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Open AccessArticle

Effects of Heat Stress on Metabolite Accumulation and Composition, and Nutritional Properties of Durum Wheat Grain

Cereal Research Centre, Council for Agricultural Research and Economics, Foggia 71122, Italy
Department of the Sciences of Agriculture, Food and Environment, University of Foggia, S.S. 673 Km 25,200, Foggia 71122, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Ute Roessner
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16(12), 30382-30404;
Received: 18 November 2015 / Revised: 9 December 2015 / Accepted: 14 December 2015 / Published: 19 December 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
Durum wheat (Triticum turgidum (L.) subsp. turgidum (L.) convar. durum (Desf.)) is momentous for human nutrition, and environmental stresses can strongly limit the expression of yield potential and affect the qualitative characteristics of the grain. The aim of this study was to determine how heat stress (five days at 37 °C) applied five days after flowering affects the nutritional composition, antioxidant capacity and metabolic profile of the grain of two durum wheat genotypes: “Primadur”, an elite cultivar with high yellow index, and “T1303”, an anthocyanin-rich purple cultivar. Qualitative traits and metabolite evaluation (by gas chromatography linked to mass spectrometry) were carried out on immature (14 days after flowering) and mature seeds. The effects of heat stress were genotype-dependent. Although some metabolites (e.g., sucrose, glycerol) increased in response to heat stress in both genotypes, clear differences were observed. Following the heat stress, there was a general increase in most of the analyzed metabolites in “Primadur”, with a general decrease in “T1303”. Heat shock applied early during seed development produced changes that were observed in immature seeds and also long-term effects that changed the qualitative and quantitative parameters of the mature grain. Therefore, short heat-stress treatments can affect the nutritional value of grain of different genotypes of durum wheat in different ways. View Full-Text
Keywords: durum wheat; heat stress; metabolic profiling; antioxidant activity durum wheat; heat stress; metabolic profiling; antioxidant activity
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De Leonardis, A.M.; Fragasso, M.; Beleggia, R.; Ficco, D.B.M.; De Vita, P.; Mastrangelo, A.M. Effects of Heat Stress on Metabolite Accumulation and Composition, and Nutritional Properties of Durum Wheat Grain. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16, 30382-30404.

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