Dr Julie Clarke
Menzies Health Institute Queensland Program Seminar Series
Infectious Diseases & Immunology
Host Assoc Prof Jason Peart
Clinical Applications of Acylated Starches by Dr Julie Clarke
Short chain fatty acids (SCFA) are produced by the microbial fermentation of dietary fibre in the large bowel. They have important roles maintaining the function and health of the gut and associated viscera, and have beneficial effects peripherally on adipose tissue, the brain and liver. Western diets are poor sources of fermentable fibre resulting in low levels of colonic SCFA and CSIRO has developed acylated starches to deliver specific SCFA to the colon to promote gastrointestinal health.
This presentation will describe research undertaken by CSIRO and collaborators investigating the potential of acylated starches to:
- improve the effectiveness of oral rehydration solution to treat acute infectious diarrhoea
- act as a chemopreventative supplement to reduce the risk of developing colon cancer and
- to act as an adjuvant to provide a long term cure for peanut allergy.
The burden of these diseases in Australia and globally is significant and the potential social and economic benefits of a low cost supplement to prevent or treat these diseases is compelling.
Dr Julie Clarke is a senior research scientist within the Nutritional Interventions program at CSIRO Health and Biosecurity in Adelaide. She has doctoral and veterinary degrees and over 30 years' experience in biomedical research focusing on various aspects of gut health. More recently Julie and her collaborators have used acylated starches to investigate the health benefits of specific short chain fatty acids. In the past 10 years this research has resulted in over 30 peer-reviewed scientific articles, including 3 in Nature/Nature Immunology, contributions to 4 book chapters, a video, several industry reports and commercial interest.
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