H.P. Vasantha Rupasinghe

Canada Research Chair in Fruit Bioactives and BioProducts

Tier 2 - 2017-11-01
Dalhousie University
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council


Coming to Canada From

Iowa State University, USA

Research involves

Understanding the functions and industrial uses of flavonoids in cool climate fruits.

Research relevance

This research will lead to the development of value-added foods, food additives and ingredients and natural health products that could fight chronic disease.

The Disease-fighting Power of Fruit

North America faces significant challenges from epidemics of chronic disease that are directly or indirectly linked to diet, lifestyle and the environment. However, adequate consumption of fruits and vegetables can help manage these health care challenges.

Dr. H.P. Vasantha Rupasinghe, Canada Research Chair in Fruit Bioactives and Bioproducts, believes that some non-nutrient components in fruit have remarkable power in preventing the development of chronic diseases and promoting human health and wellness.

In particular, Rupasinghe has found that flavonoids in fruit can act as dietary supplements that can reduce the risk of chronic diseases like brain disorders and heart disease. Rupasinghe is focusing on identifying unique flavonoids in cool climate fruit that can play major roles as active components in foods and natural health products.

He is developing methods to isolate these components from under-used fruit and is investigating new ways to incorporate safe and effective amounts of bioactive flavonoids in regular diets.

Rupasinghe’s research will make it easier to develop and sell socially and economically acceptable health food ingredients and natural health products. It may also lead to the development of chemically-altered flavonoid molecules which could be used in investigating cures for chronic diseases.