Our current research is focused in four different areas within the broad field of marine lipids. We have a number of projects involving lipid biomarkers, using individual FA, carbon isotopologues of FA and FA profiles to investigate foraging ecology in a variety of animals. Several of these projects have used controlled feeding studies with fish and birds to better understand how animals modify lipid biomarkers in their tissues.
We have recently started a new research direction, coupling essential FA concentrations with remote sensing of ocean colour, to better estimate the production of these essential nutrients in the ocean.
Lipid oxidation is one of the primary causes of food spoilage. The development of methods to better monitor the extent of oxidation in foods, particularly nutraceuticals, is a key area of research.
Oxylipins encompass a variety of lipid structures but our focus here is primarily on short chain non-esterified FA with hydroxyl functionalities. These have been suggested as important cell signaling compounds and may have a role in flocculation in brewers’ yeast.