Characterizing lytic bacteriophages against pathogenic E. coli: killing spectrum, efficacy in vivo, and genomic analysis

Bacterial pathogens of importance to animal health and food safety have major and global impacts on agriculture and food industries. There has been an increase in bacterial resistance to antimicrobials, and antibiotic use in livestock and poultry has been questioned due to likelihood of increased antimicrobial resistance. Alternative strategies to contend with bacterial pathogens within the food production chain are therefore needed. Lytic bacteriophages (phages) are bacteria-specific viruses that can lyse and kill their bacterial targets. One of the focuses of SyntBioLab Inc.

Development and commercialization of novel reference material for food allergen and gluten proficiency testing - Year two

The planned research program aims to address an existing gap: the lack of commercial availability of reference materials for food allergens to be used in the context of analytical method development, validation and performance testing. In particular, naturally incurred samples representing food matrices where priority allergens are likely to occur, in a controlled and calibrated fashion are not available. Allergens targeted include egg, milk as well as wheat gluten (targeting both wheat allergen and Gluten testing).

Finding innovations to improve calf gastrointestinal health

The neonatal and pre-weaned periods are the most challenging in dairy production, resulting in the highest mortality and morbidity rates, with diarrhea proving the most common cause of calf health problems. In order to treat and control this diarrhea, producers often rely on antibiotic therapy. An alternative is to provide living microorganisms (probiotics) that minimize pathogenic bacteria colonization of the gastrointestinal tract (GIT), without producing drug residues, when directly fed to animals.

Evaluation of botanical extract formulations for greenhouse pest management

The development of additional pesticides which minimize negative effects on the environment and beneficial insects is imperative for successful long-term management and enhanced sustainability of agricultural systems. Utilizing plant based essential oils, which generally have low toxicity to humans and other mammals, could increase sustainable pest management options.

Investigating the Health and Economic Benefits of Colostrum and Milk from Dairy Cattle Selected for Enhanced Immunity - Year two

Diseases of dairy cattle adversely affect meat and milk quality. Our research demonstrates that high immune response (HIR™) cattle have many health advantages, including better quality colostrum/milk. HIR™ technology is marketed by our partner Semex Inc as Immunity+. While many advantages of HIR™ exist, there is more to learn, particularly as it relates to colostrum. Colostrum is the first milk from the mother that protects the new born. HIR™ cows have enhanced specific antibody and pass this protection to their calves via colostrum.

Design of a thermal link for a passively cooled mobile shipping container using solid carbon dioxide

Ultra-low frozen food temperatures between -30°C to -60°C are important when shipping high value seafood products to worldwide markets. Maintaining these temperatures using a traditional vapor compression refrigeration cycles becomes increasingly difficult as the span between desired cargo and external temperature increase. Solid CO2 has the capacity to sustain ultra-low frozen temperatures even during hot summer days using a passive, non-mechanical refrigeration system.

NMR analysis of the enzymatically produced propylene glycol mono- and di- esters of canola oil

Emulsifiers as multifunctional additives can develop low-caloric, high-quality foods. Beside the monoacylglycerols (MAGs), or mixtures with diacylglycerols (DAGs), propylene glycol (1,2-propanediol) esters (PGEs) are the commonly used emulsifiers in the food industry. Emulsifiers are currently produced using costly and environmentally unfriendly “enzyme in solvent” systems and also have some shortcomings in certain food applications.

A survey of Pinot Noir Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast populations and grape quality in three Okanagan Valley vineyard sub-regions

Wine is produced by fermenting sugars in grape juice to ethanol by the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae (S. cerevisiae). The major BC viticulture area is located in the Okanagan valley, a 200km region that runs from north to south, which aims to produce high quality wines that can be distinguished based on terroir. Terroir is a term that describes all the environmental factors that influence the wine including climate, terrain, soil, grape varietal and microbial populations.

Efficacy of the plant extract CELEXT07 and the botanically derived Thymox in suppression of Cannabis fungal diseases under greenhouse production systems

The legalization of Cannabis (marijuana) is now supported by 66% of Canadian voters. Aphria Inc., was the first approved and licensed producer under the MMPR to begin growing in a greenhouse and is currently the second-largest marijuana producer in Canada. Unfortunately, Cannabis is attacked by a plethora of phytopathogens leading to a number of diseases with the most commonly reported are grey mold and powdery mildews.

Probiotics and their role in an intestinal inflammation: Use of a novel in-vitro model to understand mechanisms of action

In recent years, there has been a growing interest in the role the gut plays in our overall health and wellbeing. Changes to this gut microbial population has been linked a host of disorders, ranging from metabolic disorders such as diabetes and obesity to mental disorders such as depression and anxiety. Depending on lifestyle factors, diet, antibiotic use and age, certain populations can be at a greater risk of microbial imbalances. In order against such conditions, probiotics are used as therapeutic agents.