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Open AccessArticle

Halophytes of the Mediterranean Basin—Underutilized Species with the Potential to Be Nutritious Crops in the Scenario of the Climate Change

1
I+D Department, Sakata Seed Iberica, Pl. Poeta Vicente Gaos, 46021 Valencia, Spain
2
Biotechnology Department, Universidad Politécnica de Valencia, Camino de Vera s/n, 46022 Valencia, Spain
3
Group of Aquaporins, Centro de Edafología y Biología Aplicada del Segura-Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, P.O. Box 164, Espinardo, 30100 Murcia, Spain
4
Department of Agronomy Engineering, Universidad Politécnica de Cartagena, Paseo Alfonso XIII, 48, 30203 Cartagena, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Foods 2021, 10(1), 119; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10010119
Received: 27 November 2020 / Revised: 18 December 2020 / Accepted: 23 December 2020 / Published: 8 January 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Changes and Global Warming—the Future of Foods)
Halophyte plants are adapted to saline environments and represent a novel type of crops given their possible uses at both culinary and industrial levels. In this work, the nutritional quality of different Mediterranean halophyte species, Atriplex halimus, Salicornia fruticosa, and Cakile maritima, was evaluated under conditions of high salinity. For this, plants were grown at different NaCl concentrations (0, 100, 200, and 300 mM) and the contents of proteins, total lipids, polyphenols, and mineral elements were analyzed as well as growth. Of the three species, C. maritima was the most sensitive to salt stress and therefore showed the highest phenolic compounds content. By contrast, whereas salinity increased the amounts of proteins and phenolics with respect to the control in A. halimus and S. fruticosa, it decreased them in C. maritima. Plants of A. halimus accumulated higher amounts of Na+ in their leaves, but the level of this ion, considering human consumption, was below that of other culinary halophyte species. In conclusion, all the results indicate that these three halophyte species grown at high salt levels represent optimal crops for—new foodstuff—production as green salt or spice due to their nutritional potential. View Full-Text
Keywords: Atriplex halimus; Cakile maritima; minerals; phenolic compounds; Salicornia fruticosa; salinity Atriplex halimus; Cakile maritima; minerals; phenolic compounds; Salicornia fruticosa; salinity
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MDPI and ACS Style

Agudelo, A.; Carvajal, M.; Martinez-Ballesta, M.d.C. Halophytes of the Mediterranean Basin—Underutilized Species with the Potential to Be Nutritious Crops in the Scenario of the Climate Change. Foods 2021, 10, 119. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10010119

AMA Style

Agudelo A, Carvajal M, Martinez-Ballesta MdC. Halophytes of the Mediterranean Basin—Underutilized Species with the Potential to Be Nutritious Crops in the Scenario of the Climate Change. Foods. 2021; 10(1):119. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10010119

Chicago/Turabian Style

Agudelo, Agatha; Carvajal, Micaela; Martinez-Ballesta, María d.C. 2021. "Halophytes of the Mediterranean Basin—Underutilized Species with the Potential to Be Nutritious Crops in the Scenario of the Climate Change" Foods 10, no. 1: 119. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10010119

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