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Dr Zhi Yang PhD

Lecturer in Food Technology/Food Engineering

School of Food and Advanced Technology

Dr. Zhi Yang conducted his Ph.D. research at the University of Auckland from 2012-2016. In that project, he focused on elucidating the structure-function relationship of several food biopolymers under processing using advanced scattering techniques such as synchrotron small-angle X-ray scattering and (ultra) small-angle neutron scattering. He traveled overseas to use state-of-the-art instruments in several prestigious institutes (Australian synchrotron; Beijing, and Shanghai synchrotrons; ASNTO; KAUST).

His postdoc research at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is to in situ characterize the multiscale structural changes of various biomass during thermochemical pretreatments using SANS. This project belongs to a large DOE initiative for a better and deeper understanding of plant biopolymer structures and interactions to improve the efficiency of biofuel production. At the University of Auckland as a research fellow, he took the lead for two projects. The first one is preparation, physicochemical characterization of enzymatic digested porous starches and investigate their applications in dairy products. The second project was in cooperation with the dairy industry and focused on the physicochemical characterization of goat infant formulae acidified gels and their in-vitro digestion behavior. 

His current and long-term research goals are (1) creating the new products and functionalities from food and biomass biopolymers using either biochemical (fermentation, enzymatic) and physical approaches (high hydrostatic pressure, extrusion, large shear, and ultrasound), (2) developing novel non-invasive methods, such as light, X-ray, and neutron scattering to probe the structural changes of food and biomass biopolymers under processing and digestion in situ

My research expertise lies in the physico-chemical characterization and structural investigation of food and biomass biomacromolecule based-systems including starch, gelatine, non-starch cell wall polysaccharides, carrageenan, and milk protein; in both liquid or gel states. I am particularly interested in the development of Synchrotron Small Angle X-ray Scattering and Neutron Scattering methods to probe the multiscale structures of food and biomass biopolymers from sub-nanometers to several microns in their static state or under stresses in situ (e.g. high pressure, high temperature, shear. etc).

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Professional

Qualifications

  • Doctor of Philosophy - University of Auckland (2016)

Research Expertise

Research Interests

My research expertise lies in the physico-chemical characterization and structural investigation of food and biomass biomacromolecule based-systems including starch, gelatine, non-starch cell wall polysaccharides, carrageenan, and milk protein; in both liquid or gel states. I am particularly interested in the development of Synchrotron Small Angle X-ray Scattering and Neutron Scattering methods to probe the multiscale structures of food and biomass biopolymers from sub-nanometers to several microns in their static state or under stresses in situ (e.g. high pressure, high temperature, shear. etc).

Thematics

Future Food Systems

Area of Expertise

Field of research codes
Engineering (090000): Food Engineering (090802): Food Processing (090805): Food Sciences (090800)

Keywords

Food Biomacromolecules Structures and Functionalities; Food Rheology; Milk proteins; Starch and non-starch polysaccharides; Small-angle X-ray Scattering; Small-angle neutron Scattering; Ultra Small-angle Neutron Scattering; Non-thermal Food Processing

Research Outputs

Journal

Chundawat, SPS., Sousa, LDC., Roy, S., Yang, Z., Gupta, S., Pal, R., . . . Pingali, SV. (2020). Ammonia-salt solvent promotes cellulosic biomass deconstruction under ambient pretreatment conditions to enable rapid soluble sugar production at ultra-low enzyme loadings. Green Chem.. 22(1), 204-218 Retrieved from http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/C9GC03524A
[Journal article]Authored by: Yang, Z.
Yang, Z., Pingali, SV., O Neill, H., Bhagia, S., Evans, BR., Davison, BH., . . . Ragauskas, A. (2019). SANS study of structures and deuterium incorporation into vegetative leaf stalks of deuterated kale (Brassica oleracea). Acta Crystallographica Section A. 75, a324-a324 Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.1107/S0108767319096843
[Journal article]Authored by: Yang, Z.
Yang, Z., Xu, X., Singh, R., de Campo, L., Gilbert, EP., Wu, Z., . . . Hemar, Y. (2019). Effect of amyloglucosidase hydrolysis on the multi-scale supramolecular structure of corn starch. Carbohydrate Polymers. 212, 40-50
[Journal article]Authored by: Yang, Z.
Wang, Y., Eastwood, B., Yang, Z., de Campo, L., Knott, R., Prosser, C., . . . Hemar, Y. (2019). Rheological and structural characterization of acidified skim milks and infant formulae made from cow and goat milk. Food Hydrocolloids. 96, 161-170
[Journal article]Authored by: Yang, Z.
Lin, Q., Liang, R., Zhong, F., Ye, A., Hemar, Y., Yang, Z., . . . Singh, H. (2019). Self-Assembled Micelles Based on OSA-Modified Starches for Enhancing Solubility of β-Carotene: Effect of Starch Macromolecular Architecture. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 67(23), 6614-6624
[Journal article]Authored by: Singh, H., Yang, Z., Ye, A.
Yang, Z., Yang, H., & Yang, H. (2018). Effects of sucrose addition on the rheology and microstructure of κ-carrageenan gel. Food Hydrocolloids. 75, 164-173
[Journal article]Authored by: Yang, Z.
Yang, Z., Gu, Q., Banjar, W., Li, N., & Hemar, Y. (2018). In situ study of skim milk structure changes under high hydrostatic pressure using synchrotron SAXS. Food Hydrocolloids. 77, 772-776
[Journal article]Authored by: Yang, Z.
Li, Z., Yang, Z., Otter, D., Rehm, C., Li, N., Zhou, P., . . . Hemar, Y. (2018). Rheological and structural properties of coagulated milks reconstituted in D<inf>2</inf>O: Comparison between rennet and a tamarillo enzyme (tamarillin). Food Hydrocolloids. 79, 170-178
[Journal article]Authored by: Yang, Z.
Yang, Z., Yang, H., & Yang, H. (2018). Characterisation of rheology and microstructures of κ-carrageenan in ethanol-water mixtures. Food Research International. 107, 738-746
[Journal article]Authored by: Yang, Z.
Yang, Z., Chaib, S., Gu, Q., & Hemar, Y. (2017). Impact of pressure on physicochemical properties of starch dispersions. Food Hydrocolloids. 68, 164-177
[Journal article]Authored by: Yang, Z.
Yang, Z., Swedlund, P., Hemar, Y., Mo, G., Wei, Y., Li, Z., . . . Wu, Z. (2016). Effect of high hydrostatic pressure on the supramolecular structure of corn starch with different amylose contents. International Journal of Biological Macromolecules. 85, 604-614
[Journal article]Authored by: Yang, Z.
Yang, Z., Swedlund, P., Gu, Q., Hemar, Y., & Chaieb, S. (2016). Retrogradation of maize starch after high hydrostatic pressure gelation: Effect of amylose content and depressurization rate. PLoS ONE. 11(5)
[Journal article]Authored by: Yang, Z.
Yang, Z., Gu, Q., Lam, E., Tian, F., Chaieb, S., & Hemar, Y. (2016). In situ study starch gelatinization under ultra-high hydrostatic pressure using synchrotron SAXS. Food Hydrocolloids. 56, 58-61
[Journal article]Authored by: Yang, Z.
Yang, Z., Hemar, Y., Hilliou, L., Gilbert, EP., McGillivray, DJ., Williams, MAK., . . . Chaieb, S. (2016). Nonlinear Behavior of Gelatin Networks Reveals a Hierarchical Structure. Biomacromolecules. 17(2), 590-600
[Journal article]Authored by: Williams, M., Yang, Z.
Yang, Z., Chaieb, S., Hemar, Y., De Campo, L., Rehm, C., & McGillivray, DJ. (2015). Investigating linear and nonlinear viscoelastic behaviour and microstructures of gelatin-multiwalled carbon nanotube composites. RSC Advances. 5(130), 107916-107926
[Journal article]Authored by: Yang, Z.
Yang, Z., Gu, Q., & Hemar, Y. (2013). In situ study of maize starch gelatinization under ultra-high hydrostatic pressure using X-ray diffraction. Carbohydrate Polymers. 97(1), 235-238
[Journal article]Authored by: Yang, Z.

Thesis

Yang, Z. (2016). Investigating two food hydrocolloid based-systems under extreme stresses: (I) The non-linear rheology of Gelatin-Multiwalled Carbon Nanotubes composites, and (II) Starch dispersions under high hydrostatic pressure. (Doctoral Thesis, University of Auckland)
[Doctoral Thesis]Authored by: Yang, Z.

IP

Streekstra, H., & Yang, Z.(2020). . EP2744349 B1: Process for preparation of a dry instant porridge
[Patent]Authored by: Yang, Z.

Consultancy and Languages

Languages

  • English
    Last used: Currently using
    Spoken ability: Excellent
    Written ability: Excellent
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
    Last used: Native speaker
    Spoken ability: Excellent
    Written ability: Excellent

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