Seven advanced lines of tomato fruits (Solanum esculentum) and their wild relative, Solanum pimpinellifolum obtained from the breeding programme in the Department of Crop Science, University of Nigeria, Nsukka were assayed for their phytonutrient composition. The evaluated hybrids, (wild x Roma, wild x tropica and wild x local) were selected at the F12 generation. Results showed that the moisture, crude protein, carbohydrate, phosphorus, magnesium, β-carotene, and vitamin A contents differed significantly’ (P <0.05) among the various lines. The moisture content ranged between 83.15 % (Roma) and 88.30% (local); crude protein varied from 2.77% (wild) to 5.93% (wild x local), while carbohydrate contents ranged between 47.38 % (Roma) and 51.64 % (wild). Phosphorus was lowest in the wild (52.2 ppm) and highest in the tropica (77.1 0 ppm). Magnesium was lowest in wild x tropica (4.20 ppm) and highest in wild (7.78 ppm). The local variety had the lowest β-carotene content (0.77 mg/ml), but with the highest vitamin A content, while the wild x local produced the highest β-carotene content (2.32 mg/mI). The hybrids did not differ significantly in nutrient composition of the elements assessed. This knowledge will provide a baseline data on the nutritional characteristics of the various varieties for future hybridization programmes.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Title page————————————————————————– i
Certification page ————————————————————— ii
Dedication ———————————————————————— iii
Acknowledgment —————————————————————- iv
Table of Contents—————————————————————- v
List of Tables——————————————————————— vi
Abstract ————————————————————————— vii
Literature Review—————————————————————- 3
Origin of Tomatoes————————————————————– 3
Uses of Tomatoes—————————————————————- 5
Nutritional Values of Tomatoes ——————————————— 7
Materials and Methods——————————————————— 15
Statistical Analysis————————————————————– 16
Laboratory ———————————————————————— 16
RESULTS ———————————————————————— 25
DISCUSSION ——————————————————————- 37
CONCLUSION —————————————————————— 44
Tomato, Solanum esculentum has become the most popular grown vegetables in the world. Tomato contains health promoting vitamins such as vitamins A and C, and disease fighting phytochemicals known as carotenoids essential for cancer prevention and it is a good source of protein (Briggs and Saunders, 1979). Recent studies have shown that prostate cancer is a chronic disease whose incidence is believed to be reduced by beneficial effects of carotenoids (Anonymous, 2001).
Tomato also contains several other components that are beneficial to health including vitamin E, trace elements, flavonoids, and several water soluble vitamins (Beecher, 1998). Lycopene, a carotenoid found in tomato fruits prevent oxidation of low density lipo protein (LDL) cholesterol and reduces the risk of developing other osteoporosis and coronary heart disease. Tomato is cholesterol free. This explains why people who eat diets high in tomato have a lower risk of heart disease.
Tomato is highly beneficial in the treatment of diabetes, eye disorder, urinary disorder, obesity, intestinal and liver disorders, respiratory disorder and painful joints (Gyan, 2000). Tomato has been reported to be a kidney stimulant and thus helps to clean toxic substances in the system. The cultivation of tomato has some problems. High relative
humidity predisposes tomato to fruit and foliage diseases arising from fungal infections. This makes the cultivation of tomato in high humid environment very difficult. The use of chemical control is also environmentally unsafe. The use of disease resistant cultivars therefore becomes the most sustainable measure of control even though they are not readily available.
Although tomato breeding has undoubtedly been very successful in advanced economies, a great deal of efforts are needed in the under developed countries to develop varieties that are adapted to the local environmental conditions. It is therefore very necessary to improve the cultivated tomato with respect to quality to meet the nutritional needs of the people of Africa. Thus, one of the major challenges in any tomato breeding programme is to increase the yield and nutritional quality through plant breeding and hybridization programmes. These considerations prompted the initiation of the present study with the following objectives:
- to assess the nutrient composition of advanced interspecific hybrids generated from crosses between the cultivated and wild tomato lines and
- to determine the differences in nutrient contents between the hybrids and their parents.
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