Jump to Main Content
Influence of cultivar and fruit ripening on olive (Olea europaea) fruit protein content, composition, and antioxidant activity
- Zamora, R., Alaiz, M., Hidalgo, F.J.
- Journal of agricultural and food chemistry 2001 v.49 no.9 pp. 4267-4270
- Olea europaea, cultivars, mesocarp, olives, protein content, olive oil, chemical composition, amino acids, lipid bodies, soybean oil, oxidation, polypeptides, amino acid composition
- Proteins of olive fruit mesocarp are not very well-known at present. However, they have been shown to pass, at least partially, to the olive oil during its elaboration and therefore might be contributing to some of the special characteristics of this vegetable oil. In this study, protein content and composition were determined in olive fruits, cv. Arbequina and Picual, at three stages of ripening: green, spotted, and purple. Mesocarp proteins constituted 1.3-1.8% of the dry weight of the olive fruit, and cultivar and fruit ripening did not produce important changes in mesocarp protein content or composition. In addition, this composition was also similar to the amino acid composition of a 4.6-kDa polypeptide, which is the major protein component of olive oils and of oil bodies of olive fruit mesocarp, suggesting that this polypeptide is likely to be a major component of mesocarp proteins. There was, also, a relationship between the oil content of the olive fruit and the protein content determined, suggesting a stabilizing function of these proteins in the oil bodies of the olive fruit, analogously to the role suggested for oleosins. This stabilizing function does not seem to be extended to olive oils because when the polypeptides isolated were added at 20 ppm to soybean oil, the stability of the oil increased only slightly, suggesting that if these compounds play some role in the stability of the oils, this should be mostly a consequence of the possible interactions among these protein components and other olive oil antioxidant constituents.