GLC analysis of Indian rapeseed-mustard to study the variability of fatty acid composition.Biochem Soc Trans. 2000 Dec; 28(6):581-3.BS
Rapeseed-mustard is one of the most economically important oilseed crops in India. Speciality oils having high amounts of a specific fatty acid are of immense importance for both nutritional and industrial purposes. Oil high in oleic acid has demand in commercial food-service applications due to a long shelf-life and cholesterol-reducing properties. Both linoleic and linolenic acids are essential fatty acids; however, less than 3% linolenic acid is preferred for oil stability. High erucic acid content is beneficial for the polymer industry, whereas low erucic acid is recommended for food purposes. Therefore, it is important to undertake systematic characterization of the available gene pool for its variable fatty acid profile to be utilized for specific purposes. In the present study the Indian rapeseed-mustard germplasm and some newly developed low-erucic-acid strains were analysed by GLC to study the fatty acid composition in these lines. The GLC analysis revealed that the rapeseed-mustard varieties being commonly grown in India are characterized by high erucic acid content (30-51%) in the oil with low levels of oleic acid (13-23%). However, from among the recently developed low-erucic-acid strains, several lines were identified with comparatively high oleic acid (60-70%), moderate to high linoleic acid (13-40%) and low linolenic acid (< 10%) contents. Work is in progress at TERI (New Delhi, India) to utilize these lines for development of strains with particular fatty acid compositions for specific purposes.