Dr Daniel McFeely

Visiting Scientist Molecules from Nature

Daniel is investigating the enzymatic causes behind the formation of resistant starch in crops.

Specifically, he is looking at the role granule bound starch synthase (GBSS), the enzyme responsible for amylose formation, one of the two components of starch, has on natively increasing the percentage of amylose present in crop starches, which has been shown to lead to greater quantities of resistant starch.

Resistant starch cannot be broken down into simple sugars by the upper digestive tract and therefore migrate intact during digestion to the large intestine, to be broken down into more host beneficial products such as short chain fatty acids (SCFA).

Resistant starch has been shown to have numerous positive impacts on both the microbiome composition of the large intestine, leading as well as aid patients with type 2 diabetes to manage insulin levels, impacted by a high carbohydrate Western diet.