Nutraceutical Properties of Low alpha-Linolenic Soybeans Grown in Maryland
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Eight soybean genotypes grown in Maryland were analyzed for total phenolic content (TPC), antioxidant capacity, isoflavone composition, lutein content, tocopherol composition, and fatty acid profile. The soybean samples consisted of seven low alpha-linolenic (18:3n-3) experimental lines and one standard cultivar for comparison. 18:3n-3 levels were negatively correlated with oleic acid (18:1n-9). The isoflavones daidzein and genistein were positively correlated with 18:3n-3 levels. Alpha-tocopherol, gamma-tocopherol, and total tocopherols were negatively correlated with 18:3n-3. Two of the reduced 18:3n-3 lines contained significantly higher lutein levels than the ordinary cultivar. All low alpha-linolenic lines contained similar antioxidant capacity to the non-modified genotype. The results of this study show that the Maryland-grown low 18:3n-3 soybeans are sources of antioxidants and isoflavones and may be consumed for health benefits. Specific genotypes may be selected for food production to obtain the most desirable combination of nutritional, nutraceutical, and chemical properties.