Daniela Barile

Daniela Barile

Position Title

Food Science and Technology


Barile, a professor in the Department of Food Science and Technology, specializes in food chemistry and biochemistry. Barile completed her Ph.D. in food science at the University of Piemonte Orientale Amedeo Avogadro, Italy. She joined the UC Davis faculty in 2011 after a postdoctoral fellowship at UC Davis.

Research interests:

Foods for health, dairy products, bioactive compound isolation and characterization, agricultural side-streams, prebiotics, probiotics, functional foods.

Brief overview:

“Functional foods” provide a health benefit to the consumer over and above the inherent nutritional content. While functional foods target many aspects of health, intestinal well-being is a popular focus, particularly for those foods containing probiotics and prebiotics.

One functional food under investigation in the Barile lab comes from cows’ milk.  Barile discovered complex sugars (oligosaccharides) in cows’ milk that resemble those in human milk and potentially have the same protective qualities. The Barile lab is now using novel methods for the isolation and characterization of these complex sugars from several mammalian milks and agricultural byproducts. The ultimate goal is to capture these valuable molecules from bovine whey (the byproduct of cheese-making) and other agricultural discards to use them as food supplements that enhance long-term health, especially for infants, the elderly, and others with compromised immune systems. By extracting these complex sugars from agricultural byproducts, which are currently discarded as waste, we can also improve the profitability and sustainability of the food industry.


Current projects:

  • Pilot study on the tolerability of feeding bovine milk oligosaccharides for modifying gastrointestinal function in healthy humans
  • Mechanisms by which human milk peptides and N-glycans shape the infant intestinal microbiota
  • Separation and purification of oligosaccharides from human milk
  • Protecting the fragile intestine: integrating microbiota and mucosal health
  • Polysaccharides from non-Saccharomyces yeasts: a new opportunity to improve wine quality and human health
  • Analysis of bovine milk peptides and glycolipids by mass spectrometry