(L-R top row) Dr. Brittany Luby, Dr. Philippe Lassou, Dr. Iris Joye, Dr. Elijah Kiarie
(L-R bottom row) Dr. Manickavasagan Annamalai, Dr. Kaitlyn McLachlan, Dr. Scott Ryan

Seven University of Guelph researchers exploring subjects from Indigenous history in North America to improving the availability of safe and healthy food have received the 2021 U of G Research Excellence Awards.

The awards program highlights the achievements of recently tenured faculty members and helps to raise their profile among external funding agencies. The $5,000 awards are sponsored by the Office of Research and the Office of the Provost.

“These exceptional researchers, even at this early stage in their careers, have already made tremendous contributions to finding new ways to improve life and make real-world impacts,” said Dr. Malcolm Campbell, vice-president (research). “We are deeply proud to honour these tremendous researchers and look forward to celebrating their future successes.”

History professor Dr. Brittany Luby studies Anishinaabe family responses to settler encroachment with a focus on water infrastructure. Her most recent research considers how dam development impacts human-plant relations, particularly with manomin (wild rice).

Dr. Kaitlyn McLachlan, Department of Psychology, aims to better understand developmental risk factors for vulnerable youth and help improve outcomes. She studies fetal alcohol spectrum disorder with a focus on the criminal justice system.

Engineering professor Dr. Manickavasagan Annamalai aims to make safe and healthy food more available. He focuses on bioimaging techniques for food quality and safety, as well as processing and product development for health and wellness.

Dr. Iris Joye, Department of Food Science, studies food and cereal chemistry. She looks at the role proteins can play in food structure development and how they can be used in nano- and microtechnology applications to improve food quality.

Animal biosciences professor Dr. Elijah Kiarie studies feeding strategies to enhance gut health and function; perinatal nutrition for stronger skeletal growth and later-life productivity, skeletal integrity and welfare; and feedstuffs evaluation and processing.

Dr. Scott Ryan, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, studies cellular mechanisms underlying neurodegenerative disease and regenerative therapy. His innovative approach couples high-resolution imaging techniques with biochemical analysis to model, understand and treat neurodegenerative diseases using stem cell technology.

Accounting professor Dr. Philippe Lassou studies the interplay between accountability, public resource (finance) management and sustainable development in developing countries, with a particular focus on the government sector and indigenous development issues, notably in poor and marginalized communities.