David Kitts

David Kitts

Associate Dean, Research

Professor, Food Science



FNH 243, 2205 East Mall

University of California, Davis, 1983, PostDoc, Animal Physiology

University of British Columbia, 1981, Ph.D, Animal Physiology

University of British Columbia, 1976, M.Sc, Animal Physiology

University of British Columbia, 1974, B.Sc, Animal Science

My research discipline is Food Chemistry and Toxicology. I employ many aspects of food chemistry principles to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms of both nutrient and food toxicant action in living organisms. Recently, my laboratory has focused on characterizing the mechanisms of antioxidant and prooxidant activity for many naturally occurring animal and plant constituents, in addition to derived products from food processing. Moreover, we have focused also on the interaction between food constituents and transition metals in modulating generation of free radical and peroxidation reactions that can alter stability of lipids in both food materials as well as biological membranes.

Research Projects

Antioxidant and metal sequestering activity of Maillard Reaction products

Funded by NSERC

Bioactivity components in mother’s milk

Funded by AFMnet

Functional and health properties of cranberry

Funded by UBC Trust

Chemical methods of stabilizing oils using phytochemicals

Funded by IRAP and Industry partners

Mixed tocopherol preparations and presence of phytonutrients will influence vitamin E bioavailability and antioxidant function in intestinal cell lines

Funded by FNH-VCL

Stress related induction of resveratrol in grapes and mechanism of action

Funded by NCE-Agr.Canada

Food Chemistry (FNH 301) undergraduate course.

Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals (FNH 402) undergraduate course

Food Science Capstone (FNH 425)-undergraduate course

Food Science Undergraduate Thesis (FNH 499)

Food Toxicology and Risk Assessment (Food 525) graduate course

See Google Scholar for a full list of publications.

Journal Articles

Kopeć, A. Zawistowski, J. and Kitts, D.D. 2020. Benefits of anthocyanin-rich black rice fraction and wood sterols to control plasma and tissue lipid concentrations in Wistar Kyoto rats fed an atherogenic diet. Molecules 25 (22), 5363. https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25225363

Jenkins, D.J., Kitts, D.D., Giovannucci, E.L., Sahye-Pudaruth, S., Paquette, M., Blanco Mejia, S., Patel, D., Kavanagh, M., Tsirakis, T., Kendall, C.W.C., Pichika, S.C. and Sievnepiper, J.L. 2020. Selenium, antioxidants, cardiovascular disease, and all-cause mortality: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 112 (6), 1642- 1652. https://doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/nqaa245

Zhang, Huiying (Amelie)., Nakamura, S. and Kitts, D.D. 2020. Antioxidant properties of casein phosphopeptides (CPP) and Maillard-type conjugated products. Antioxidants. 9, 648; https://doi.org/10.3390/antiox9080648

Hingston, P., Johnson, K., Kitts, D.D. Wang, S. 2020. Safety and Quality of Fish and Game meats prepared by first nations communities in British Columbia, Canada. Journal of Food Protection. 83: (5). 896-901. https://doi.org/10.4315/JFP-19-492

Pratap Singh, A., Fathordoobady,F., Guo, Y., Singh, A; and Kitts, D.D. Antioxidants help favorably regulate the kinetics of lipid peroxidation, poly-unsaturated fatty acids degradation and acidic cannabinoids decarboxylation in hempseed oil. Scientific Reports. 10 (1) 10567. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-67267-0

Chen, X., Singh, A. and Kitts, D.D. 2020. In-vitro bioaccessibility and bioavailability of heavy metals in a mineral clay complex used in natural health products Scientific Reports. 10 (1):8823 https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-65449-4

Wang, Y., Bellissimo, N., Kitts, D.D., O’Brien, H.T., Ma, D., Suh, M. et al. 2020. Knowledge and Perceptions of Carbohydrates among Nutrition-Major and Nutrition-Elective Undergraduate Students in Canada. Journal of American College of Nutrition. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-65449-4

Kitts, D.D., Singh, A., Fathordoobady, F., Doi, B. and Pratap Singh, A. 2019. Plant extracts inhibit the formation of hydroperoxides and help maintain vitamin e levels and omega-3 fatty acids during high temperature processing and storage of hempseed and soybean oils. Journal of Food Science. 84: (11). 3147-3155. https://doi.org/10.1111/1750-3841.14817

Mu. K. Yu, S. and Kitts, D.D. 2019. The role of nitric oxide in regulating intestinal redox status and intestinal epithelial cell functionality. International Journal of Molecular Science. 20: (7) 1755. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20071755

Laing, N. Dupuis, J.H., Yada, R. and Kitts, D.D. 2019. Chlorogenic acid isomers directly interact with Keap 1-Nrf2 signaling in Caco-2 cells. Molecular Cellular Biochemistry. 457: (1,2). 105-108. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11010-019-03516-9

Liang, N. and Kitts, D.D. 2018. Chlorogenic acid (CGA) isomers alleviate interleukin 8 (IL-8) production in Caco-2 cells by decreasing phosphorylation of p38 and increasing cell integrity. International Journal Molecular Science. 19: (12) 3873: https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms19123873

Laing, N. and Kitts, D.D. 2018. Chlorogenic acid isomers ameliorate oxidative stress in Caco-2 cells treated with pro-inflammatory proteins by activating the Nrf2/Keap1-ARE signaling pathway. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 66: 11008-11017. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.jafc.8b03983

Book Chapters

Kitts, D.D. 2019. “Dietary Lipids and Physiological Function”. In Bailey’s Industrial Oil and Fat Products (7th Edition) Manuscript ID biof.20160105. Fereidoon Shahidi. Editor in Chief. https://doi.org/10.1002/047167849X.bio105

Yegin, S., Kopec, A., Kitts, D.D. and Zawistowski, J. 2020. Dietary fiber: a functional food ingredient with physiological benefits. In: Dietary Sugar, Salt, Fat and Calories in Human Health. D. Bagchi (Ed.). Elsevier. Pp. 531-555. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-816918-6.00024-X

Liang, N*., Mu, K*., and Kitts, D.D. 2017. Beneficial health compounds found in Coffee beans. In: “Achieving sustainable cultivation of coffee.” Ed. Philippe Lashermes. Chapter 12. 32 pages. BDS Publishing, N.Y.

Kitts, D.D. and Liu, Y*. 2015. Encapsulation strategies to stabilize a natural folate, L-5-methyltetrahydrofolic acid for food fortification practices. In: Nanotechnology and Functional Foods: Effective Delivery of Bioactive Ingredients. 1st Edition, Chapter 9. Ed. Sabliov, C., Chen, H and Yada, R. Wiley-Blackwell. Publishing. N.Y. pp142-157.

Zawistowski, J. and Kitts, D.D. 2015. Plant Sterols-Functional food ingredients for cardiovascular health. In: Nutraceuticals and Functional Foods, Encyclopedia of Life Support Systems. G.K. Jayaprakasha (Ed). UNESCO Eolss Publishers Paris France.(pp1-30).