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Bulei Sheng

PhD Student

Bulei Sheng


PhD project: Effect of natural variations in milk proteins on its digestibility

University: Aarhus University

Department: Department of Food Science

Supervisor: Lotte Bach Larsen, Professor, Department of Food Science, AU

Co-supervisor: Nina Aagaard Poulsen, Associate Professor, Department of Food Science, AU

Project term: 01.09.18 – 31.08.2021

Master’s degree: MSc in Saccharide Science and Technology, South China University of Technology, China.



Ingestion of dairy products is appearing to be associated with health-related effects coming from genetic polymorphisms of milk proteins. In bovine milk, different genetic variants of bovine proteins have been found to have varying degree of post-translational modifications (PTMs). Bovine protein isoforms may affect the organization of macromolecular structure and further influence its digestion process. By ingestion, dairy proteins are exposed to a complex array of digestive proteases, and a source of peptides with biological functions will be provided by these hydrolyzed proteins. Yet, little work has explored the influence of natural variations in bovine proteins, including genetic variants and PTMs degree, on the digestion process of itself and milk and the generation of bioactive peptides.


Research outline:

To investigate the influence of bovine protein isoforms on the digestibility of itself and skim milk, and further provide the possibilities to produce milk with enhanced digestibility.



  • Particle size by NanoFlex
  • Digestion assays using the INFOGEST 2.0
  • Protein profiling by LC-ESI/MS single Q
  • Image analysis by 1 and 2 D gels, image analysis
  • Degree of hydrolysis by fluorescamine assay
  • Peptidomics using LC-MS methods

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ID: 131573842