Author: Luo, Yangchao

IAFP – 2023

Our lab attended the IAFP (International Association of Food Protection) 2023 Annual Meeting in Toronto, Canada! Our graduate students presented a total of 8 posters and everyone enjoyed the first international travel after the pandemic!

IAFP group photo

Dr. Luo received 2023 CAHNR Excellence in Research Award

Every year the College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources (CAHNR) and the College Alumni Board recognize the accomplishments of our distinguished alumni, faculty, staff and supporters.

Dr. Luo is the recipient of 2023 CAHNR Excellence in Research Award. This award is designed to recognize UConn CAHNR faculty members and/or staff, demonstrating a superior commitment to an on-going research program. Please read more about this on UConn Today. In 2020, Dr. Luo was awarded the Donald M. Kinsman Award for Excellence in Teaching, an award designed to recognize superior teaching by early-career UConn CAHNR faculty members - read more about this on UConn Today.


New Publication by Pingxu Qin

Congratulations to Pingxu Qin on having her review article published in the Journal of Agriculture and Food Research. The article, entitled "A review on plant-based proteins from soybean: Health benefits and soy product development", provides an overview on the health and environmental benefits soybean protein, and its amino acid composition and protein digestibility. As one of the most popular plant proteins, its byproducts-making processes (heat processing, protein isolation, and fermentation) were discussed in detail in this review. Finally, the relationship between soy protein consumption and chronic diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, women menopausal symptoms, osteoporosis, cancer, and abdominal body fat, was highlighted by analyzing recent clinical studies. Please read the paper here.

Graphical Abstract

Graphical Abstract_Pingxu Qin


  • Proteins from plant and animal sources were compared.
  • The processing technologies for manufacturing various soy-based products were introduced.
  • The health benefits of soy-based products on chronic diseases were summarized from recent clinical studies.
  • The preventive effects of soy-based products on various cancers were mainly discussed.

Dr. Luo Named to the World’s Highly Cited Researcher List, Again

Dr. Luo has been recognized by Web of Science as the most Highly Cited Researchers in 2021 across the globe, ranked among top 1% by citations! Please read the News @ UConn Today. There are only six University of Connecticut professors who have received this recognition.

The 2021 Highly Cited Researchers list, released recently by the Web of Science Group, identifies scientists and social scientists who produced multiple papers ranking in the top one percent by citations for their field and year of publication, demonstrating significant research influence among their peers.

Dr. Luo has been named to the World's Most Highly Cited Researcher List in 2019 and 2021.

Highly Cited Researcher Certificate_2021
Highly Cited Certificate_2019

Lab Alum Taoran Wang featured on UConn Today


Read the story at UConn Today.

Taoran Wang is combining her life-long passion for food with her UConn education to expand innovation for plant-based food company, Beyond Meat.

Wang came to the College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources from China to earn her master’s degree in allied health sciences. During her time in the master’s program, Wang realized she had a passion for food science and decided to continue her education at UConn. Wang completed her Ph.D. in nutritional sciences in 2019.

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New Publication by Erika Fleming

Congratulations to Erika Fleming on publishing a research article in Food Biophysics. The article, entitled “Mucoadhesive biopolymer nanoparticles for encapsulation of lipophilic nutrients with enhanced bioactivity”, reports the various methodologies to evaluate the mucoahesive properties of biopolymer nanoparticles, including traditional physical and chemical methods, as well as the state-of-the-art analytical technique, i.e., Quartz Crystal Microbalance with Dissipation Monitoring (QCM-D). QCM-D is an ultra-sensitive instrument for real-time characterization of interfaces and molecular interactions. Please read the article here.

Novelty Statement

Given the exceptional mucoadhesive properties, the biopolymer nanoparticles that we prepared make an excellent candidate for the encapsulation of lipophilic nutrients with low bioavailability.

New Publication by Taoran Wang and Wusigale

Congratulations to Taoran Wang and Wusigale (co-first authors) on having their research paper published in Advanced Composites and Hybrid Materials. The article, entitled "Polydopamine-coated chitosan hydrogel beads for synthesis and immobilization of silver nanoparticles to simultaneously enhance antimicrobial activity and adsorption kinetics", showcases our recent collaborative project on developing the innovative and multi-functional chitosan-based hydrogel beads with immobilized with silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) via polydopamine coating to simultaneously enhance antimicrobial and adsorption activity. The findings from this study demonstrate that AgNPs (2.5 nm) not only significantly improved the adsorption performance of the chitosan hydrogel beads and but also dramatically enhanced their antibacterial activity against both Gram-negative bacteria than Gram-positive bacteria. This work has developed an integrative approach to efficiently control both the microbial and chemical quality of wastewater. Please read the paper here.

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