Euphytica

, Volume 163, Issue 3, pp 381–390

Relationship between yield and mineral nutrient concentrations in historical and modern spring wheat cultivars

  • Kevin M. Murphy
  • Philip G. Reeves
  • Stephen S. Jones
Article

Abstract

The diet of approximately three billion people worldwide is nutrient deficient and most of the world’s poorest people are dependent on staple food crops as their primary source of micronutrients. One component of the solution to nutrient deficiencies is collaboration among plant breeders, cereal chemists and nutritionists to produce staple crop cultivars with increased mineral nutrient concentration. Sixty-three historical and modern wheat cultivars were evaluated for grain yield and concentration of calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, selenium, and zinc. While grain yield has increased over time, the concentrations of all minerals except calcium have decreased. Thus a greater consumption of whole wheat bread from modern cultivars is required to achieve the same percentage of recommended dietary allowance levels contributed by most of the older cultivars. The decrease in mineral concentration over the past 120 years occurs primarily in the soft white wheat market class, whereas in the hard red market class it has remained largely constant over time. This suggests that plant breeders, through intentional selection of low ash content in soft white wheat cultivars, have contributed to the decreased mineral nutrient concentration in modern wheat cultivars. These results contradict the theory that there exists a genetically based, biological trade-off between yield and mineral concentrations. Therefore, using the abundant variation present in wheat cultivars, it should be possible to improve mineral concentrations in modern cultivars without negatively affecting yield.

Keywords

Micronutrients Plant breeding Recommended dietary allowance Wheat Landraces Yield 

References

  1. Abeledo LG, Calderini DF, Slafer GA (2003) Genetic improvement of barley yield potential and its physiological determinants in Argentina (1944–1998). Euphytica 130:325–334CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Borlaug NE (1983) Contributions of conventional plant breeding to food production. Science 219:689–693PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bouis HE (2003) Micronutrient fortification of plants through plant breeding: can it improve nutrition in man at low cost? Proc Nutr Soc 62:403–411PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Branca F, Ferrari M (2002) Impact of micronutrient deficiencies on growth: the stunting syndrome. Ann Nutr Metab 46:8–17PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Caballero B (2002) Global patterns of child health: the role of nutrition. Ann Nutr Metab 46:3–7PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Calderini DF, Torresleon S, Slafer GA (1995) Consequences of wheat breeding on nitrogen and phosphorus yield, grain nitrogen and phosphorus concentration and associated traits. Ann Bot 76:315–322CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Cox CM, Qualset CO, Rains DW (1985) Genetic variation for nitrogen assimilation and translocation in wheat. 1. Dry matter and nitrogen accumulation. Crop Sci 25:430–435Google Scholar
  8. Davis DR, Epp MD, Riordan HD (2004) Changes in USDA food composition data for 43 garden crops, 1950–1999. J Am Coll Nutr 23:669–682PubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. DellaPenna D (1999) Nutritional genomics: manipulating plant micronutrients to improve human health. Science 285:375–379PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Egli I, Davidsson L, Juillerat MA, Barclay D, Hurrell R (2004) Phytic acid degradation in complementary foods using phytase naturally occurring in whole grain cereals. J Nutr 68:1855–1859Google Scholar
  11. Fox TE, Atherton C, Dainty JR, Lewis DJ, Langford NJ, Baxter MJ, Crews HM, Fairweather-Tait SJ (2005) Absorption of selenium from wheat, garlic, and cod intrinsically labeled with Se-77 and Se-82 stable isotopes. Int J Vitam Nutr Res 75:179–186PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Frison EA, Smith IF, Johns T, Cherfas J, Eyzaguirre PB (2006) Agricultural biodiversity, nutrition, and health: making a difference to hunger and nutrition in the developing world. Food Nutr Bul 27:167–179Google Scholar
  13. Garvin DF, Welch RM, Finley JW (2006) Historical shifts in the seed mineral micronutrient concentration of US hard red winter wheat germplasm. J Sci Food Agric 86:2213–2220CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Graham RD, Welch RM, Bouis HE (2001) Addressing micronutrient malnutrition through enhancing the nutritional quality of staple foods: principles, perspectives and knowledge gaps. Adv Agron 70:77–142CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Grantham-McGregor SM, Ani CC (1999) The role of micronutrients in psychomotor sad cognitive development. Br Med Bull 55:511–527PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Hallberg L, Hulthen L (2000) Prediction of dietary iron absorption: an algorithm for calculating absorption and bioavailability of dietary iron. Am J Clin Nutr 71:1147–1160PubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. Heitholt JJ, Croy LI, Maness NO, Nguyen HT (1990) Nitrogen partitioning in genotypes of winter-wheat differing in grain N-concentration. Field Crops Res 23:133–144CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Johnson PE, Lykken GI, Korynta ED (1991) Absorption and biological half-life in humans of intrinsic and extrinsic 54Mn tracers from food of plant origin. J Nutr 121:711–717PubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Levrat-Verny MA, Coudray C, Bellanger J, Lopez HW, Demigne C, Rayssiguier Y, Remesy C (1999) Wholewheat flour ensures higher mineral absorption and bioavailability than white wheat flour in rats. Br J Nutr 82:17–21PubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. Pepe JF, Heiner RE (1975) Plant height, protein percentage, and yield relationships in spring wheat. Crop Sci 15:793–797Google Scholar
  21. Ramakrishnan U, Manjrekar R, Rivera J, Gonzales-Cossio T, Martorell R (1999) Micronutrients and pregnancy outcome: a review of the literature. Nutr Res 19:103–159CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Rengel Z (2001) Genotypic differences in micronutrient use efficiency in crops. Commun Soil Sci Plant Anal 32:1163–1186CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Sanchez PA, Swaminathan MS (2005) Cutting world hunger in half. Science 307:357–359PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Slafer GA, Peltonen-Sainio P (2001) Yield trends of temperate cereals in high latitude countries from 1940 to 1998. Agric Food Sci Finland 10:121–131Google Scholar
  25. Stoltzfus RJ (2001) Defining iron-deficiency anemia in public health terms: a time for reflection. J Nutr 131:565S–567SPubMedGoogle Scholar
  26. Uauy C, Distelfeld A, Fahima T, Blechl A, Dubcovsky J (2006) A NAC gene regulating senescence improves grain protein, zinc, and iron content in wheat. Science 314:1298–1301PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. USDA (2005) Washington wheat varieties. National agricultural statistics service http://www.nass.usda.gov/wa/whtvar05.pdf
  28. Welch RM (2002) The impact of mineral nutrients in food crops on global human health. Plant Soil 247:83–90CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Welch RM, Graham RD (1999) A new paradigm for world agriculture: meeting human needs productive, sustainable, nutritious. Field Crops Res 60:1–10CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Welch RM, Graham RD (2002) Breeding crops for enhanced micronutrient content. Plant Soil 245:205–214CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Weremko D, Fandrejewski H, Zebrowska T, Han IK, Kim JH, Cho WT (1997) Bioavailability of phosphorus in feeds of plant origin for pigs. Asian-Australas J Anim Sci 10:551–556Google Scholar
  32. White PJ, Broadley MR (2005) Historical variation in the mineral composition of edible horticultural products. J Hortic Sci Biotechnol 80:660–667Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kevin M. Murphy
    • 1
  • Philip G. Reeves
    • 2
  • Stephen S. Jones
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Crop and Soil SciencesWashington State UniversityPullmanUSA
  2. 2.USDA-ARSGrand Forks Human Nutrition Research CentreNorth Grand ForksUSA

Personalised recommendations