Journal of food science

Macromolecular Traits in the African Rice Oryza glaberrima and in Glaberrima/Sativa Crosses, and Their Relevance to Processing.

PMID 28850662


Molecular properties of proteins and starch were investigated in 2 accessions of Oryza glaberrima and Oryza sativa, and in one NERICA cross between the 2 species, to assess traits that could be relevant to transformation into specific foods. Protein nature and organization in O. glaberrima were different from those in O. sativa and in NERICA. Despite the similar cysteine content in all samples, thiol accessibility in O. glaberrima proteins was higher than in NERICA or in O. sativa. Inter-protein disulphide bonds were important for the formation of protein aggregates in O. glaberrima, whereas non-covalent protein-protein interactions were relevant in NERICA and O. sativa. DSC and NMR studies indicated only minor differences in the structure of starch in these species, as also made evident by their microstructural features. Nevertheless, starch gelatinization in O. glaberrima was very different from what was observed in O. sativa and NERICA. The content of soluble species in gelatinized starch from the various species in the presence/absence of treatments with specific enzymes indicated that release of small starch breakdown products was lowest in O. glaberrima, in particular from the amylopectin component. These findings may explain the low glycemic index of O. glaberrima, and provide a rationale for extending the use of O. glaberrima in the production of specific rice-based products, thus improving the economic value and the market appeal of African crops. The structural features of proteins and starch in O. glaberrima are very different from those in O. sativa and in the NERICA cross. These results appear useful as for extending the use of O. glaberrima cultivars in the design and production of specific rice-based products (for example, pasta), that might, in turn, improve the economic value and the market appeal of locally sourced raw materials, by introducing added-value products on the African market.