Biofortification of potato (Solanum tuberosum) using metal oxide nanoparticles

Davies, K.E., 2018. Biofortification of potato (Solanum tuberosum) using metal oxide nanoparticles. PhD, Nottingham Trent University.

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The project aimed to increase the phytoavaiablilty of calcium (Ca), iron (Fe) and zinc (Zn) in order to
fortify tubers for human consumption to aid the reduced global micronutrient malnutrition (MNM). Simultaneously improve quality of tubers (dry mass), reduction of disease occurrence (soft rot), and
uniformity of tuber size.

There are three strategies commonly adopted to improve plant fortification: enhanced fertilisers, breeding and nutritional genetic modification. While genetic modification has produced some interesting results, the commercialisation is hindered by public perception and legislation, therefore selective breeding programmes are now being developed to circumvent these issues and help address the global issue of micronutrient malnutrition. This programme of work adopts a more holistic approach, whereby a plant food additive has been developed that can be fed to all varieties of crop without the need to develop new strains through breeding or genetic modification.

The work here in produced a number of key findings:
• Increase in mineral content of tubers from skin to pith in all applications
• Increased foliar growth rate and tubers >30mmm
• Iron increased the consistency of tuber size
• Retention on minerals in growth media, decreasing leaching and increasing phytoavailability. Also beneficial to decreasing the minerals realised in the environment.

Using patented technology, the reactor allows accurate and consistent size production of nanoparticles metal oxide nanoparticles with a production rate of 1 kg per hour whereas previous this rate was approximately 5 grams a day. The bulk production allows nanoparticles to be applied in numerous ways that were previously unfeasible.

Sustainable application of iron fortification that retains in the soil strata for a longer period of time than conventional applications Coating of amino acid to the nanoparticle increases the efficiency of nitrogen assimilation, in turn increasing the metabolism of the plant and accumulation of other minerals present in the soil or fertiliser. Costing less than current Fe-chelated with less requirement for application.

Significant increases in the mineral content of the tubers means a more nutritional food for human consumption. Increases in weight, yield and faster maturity can mean a solution to sustaining agriculture for a fast growing population.

The fortification method can be added to current fertiliser applications, requiring no drastic changes to current methods.

The implications of the project are summarised in the below figure.

Item Type: Thesis
Creators: Davies, K.E.
Date: 2018
Rights: This work is the intellectual property of the author, BBSRC and AHDB Potato (Note: if there are other owners of the IP, they must also be named here). You may copy up to 5% of this work for private study, or personal, noncommercial research. Any re-use of the information contained within this document should be fully referenced, quoting the author, title, university, degree level and pagination. Queries or requests for any other use, or if a more substantial copy is required, should be directed in the owner(s) of the Intellectual Property Rights.
Divisions: Schools > School of Science and Technology
Record created by: Linda Sullivan
Date Added: 07 Jan 2019 12:58
Last Modified: 07 Jan 2019 12:58

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