Edward Deehan
  • Assistant Professor, Department of Food Science and Technology


(402) 472-5233

The research conducted in the Deehan lab focuses on characterizing the effects that non-digestible dietary compounds have on health and the gut microbiome and on exploring the role of the gut microbiome in these physiological effects. The primary goal of our research is to maximize the health benefits of non-digestible dietary compounds that are accessible to the gut microbiota. Specifically, our work aims to i) achieve more reliable health and microbiome effects with mixtures of commercially available and/or novel phenolic-rich fibers alone or in combination with other interventions and ii) improve the acceptance of fiber-based ingredients by ameliorating gastrointestinal symptoms and developing fiber-enriched foods to enable a ‘health by stealth’ based approach. By using dietary intervention studies in humans as the main route of scientific inquiry, our research informs the development and commercialization of foods, medical foods, and supplements that aim to promote health through their actions in the gastrointestinal tract.

Featured Publications

Deehan EC, Mocanu V, Madsen KL. Effects of dietary fiber on metabolic health and obesity. Nature Reviews Gastroenterology & Hepatology. 2024; 21:301–318. 

Deehan, E.C., Zhang, Z., Riva, A., Armet, A.M., Perez-Muñoz, M.E., Nguyen, N.K., Krysa, J.A., Seethaler, B., Zhao, Y.Y., Cole, J., Li, F., Hausmann, B., Spittler, A., Nazare, J.A., Delzenne, N.M., Curtis, J.M., Wismer, W.V., Proctor, S.D., Bakal, J.A., Bischoff, S.C., Knights, D., Field, C.J., Berry, D., Prado, C.M., Walter, J. 2022. Elucidating the Role of the Gut Microbiota in the Physiological Effects of Dietary Fiber. Microbiome. 10: 77. 

Mocanu, V., Zhang, Z., Deehan, E.C., Kao, D.H., Hotte, N., Karmali, S., Birch, D.W., Samarasinghe, K.K., Walter, J., Madsen, K.L. 2021. Fecal Microbial Transplantation and Fiber Supplementation in Patients with Severe Obesity and Metabolic Syndrome: A randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled phase 2 trial. Nature Medicine. 27(7): 1272-1279. 

Deehan, E.C., Yang, C., Perez-Muñoz, M.E., Nguyen, N.K., Cheng, C.C., Triador, L., Zhang, Z., Bakal, J.A., Walter, J. 2020. Precision Microbiome Modulation with Discrete Dietary Fiber Structures Directs Short-Chain Fatty Acid Production. Cell Host & Microbe. 27(3): 389-404.e6. 

Makki, K., Deehan, E.C., Walter, J., Bäckhed, F. 2018. The Impact of Dietary Fiber on Gut Microbiota in Host Health and Disease. Cell Host & Microbe. 23(6): 705-715.