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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Griffin, Georgia » Plant Genetic Resources Conservation Unit » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #293924

Title: Desmodium genetic resources for improving flavonoid concentrations, oil, and fatty acid content

item Morris, John - Brad
item Wang, Ming
item Tonnis, Brandon

Submitted to: Plant Genetic Resources: Characterization and Utilization
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/12/2013
Publication Date: 9/11/2013
Publication URL:
Citation: Morris, J.B., Wang, M.L., Tonnis, B.D. 2013. Desmodium genetic resources for improving flavonoid concentrations, oil, and fatty acid content. Plant Genetic Resources: Characterization and Utilization. doi:10.1017/S1479262113000397 p 1-9.

Interpretive Summary: Desmodium seeds contain various amounts of health promoting flavonoids and fatty acids for use as a livestock supplement. Desmodium samples conserved at the USDA, ARS germplasm facility were evaluated for flavonoid, oil, and fatty acids. Several flavonoids and fatty acids in Desmodium species varied from the check species, D. incanum. Several of these Desmodium accessions could be used as a livestock supplement in the southern U.S.A. and could be used in breeding programs to develop superior varieties containing specific concentrations of flavonoids and fatty acids.

Technical Abstract: Seed from several Desmodium species adapted to the Griffin, GA environment have potential as nutraceutical supplements for livestock. Flavonoids, oil, and fatty acid profiles identified from 25 accessions representing 5 species (D. discolor, D. incanum, D. intortum, D. sandwicense, and D. tortuosum) will add value to the genus Desmodium for possible use as a livestock health supplement. Seeds from 25 Desmodium accessions were evaluated for flavonoid concentrations using high performance liquid chromatography, oil content using nuclear magnetic resonance, and fatty acid composition using gas chromatography. Several accessions were significantly higher for all traits than the D. incanum check accessions. The Desmodium accessions produced significantly more quercetin and kaempferol than the best check accession (D. incanum, PI 477072). However, all of the Desmodium accessions produced significantly more isorhamnetin and luteolin than all four D. incanum check accessions. All Desmodium accessions produced more linoleic (18:2) and behenic (22:0) acids than a couple of D. incanum check accessions during 2010 and 2011. Significant correlations were found between several traits. Quercetin, kaempferol, isorhamnetin, luteolin, and apigenin showed significant negative correlations (r² = -0.62***, r² = -0.82***, r² = -0.34*, r² = -0.40**, and r² = -0.58***, respectively) with oil percentage. Palmitic acid had a significant negative correlation with oleic (r2 = -0.57***) and linoleic (r2 = -0.28*) acids. This information will assist breeders and other scientists in developing superior cultivars with optimum levels of flavonoids, oil, and fatty acids in many of these Desmodium species.