Diane Hooton

Doctor of Philosophy, (Anatomy/Physiology)
Study Completed: 2018
College of Health


Thesis Title
Brush border digestion: Development of a physiologically relevant in vitro model

Read article at Massey Research Online: MRO icon

Ms Hooton developed a method to simulate the final stage of mammalian small intestine digestion, known as brush border digestion. The brush border phase of digestion is often omitted from simulated digestions so the aim of her research was to develop a validated method that could be used as an adjunct to current techniques. An array of brush border enzymes were characterised and validated for use under conditions representative of the small intestine. The brush border phase of digestion was validated by monitoring the removal of sugar molecules from onion polyphenolic compounds using liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry. Results suggest that this method can be used to assess the digestion of nutrients and whole foods in the laboratory, which may allow researchers better insight into the digestive process and the discovery of novel bioactive components.

Dr Wei-Hang Chua
Dr John Monro
Dr Martin Wickham
Mr Robert Simpson