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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Genetic Improvement for Fruits & Vegetables Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #308697

Title: Genotype x environment interactions in eggplant for fruit phenolic acid content

item Stommel, John
item Haynes, Kathleen
item Whitaker, Bruce
item PROHENS, JAIME - Polytechnic University Of Valencia (UPV)

Submitted to: Euphytica
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/28/2015
Publication Date: 3/15/2015
Publication URL:
Citation: Stommel, J.R., Haynes, K.G., Whitaker, B.D., Prohens, J. 2015. Genotype x environment interactions in eggplant for fruit phenolic acid content. Euphytica. 205:823-836.

Interpretive Summary: Eggplant fruit contain high levels of antioxidants called phenolic acids that contribute to fruit nutritive value and culinary quality. Relatively little is know about how growing conditions influence eggplant fruit phenolic acid content. We grew typical cultivated eggplant varieties as well as exotic eggplant relatives in multiple locations under greenhouse and open field conditions to assess the influence of environment on fruit phenolic acid content. We found that different eggplant varieties varied considerably for total content as well as composition of phenolic acids. However, the environment under which plants were grown did not significantly influencefruit phenolic acids. The results are useful for plant breeders who develop new eggplant varieties for different production locations and for vegetable growers.

Technical Abstract: Eggplant fruit are a rich source of phenolic acids that contribute to fruit nutritive value and influence culinary quality. We evaluated the influence of production environment on eggplant fruit phenolic acid content. Ten Solanum melongena accessions including five F1 hybrid cultivars, three open-pollinated cultivars and two land race accessions, plus one S. macrocarpon and one S. aethiopicum accession were grown at two locations under greenhouse and open field environments. Twenty-nine phenolic acid compounds were identified in fruit flesh and assigned to six phenolic acid classes that included hydroxycinnamic acid amides, caffeoylquinic acid esters, hydroxycinnamoylquinic acid esters, malonylcaffeoylquinic acid esters, Di-O-hydroxycinnamoylquinic acid esters, and other hydroxycinnamic acid conjugates. Among the six classes of phenolic acids, there were significant differences among the accession for all phenolic acid classes with the exception of Di-O-hydroxycinnamoylquinic acid esters. Analysis of fruit phenolic acids demonstrated that there were no significant differences among the environments for any of the variables. The environment x accession interaction was highly significant for all phenolic acid classes. Broad-sense heritability estimates for all six phenolic acid classes were high, ranging from 0.64 to 0.96. Stability analysis demonstrated stability for phenolic acid content across environments within S. melongena accessions for two F1 hybrids, two landraces and two open-pollinated cultivars.