Rapeseed as a domestic protein source of excellent quality for human consumption

Oilseed rape (Brassica napus L.) is the most important oil crop in Germany. With a potential of more than 1 Million tons of crude protein per year, it is also one of the most efficient protein producer. Despite its performance, excellent amino acid composition and nutritional value, proteins from this crop haven't been used for human consumption so far for different reasons, including the presence of adverse components. The current project is integrated into the BMBF funded research project 'Rapeseed as a domestic protein source of excellent quality for human consumption' (RaPEQ). Its main objective is to analyze the genetic variation in a genetically diverse rapeseed set for cruciferin, napin and sinapic acid ester content of the seeds. Napin and cruciferin are the main storage proteins of rapeseed, whose modification in terms of their composition should affect the protein quality, because both proteins have different structural, thermal, functional and biological properties. Identification and quantification of the proteins will be achieved by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). Another seed component in rapeseed is sinapic acid, which is a phenolic compound responsible for bitter taste. The reduction of this component would make rapeseed products more attractive for human nutrition. The level of sinapic acid ester content of seed samples will be analyzed by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). With the thus obtained data the development of a near-infrared reflection spectroscopy (NIRS) calibration for fast and nondestructive prediction of the cruciferin / napin ratio of the seeds will be realized as well, together with the improvement of an already existing NIRS calibration for sinapic acid esters. Finally, sequence informative SNP molecular markers (Illumina Infinium 60K Brassica chip) will be employed, to identify marker trait associations; the results could be used for practical breeding purposes