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MAY 2018
On Thursday, April 26th, 2018 the Department held its 2018 Student Banquet at the Wick Alumni Center. Over a hundred attendees came together to celebrate the awards and accomplishments of the graduate and undergraduate students in the programs of the Department. Dr. Bob Hutkins was the host for the evening. Dr. Curt Weller, Dr. Amanda Ramer-Tait, and Sara Roberts presented certificates of achievement to scholarship and award winners. Doug Carr from the NU Foundation personally thanked the scholarship donors. Dr. Steve Taylor and his wife, Susan, presented their scholarship, The Steve and Susan Taylor Scholarship, to Thanh Le. Thanh is the first recipient of this scholarship. Mrs. Lynne Froning was also at the banquet. The scholarship created in memory of her late husband is the Glen Froning and Family Food Science & Technology Scholarship and will be available to students in the future. Dr. Froning served on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln faculty for many years and was an internationally recognized egg scientist.
The Department would like to congratulate all of its Spring 2018 graduating students:

Bachelor’s Degree in Food Science and Technology
Cody Brown
Rebecca Conn
Christine Darden
Elliott Fullner
Sarah Herzinger
Irwin Panguripan
Abdulaziz Aldahash
Sabrina Vasquez

Mohammed Aldawsari
Katherine Ivens
Hatem Kittana
An Nguyen
Ahmad Salamatullah
Dr. Ozan Ciftci was selected to participate in the 2018 IFT Emerging Leaders Network Program (  The IFT Emerging Leaders Network (ELN) is a highly selective global leadership program established for new professionals in the science of food who are eager to expand their leadership skills.  He will participate in an intensive two–and–a–half day leadership seminar at IFT18 in Chicago (July 13-15, 2018), plus have a full registration to IFT18 Annual Event in Chicago (July 15-18, 2018).
Dr. Amanda Ramer-Tait has been promoted to Associate Professor and granted tenure. Dr. Ramer-Tait specializes in the research of Immunology, functional foods and nutraceuticals, and gastrointestinal microbiology. She is also a researcher with the Nebraska Food for Health Center. The University of Nebraska-Lincoln honored all promoted faculty with a celebration on April 24th at the Rococo Theatre.
Kelsey Bignell, a junior in the Department of Food Science and Technology, won a top prize awarded by CASNR for her UCARE poster at the Undergraduate Research Poster Session.  The title of her poster is “Determination of the ability of phenolic compounds in red beans to inhibit α-amylase and α-glucosidase”.  This research is significant as even partial inhibition of these enzymes slows the breakdown of carbohydrate to glucose entering the bloodstream.  Such treatment options mitigate the risk factors to individuals who have to control their diabetes. Kelsey worked in the lab of Dr. Vicki Schlegel for the past two years.
With the warm weather we all want to get rid of all those heavy coats and sweaters, and snow boots.  However, please remember that sandals, open-toed shoes, flip-flops and the like are not allowed when working in the lab.  Substantial footwear should be worn in the lab.
Also, shorts, cut-offs, skirts, and shorter pants such as peddle pushers and clam diggers are not appropriate when working in the lab.  See the links below for elaboration.
Upcoming Events

April 30 - May 4
Spring Semester Final Exams
May 4
Spring Semester Graduate Commencement
May 5
Spring Semester Undergraduate Commencement
May 14
May 28
Memorial Day
(Student and Staff Holiday)
Upcoming Workshops
Fermented Dairy Products
May 22nd - 23rd, 2018

The current state of science has significantly advanced the understanding of good microorganisms that reach the gut and have a positive impact on overall health. The research focusing on bacteria in fermented foods has put a spotlight on the health benefits of dairy foods such as yogurt, kefir, and cheese.

We are inviting you to a unique opportunity to learn about fermented dairy foods and health while not losing sight of food safety and other considerations.

To learn more and to register, please visit

Registration Deadline: May 18th.

Alliance for Advanced Sanitation
May 22nd - 24th, 2018

Presentations from a distinguished panel of speakers, topics include:

  • Antimicrobial resistance
  • Food allergen monitoring risk assessment
  • Chlorine dioxide gas to manage food safety
  • Altering stainless steel surface chemistry
  • Biofilm control
  • Regulatory perspectives on hygiene in food safety inspections

Breakout session on specific topics of relevance to food manufacturing hygiene

Poster competition and presentations

An opportunity to network with industry peers, researchers and suppliers.

To register please visit

Recent Publications

Ciftci, O.N., Cahyadi, J., Guigard, S.E., Saldaña, M.D. A. Optimization of artemisinin extraction from Artemisia annua L. with supercritical carbon dioxide+ethanol using response surface methodology. Electrophoresis, In press.

Sapna Chitlapilly Dass, Bing Wang, Jayne Stratton, Andreia Bianchini, and Angela Anandappa (2018) Food processing Page 2 of 11 environment surveillance using amplicon metagenomics: Assessing the change in the microbiome of a fluid milk processing facility before and after cleaning. BAOJ Food Sci&Tec 2: 12.

Galeb S. Abu-Ali, Raaj S. Mehta, Jason Lloyd-Price, Kerry L. Ivey, Himel Malick, Tobyn Branck, David A. Drew, Casey DuLong, Eric Rimm, Jacques Izard, Andy T. Chan, Curtis Huttenhower.  Microbial ecology and population structure in the human gut metatranscriptome.  Nature Microbiology (2018) vol. 3(3), pp. 356-366. (doi: 10.1038/s41564-017-0084-4)

M Lu, Y Jin, R Cerny, B Ballmer-Weber, RE Goodman. 2018. Combining 2-DE immunoblots and mass spectrometry to identify putative soybean (Glycine max) allergens. Food and Chemical Toxicology, 116, 207-215.

Mendoza, J. R., Rodas, A., Oliva, A., Sabillón, L., Colmenares, A., Clarke, J., Bianchini, A. (2018). Safety and Quality Assessment of Smallholder Farmers Maize in the Western Highlands of Guatemala. Journal of Food Protection, 81(5), 776-784. doi:10.4315/0362-028x.jfp-17-355

Raaj S. Mehta, Galeb Abu-Ali, David A. Drew, Jason Lloyd-Price, Ayshwarya Subramanian, Paul Lochhead, Amit Joshi, Kerry Ivey, Hamed Khalili, Gordon T. Brown, Casey Dulong, Mingyang Song, Long Nguyen, Himel Mallick, Eric B. Rimm, Jacques Izard, Curtis Huttenhower, and Andrew T. Chan
Genomic and Functional Stability of the Human Gut Microbiome. Nature Microbiology (2018) vol. 3(3), pp. 347-355. (doi:10.1038/s41564-017-0096-0

Yin Cao, Kana Wu, Raaj Mehta, David A. Drew, Mingyang Song, Paul Lochhead, Long H. Nguyen, Jacques Izard, Charles S. Fuchs, Wendy S. Garrett, Curtis Huttenhower, Shuji Ogino, Edward L. Giovannucci, and Andrew T. Chan. Long-term use of antibiotics and risk of colorectal adenoma. Gut (2018) vol. 67(4), pp. 672-678. (doi: 10.1136/gutjnl-2016-313413)

Vallecilla-Yepez, L. and Ciftci, O.N. (2018). Increasing cis-lycopene content of the oleoresin from tomato processing byproducts using supercritical carbon dioxide. LWT - Food Science and Technology, In press

B Yuan, M-G Danao, M Lu, J Stratton, S Weier, C Weller. 2018. High pressure processing (HPP) of aronia berry puree: Pilot scale processing and a shelf-life study. Innovative Food Science & Emerging Technologies, 47, 241-248.

B Yuan, M-G Danao, J Stratton, S Weier, C Weller, M Lu. 2018. High pressure processing (HPP) of aronia berry purée: Effects on physicochemical properties, microbial counts, bioactive compounds, and antioxidant capacities. Innovative Food Science & Emerging Technologies, 47, 249-255.

B Yuan, M Lu, K Eskridge, M Hanna. 2018. Valorization of hazelnut shells into natural antioxidants by ultrasound-assisted extraction: Process optimization and phenolic composition identification. Journal of Food Process Engineering.

Recent Awards

Andreia Bianchini, Midwest Dairy Association, Evaluation of Listeria spp, Transfer from Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to the Plant Environment and Effective Sanitation Procedures to Control It in Dairy Processing Facilities, $24,744.

Ozan Ciftci, Department of Agriculture, Development of an Integrated Green Process to Obtain a High Value, Stable and Bioavailable Lycopene Product from Tomato Processing Industry Waste, $489,781.

Jennifer Clarke, ARD Strategic Funding Supercomputing and Life Sciences Symposium. $2,000.

Jennifer Clarke, DHHS, Nebraska Center for Integrated Biomolecular Communication (CIBC), $2,250,619.

Jennifer Clarke, Department of Justice, The Human Virome as Trace Evidence in Forensic Investigation, $698,382.

Philip Johnson, DBV Technologies, MS-Based Characterization of Food Allergens for Clinical Use, $88,111.

Jeyam Subbiah, The Science of Dry-Aged Beef. Nebraska Beef Council, October 1, 2017, to September 30, 2018. $38,136.

Changmou Xu, USDA/SCMP, Improving Aronia Berry Sustainabilty and Fruit Quality, $479,751.

Internships and Jobs

Student Worker - University of Nebraska Lincoln
Located in Chase Hall on East Campus, this position will include laboratory, field and computer work. The position will support projects that asses the environmental footprints of swine production systems, monitor nutrient transport in soils and more.

For more information contact Dr. Amy Schmidt at or Dr. Rick Stowell at

Lab Animal Care Assistant - Gnotobiotic Mouse Facility
Working with mice in sterile environments; preparing the food, water, and bedding for the mice and maintaining the sterile conditions of the isolators using aseptic techniques. Performing periodic microbiological quality-control checks and assisting lab personnel with various mouse-related tasks. The position is for Fall 2017 and possibly longer. Find more details here.

To apply, contact Dr. Amanda Ramer-Tait ( Please send (1) cover letter, (2) resume, (3) schedule of available days/times to work, and (4) if you are eligible for work-study. All four items must be included in your application email.
Dairy Plant Student Worker  - UNL Dairy Plant East Campus
Gain experience in producing high-quality foods, including cheese and ice cream, in a fun environment. You will learn about food processing, operating equipment, and food safety programs.

To apply: Josie at the Dairy Store (402) 472-2267 or pick up an application at the Dairy Store counter.
Research Technician III - University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Using aseptic handling processes clean, handle and store a large volume of sample preparation and reagent preparation vessels on a daily basis. Evaluate suitability of samples for testing in existing assays and identify appropriate methodology to maximize extraction efficiency. Independently assess and address appropriate sample preparation. Identify potential areas of contamination. Perform daily quality control verifications of equipment. Maintain stock of laboratory supplies. Share responsibility in training, oversight, and guidance of undergraduate student activities.

To apply:
Research and Development Scientist - Streck
Streck is recruiting for a talented and professional research and development scientist to join our immunology and biomarkers team. This position is responsible for working on research and development projects that are focused on product and process improvements to current commercial product applications and new product development projects. This position requires a Ph.D. or Master’s Degree in Biology, Immunology, Microbiology, Molecular Biology, Cellular Biology, Biochemistry, or related field and 3-5 years post-degree industry and/or lab experience.

To apply:
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