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Glucosinolates in Broccoli Sprouts (Brassica oleracea var. italica) as Conditioned by Sulphate Supply during Germination

Pérez-Balibrea, Santiago, Moreno, Diego A., García-Viguera, Cristina
Journal of food science 2010 v.75 no.8 pp. C673
seed germination, sprouts (food), application timing, broccoli, plant nutrition, sprouting, phytochemicals, sowing, Brassica oleracea var. italica, fertilizer rates, seedlings, secondary metabolites, sulfur fertilizers, health foods, glucosinolates
Sulphur (S) fertilization is essential for primary and secondary metabolism in cruciferous foods. Deficient, suboptimal, or excessive S affects the growth and biosynthesis of secondary metabolites in adult plants. Nevertheless, there is little information regarding the influence of S fertilization on sprouts and seedlings. An experiment was set up to evaluate the effect of S fertilization, supplied as K2SO4 at 0, 15, 30, and 60 mg/L, on the glucosinolate content of broccoli sprouts during the germination course of 3, 6, 9, and 12 d after sowing. Glucosinolate concentration was strongly influenced by germination, causing a rapid increase during the first 3 d after sowing, and decreasing afterwards. The S supply increased aliphatic and total glucosinolate content at the end of the monitored sprouting period. S-treated sprouts, with S15, S30, and S60 at 9 and 12 d after sowing presented enhanced glucosinolate content. Overall, both germination time and S fertilization were key factors in maximizing the bioactive health-promoting phytochemicals of broccoli. Germination with sulphate is a simple and inexpensive way to obtain sprouts that contain much higher levels of glucosinolates (health promoting compounds), than the corresponding florets from the same seeds.