Skip to main content
ARS Home » Plains Area » Fargo, North Dakota » Edward T. Schafer Agricultural Research Center » Cereal Crops Research » Research » Research Project #419732

Research Project: Enhancement of Hard Spring Wheat, Durum, and Oat Quality

Location: Cereal Crops Research

2014 Annual Report

1a. Objectives (from AD-416):
Identify milling, baking, and pasta processing traits of experimental and advanced lines of hard spring and durum wheat that impact end-use quality and the overall development and release of new commercial cultivars of wheat. Identify specific biochemical components in wheat that are associated with end-use baking quality traits. More specifically, to develop rapid methods to characterize proteins, which are initially important for predicting end-use quality; to determine the variation in free asparagine content in wheat, which is an important precursor for the formation of carcinogenic acrylamide during bread baking and toasting; and to identify the efficacy and impact of sulfur fertilization on end-use baking quality of hard spring wheat. Optimize methodologies for the extraction and analysis of soluble oat fiber components; determine environmental variation in the quantity and quality of ß-glucan as characterized in the first objective in newly developed high ß-glucan cultivars and other oat cultivars; and determine relationships between oil concentration and ß-glucan concentration in segregating crosses for these traits, as to how each affects groat breakage during dehulling.

1b. Approach (from AD-416):
Approximately 4000 hard spring and 1000 durum wheat experimental lines will be submitted by Federal, State, and private breeders, and special interest groups on an annual basis and evaluated for end-use quality. Wheat will be obtained from different generations of development in specific breeding programs, which will include early-generation, preliminary, and advanced lines and include commercial cultivars as controls. Measureable end-use quality traits include test weight, size, seed weight, sprout damage, physical evidence of disease, and protein and ash content; milling performance as a function of flour and semolina yield; flour and semolina color, protein, and ash content; dough strength properties; bread baking quality; and pasta processing quality. The Fargo Genotyping Laboratory will identify quantitative trait loci regions associated with end-use quality, primarily kernel and dough strength traits on selected hard spring wheat samples. Research will be conducted on the rapid characterization of protein extracts from wheat and flour by testing two different protein extraction methods. Variation in free asparagine content in wheat lines will be measured. The efficacy and impact of sulfur fertilization on end-use baking quality of hard spring wheat, specifically protein composition and amino acid profiles, will be determined as a function of dough strength characteristics. To develop optimized methodologies for the extraction of beta-glucan from oats, samples of oats will be obtained from replicated plots grown in diverse environments over several years. The newly developed methods for the analysis of soluble fiber quality will be used to determine how environment might affect the quality and concentration of beta-glucan, especially in newly developed high beta-glucan cultivars. Beta-glucan effects on milling quality of oats will also be tested. Because beta-glucan is in the cell walls of oats, it is thought to provide a strengthening effect, which reduces groat breakage during dehulling. However, high oil in oats also seems to prevent groat breakage, and currently breeders have been unable to separate the traits of high oil and high beta-glucan in oats. A collaborating genetics program has developed populations of recombinant inbred lines from oat crosses designed to be segregating for high oil and high beta-glucan. We will evaluate the phenotypes of these lines and test their behavior during dehulling to determine the relative roles of oil and beta-glucan in preventing groat breakage during oat milling.

3. Progress Report:
The Hard Red Spring Wheat Quality Laboratory (WQL) analyzed physical and biochemical quality traits of approximately 3000 samples of hard spring and durum wheat. Samples were submitted by private and public wheat breeders involved in wheat germplasm improvement and by scientists involved in gene mapping to identify quantitative trait loci associated with end-use quality traits. The WQL provided over 40 different tests related to wheat kernel characteristics, milling performance, and flour, semolina, dough, baking, and spaghetti processing quality. In cooperation with the Wheat Quality Council (WQC), eleven experimental lines of hard spring wheat that were grown at up to 5 locations were evaluated along with the check cultivars, Glenn and Elgin-ND. The WQL tested each line for kernel, milling, flour, dough, and bread-baking quality traits, coordinated the baking quality test results from 13 independent public and private testing laboratories, and analyzed the data. Results were published, presented, and discussed at the annual meeting of the WQC. Interactions with the WQC serve as a means to obtain industry feedback on the milling and baking quality traits of advanced experimental lines of wheat that are considered for release into commercial production. We continued research on the effects of protein molecular weight distribution (MWD) on bread-making characteristics of hard spring wheat. Approximately, 300 samples harvested from Minnesota in 2013 were analyzed by size-exclusion high performance liquid chromatography (SE-HPLC). The sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) buffer soluble and insoluble protein fractions that were extracted from those samples were also evaluated by UV spectroscopy. The data obtained from this research will be evaluated to develop prediction models of quality traits. Waxy wheat is unique since its starch is primarily composed of amylopectin. One hundred ninety eight lines of hard winter waxy wheat were analyzed by SE-HPLC. The data will be analyzed to investigate the association between protein MWD and breadmaking quality in waxy wheat. Wheat kernel vitreousness is an important grading characteristic in the US. Research was performed to determine the possible association between kernel vitreousness and protein MWD, and breadmaking quality. Data analysis indicated that high molecular weight polymeric proteins could have a significant association with kernel vitreousness. The changes in protein MWD were analyzed during pasta cooking using SE-HPLC. The data will be analyzed to determine the relationships with pasta cooking characteristics. Solvent retention capacity (SRC) is a test to evaluate flour baking quality. SRC has not been tested for evaluation of breadmaking quality of hard spring wheat. We analyzed SRC and protein MWD of 10 hard spring wheat genotypes grown at 10 locations in North Dakota. Data analysis is ongoing to determine the potential association between SRC parameters and protein MWD and quality traits. The segregation of low asparagine wheat genotypes is important to reduce acrylamide content in baking products. Free asparagine concentration is being analyzed for 132 hard spring wheat samples grown in Minnesota and the data will be analyzed to investigate the variation in free asparagine for spring wheat lines grown in Minnesota.

4. Accomplishments
1. Development of improved wheat germplasm. Wheat producers, milling and baking industries, and overseas customers require high standards in the quality of wheat to meet their evolving needs. The Hard Red Spring and Durum Wheat Quality Laboratory contributed wheat end-use quality data that helped lead to the development of improved wheat germplasm and subsequent release of new cultivars of spring and durum wheat bred for commercial production. Specifically, this work contributed to the release of two hard spring wheat cultivars, ‘Rollag’ by University of Minnesota and 'Advance' by South Dakota State University, in 2014. Such new releases provide value to both farmers and industry through improved productivity or end-use quality.

2. Effect of protein on flour dough thermal properties. Flour bread making quality is very important for wheat marketing in domestic and international trade, and thermal tolerance of dough to heating has been shown to influence flour bread making quality. ARS and NDSU researchers in Fargo, ND studied the influence of flour proteins on properties of hard red spring wheat dough during heating and bread making, and found that less soluble polymeric proteins had a significant and positive effect on dough thermal tolerance and strength, and consequently, bread loaf volume. This work expands our knowledge of the function of proteins in bread making and will be useful for the evaluation of wheat and flour quality of hard spring wheat.

3. Effect of wheat kernel size on protein, milling yield, and baking quality. Optimization of flour yield and quality is important in the wheat milling industry, but flour yield from roller mills can be reduced by having a mixture of wheat seeds with different sizes. ARS and NDSU researchers in Fargo, ND determined how seed size and experimental mill type is associated with milling and bread making quality. When compared to large seeds, small seeds have a greater level of high molecular weight polymeric proteins that can contribute to the enhancement of flour bread making quality, while still having poor milling quality. This information will be helpful for segregation and improvement of hard spring wheat for milling and bread making quality.

4. Occurrence of mycotoxins in hard red spring wheat affected by Fusarium head blight. Deoxynivalenol (DON) is a mycotoxin found in wheat with a disease known as Fusarium head blight. Deoxynivalenol-3-glucoside (D3G) is a type of "masked mycotoxin." ARS and NDSU researchers in Fargo, ND evaluated the DON and D3G content of hard spring wheat samples collected from the 2011 and 2012 crop surveys of the USA. Wheat samples showed a significant difference in DON and D3G content according to growing region. This work provides more accurate data regarding total mycotoxin levels in hard spring wheat. The data should be useful for the segregation of hard spring wheat for total mycotoxin level in the milling and baking industry.

5. Mycotoxin in hard red spring wheat affected by Fusarium head blight in Minnesota. The "masked" mycotoxin deoxinyvalenol-3-glucoside (D3G) is important from a food safety point of view, since it can harm human and animal health. Unfortunately, no data regarding D3G has been available for hard spring wheat genotypes. ARS and NDSU researchers in Fargo, ND and researchers in University of Minnesota determined the level of mycotoxins, including D3G, in hard spring wheat varieties grown in Minnesota. This work provides more precise information on total mycotoxin content of hard spring wheat varieties grown at diverse locations in Minnesota. This information will help identify hard spring wheat varieties with stably low mycotoxin content across growing locations and will thus facilitate further development of wheat with low mycotoxin levels.

6. Addition of glucose oxidase for the improvement of refrigerated dough quality. Refrigerated dough encompasses a wide range of products and is a very popular choice for consumers. Two of the greatest problems that occur during refrigerated dough storage are water weeping from dough (dough syruping) and decreased dough baking quality. ARS and NDSU researchers in Fargo, ND examined the effect of an enzyme called glucose oxidase on refrigerated dough quality. The optimum level of glucose oxidase was 10 ppm, at which level dough syruping was reduced, while dough bread-making quality was maintained during refrigerated storage. This information will help the promotion of hard spring wheat flour for the production of refrigerated dough with improved quality.

Review Publications
Simsek, S., Ohm, J.-B., Lu, H., Rugg, M., Berzonsky, W., Alamri, M.S., Mergoum, M. 2014. Effect of pre-harvest sprouting on physicochemical properties of starch in wheat. Foods. 3:194-207.
Ovando-Martinez, M., Ozsisli, B., Anderson, J., Whitney, K., Ohm, J.-B., Simsek, S. 2013. Analysis of deoxynivalenol and deoxynivalenol-3-glucoside in hard red spring wheat inoculated with Fusarium graminearum. Toxins. 5:2522-2532.
Simsek, S., Ovando-Martinez, M., Ozsisli, B., Whitney, K., Ohm, J. 2013. Occurrence of deoxynivalenol and deoxynivalenol-3-glucoside in hard red spring wheat grown in the USA. Toxins. 5:2656-2670.
Simsek, H., Kasi, M., Ohm, J.-B., Blonigen, M., Khan, E. 2013. Bioavailable and biodegradable dissolved organic nitrogen in activated sludge and trickling filter wastewater treatment plants. Water Research. 47:3201-3210.
Simsek, S., Ohm, J., Lu, H., Rugg, M., Berzonsky, W., Alamri, M., Mergoum, M. 2013. Effect of pre-harvest sprouting on physicochemical changes of proteins in wheat. Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture. 94:205-212.
Tsilo, T.J., Hareland, G.A., Ohm, J., Anderson, J.A. 2013. Polymeric proteins and their association with grain yield in hard red spring wheat lines. Euphytica. 194:187-196.
Cremer, J.E., Liu, L., Bean, S., Ohm, J., Tilley, M., Wilson, J.D., Kaufman, R.C., Vu, T.T., Gilding, E.K., Godwin, I., Wang, D. 2014. Impacts of kafirin allelic diversity, starch content, and protein digestibility on ethanol conversion efficiency in grain sorghum. Cereal Chemistry. 91(3):218-227.
Sivapragasam, N., Thavarajah, P., Ohm, J.-B., Khaitsa, M., Thavarajah, D. 2014. Novel starch based nano scale enteric coatings from soybean meal for colon-specific delivery. Carbohydrate Polymers. 111:273-279.
Sivapragasam, N., Thavarajah, P., Ohm, J.-B., Thavarajah, D. 2014. Enzyme resistant carbohydrate based micro-scale materials from sugar beet (Beta vulgaris L.) pulp for food and pharmaceutical applications. Bioactive Carbohydrates and Dietary Fibre. 3:115-121.