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Assoc. Prof. Russell Keast
School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences
+61 3 924 46944
Role and profile
Associate Professor Russell Keast is a Lecturer in the area of Sensory Science in the School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences. He teaches at undergraduate and postgraduate level and also supervises higher degree students. Associate Professor Keast is a member of the Centre for Physical Activity and Nutrition Research (C-PAN) and is an active researcher in sensory science, with particular emphasis on how individual differences in our chemical senses (taste, smell, chemical irritation) may influence health. In addition, Associate Professor Keast is a qualified chef and his research and teaching interests overlap the emerging areas of Molecular Gastronomy and Culinology.
Course Director: Bachelor of Food Science and Nutrition.
Unit Chair HSN313 Sensory Evaluation of Food
Supervises 5 PhD students and 3 Honours students
Associate Professor Keast’s research is primarily concerned with understanding the sense of taste and the role taste sensitivity may play in development of diet-related disease.
Using sensory evaluation techniques combined with nutritional assessment, the majority of Associate Professor Keast’s published research has focused on understanding the taste system, in particular how knowledge of taste may be associated with dietary consumption and development of diet-related disease. For example, recent research has involved 1/ the role of caffeine in sugar sweetened beverages, 2/ the link between salt taste and consumption of salty foods, 3/ the existence of a sixth basic taste responsive to fat, and the role it may play in development of obesity. In addition, Associate Professor Keast has been actively involved in developing a link between chemical analysis and perceived flavour. Using a sensory directed approach to the chemical separation of foods, he co-discovered a natural non-steroidal anti-inflammatory compound in virgin olive oil.
Associate Professor Keast is initiating research linking sensory science and culinary arts (e.g. Molecular Gastronomy or Culinology), to help develop novel food products.
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