Plant and Soil

, Volume 245, Issue 1, pp 205–214 | Cite as

Breeding crops for enhanced micronutrient content

Article

Abstract

Micronutrient malnutrition (e.g. Fe, Zn and vitamin A deficiencies) now afflicts over 40% of the world's population and is increasing especially in many developing nations. Green revolution cropping systems may have inadvertently contributed to the growth in micronutrient deficiencies in resource-poor populations. Current interventions to eliminate these deficiencies that rely on supplementation and food fortification programs do not reach all those affected and have not proven to be sustainable. Sustainable solutions can only be developed through agricultural system approaches. One agricultural approach is to enrich major staple food crops (e.g. rice, wheat, maize, beans and cassava) in micronutrients through plant breeding strategies. Available research has demonstrated that micronutrient enrichment traits are available within the genomes of these major staple crops that could allow for substantial increases in Fe, Zn and provitamin A carotenoids without negatively impacting yield. Furthermore, micronutrient-dense seeds can increase crop yields when sowed to micronutrient-poor soils. The enrichment traits appear to be stable across various soil types and climatic environments. Further research is required to determine if increasing levels of micronutrients in staple foods can significantly improve the nutritional status of people suffering from micronutrient deficiencies.

iron nutritional quality plant breeding staple foods vitamin A zinc 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Anonymous 1992 International Conference on Nutrition: World Declaration and Plan of Action for Nutrition. Food and Agricultural Organization/World Health Organization, United Nations, Rome. 42 p.Google Scholar
  2. Anonymous 1993 Focus on Micronutrients. SCN News 9, 1-66.Google Scholar
  3. Anonymous 1994 The Challenge of Dietary Deficiencies of Vitamins and Minerals. In Enriching Lives: Overcoming Vitamin and Mineral Malnutrition in Developing Countries. pp. 6-13. World Bank, Washington D.C.Google Scholar
  4. Anonymous 1995 Progress report on the implementation of the ICN world plan of action for nutrition. FAO, United Nations Conference, Twenty-eighth Session, Rome, 20 October-2 November, 1995. Document C 95/INF/18 September, 1995. Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations. Rome 14 p.Google Scholar
  5. Anonymous. Food security and nutrition.World Food Summit Technical Background Documents WFS 96/TECH/9, 1-45. 1996. Rome, Food and Agricultural Organization, United Nations. World Food Summit Technical Background Documents Vol. 1.Google Scholar
  6. Behrman J R 1993 The Economic Rationale for Investing in Nutrition in Developing Countries. Monograph, US Agency for International Development / VITAL, Washington, D.C. 1-32.Google Scholar
  7. Bouis H 1996 Enrichment of food staples through plant breeding: A new strategy for fighting micronutrient malnutrition. Nutrit. Rev. 54, 131-137.Google Scholar
  8. Buyckx M 1993 The international community's commitment to combating micronutrient deficiencies. Food Nutr. Agr. 7, 2-7.Google Scholar
  9. Combs G F Jr, Duxbury J M and Welch R M 1997 Food systems for improved health: linking agricultural production and human nutrition. Euro. J. Biochem. 51, S32-S33.Google Scholar
  10. Combs G F, Jr and Welch R M 1998 Creating Healthful Food Systems: Linking Agriculture to Human Needs, Cornell International Institute for Food, Agriculture and Development, Ithaca, NY. 34 p.Google Scholar
  11. Combs G F Jr, Welch R M, Duxbury J M, Uphoff N T, and Nesheim M C 1996 Food-Based Approaches to Preventing Micronutrient Malnutrition: An International Research Agenda, Cornell International Institute for Food, Agriculture and Development. Cornell University, Ithaca, NY. 68 pp.Google Scholar
  12. Endre L, Beck F W J and Prasad A S 1990 The role of zinc in human health. J. Trace Elements Experl. Med. 3, 337-375.Google Scholar
  13. FAO 1990 Food Production Yearbook, Food and Agricultural Organization, United Nations, Rome.Google Scholar
  14. Frazao E 1996 The American diet: a costly health problem. FoodReview, January/April 2-6.Google Scholar
  15. Gibson R S 1994 Zinc nutrition in developing countries. Nutr. Res. Rev. 7, 151-173.Google Scholar
  16. Gordon N 1997 Nutrition and cognitive function. Brain Dev. 19, 165-170.Google Scholar
  17. Graham R D, Senadhira D, Beebe S, Iglesias C and Monasterio I 1999 Breeding for micronutrient density in edible portions of staple food crops. Conventional approaches. Field Crops Res. 60, 57-80.Google Scholar
  18. Graham R D, Senadhira D, Beebe S E and Iglesias C 1998 A strategy for breeding staple-food crops with high micronutrient density. Soil Sci. Plant Nutr. 43, 1153-1157.Google Scholar
  19. Graham R D and Welch R M 1996 Breeding for staple-food crops with high micronutrient density International Food Policy Research Institute, Washington, D.C. 72 pp.Google Scholar
  20. Grantham-McGregor D M and Ani C C 1999 The role of micronutrients in psychomotor and cognitive development Brit. Med. Bull. 55, 511-527.Google Scholar
  21. Hofbauer L C, Spitzweg C, Magerstädt R A and Heufelder A E 1997 Selenium-induced thyroid dysfunction. Postgrad. Med. J. 73, 103-104.Google Scholar
  22. Iglesias C, Mayer J, Chavez L and Calle F 1997 Genetic potential and stability of carotene content of cassava roots. Euphytica 94, 367-373.Google Scholar
  23. Islam S and Tori T H 1998 The invisible adversary. Star Magazine, Jan. 9, 4-10.Google Scholar
  24. Kim E-S, Noh S K and Koo S I 1998 Marginal zinc deficiency lowers the lymphatic absorption of ?-tocopherol in rats. J. Nutr. 128, 265-270.Google Scholar
  25. Larsen T 1997 Erythrocyte membrane enzymes as indicators of zinc status, In Trace Elements in Man and Animals-9. Proceedings of the Ninth International Symposium on Trace Elements in Man and Animals. Eds. PWF Fischer et al., pp. 105-106. National Research Council of Canada, Ottawa.Google Scholar
  26. Li R, Chen X, Yan H, Deurenberg P, Garby L and Hautvast J G A J 1994 Functional consequences of iron supplementation in irondeficient female cotton mill workers in Beijing, China. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 59, 908-913.Google Scholar
  27. Maberly G F, Trowbridge F L, Yip R, Sullivan K M and West, C E 1994 Programs against micronutrient malnutrition: Ending hidden hunger. Ann. Rev. Public Health 15, 277-301.Google Scholar
  28. Marschner H 1995 Mineral Nutrition of Higher Plants, Academic Press, London. 889 pp.Google Scholar
  29. Mason J B and Garcia M 1993 Micronutrient deficiency-the global situation. SCN News 9, 11-16.Google Scholar
  30. McGuire J 1993 Addressing micronutrient malnutrition. SCN News 9, 1-10.Google Scholar
  31. Mongeau E and Larivee S 2000 Nutrition and intelligence 2000 Int. J. Psychol. 35, 10-23.Google Scholar
  32. Penland J G 1997 Trace elements, brain function and behavior: Effects of zinc and boron. In Trace Elements in Man and Animals-9. Proceedings of the Ninth International Symposium on Trace Elements in Man and Animals. Eds. PWF Fischer et al. pp. 213-216. National Research Council of Canada, Ottawa.Google Scholar
  33. Prasad A S 1993 Essential and toxic trace elements in human health and disease: An update. Marginal deficiency of zinc and immunological effects. Prog. Clin. Biol. Res. 380, 1-22.Google Scholar
  34. Prasad A S 1996 Zinc deficiency in women, infants and children: J. Am. Coll. Nutr. 15, 113-120.Google Scholar
  35. Ramalingaswami V 1995 New global perspectives on overcoming malnutrition. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 61, 259-263.Google Scholar
  36. Reinhold J G 1988 Problems in mineral nutrition: a global perspective. In Trace Minerals in Foods. Ed. KT Smith. pp. 1-55. Marcel Dekker, Inc., New York and Basel.Google Scholar
  37. Ross E B 1996 Malthusianism and agricultural development: False premises, false promises. Biotech. Develop. Monitor 26, 24.Google Scholar
  38. Sanghvi T G 1996 Economic Rationale for Investing in Micronutrient Programs. A Policy Brief Based on New Analyses, Office of Nutrition, Bureau for Research and Development, United States Agency for International Development, Washington, D.C. 12 p.Google Scholar
  39. Shrimpton R 1993 Zinc deficiency-is it widespread but underrecognized? SCN News 9, 24-27.Google Scholar
  40. UNACCSN 1992 Second Report on the World Nutrition Situation. Vol. I. Global and Regional Results. United Nations Administrative Committee on Coordination, Subcommittee on Nutrition, Geneva. 80 pp.Google Scholar
  41. Uvin P 1994 The state of world hunger. Nutr. Rev. 52, 151-161.Google Scholar
  42. Walter T, Peirano P and Roncagliolo M 1997 Effect of iron deficiency anemia on cognitive skills and neuromaturation in infancy and childhood. In Trace Elements in Man and Animals-9. Proceedings of the Ninth International Symposium on Trace Elements in Man and Animals. Eds. P WF Fischer et al. pp. 217-219. National Research Council of Canada, Ottawa.Google Scholar
  43. Viteri F E V 1998 Prevention of iron deficiency. In Prevention of Micronutrient Deficiencies. Eds. CP Howson et al. pp. 45-102. National Academy Press, Washington, D. C.Google Scholar
  44. Welch R M 1986 Effects of nutrient deficiencies on seed production and quality. Adv. Plant Nutr. 2, 205-247.Google Scholar
  45. Welch R M 1995 Micronutrient nutrition of plants. Crit. Rev. Plant Sci. 14, 49-82.Google Scholar
  46. Welch R M 1999 Importance of seed mineral nutrient reserves in crop growth and development. In Mineral Nutrition of Crops. Fundamental Mechanisms and Implications. Ed. Z Rengel. pp. 205-226. Food Products Press, New York.Google Scholar
  47. Welch R M, Combs G F Jr and Duxbury J M 1997 Toward a 'Greener' revolution. Issues Sci. Tech. 14, 50-58.Google Scholar
  48. Welch R M and Graham R D 1999 A new paradigm for world agriculture: Meeting human needs. Productive, sustainable, nutritious. Food Crops Res. 60, 1-10.Google Scholar
  49. White J G and Zasoski R J 1999 Mapping soil micronutrients. Field Crops Res. 60, 11-26.Google Scholar
  50. WHO 1996 Trace elements in human nutrition and health, World Health Organization, Geneva. 343 pp.Google Scholar
  51. Yang X and Römheld V 1999 Physiological and genetic aspects of micronutrient uptake by higher plants. In Plant Nutrition-Molecular Biology and Genetics. Proceedings of the Sixth International Symposium on Genetics and Molecular Biology of Plant Nutrition. Eds. G Gissel-Nielsen and A. Jensen. pp. 151-186. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, The Netherlands.Google Scholar
  52. Yip R 1997 The challenge of improving iron nutrition: Limitations and potentials of major intervention approaches. Euro. J. Clin. Nutr. 51, S16-S24.Google Scholar
  53. Yip R and Scanlon K 1994 The burden of malnutrition: A population perspective. J. Nutr. 124 Suppl., 2043S-2046S.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Soil and Nutrition LaboratoryUSDA-ARS, U.S. PlantIthacaUSA
  2. 2.Department of Plant Science, Waite CampusUniversity of AdelaideGlen OsmondSouth Australia

Personalised recommendations