Farhana Pinu

Post-doctoral Scientist

The University of Auckland & the New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research Ltd

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RESEARCH INTERESTS

  • Metabolomics
  • Biomarker discovery
  • Food Microbiology
  • Food Innovation and Safety
  • Industrial Biotechnology
  • Analytical chemistry
  • Statistics and Bioinformatics

 

BACKGROUND

  • 2013 - PhD in Biological Sciences (Metabolomics), The University of Auckland, New Zealand
  • 2006 - MSc in Microbiology, The University of Dhaka, Bangladesh
  • 2004 - BSc (Honours) in Microbiology, The University of Dhaka, Bangladesh
  • 2005 - 2013 (study leave since 2009): Lecturer and Assistant Professor, Department of Microbiology, Stamford University Bangladesh.

 

RESEARCH AREAS

Sauvignon blanc metabolomics

1. Metabolite profile analysis before and after fermentation:

This study is a pioneering work in Sauvignon blanc metabolomics that has demonstrated the capability of metabolomics as a hypothesis-generating tool. The specific objectives of this project include:

  • To establish methods for comprehensive metabolite profiling of grape juice using different analytical instrument, such as, GC-MS, LC-MS, NMR and FTIR
  • To determine metabolites in juice that influence the production of volatile thiols in wines

The metabolomics data from this project has been used as metadata to create the “Juice Index” under the Grape and Wine Research Programme (See Wine Metabolomics).

2. Production of low ethanol wines using metabolomics approach:

This is a collaborative project between University of Auckland, New Zealand Wine growers and NZ Institute for Plant and Food Research Ltd. In this project I am investigating the feasibility of an alternative approach to produce wines with lower ethanol content based on juice supplementation with trace amounts of specific juice metabolites with high negative correlation with ethanol content in fermented wines.

 

Metabolomic analysis of sauvignon blanc

Figure 1. The application of metabolomics approach in Sauvignon blanc research

 

Vinegar metabolomics

This is a collaborative project between The University of Auckland and the Universidade Estadual de Santa Cruz (Bahia, Brazil). This is an exploratory study that aims to detect and identify as many metabolites as possible in balsamic vinegars in order to characterize the influence of new isolates of acetic acid bacteria.

Metabolic profiling of balsamic vinegar samples

Figure 2. The workflow of metabolite profiling of balsamic vinegar samples


SELECTED PUBLICATIONS

  • Pinu, F. R., Edwards, P. J.B., Gardner, R. C. and Villas-Boas, S. G. 2014. Nitrogen and carbon assimilation by Saccharomyces cerevisiae during Sauvignon blanc juice fermentation. FEMS Yeast Research. doi: 10.1111/1567-1364.12222.
  • Pinu, F.R., Edwards, P.J. B. S., Jouanneau, Kilmartin, P.A., Gardner, R.C. and Villas-Boas, S. G. 2014. Sauvignon blanc metabolomics: grape juice metabolites affecting the development of varietal thiols and other aroma compounds in wines. Metabolomics. 10: 556-573.
  • Pinu, F.R.; Jouanneau, S.; Nicolau, L.; Gardner, R.C.; Villas-Boas, S.G. 2012. Concentrations of the volatile thiol 3-mercaptohexanol in Sauvignon Blanc wines: No correlation with juice precursors. American Journal of Enology and Viticulture. 63: 407 – 413.
  • Mahin, A.A; Anne, A; Pinu, F.R. and H.O. Rashid. 2011. Microbial decontamination of raw beef and beef kebab by radiation and low temperature for long term preservation. Bangladesh Journal of Environmental Research. 9: 30-44.
  • Pinu, F. R.; Sultana, N and Sayeed, K.A.R. 2009. Microbiological Study and Antibiotic sensitivity pattern of pathogens Isolated from blood and urine specimens collected from a renown hospital of Dhaka City. The Stamford Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences. 2, 32-36.
  • PinuF.R.; Yeasmin, S; Bari, M.L. and Rahman, M.M. 2007. Microbiological Conditions of Frozen Shrimp in Different Food Market of Dhaka City. Food Science and Technology Research. 13: 362-365.

 

BOOK CHAPTERS

  • Pinu, F.R. and Villas-Bôas. S.G. 2015. Extracellular metabolomics. In: Villas-Bôas, S.G. and Ruggiero, K. (Eds). Microbial Metabolomics. CABI Publishing, London, UK.
  • Pinu, F.R., Tumanov, S. and Villas-Bôas. S.G. 2015. Extraction of intracellular metabolites. In: Villas-Bôas, S.G. and Ruggiero, K. (Eds). Microbial Metabolomics. CABI Publishing, London, UK.

 

AWARDS

  • Merit award at 2009 Faculty of Science Postgraduate Poster Competition
  • Metabolomics Society Travel Award based on the merit of application and materials presented at the Metabolomics Society 2012 Annual meeting in Washington DC.

 

LINKS

http://www.plantandfood.co.nz/

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