NFHC Advisory Board

Bruce German, Ph.D.
  • University of California, Davis
  • Director, Foods for Health Institute

Research Interests: Dr. Bruce German's laboratory group focuses on research seeking to understand how to improve foods and their ability to deliver improved health. The model being used to pave the way toward improving the health benefits of foods is milk, which evolved to make healthy mammals healthier. Milk is the only biomaterial that has evolved under the Darwinian selective pressure for the specific and sole purpose of nourishing growing mammals. Survival of offspring exerted a strong selective pressure on the biochemical evolution of lactation. This process has led to the appearance of new compositional properties of milk that promote health, strength, and ultimately survival. This evolutionary logic is the basis of the research program to discover physical, functional and nutritional properties of milk components.

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Bruce Hamaker, Ph.D.
  • Purdue University
  • Director, Whistler Center for Carbohydrate Research

Research Interests: Dr. Bruce Hamaker’s general research areas include carbohydrates & health, starch, and cereal chemistry. His specific research interests include: manipulation of starch digestion rate for low glycemic response/slow digestion; dietary fiber, modifications in functionality and fermentability, microbiota changes; cereal starch and protein functionality; textural properties influenced by starch fine structure; interactions between starch and other food components; appropriate methods of improving cereal utilization in developing countries; cereal endosperm texture; and electron and confocal microscopy of cereal components.

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Eamonn Quigley, M.D.
  • Weill Cornell Medical College/Houston Methodist
  • Director, Lynda K. and David M. Underwood Center for Digestive Disorders

Research Interests: Dr. Eamonn Quigley is internationally known for his research on gastrointestinal motility disorders, primarily irritable bowel syndrome (IBS); gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD); neurogastroenterology (the relationship between the central nervous system and the gut); the gut microbiome and probiotics in health and disease. A highlight of his ongoing research includes how bacteria in the digestive tract play a major role in pulling nutrients from food to nourish the body, as well as participating in protecting the body from disease.

He has published more than 800 peer-reviewed articles, reviews, editorials, book chapters and case reports, mostly in the areas of gut motility, functional gastrointestinal disorders, and GERD. Quigley has received numerous international honors and awards.

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Mary Ellen Sanders, Ph.D.
  • Dairy & Food Culture Technologies
  • Consultant

Professional Interests: Dr. Mary Ellen Sanders' professional activities focus on providing evidence-based guidance to food and dietary supplement companies on the role of probiotics in human health ( She advises on scientific substantiation of probiotic claims, product development and safety of probiotics. She also works with several non-profit organizations (including ISAPP, FAO/WHO, USP, ILSI-North America and World Gastroenterology Organisation) to provide information on probiotics for consumers and professionals.

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Chris Wilson, M.D.
  • BMGF (Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation)
  • Advisor to BMGF

Additional Positions: Former Director of the Global Health Discovery program

While Dr. Chris Wilson was the Director of the Global Health Discovery Program, he led a team that targets fundamental scientific and technological advances in global health that could lead to new ways to prevent, treat, and diagnose disease.

Wilson joined the foundation in 2009 as Deputy Director, Vaccine Discovery and Human Biology, Global Health Discovery.

He joined the faculty at the University of Washington in 1979 in the Infectious Diseases Division of the Department of Pediatrics and later served as head of the Division of Infectious Diseases, Immunology and Rheumatology. In 1989, he became one of the founding faculty members in the new Department of Immunology, and served as Chairman of the Department of Immunology and head of the graduate program in immunology from 1999-2009.

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