Boosting beneficial phytochemicals in vegetable crop plants

Plants contain an astonishing diversity of biochemical pathways, which eventually result in the production and accumulation of innumerable phytochemical compounds. From an historical point of view, people have primarily selected plants on the basis of traits that are linked to the presence of beneficial phytochemicals. During the past decade, biotechnology has improved the possibilities of changing the biochemical composition of several crop plants and consequently has opened up new opportunities for targeted crop improvement or even for the development of new crops or converting existing crops for other uses. In this review, we will give an overview of strategies and progress made in modifications of some of the important compounds of importance to the food industry in particular. The focus is placed on the flavonoid, vitamin, essential amino acid and polyunsaturated fatty acid composition of vegetable crops and hence topics such as food quality improvement, food fortification, nutritional value and functional foods are broadly illustrated.

E.G.W.M. Schijlen, J. Beekwilder, R.D. Hall, I.M. van der Meer
Authors from the NMC: 
Publication data (text): 
2008; 3, 025, 21 pp.
Published in: 
CAB REVIEWS: Perspectives in Agriculture, Veterinary Science, Nutrition and Natural Resources
Date of publication: 
March, 2008
Status of the publication: 
Centre for BioSystems Genomics