Scientists from Cornell University and colleagues from other institutions
have identified genes that control Vitamin E content in the
load/biotech-crop-annual-update-maize-2016.pdf> maize grain.
The researchers used different types of genetic association analyses to
identify 14 genes across the maize genome involved in the synthesis of
vitamin E. Six genes were newly discovered to encode proteins that
contribute to a class of antioxidant compounds called tocochromanols,
collectively known as vitamin E. Aside from antioxidant properties,
tocochromanols are associated with good heart health in humans and proper
functioning in plants.
A near-complete foundation for the genetic improvement of vitamin E in maize
grain and other major cereals has been established, according to Michael
Gore, associate professor of plant breeding and genetics and a
co-corresponding author of the study published in The Plant Cell.