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Evaluation of the heritability of the chemical components of the almond (Prunus amygdalus Batsch) kernel

Font i Forcada, C., Kodad, O., Socias i Company, R.
Acta horticulturae 2011 no.912 pp. 465-467
Prunus dulcis, almonds, alpha-tocopherol, breeding, fatty acid composition, fruit quality, gamma-tocopherol, genetic background, heritability, linoleic acid, lipid content, oleic acid, protein content, seeds
Oil content, fatty acid composition, tocopherol content and total protein were evaluated in 200 genotypes from four almond breeding progenies from the breeding program at the Centro de Investigación y Tecnología Agroalimentaria (CITA) de Aragón, Spain, to select cultivars producing kernels of higher quality. Oil content ranged between 37% and 67.5% of dry matter, with significant differences between genotypes. The major fatty acid was oleic, followed by linoleic, as described for almond cultivars, with variability depending on the genotype. Quantification of tocopherol homologs (α, δ, and γ) confirmed the importance of α-tocopherol, with significant differences between genotypes and homologs, indicating a genetic control. The protein content ranged between 24.7% and 8.4%, with a range of variability of 3.13%. The value of heritability by components of variance for γ-tocopherol and oil content was high. For linoleic acid and α-tocopherol the heritability was medium and for the rest of components was low. These results point at the importance of the genetic background on the fruit quality profile of almond kernels and the relevance of the different components for selecting new plant material.