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Grain and Nutritional Quality Traits of Southwestern U.S. Blue Maize Landraces

Nankar, Amol, Holguin, F. Omar, Scott, M. Paul, Pratt, Richard C.
Cereal chemistry 2017 v.94 no.6 pp. 950-955
Zea mays, amino acid composition, anthocyanins, color, corn, cyanidin, functional foods, genotype, glucosides, high performance liquid chromatography, landraces, near-infrared spectroscopy, nutritive value, oils, pelargonidin, seeds, starch, texture, New Mexico
Anthocyanin-rich Southwestern blue maize (Zea mays L.) landraces are receiving interest as functional foods, and commercial production is increasing. We determined variation in kernel color, anthocyanin content, texture, and selected compositional traits of representative varieties. In 2013, eight varieties were grown at four locations in New Mexico. Total kernel anthocyanin content (TAC) and component pigments were measured with spectrophotometry and HPLC, respectively. Oil, protein, starch, and kernel density were determined using NIR spectroscopy and amino acid concentrations using wet chemistry. An average of 49.6 mg/100 g of TAC with a range of 17.6–65.1 mg/100 g was observed. Cyanidin and pelargonidin were major components, and peonidin and succinyl 3-glucoside were minor components. Low levels of disuccinyl glucoside were detected. Blue kernels were higher in anthocyanin than purple or red kernels. Floury kernels displayed the highest protein and oil contents and the lowest starch content and kernel density. The highest starch and kernel density levels were observed in small flint/dent and pop-flint/dent kernels. Amino acid content was variable across genotypes and locations.