2010 Fellow's Research Projects

Hossain Uddin Shekhar, Bangladesh

Research Themes Searching for the Functionality of Selected Indigenous Foods of Bangladesh


In my research, I focus on the fruits and vegetables that are consumed daily in Bangladesh and the ways these foods function to preserve and enhance people's health. I hope to create a database of the functionality of these common foods in order to help people make good choices of what to eat, choices that will protect their health and ward off disease. Since fruits and vegetables are relatively cheap, this will be especially beneficial to the poor, who cannot afford to spend a lot on their health. This is a field that has not been extensively researched in Bangladesh, so it is exciting for me to investigate it.

Dyah Wulandani, India

Research Themes Improving Biodiesel Fuel Production through Non-Catalytic Esterification Method


The demand for biodiesel fuel in Indonesia is estimated to increase by a factor of five. I hope to develop an efficient and low-cost method of biodiesel fuel production. Generally, biodiesel fuel is produced through trans-esterification reaction between vegetable oil and methanol, using alkaline catalysts. The 'Non-catalytic Superheated Methanol Vapor in the bubble column reactor (SMV) method', on the other hand, has an advantage of not requiring purification before and after reaction, resulting in the reduction of both initial and running costs. SMV method can also allow us to produce biodiesel fuel from free fatty acids. In order to improve productivity, we are using computer simulation techniques to analyze the reaction during production.

Bayarsaikhan Dolgorsuren, Mongolia

Research Themes The Nutritional Components of Traditional Mongolian Fermented Foods


In Mongolia, people eat dairy products, like cheese, produced with a unique manufacturing method that has been passed down from generation to generation. These foods are thought to contain undiscovered nutritional components that are beneficial to health. I have worked as a nutritional advisor in hospitals in Mongolia but I have found the knowledge and facilities there to be inadequate compared to Japan. My goal is for my research to have a positive effect on the health of the people in my country. I think I can use what I have learned from observing hospitals in Japan to successfully achieve that goal.

Li Bingxue, P.R. China

Research Themes The Practical Production of Oligosaccharides Using a Multiple-Enzyme System


In my research I focus on the benefits of sugars that are found in breast milk but are not found in cow's milk. I am currently working to create new sugars that suppress bacteria that are harmful to people's health. If I can safely and successfully produce these new sugars, the results will be groundbreaking. Since coming to Japan, I have had many opportunities to attend international conferences and exchange ideas with researchers from many different countries. These interactions have been very inspiring to me.

Ngamjit Lowithun, Thailand

Research Themes Quality Control of Food Production Using Ultrafine Grinding Methods


I am currently researching ways to make bread with rice flour. Thailand is a major producer of rice, so I am hoping to develop high-value-added products that we can make with rice. In Japan, rice consumption is decreasing. New products made from rice might help to offset that decrease. Depending on the method of milling the rice and on the variety of rice used, such as Indica rice from Thailand or Japonica rice from Japan, we can customize the flavor of the finished bread. Right now our search is for the best balance of ingredients and techniques. After we have successfully developed rice bread, I hope to take on the challenge of improving rice noodles as well.

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