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Faculty Profile

Qixin Zhong


Physical Properties
Food Ingredient Science and Technology


Food Science Bldg.
2510 River Dr.
RM 211
Knoxville, TN 37996


Ph.D., North Carolina State University, double majors in Food Science and Chemical Engineering, 2003
M.S., North Carolina State University, Food Science, 2001
B.Eng., Wuhan Food Industry College, Animal Nutrition and Feed Processing, 1993

Current Research

We study the science and technology of food ingredients that are cornerstones making our foods enjoyable, safe, and healthy. Our translational research program applies materials science and engineering principles to understand, improve, and design multi-length scale structures enabling functions of food ingredients. Our research areas include
oStructure and function of food ingredients and food products
oBioactive delivery systems as functional foods ingredients
oAntimicrobial delivery systems as intervention strategies
oSelf-assembled food materials as novel ingredients
oInterfacial engineering and novel colloidal systems
oSupercritical fluids: particle, extraction, safety


Representative publications from advisees in the past 5 years (see personal website for a complete list:

1) Zhang, Y. and Q. Zhong. 2017. Freeze-dried capsules prepared from emulsions with encapsulated lactase as a potential delivery system to control lactose hydrolysis in milk. Food Chemistry.
2) Chen, H. and Q. Zhong. 2017. Lactobionic acid enhances the synergistic effect of nisin and thymol against Listeria monocytogenes Scott A in tryptic soy broth and milk. International Journal of Food Microbiology. 260: 36–41.
3) Zhang, Y., Q. Ma, F. Critzer, P.M. Davidson, and Q. Zhong. 2016. Organic thyme oil emulsion as an alternative washing solution to enhance the microbial safety of organic cantaloupes. Food Control. 67: 31-38.
4) Zhang, Y., J. Lin, and Q. Zhong. 2016. S/O/W emulsions prepared with sugar beet pectin to enhance the viability of probiotic Lactobacillus salivarius NRRL B-30514. Food Hydrocolloids. 52: 804–810.
5) Pan, K. and Q. Zhong. 2016. Low energy, organic solvent-free co-assembly of zein and caseinate to prepare stable dispersions. Food Hydrocolloids. 52: 600-606.
6) Zhang, Y., Q. Ma, F. Critzer, P.M. Davidson, and Q. Zhong. 2015. Effects of alginate coatings with cinnamon bark oil and soybean oil on quality and safety of cantaloupe. International Journal of Food Microbiology. 215: 25-30.
7) Pan, K. and Q. Zhong. 2015. Amyloid-like fibrils formed from intrinsically disordered caseins: physicochemical and nanomechanical properties. Soft Matter. 11: 5898-5904.
8) Ma, Q. and Q. Zhong. 2015. Incorporation of soybean oil improves the dilutability of essential oil microemulsions. Food Research International. 71: 118–125.
9) Chen, H., Y. Guan, and Q. Zhong. 2015. Microemulsions based on sunflower lecithin-Tween 20 blend have high capacity of dissolving peppermint oil and stabilizing Coenzyme Q10. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 63(3):983-989.
10) Shi, X. and Q. Zhong. 2014. Enhancing lactose crystallization in aqueous solutions by soluble soybean polysaccharide. Food Research International. 66: 432-437.
11) Pan, K., Y. Luo, Y. Gan, S.J. Baek, and Q. Zhong. 2014. pH-Driven encapsulation of curcumin in self-assembled casein nanoparticles for enhanced dispersibility and bioactivity. Soft Matter. 10(35), 6820-6830.
12) Luo, Y., Y. Zhang, K. Pan, F. Critzer, P.M. Davidson, and Q. Zhong. 2014. Self-emulsification of alkaline-dissolved clove bud oil by whey protein, gum arabic, lecithin, and their combinations. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 62(19): 4417–4424.
13) Pan, K., H. Chen, P.M. Davidson, and Q. Zhong. 2014. Thymol nanoencapsulated by sodium caseinate: Physical and anti-listerial properties. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 62(7): 1649–1657.
14) Chen, H., P.M. Davidson, and Q. Zhong. 2014. Impacts of sample preparation methods on solubility and anti-listerial characteristics of essential oil components in milk. Applied and Environmental Microbiology. 80(3): 907-916.
15) Xue, J., P.M. Davidson, and Q. Zhong. 2013. Thymol nanoemulsified with whey protein isolate-maltodextrin conjugate: the enhanced emulsifying capacity and anti-listerial properties in milk by propylene glycol. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 61(51): 12720–12726.
16) Zhang, L., D.G. Hayes, G. Chen, and Q. Zhong. 2013. Transparent dispersions of milk fat-based nanostructured lipid carriers for delivery of β-carotene. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 61(39): 9435–9443.
17) Pan, K. and Q. Zhong. 2013. Improving clarity and stability of skim milk powder dispersions by dissociation of casein micelles at pH 11.0 and acidification with citric acid. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 61(38): 9260–9268.
18) Pan, K., Q. Zhong, and S.J. Baek. 2013. Enhanced dispersibility and bioactivity of curcumin by encapsulation in casein nanocapsules. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 61(25): 6036–6043.
19) Liu, G. and Q. Zhong. 2013. Dispersible and thermal stable nanofibrils derived from glycated whey protein. Biomacromolceules. 14(7): 2146-2153.
20) Liu, G. and Q. Zhong. 2013. Thermal aggregation properties of whey protein glycated with various saccharides. Food Hydrocolloids. 32(1): 87-96.

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