Instituto Fitotecnico de Santa Catalina
Universidad Nacional de la Plata and CIGEN (CONICET-CIC-UNLP)

Analysis of the chemical composition of quality maize inbreds and their hybrids

— Corcuera, VR; Bernatené, EA; Naranjo, CA

Since 1990, inbreds were obtained by Schull’s method from eleven foundational populations of waxy, opaque2 and normal endosperm maizes. Materials were conducted ear-per-row during the first inbreeding generations and later using balanced composites. Several single-crosses amongst developed inbreds were practised. Oil content (%), protein content (%), starch content (%) and kernels density were measured at the lab through a non-destructive assay using a NIR device model Tekator Infratec 1227. Measurements were carried out on samples of 49 elite inbreds and F2 kernels taken from 82 precommercial single-cross hybrids developed using them. Oil content in the inbreds ranged from 3.84 to 7.34% with an average value of 5.62% ± 0.81. The hybrids shown an average oil content of 5.36% ± 0.44, ranging from 3,80 to 6,11%. Protein content ranged from 9.40 to 15.50% in the inbreds with an average of 11.87% ± 1.30. F2 kernels collected from single-cross hybrids has an average content of 10.63 ± 0.88, ranging from 8.4 to 12.9%. About starch, the average content detected in the inbreds is 70.17% ± 1.22 (66.9 to 73.80%) and in F2 kernels 70.03% ± 0.99 ranging from 68.00 to 72.80%. Finally, kernels density average value is 1.269 ± 0.040 (1.136 to 1.331) for the inbreds considered and 1.287 ± 0.48 (1.000 to 1.327) for their single-cross hybrids. These values reflect the exceptional quality of these grains. The precommercial single-crosses labelled 3165, 3166, 3205, 3207, 3218, 3235,3253,3254,3256,3259,3268, 3295 and 3300 seem to be the most promisory germplasm among all the hybrids evaluated, as a minimun of 5.70% oil, 11.4% protein and 68.6% starch may be found in their F2 kernels that also reach maximun values of 6.04% oil, 12.9% protein and 71.3% starch.

At least eight elite inbreds denote high oil and high protein content: 3022 ( 6.98% oil and 15.5% protein), 3109 (6.77% oil and 13.1% protein), 3098 (6.52% oil and 12.6% protein), 3132/I (6.49% oil and 11.9% protein), 3139/II (7.34% oil and 10.8% protein), 3002c (6.33% oil and 11.8% protein), 3043b (5.99% oil and 12.1% protein), 3141a (6.22% oil and 12.1% protein). These represents and important advance in the obtention of quality maize germplasm as the correlation between oil and protein usually is non-significant or even may adopt negative values.

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