Junior Research Scientist in Food flavour and perception

21000 DIJON

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INRAE presentation

The French National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food, and the Environment (INRAE) is a public research establishment under the dual authority of the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Research.

INRAE is recruiting researchers by open competition and offering permanent position.

It is a major player in research and innovation created on 1st of January 2020. INRAE is a research institute resulting from the merger of INRA and IRSTEA. It is a community of 12,000 people with more than 200 research units and 42 experimental units located throughout France.

The institute is among the world leaders in agricultural and food sciences, in plant and animal sciences, and is 11th in the world in ecology and environment. INRAE’s main goal is to be a key player in the transitions necessary to address major global challenges. In the face of the increase in population, climate change, scarcity of resources and decline in biodiversity, the institute develops solutions for multiperformance agriculture, high quality food and sustainable management of resources and ecosystems.

Work environment, missions and activities

The Center for Taste and Feeding behavior (CSGA) is a multidisciplinary research unit composed of circa 200 staff, of which 60 are researchers. The objectives of the CSGA are to explain the sensory properties of foods through food composition factors, to understand sensory perception, food preferences and food choices throughout life. Accounting for sensory perception variability is scientific frontier studied by the Flavor Food Oral Processing & Perception (FFOPP) team.
The FFOPP (30 staff, including 12 researchers and professors) focuses its research on understanding the mechanisms underlying the construction of the mental representation of food in humans and thus contributing to the challenge of ensuring food acceptability while adapting to the needs of different populations and age groups. The team develops a systemic and transdisciplinary approach, considering the Food-Eater tandem whilst considering food composition and structure, food bolus formation, oral physiology, the dynamics of flavor compound release, and the multimodal interactions occurring in the central nervous system.

You will be assigned to the FFOPP team and your research will focus on the consequences of physical and chemical transformations that occur during food oral processing on the senso-availability of chemical stimuli (odor and taste-active compounds) and their perception. You will define concepts and develop in vitro, in silico and in vivo methodologies to study physical and chemical mechanisms (transfers, reactions) regulating the release of chemical stimuli in the mouth and the impact of food (ingredients, process) and eater variability (age, pathologies, life habits) on the availability of these stimuli for the receptors and on the dynamic of perception .
To carry out your project, you will have access to team's expertise in saliva biochemistry, oral physiology and chewing, psychophysics and neurosciences in connection with food flavor perception. You will be able to set up protocols using the team's specific tools such as artificial mouth, salivary reactor, chewing recording systems. You will work in close collaboration with the ChemoSens platform of the CSGA for sensory and instrumental methodologies related to flavor compounds analyses (GC/MSMS/O, in vivo PTR/TofMS, APPI/HRMS).

Training and skills

PhD or equivalent

This competition is open to candidates with a doctoral degree (or equivalent).
You have demonstrated expertise in food physico-chemistry and/or analytical chemistry of small molecules. Knowledge of oral physiology and/or sensory perception would be advantages for the post.
Proficiency in English is required as well as long-term international experience: successful candidates who have not yet had one will have to stay abroad at the end of the year of internship.

INRAE's life quality

By joining our teams, you benefit from:

- 30 days of annual leave + 15 days "Reduction of Working Time" (for a full time);
- parenting support: CESU childcare, leisure services;
- skills development systems: training, career advise;
- social support: advice and listening, social assistance and loans;
- holiday and leisure services: holiday vouchers, accommodation at preferential rates;
sports and cultural activities;
- collective catering.

Offer reference

  • Profile number: CR-2021-TRANSFORM-2
  • Corps: CRCN
  • Category: A
  • Open competition number: 29

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