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The 2011 ASHS Annual Conference

Investigations Into Enzymatic and Non-Enzymatic Antioxidants In Different Cultivars of Blueberry

Monday, September 26, 2011
Kona Ballroom
Chaim Kempler, Pacific Agri-Food Research Centre, Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, Agassiz, BC, Canada
Tissa Kannangara, Ph.D., Agriculture Research, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Agassiz, BC, Canada
David Ehret, Pacific Agri-Food Research Centre, Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, Agassiz, BC, Canada
The consumption of fruits rich in antioxidants is encouraged in the prevention and treatment of illnesses such as cancer. Berries (blueberry, blackberry, raspberry) are rich sources of dietary antioxidants and hence plant breeders interested in improving fruit quality may use antioxidants as a selection criterion, in addition to parameters such as sugar content or titratable acidity. In the present investigation we compared the enzymatic antioxidants, superoxide dismutase(SOD) and peroxidase, and non-enzymatic antioxidant anthocyanin in a number of blueberry cultivars. Titratable acidity, sugar content, fruit size and firmness were also determined. Anthocyanin content was determined using both the pH differential method and high performance liquid chromatography. Blueberries used in the investigation were harvested from 4-year old plants grown in the Fraser Valley of British Columbia and a total of seven varieties and four selections were examined in the study. The cultivar ‘Draper’ had the highest SOD followed by ‘Reka’. In contrast, peroxidase activity was higher in ‘Reka’ than in ‘Draper’. The data demonstrates genetic variation in both enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidant levels among cultivars. This variation may be used to select for these important compounds in berry breeding programs.
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