Graham Lyons

Graham Lyons

School of Agriculture, Food and Wine

Faculty of Sciences, Engineering and Technology

Grew up in Adelaide. Obtained B Agric Sci degree (University of Adelaide) in 1975. Spent 1980-1983 working on an agricultural development program in the Solomon Islands, and 1984-1997 operating a family agribusiness in SA (beef cattle, sheep, cereal crops), including the successful "Glen Bold" Angus stud. In the 1990s co-authored seven books, mostly on global environmental, agricultural, population, economic and health issues.
Obtained Master of Public Health degree (University of Adelaide, majoring in epidemiology and nutrition) in 2000, and a PhD (University of Adelaide, GRDC funded) in 2004. Title: High-selenium wheat: Biofortification for better health. An outcome of this research was the development and marketing of three innovative food products.
My background has formed my focus on applied research which can benefit producers and consumers in a timely manner. In order to overcome widespread nutrient/micronutrient deficiencies, it is necessary to move beyond production of food crops with yield as the sole focus, toward a "food system" paradigm based on sustainable provision of nutritious food to optimise human and animal health.
From 2006-2010 I managed the HarvestPlus Food Systems program. This included the following projects:
*Agronomic biofortification, soil fertility and crop variety trials in a micronutrient-deficient region of Shaanxi province, Central China.
*An orange-fleshed sweet potato program in Solomon Islands and PNG to raise vitamin A status (funded by ACIAR and HarvestPlus. See ).
*Preliminary investigation of potential trial sites for a food systems proof-of-concept trial in East Africa (Kenya, Uganda, DR Congo, Rwanda and Burundi), which involved the collection and analysis of plant tissues of important food crops.
*Agronomic biofortification field trials with cassava in Colombia, South America, in collaboration with the International Centre of Tropical Agriculture (CIAT).
*A pig feeding trial to investigate the effect of the carotenoid, lutein on bioavailability of dietary iron.
*In 2016, HarvestPlus Director, Professor Howarth Bouis won the World Food Prize, the de facto Nobel Prize for Food & Agriculture.

My other interests include physical fitness, nutrition, classical music, evolution and travel.

Research Interests
*Screening cereals for sodium accumulation and tolerance (sodicity & salinity research)
*Agronomic biofortification of food crops with micronutrients to reduce human and animal malnutrition and disease
*Investigating beneficial effects of selenium in plants
*Establishment and management of international agricultural and health programs. I am currently involved in an ACIAR-funded program: imports & trials of nutritious leafy vegetables for Kiribati & Tuvalu, Pacific Is.
*Epidemiology of chronic diseases
*Development of functional foods
*Development of novel "nutritherapies" for viral diseases and cancer

  • Past Higher Degree by Research Supervision (University of Adelaide)

    Date Role Research Topic Program Degree Type Student Load Student Name
    2013 - 2013 Co-Supervisor Consumers' purchasing motives of local foods in Indonesia: A means-end chain approach Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Mrs Poppy Arsil
    2011 - 2018 Co-Supervisor Improving Yields and Enhancing Zinc and Selenium Consumption in Zambian Population Through Argonomic Biofortification of Maize and Wheat Master of Agricultural Science Master Full Time Mr Christopher Gondwe
    2009 - 2013 Co-Supervisor Stability and Esterification of Lutein in Bread Wheat During Post Harvest Storage in Comparison with Banana Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Miss Fauziah Tufail Ahmad
    2004 - 2010 Principal Supervisor The Effects of Selenomethionine and Wheat Biofortified with Selenium on DNA Damage and Cell Death in Human Lymphocytes Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Part Time Dr Jing Wu
  • Committee Memberships

    Date Role Committee Institution Country
    2011 - ongoing Advisory Board Member International Society for Selenium Research - United States
  • Memberships

    Date Role Membership Country
    2014 - ongoing Member World Public health Nutrition Association -
    1997 - ongoing Member Australian Centre for Nutritional and Environmental Medicine Australia

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