Prof. Vic Morris

Emeritus Fellow

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I am professionally qualified as a chemist and a physicist and my early PhD research was in solid state physics. After post-doctoral studies funded by fellowships from the Ministry of Defence, the Medical Research Council and ICI, I  joined the Quadram Institute Bioscience in 1979, with a brief to introduce molecular biophysical methods into food science.

This research at Quadram Institute Bioscience has focused on the use of physical techniques to understand the nature of complex food structures. My most recent interest has been focused on food structure and health and includes research on molecular structure at interfaces, starch structure and function and the molecular basis for the bioactivity of plant carbohydrates.

At Quadram Institute Bioscience I am involved in the pioneering use of atomic force microscopy and force spectroscopy to probe the molecular structure of foods. These methods have allowed solutions to previously intractable complex problems in food science.

I am an ISI ‘highly-cited’ researcher in Agricultural Sciences, a fellow of the Institute of Physics, the Royal Society of Chemistry, the Institute of Food Science and Technology and the International Academy of Food Science and Technology. I was awarded an MBE for my services to food science and I was the first winner of the Food Hydrocolloid Trust Medal. More details of my research interests are given at

Key Publications

Miles MJ, Morris VJ, Orford PD & Ring SG. The roles of amylose and amylopectin in the gelation and retrogradation of starch. Carbohydrate Research 135 (1985) 271-281.

Mackie, AR, Gunning, AP, Wilde, PJ & Morris, VJ 1999 The orogenic displacement of protein from the air/water interface by competitive adsorption. J Colloid & Interface Sci. 210, 157-166.

Gunning AP, Bongaerts RJM & Morris VJ.Recognition of galactan components of pectin by galectin-3. FASEB J. 23, 415–424 (2009).

Morris V. J. & Gunning A. P. Microscopy, microstructure and displacement of proteins from interfaces Soft Matter 4 943-951 2008.

Maxwell EG, Belshaw NJ, Waldron KW & Morris VJ. 2012 Pectin- An emerging new bioactive polysaccharide. Trends in Food Science and Technology 24, 64-73

Petropoulou K., Chambers E. S., Morrison D. J., Preston T., Godsland I. F., Wilde P., Narbad A., Parker R., Salt L., Morris V. J., Domoney C., Persaud S. J., Holmes E., Penson S., Watson J., Stocks M., Buurman M., Luterbacher M., Frost G.. (2016)

Identifying crop variants with high resistant starch content to maintain healthy glucose homeostasis

Nutrition Bulletin, 41, 372-377

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Merali Z., Marjamaa K., Kasper A., Kruus K., Gunning A. P., Morris V. J., Waldron K. W.. (2016)

Chemical characterization of hydrothermally pretreated and enzyme-digested wheat straw: An evaluation of recalcitrance

Food Chemistry, 198, 132-140

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Maxwell E. G., Colquhoun I. J., Chau H. K., Hotchkiss A. T., Waldron K. W., Morris V. J., Belshaw N. J., Belshaw N. J.. (2015)

Rhamnogalacturonan I containing homogalacturonan inhibits colon cancer cell proliferation by decreasing ICAM1 expression

Carbohydrate Polymers, 132, 546-553

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Posé S., Kirby A. R., Paniagua C., Waldron K. W., Morris V. J., Quesada M. A., Mercado J. A.. (2015)

The nanostructural characterization of strawberry pectins in pectate lyase or polygalacturonase silenced fruits elucidates their role in softening

Carbohydrate Polymers, 132, 134-145

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Maxwell E. G., Colquhoun I. J., Chau H. K., Hotchkiss A. T., Waldron K. W., Morris V. J., Belshaw N. J.. (2015)

Modified sugar beet pectin induces apoptosis of colon cancer cells via an interaction with the neutral sugar side-chains Publication date: 20 January 2016 Volume: 136 Pages: 923-929

Carbohydrate Polymers, 136, 923-929

Liu D., Wellner N., Parker M. L., Morris V. J., Cheng F.. (2015)

In situ mapping of the effect of additional mutations on starch granule structure in amylose extender (ae) maize kernels

Carbohydrate Polymers, 118, 199-208

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Gunning A. P., Kirby A. R., Wilde P. J., Penfold R., Woodward N. C., Morris V. J.. (2013)

Probing the role of interfacial rheology in the relaxation behaviour between deformable oil droplets using force spectroscopy

Soft Matter, 9, 11473-11479

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Liu D., Parker M. L., Wellner N., Kirby A. R., Cross K., Morris V. J., Cheng F.. (2013)

Structural variability between starch granules in wild type and in ae high-amylose mutant maize kernels

Carbohydrate Polymers, 97, 458-468

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