films Small Angle Scattering Studies of Interfacial Films

Photo of David Kyle

David Kyle

Associate Professor, Department of Sociology

Dr. Kyle’s research focuses broadly on the comparative historical development and contemporary cultures of social innovations and inventions among entrepreneurs, inventors, and creative makers within the global worlds of coffee, jazz improvisation, and human mobility, especially human smuggling. He has taught courses on these topics at the undergraduate and graduate levels, building on several years…

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Carlito Lebrilla

Professor, Department of Chemistry

Dr. Lebrilla’s research is focused on analytical chemistry with specific emphasis in the area of nutrition, disease markers, and mass spectrometric methods. Expertise in oligosaccharides and glycosylation of proteins and lipids, as well as broad efforts in science – encompassing instrument construction and development to investigating biological problems – provides unique perspectives that are employed to solve specific…

Photo of Maria Marco

Maria Marco

Associate Professor, Department of Food Science and Technology

Dr. Marco’s research examines microorganisms for their contributions to altering food safety, food quality, and gut health. A common thread to her research is the investigation of the ecology and genetics of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) in food systems and the mammalian digestive tract. The broad objective of this research is to identify the attributes…

Photo of Juan F Medrano

Juan F Medrano

Professor, Department of Animal Science

Dr. Medrano’s research focuses on applications of genomics and systems biology approaches to study genetic variation of complex traits. He currently leads the U.C. Davis project developing the first genome reference sequence of Coffea arabica to set the foundation of a coffee breeding program. He has also been a collaborator in the development of the new improved…

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David Mills

Peter J. Shields Endowed Chair in Dairy Food Science Professor, Departments of Viticulture & Enology and Food Science & Technology

Dr. Mills has over 20 years experience working on the molecular biology of Gram-positive microorganisms, with an emphasis on the lactic acid bacteria (LAB) and bifidobacteria used in food fermentations or active as probiotics. An overall goal of Dr. Mills research is to link genomic content, ecological context and specific strain behavior to better understand…

Photo of Alyson Mitchell

Alyson Mitchell

Professor and Food Chemist, Department of Food Science & Technology

Professor Mitchell’s research program investigates the basic chemical reactions and changes in composition that occur in fruits and vegetables as a result of breeding, pre- and post-harvest processes and developing mass spectral approaches for identifying and quantifying target and nontarget secondary plant metabolites for authentication, safety and biological relevance. Her research team helps identify strategies…

Photo of William Ristenpart

William Ristenpart

Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering

Dr. Ristenpart is the director of the UC Davis Coffee Center, and co-instructor of “The Design of Coffee.” His research is in complex fluids, with an emphasis on using advanced high-speed video techniques to extract quantitative measurements from complicated phenomena. His group strives to answer fundamental scientific questions about a variety of systems where the transport…

Photo of Ron C. Runnebaum

Ron C. Runnebaum

Assistant Professor, Departments of Viticulture & Enology and Chemical Engineering

Dr. Runnebaum has a joint appointment as Assistant Professor in Viticulture & Enology and in Chemical Engineering. His research program aims to combine his interests in sustainable winemaking with his research background in nanomaterials, adsorption, heterogeneous catalysis, and reaction engineering. Winemaking-related projects include 1) Developing materials to capture CO2 and volatile organic compounds, especially from…

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Geoff Schladow

Director, Tahoe Environmental Research Center Professor, Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering

Professor Schladow’s area of interest is the interaction between fluid transport and mixing processes with water quality in natural and engineered systems.  Examples of such systems include lakes, rivers, estuaries and mining pits.  Using a combination of field experimentation, detailed laboratory studies and numerical modeling, he is better quantifying the critical flux paths in these…

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Christopher Simmons

SimmonsAssistant Professor, Department of Food Science & Technology

Dr. Simmons’ research focuses on improving energy and water use efficiency in food processing by reclaiming energy from waste biomass streams and developing strategies for waste water treatment and recycling. Specifically, high-throughput, massively parallel sequencing and bioinformatics approaches are used to characterize microbial communities that are able to deconstruct waste biomass into fermentable sugars under…

Photo of Carolyn Slupsky

Carolyn Slupsky

Graduate Group Chair, Nutritional Biology Professor, Departments of Nutrition and Food Science & Technology

Dr. Slupsky’s research includes understanding the impact of diet on human health from the perspective of nutrition, the gut microbiome, and host-microbial co-metabolism. She uses a multi-discplinary research approach that integrates metabolomics with clinical measures, global gene expression profiles, as well as microbial community analysis to understand the intimate link between our gut microbiome, metabolism,…

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Keith Taylor

Assistant Economic Development Specialist in Cooperative Extension, Department of Human Ecology

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Allen Van Deynze

Director of research at the UC Davis Seed Biotechnology Center and Associate Director of the UC Davis Plant Breeding Center

Dr. Allen Van Deynze is the Director of Research at the Seed Biotechnology Center and Associate Director of the Plant Breeding Center at University of California, Davis. As part of the SBC’s mission to serve as a liaison between public institutions and seed industry, Allen is responsible for developing, coordinating and conducting research and generating…

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Anthony Wexler

Director, Air Quality Research Center Professor, Departments of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering and Civil & Environmental Engineering

Dr. Wexler’s research focuses on understanding the atmospheric processes that transport and transform particulate pollutants between their emission and their reception. Experimental, numerical, and theoretical approaches are employed. Focus is on urban and regional smog, and global climate change.

Photo of Angela Zivkovic

Angela Zivkovic

Assistant Professor, Department of Nutrition

Dr. Zivkovic’s research is focused on the role of diet and nutrition in Precision Health. She is interested in researching the effects of coffee consumption on cardio-metabolic health such as the effects on high density lipoprotein (HDL) composition and function, and the health effects of coffee in different genetic backgrounds, metabolic phenotypes, and gut microbiome phenotypes.