Susan L. Holdt (Denmark), Associate Professor at the National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark (DTU Food) has a broad experience in (bioactive) components, ingredients, threshold values and Danish and EU regulations of seaweeds. Susan are involved in multi-extraction of seaweed valorizing and optimizing the biomass use compared to the single-extraction of e.g. the existing carrageenan/hydrocolloid/stabilizing agent industry. All the research is applied with national and international aprtners within both research and businesses. She is the Secretary General of the International Seaweed Association, has initiated the Danish Seaweed Organisation (DSO; Danish-seaweed.dk) a marketing platform for seaweed companies, and she is chair of the cross disciplinary Seaweed Network in Denmark (www.tangnet.dk) initiated in 2008, with more than 360 members from industry, universities, organizations, national authorities, chefs, fish farmers, groups and persons that work with or have interest in seaweed. Susan was chair of the National Organizing Committee for the 22nd International Seaweed Symposium, Copenhagen 2016 (www.iss-2016.org) which the National Food Institute, DTU (DTU Food) is hosting. This won the prize in the category “Best congress in Copenhagen in 2016 with less than 1,000 delegates”.
Stefan Kraan (Ireland), He moved to Ireland to pursue a PhD on phylogenetics and aquaculture of edible seaweeds at the National University of Ireland, Galway in 1998. He became manager of the Irish Seaweed Industry Organisation in 1998 and established the Irish Seaweed Centre in 2001, a dedicated R&D centre for seaweed-based research and development. In 2009 Stefan established Ocean Harvest Technology, a company dedicated in using seaweeds for animal health and production. After 8 years he resigned to pursue and develop some commercial ideas using seaweeds for a variety of purposes amongst them functional food ingredients for human food and novel algae cultivation systems for biomass production. He has organised the International Society for applied Phycology conference in 2008 in Galway and has been instrumental in several other seaweed meetings and conferences amongst them several International Seaweed Symposia. Dr Kraan is currently president of the International Seaweed Association.
Jane Teas (US), Jane received her doctorate in pathobiology from Johns Hopkins University with emphasis on to how everything that impacts health is actually related to a wider network of factors including diet, environment, social and personal behavior. She stumbled upon seaweed while doing library research as a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard School of Public Health. The ancient Egyptians were reported to have used seaweed to treat breast cancer, and Jane felt (unlike the author) there was more to dietary seaweed than just iodine. She began a career-long passion to try to understand why people who regularly consume seaweed have dramatically lower rates of many common cancers including breast, prostate, colon and skin. She has done work using whole seaweed or extracts on colon and breast cancer cells, supplemented feed to rats who were then administered a carcinogen, but mostly with clinical trials with healthy people monitoring changes in blood and urine biomarkers commonly associated with breast cancer risk. The absolute proof that seaweed is treating breast cancer has yet to be published and accepted by western societies. The dicotymy between the love for seaweed in Japan compared to the abhorrence of things seaweedy in the US and possibly elsewhere brings up a scientific/cultural problem of what is acceptable evidence. For Jane, seaweed remains a topic of infinite possibilities for health and research, and she is currently a research fellow at the Cooper Library of the University of South Carolina
Ditte B. Hermund (Denmark) Dr Ditte B. Hermund is a food scientist and emplyed in a postdoc postion at the National Food Institute in Copenhagen, Denmark. She did her PhD on extraction and characterization of antioxidant substances from Fucus vesiculosus. She also studied the potential of natural algae based antioxidants for hindering quality deterioation in omega-3 enriched food products.
Her current research focusses on extracting bioactive compounds from Saccharina latissima and determening their chemical composition and functional propreties, such as antioxidant and anti-enzymatic activity. Moreover, she studies how algae based ingredients can be used in cosmetic applications. Ditte is a dedicated scientist and an expert on phlorotannins (the major polyphenolic group in brown alga), the structural characterization of these and how they behave in highly complex food systems.
Michela Caprani (Ireland) Michela Caprani (Ireland) is a graduate of a BA in Nutraceuticals for Health and Nutrition from Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT).
She also studied alongside Stefan Kraan in Ocean Harvest Technology investigating the effects of macroalgae on fatty acid profiles in bovine milk. She did her thesis on the novel purification and nutraceutical screening of antioxidants bioactive peptides from Arthrospira platensis and plans to continue her studies on bioactive compounds from seaweeds.