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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Superoxide dismutase activity in mesocarp tissue from divergent Cucumis melo L. genotypes

Authors
item Lester, Gene
item Jifon, J - TEXAS AGRILIFE CENTER
item Crosby, K - TEXAS A&M UNIVERSITY

Submitted to: Plant Foods for Human Nutrition
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: May 24, 2009
Publication Date: August 24, 2009
Citation: Lester, G.E., Jifon, J.L., Crosby, K.M. 2009. Superoxide dismutase activity in mesocarp tissue from divergent Cucumis melo L. genotypes. Plant Foods for Human Nutrition. 64(3):205-211.

Interpretive Summary: The edible portion of muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) fruit is unique among plant foods in being able to provide a protective medium in which the antioxidant activity of superoxide dismutase (SOD) is protected in the stomach making it available to be absorbed by the body. However, little is known about the variability of SOD activity in the melon germplasm and the potential of this species as a food-based source of SOD. In this study, SOD activities of fourteen diverse advanced breeding lines and commercial melon cultivars grown in two different soil types – clay or sandy loam – were investigated. Variation in SOD activity was affected more by melon genotypes (P less than or equal to 0.001), than soil type (P less than or equal to 0.055). Netted (cantaloupe) genotypes generally had the lowest SOD activity compared to the green- and orange-fleshed honey dew types. Casaba type fruit had average SOD activities that were approximately 1.6-fold greater than those of honey dew types, and approximately 9.0-fold greater than those of cantaloupe types. These data are useful to develop C. melo pharmacologically as an SOD treatment.

Technical Abstract: Muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) fruit matrix is unique among plant foods in being able to provide a protective medium in which the antioxidant activity of the enzyme superoxide dismutase (SOD) is preserved during the digestive process, and therefore, being able to elicit in vivo pharmacological effects of this enzyme. However, little is known about the variability of SOD activity in the melon germplasm and the potential of this species as a food-based source of SOD. In this study, SOD activities of diverse advanced breeding lines and commercial melon cultivars grown in two different soil types – clay or sandy loam – were investigated. Specific and total SOD activities varied significantly among the genotypes (P less than or equal to 0.001), compared to soil type (P less than or equal to 0.055). Netted (cantaloupe) genotypes generally had the lowest SOD activities compared to the green- and orange-fleshed honey dew types. Casaba type fruit had average SOD activities that were approximately 1.6-fold greater than those of honey dew types, and approximately 9.0-fold greater than those of cantaloupe types. These data indicate there is a useful genetic diversity among commercial melon varieties and in exotic genotypes that could be used to develop C. melo pharmacologically as an SOD treatment.

Last Modified: 9/2/2014
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