BAE Would Like to Welcome Dr. Gail Bornhorst


Gail Bornhorst


Visiting Assistant Professor


2004-2007: B.S., Biosystems Engineering, MSU

2008-2010: M.S., Biological Systems Engineering, University of California, Davis

(Thesis Title:Rate Kinetics of Bread Bolus Disintegration in a Simulated Gastric Environment)


2010-2012: PhD, Biological Systems Engineering, University of California, Davis

(Dissertation Title: Breakdown and Mixing of Brown and White Rice during Gastric Digestion in Vivo)


Research Interests:

  • Designing innovative foods for health to optimize nutrient release in the gastrointestinal tract
  • Modification of food physical properties and microstructure by food processing to develop functional foods
  • Determine the relationship between food rheological properties with the mass transport and absorption of food and pharmaceutical products
  • Experimental and computational analyses of mixing in food, biological, and industrial settings
  • Development of dynamic in vitro gastric models to accurately simulate physical and chemical aspects of digestion


Honors and Awards:

  • National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, 08-12
  • University of California,Davis Graduate School Fellowship,08-09
  • Henry A. Jastro Graduate Research Scholarship Award (UC Davis), 08-09, 09-10, 10-11
  • Kellogg Company Outstanding Intern Scholarship, 08
  • MSU Senior Class Council Outstanding Senior Award, December 07


BE478 and designing new course about Engineering Principles applied to Food Digestion and Health Systems


I am originally from Houghton, MI. I completed my B.S. degree in the Biosystems Engineering department at MSU, during which time I completed a semester study abroad at the University of León in León, Spain. I also had internships at Nestlé USA (industrial engineering) and Kellogg Company (food chemistry/material properties) prior to starting graduate school. For graduate school, I went to California, where I completed my M.S. and Ph.D. in Biological Systems Engineering at the University of California, Davis working in the area of food breakdown during digestion, both in vitro and in vivo. During my PhD, I was a visiting scholar at the Riddet Institute at Massey University (Palmerston North, New Zealand) 3 times, for about a year in total. After finishing my PhD, I was a Postdoctoral Scholar at UC Davis for a year, working on digestibility and breakdown of almond proteins in vivo and mechanisms of food breakdown in vitro before coming back to MSU!


G.M. Bornhorst, M.J. Roman, K.C. Dreschler, R.P. Singh. Physical property changes in raw and roasted almonds during gastric digestion in vivo and in vitro. Food Biophysics.In Press. July 2013.

G.M. Bornhorst, K.J.Kostlan, R.P.Singh. Image Analysis as a Technique to Quantify Particle Size Distribution of Digested Food Particles. Journal of Food Science. In Press. July 2013.

G.M. Bornhorst, L.Q. Chang, S.M. Rutherfurd, P.J. Moughan, R.P. Singh. 2013. The nature and emptying rate of gastric chyme after consumption of cooked brown or white rice in the growing pig. Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture. 93(12): 2900-2908.

G.M. Bornhorst, M.J. Ferrua, S.M. Rutherfurd, D.R. Heldman, R.P. Singh. 2013. Rheological Properties and Textural Attributes of Cooked Brown and White Rice during Gastric Digestion in Vivo. Food Biophysics. 8(2): 137-150.

G.M. Bornhorst, R.P. Singh. 2013.Kinetics of bread bolus digestion with varying in vitro oral and gastric parameters. Food Biophysics. 8(1):50-59.

G.M. Bornhorst, N. Ströbinger, S.M. Rutherfurd, R.P. Singh, P.J. Moughan. 2013. Properties of gastric chyme for pigs fed cooked brown or white rice. Food Biophysics. 8(1): 12-23.

G.M. Bornhorst, R.P.Singh. 2012. Bolus Formation and Disintegration during Digestion of Food Carbohydrates. Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety. 11: 101-118.