First Prize for Marta

Poultry CRC researcher Mrs Marta Navarro Gomez has claimed first prize of the graduate student competition at the 46th Annual Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology conference in Brisbane (14-16 July). Marta presented the most recent results of her Poultry CRC project, and was voted best of the 25 students competing. “This was totally unexpected, and I am very happy to have received this award” she said.

Marta’s current project is investigating the use of natural plant extracts to reduce pre-slaughter levels of Campylobacter in the gastrointestinal tract of broiler chickens. Primarily, Marta’s research is looking at mechanisms to understand and overcome the differences between in vitro assays and animal trials where, in many instances, promising laboratory results do not readily translate into effective treatments. Central to this approach, Marta says, “is the application of a nano-emulsion delivery technology to enhance effective levels (of the extracts) in the intestinal tract”.

To date she has had some good results utilising sorghum syrup, a by-product of biofuel production. This prompted her decision to attend this conference. Marta explained, “We were invited to enter a poster (.pdf – 2MB) and abstract, and then present a six minute oral presentation of our work”. Marta said she enjoyed meeting a wide variety of delegates from throughout the food production industry and revelled in being put on the spot, “I cannot be funny in English (as her second language), but by the second day I was comfortable and not so stressed” Marta exclaimed!

“I found this to be a very worthwhile conference, with many interesting facets to this industry” she said. She strongly encourages other CRC students in the food safety arena to attend this conference in future and consider entering an abstract or a poster. Well done Marta, congratulations!

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