Staff profile

Sife  Chikunya

Dr Sife Chikunya

BSc Hons, MSc, PG Cert., PhD, FHEA, R.Anim.Sci.

Role

Senior Lecturer in Animal Science and Head of Research. I teach undergraduate (BSc) and postgraduate (MSc & PhD) degree programmes. I lead a number nutrition and biochemistry related modules in the Animal, Bioveterinary Science and Sports Programme Area. I am also responsible for coordinating research and postgraduate research degree programmes at Writtle University College.

Biography

I hold the following academic qualifications: a BSc (Hons) in Animal Science (University of Zimbabwe), an MSc in Animal Nutrition (University of Cambridge), a PG Cert. in Learning and Teaching (Open University), and a PhD in Ruminant Nutrition (University of Cambridge). During my academic career I have received prestigious scholarships and awards, such as The Rotary Foundation Freedom from Hunger Scholarship, The Commonwealth and Livingstone Trust Scholarship, and The Farmers Clubs Charitable Trust scholarship. I hold several professional fellowships namely, Fellow of the Cambridge Commonwealth Society; Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, Honarary Member of the Farmers Club, Member of the British Society of Animal Science, and Member of the Nutrition Society.

Qualifications

PhD, Ruminant Nutrition (University of Cambridge)
PG Cert, Learning & Teaching in Higher Education (Open University)
MSc, Animal Nutrition (University of Aberdeen)
BSc (Hons), Animal Science (University of Zimbabwe)

Subject Areas

My main area of specialisation is animal nutrition science. I teach the following modules:
Introduction to Biochemistry
Nutritional Biochemistry
Principles of Animal Nutrition
Applied Nutrition and Feeding
Companion and Zoo Animal Nutrition and Feeding
Research Methods
Animal Nutrition Science
Nutritional Issues in Animal Welfare
Current Issues in Animal Science

Research

My areas of research interest include utilisation of nitrogen and energy sources in ruminants. I am also interested in the metabolism and utilisation of dietary fatty acids and vitamins in ruminants, and their effects on semen quality and ruminant food products such as meat and milk. Recently, I have started work to investigate the effects of essential oils on the activities or rumen micro-organisms in vitro.

PUBLICATIONS

Chaudhry A. S., Chikunya S., Flockhart J., Gibbons, J., Houdijk, J. G., Kelly A., Kenny, D. A. Mannsbridge, S. C., Mayes, R. W., Nash, D. M., Richardson, R. I., Rooke J. A., Rose M. T., Steele M. A., Wolf B. T. and Wood S. [Editors], (2016). Advances in Animal Biosciences: Animal Science for a Sustainable Future. Volume 7, Issue 1, April 2016 (ISSN 2040-4700). Cambridge University Press.

Athanasiadou S., Chaudhry A. S., Chikunya S., Denwood, M., Flockhart J., Flynn J., Gibbons, J., Houdijk, J. G., Kenny, D. A., Mather, A., Mayes, R. W., McNeilly T., Nash, D. M., Richardson, R. I., Rooke J. A., Rose M. T., Steele M. A., Rymer, C., Wall E., Wolf B. T. and Wylie S. [Editors], (2015). Advances in Animal Biosciences: Science with Impact. Volume 6, Issue 1, April 2015. Cambridge University Press

Athanasiadou S., Chaudhry A. S., Chikunya S., Denwood, M., Eckersall D. P., Flockhart J., Flynn J., Gibbons, J., Houdijk, J. G., Kenny, D. A., King T., Mather, A., Mayes, R. W., McNeilly T., Nash, D. M., Richardson, R. I., Rooke J. A., Rose M. T., Steele M. A., Waters, S., Wall E., Wolf B. T. and Wylie S. [Editors] (2014). Advances in Animal Biosciences: Science into Practice and Planning for Intensification. Volume 5, Issue 1, April 2014, Cambridge University Press.

Eburu P. and Chikunya, S. (2015). Effects of ten whole essential oils on rumen fermentation and biohydrogenation of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids by rumen microorganisms in vitro. Advances in Animal Biosciences 6 (2) pp. 203. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.

Eburu F. and Chikunya, S. (2015). The effects of graded doses of 4‐allylanisole, anethole, anise oil and cassia oil on fermentation and biohydrogenation of n‐3 polyunsaturated fatty acids by rumen microorganisms in vitro. Advances in Animal Biosciences 6 (2) pp. 204. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press

Sgwane T.S., Chikunya S. and Wallace R. J. (2014) Effect of (+)-α-pinene and L-menthone on selected Butyrivibrio species and ruminal biohydrogenation of linoleic acid in vitro. Rowett-INRA 9th Joint Symposium, Aberdeen, Scotland, UK 16 – 19 June 2014.

Collingbourne S.J., De Luna C.J., Chikunya S. and Carter A. (2014). The commercial viability of crossbreeding modern and traditional pig breeds. Advances in Animal Bioscience 5 (1) pp. 140. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press

Eburu F. and Chikunya, S. (2014). Assessment of the effects of fifteen compounds from essential oil extracts on the metabolism of polyunsaturated fatty acids by rumen microorganisms in vitro. Advances in Animal Bioscience 5 (1) pp. 78. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press

Gilman F. and Chikunya, S. (2014). The effects of whole clove bud oil or its three principal constituent components on the biohydrogenation of polyunsaturated fatty acids by rumen microorganisms in vitro. Advances in Animal Bioscience 5 (1) pp. 84. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press

Sgwane TS, Wallace RJ, Chikunya S (2013). Effect of essential oil compounds on metabolism of dietary polyunsaturated fatty acids by ruminal microbes in vitro. In: Proceedings of the British Society of Animal Science and the Association of Veterinary Teaching and Research Work 16-17 April 2013; University of Nottingham, 576 UK: Cambridge University Press

Sgwane, T. S., Wallace R.J. and Chikunya, S. (2013). The effects of essential oil compounds on the metabolism of polyunsaturated fatty acids by rumen microorganisms in vitro. Advances in Animal Biosciences 4 (1), pp. 41. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.

Bokharaeian, M. and Chikunya, S. (2012). Effects of 3-carene, resorcinol, and p-cresol on the metabolism of polyunsaturated fatty acids by rumen microorganisms in vitro. Advances in Animal Biosciences 3 (1), pp. 106. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press

Adebiyi, A.O. and Chikunya, S. (2011). The effects of combining sodium hydroxide treatment with fungal cellulases on the in vitro fermentation characteristics of wheat straw. Annual Meeting of the European Federation of Animal Science, pp. 71. Wageningen Academic Publishers, Netherlands.

Mufungwe, J. and Chikunya, S. (2011). The effects of phenylpropanoid essential oil compounds on the fermentation characteristics of a dairy cow ration in vitro. Annual Meeting of the European Federation of Animal Science, pp. 276. Wageningen Academic Publishers, Netherlands.

Schwitzer C., J. Bilstra, Chikunya S. and Carroll J. B. (2010). Nutrient digestibility and digestive efficiency in Livingstone’s fruit bats (Pteropus livingstonii). Proceedings of the 6th European Zoo Nutrition Conference, Barcelona, Spain: 28-31 January 2010Estuty N., Chikunya S. and Scaife J. (2010). Extent of biohydrogenation by rumen micro-organisms on n-3 PUFA in two protected fat sources incubated in vitro. Proceedings of the European Association of Animal Production. pp. 215. Wageningen Academic Publishers, Netherlands.

Mitchell K. and Chikunya S. (2010). The effects of individual or blended essential oils on rumen gas production and ammonia accumulation in vitro. Proceedings of the British Society of Animal Science, pp 28. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.

Kikuchi A., Bleach E. and Chikunya S. (2010). Influence of cat owners' feeding practice and attitude towards obesity on body condition of cats. Proceedings of the British Society of Animal Science, pp 107. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.

Estuty N., Chikunya S. and Scaife J. (2009). Effects of feeding protected linseed or fish oil on the lipid composition and characteristics of Suffolk ram semen. Proceedings of the European Association of Animal Production, pp. 562. Wageningen Academic Publishers.

Estuty N., Chikunya S. and Scaife J. (2008). Effects of n-3 PUFA on the quality of Suffolk rams. Proceedings of the European Association of Animal Production, pp 225.Wageningen Academic Publishers.

Estuty N., Chikunya S. and Scaife J. (2008). Effects of dietary polyunsaturated fatty acids on the quality of Suffolk rams. Proceedings of the Society of Feed Technologists.

Yaxley M., Schwitzer C. and Chikunya S (2008). Diet selection and nutrient intakes of lion tamarins (Leontopithecus spp): a preliminary study. Proceeding of the 5th European Zoo Nutrition Conference, Chester: 24-27th January 2008

Gosling, R. J., Chikunya S. and Scaife J. (2006). The effects of lead salt speciation and concentration on rumen microbial activity, in-vitro. Proceedings of the British Society of Animal Science, pp. 234.

Gosling, R. J., Chikunya S. and Scaife J. (2006). The effects of cadmium on parameters of fermentation by rumen micro-organisms in-vitro. Proceedings of the British Society of Animal Science, pp. 230.

Sinclair L. A., Cooper S. L., Chikunya S., Wilkinson R. G., Hallett K. G, Enser M. and Wood J. D. (2005). Biohydrogenation of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids in the rumen and their effects on microbial metabolism and plasma fatty acid concentrations in sheep. Animal Science 81: 239-244

Chikunya S., Demirel G., Enser M., Wood J. D., Wilkinson R. G. and Sinclair L. A. (2004). Biohydrogenation of dietary n-3 PUFA and stability of ingested vitamin E in the rumen, and their effects on microbial activity in sheep. British Journal of Nutrition 91: 539-550.

Chikunya S. (2004). Gastrointestinal microbiology of farm animals: In The Encyclopaedia of Farm Animal Nutrition (Editors, M. F. Fuller, S. P. Lall, K. J. McCracken, H. Omed and C. J. C. Phillips), CABI Publishing, Oxford, UK.

Chikunya S, Sinclair L. A., Wilkinson R. G. (2002). Influence of dietary fatty acids on the milk fat composition and performance of lactating Friesland ewes. Proceedings of the British Society of Animal Science, pp. 97.

Cooper S. L., Sinclair L. A., Wilkinson R. G., Chikunya S., Hallet K., Enser M and Wood J. D. (2002). Rumen biohydrogenation of polyunsaturated fatty acid sources and their effect on plasma fatty acid status in sheep. Proceedings of the British Society of Animal Science, pp. 177.

Cooper S. L., Sinclair L. A., Huntington J. A., Wilkinson R. G., Chikunya S., Enser M. and Wood J. D. (2001). The biohydrogenation of n-3 fatty acids determined in vitro. Proceedings of the British Society of Animal Science, pp. 147.

Chikunya S, Sinclair L. A., Wilkinson R. G., Chikunya S., Hallet K., Enser M. and Wood J. D. (2000). Biohydrogenation of dietary n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids and stability of ingested vitamin E in the rumen of sheep. Proceedings of the Japanese Society for Rumen metabolism and Physiology, 11(2): 46.

Chikunya S (1999). Microbial protein synthesis and fibre digestion in the rumen in relation to the form of supplementary nitrogen. PhD Thesis, University of Cambridge,UK.

Chikunya S., Newbold C. J., Rode L., Chen X. B. and Wallace R. J. (1996). Influence of rumen degradable protein on bacterial growth in the rumen of sheep receiving different energy sources. Animal feed Science and Technology, 63: 333-340.

Chikunya S (1994). Effects of rumen degradable protein on bacterial growth in the rumen of sheep receiving different energy sources. MSc Thesis, University of Aberdeen, Scotland, UK.