Salwa Karboune

Image by Tom DiSandolo.

Associate Professor; Associate Dean (Research)

Scientific Director, Consortium for Research, Innovation and Transformation of Agrifood

T: 514 398-8666  |  salwa.karboune [at] (Email)  |  Macdonald-Stewart Building, MS1-040  |  LinkedIn


PhD - Food Biotechnology (Biocatalysis) University of Marseille, France 2003
DEA equivalence (Diploma of Advanced Studies) - Applied Chemistry, University of Marseille, France 1998
MSc - Food Science Engineering, Institut Agronomique et Vétérinaire Hassan II, Rabat, Morocco 1998
BSc - Food Science, Institut Agronomique et Vétérinaire Hassan II, Rabat, Morocco 1996

Short Bio

Professor Salwa Karboune is a graduate from the University of Marseille, France, in Food Biotechnology. Her main research expertise is in the design and development of new "green" approaches for the synthesis of novel functional food ingredients that can improve the quality and the functionality of food products. Her research program is based on a multidisciplinary approach combining food chemistry, enzyme technology and foodomics and focuses on carbohydrate/protein-based bioactive molecules. Such research is important as the structural and molecular roles of oligo/polysaccharides and proteins in biological systems are increasingly being recognized. Her research work also contributes to the sustainability of the Agri-Food sector by developing innovative biocatalytic approaches to generating highly added value functional ingredients from food-processing by-products. She has also an interest in the development of integrated approaches to translate knowledge into practical applications and new food products.

Her multidisciplinary research program has garnered national and international recognition through the sustained excellence of the research her group conducted. Her research has attracted funding from CFI, FRQNT, NSERC and MAPAQ. Since 2017, she has been the scientific director of The Consortium for Research, Innovation and Transformation (RITA) of Agrifood, an inclusive platform that establishes collaboration between research institutions and the food processing industry. At the national and International level, she is a member of the CFI Science Advisory Board, CIFST’s Scientific Expert Council, INAF executive board, INITIA foundation board and IFT Higher Education Review board. In 2015-2016, she chaired the NSERC Scholarships and Fellowships Selection Committee for Plant and Animal Biology. She is currently a committee member of NSERC Research Tools and Instruments Selection Committee for Biological Systems and Functions. She also serves on editorial and advisory boards for journals in her field. The research of her group has been covered in media, such as McGill Reporter, CBC and Journal of Montreal.

Professor Karboune is passionate about science and active learning, and she is a strong supporter of hands-on projects. She successfully mentored teams of students to first place prizes at the prestigious IFT Food Product Development competitions.

Active Affiliations

  • Board Member. IFT Higher Education Review board (HERB). 2019-Current
  • Executive Board Member. INAF, Institut des nutraceutiques et des aliments fonctionnels, Université Laval, Québec. 2016-current
  • Board Member. Canadian Food Innovators Science Advisory Board, Canadian Food Innovators. 2016-Current.
  • Committee Member, CIFST's Scientific Expert Council, Canadian Inst of Food Sci and Tech. 2018-Current.
  • Committee Member. NSERC Scholarships and Fellowships Selection Committee for Plant and Animal biology. 2013-2015.
  • Chair, NSERC Scholarships and Fellowships Selection Committee for Plant and Animal biology. 2015-2016.
  • Committee Member. NSERC Research Tools and Instruments Selection Committee for Biological Systems and Functions (1602), 2018-current
  • Committee Membre. Conseil d’administration de INITIA, CTAQ « La Fondation INITIA contribue à l’avancement du monde alimentaire par le transfert de connaissances ». 2016 – current.

Membership in Professional Organizations

  • Institute of Food Technology (IFT), Professional Member, USA.
  • Conseil de la Transformation Alimentaire du Québec
  • Canadian Institute of Food Science and Technology (CIFST), Professional Member, Canada.
  • American Oil Chemists' Society (AOCS), Member, USA.
  • Club of Bioconversion and Organic Synthesis (CBSO), Professional Member, France.
  • INITIA Foundation, Canada.

Research Interests

Dr Karboune’s research program aims at transferring novel findings emanating from bioactivity research to practical applications through innovations in sustainable biocatalytic processes to synthesize well-defined functional ingredients. The overall goal is to develop new sustainable processes and functional food ingredients from abundant biomass to meet the consumers’ needs of healthy diet. The focus is currently put towards developing novel functional food ingredients supporting intestinal health such as prebiotics and phenolated oligosaccharides to achieve desired gut microbiome phenotypes. Another current research focus area of Dr Karboune’s team is the enzymatic modification of plant-based proteins to enhance their functional properties and their applications.

Current Research

Current projects, under-investigation in our laboratory, are listed here below.

  • Development of an innovative enzymatic glycosylation strategy based on levansucrase-catalyzed transfructosylation reactions for the synthesis of hetero-fructooligosaccharides and polyfructosides having enhanced prebiotic effects and other physiological properties.
  • Investigation of the synergetic actions of levansucrase/levanase and levansucrase/galactosidase for the synthesis of controlled-molecular-size β-(2-6)-fructooligosaccharides and galacto(fructo)oligosaccharides with high colonic persistent prebiotic activity.
  • Exploration of the properties of selected biocatalysts immobilized on nanoparticles in a little-explored transitional region between heterogeneous and homogeneous catalysis.
  • Regioselective acylation of oligosaccharides with phenolic acids by feruloyl esterase using nano-emulsion systems to produce phenolated oligosaccharides.
  • Modification of proteins via laccase-catalyzed oxidative crosslinking and conjugation with polysaccharides to improve their techno-functionalities and health-promoting properties.
  • Development of innovative biocatalytic approaches for the biogeneration of non-digestible oligosaccharides, polysaccharides, and proteins from abundant agri-food by-products, including potato pulp, cranberry pomace and cocoa bean shell.
  • Development of multidimensional approaches (an intelligent platform) to identify and select multifunctional natural ingredients

The results of these projects have implications in various fields as biotechnology, food science and industrial processing.


FDSC 405 Food Product Development 3 Credits
    Offered in the:
  • Fall
  • Winter
  • Summer

FDSC 504 Course not available


View a list of current publications

Current Lab Members


Lan Liu (Research Associate, co-supervised by Dr S. Bayen)
Nastaran Khodaei (Research Associate)
Mingqin Li (Post-Doctoral Fellow)
Eugenio Spadoni Andreani (Post-Doctoral Fellow)
Amal Sahyoun (PhD candidate)
Delphine Martineau-Côté (PhD candidate, co-supervised by Dr L’hocine)
Kelly Light (PhD candidate)
Elham Chidar (MSc Student)
Rami Bahlawan (MSc Student)
Amalie Younes (MSc Student)
YiNing (Celeste) Dong (MSc student, co-supervised by Dr Ronholm)
Nandini Kodamagge Taranath (Research Assistant)


Veronique Fournier (Research Associate)
Nausheen Sadiq (Post-Doctoral Fellow, Co-supervised by Dr Bayen)
Marya Aziz (Post-Doctoral Fellow)
Seo Sooyoun (Post-Doctoral Fellow)
Juan Carrillo Montes (Post-Doctoral Fellow)
Maryam Khodadadi (Post-Doctoral Fellow)
Mingqin Li (PhD)
Eugenio Spadoni Andreani (PhD)
Juan Tamayo Cabezas (PhD)
Andrea Hill (PhD)
Jin Li (PhD)
Amanda Waglay (PhD)
Feng Tian (PhD)
Nastaran Khodaei (PhD)
Seo Sooyoun (PhD )
Marina Minh Nguyen (MSc thesis)
Mehdi Sirouspour (MSc thesis)
Marika Houde (MSc thesis)
Erin Davis (MSc thesis)
Meng Yuan Chen (MSc thesis)
Afshan Malick (MSc thesis)
Neeyal Appanah (MSc thesis)
Mengxi Li (MSc thesis)
Lotthida Inthanavong (MSc thesis)
Jessica Soares Couto (MSc thesis)
Pratibha Pratibha (MSc non-thesis)
Chloe Derouet (MSc non-thesis)
Heloise Piaud (MSc non-thesis)
Diksha Rani (MSc non-thesis)
Nandini Kodamagge Taranath (MSc non-thesis)
Nitin Arora (MSc non-thesis)
Shi he (MSc non thesis)
Chia-Ning Chang (MSc non thesis)
Maria Lucia Loero (MSc non thesis)
Ankoer Goel (MSc non thesis)
Sumeet Pal Singh (MSc non thesis)
Rency Mathew (MSc non thesis)
Sabrina Young (MSc non thesis)
Yi Wang (MSc non thesis)
Leanne Willson (MSc non thesis)


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