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Unravelling the effect of provitamin A enrichment on agronomic performance of tropical maize hybrids
Mengesha Abera, W.
Review StatusPeer Review
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Maize is consumed in different traditional diets as a source of macro- and micro-nutrients across Africa. Significant investment has thus been made to develop maize with high provitamin A content to complement other interventions for alleviating vitamin A deficiencies. The current breeding focus on increasing β-carotene levels to develop biofortified maize may affect the synthesis of other beneficial carotenoids. The changes in carotenoid profiles, which are commonly affected by environmental factors, may also lead to a trade-off with agronomic performance. The present study was therefore conducted to evaluate provitamin A biofortified maize hybrids across diverse field environments. The results showed that the difference in accumulating provitamin A and other beneficial carotenoids across variable growing environments was mainly regulated by the genetic backgrounds of the hybrids. Many hybrids, accumulating more than 10 µg/g of provitamin A, produced higher grain yields (>3600 kg/ha) than the orange commercial maize hybrid (3051 kg/ha). These hybrids were also competitive, compared to the orange commercial maize hybrid, in accumulating lutein and zeaxanthins. Our study showed that breeding for enhanced provitamin A content had no adverse effect on grain yield in the biofortified hybrids evaluated in the regional trials. Furthermore, the results highlighted the possibility of developing broadly adapted hybrids containing high levels of beneficial carotenoids for commercialization in areas with variable maize growing conditions in Africa.
Multi standard citation
Permanent link to this itemhttps://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12478/7209
IITA Authors ORCID
Alamu Emmanuel Oladejihttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-6263-1359
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)