Nutraceutical profiles of apricots (Prunus armeniaca L.) as a source of fruit quality traits for breeding
Aim of study: In a social context of increasing concern about healthy diets, the development of new varieties with enhanced content in nutraceutical compounds is an important objective of the fruit breeding programs currently developed. In this sense, apricot is a fruit crop very appreciated by consumers worldwide due to its organoleptic characteristics, but also plays an important role in human nutrition due to its content of phytocompounds as sugars, organic acids, vitamins and polyphenols.
Area of study: The identification of sources of variation for these traits could be useful for apricot breeding worldwide.
Material and methods: New selections from the apricot breeding program carried out at the Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Agrarias (IVIA, Spain) and traditional varieties have been analysed aimed at identifying sources of genetic variation for fruit quality. For this purpose, sugar content, organic acids and ascorbic acid were studied during three crop years.
Main results: Results revealed sucrose and glucose as the major sugars, malic and citric acid as the main organic acids, and diverse ascorbic acid content among the cultivars studied.
Research highlights: Some accessions point as potential sources to increase fruit quality. In addition, the study showed that apricot peel is an excellent source of nutraceutical compounds. Moreover, this study opens up new possibilities to study the genetic control of these traits in apricot in the future.
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