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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Combined mutations in five wheat STARCH BRANCHING ENZYME II genes improve resistant starch but affect grain yield and bread-making quality

  • Author(s): Schönhofen, A
  • Zhang, X
  • Dubcovsky, J
  • et al.

© 2017 The Authors Increases in the proportion of amylose in the starch of wheat grains result in higher levels of resistant starch, a fermentable dietary fiber associated with human health benefits. The objective of this study was to assess the effect of combined mutations in five STARCH BRANCHING ENZYME II (SBEII) genes on starch composition, grain yield and bread-making quality in two hexaploid wheat varieties. Significantly higher amylose (∼60%) and resistant starch content (10-fold) was detected in the SBEII mutants than in the wild-type controls. Mutant lines showed a significant decrease in total starch (6%), kernel weight (3%) and total grain yield (6%). Effects of the mutations in bread-making quality included increases in grain hardness, starch damage, water absorption and flour protein content; and reductions in flour extraction, farinograph development and stability times, starch viscosity, and loaf volume. Several traits showed significant interactions between genotypes, varieties, and environments, suggesting that some of the negative impacts of the combined SBEII mutations can be ameliorated by adequate selection of genetic background and growing location. The deployment of wheat varieties with increased resistant starch will likely require economic incentives to compensate growers and millers for the significant reductions detected in grain and flour yields.

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