Researchers report study results of native potatoes

This research with high quality standards provides an important tool to the local and Latin American industry.

© Fraunhofer Chile Research
© Fraunhofer Chile Research
© Fraunhofer Chile Research

On Friday, August 10, was held at the Universidad Austral de Chile, UACh, the final seminar of the project "Molecular markers for the generation of potatoes with improved content of anthocyanins".

The event was attended by the researchers responsible for the project, Dr. Derie Fuentes and Dr. Álvaro González from the Center of  Systems Biotechnology of Fraunhofer Chile Research, and the researchers, Dra. Anita Behn and Dra. Carolina Lizana, from the Institute of Sanitary and Plant Production of the UACh.

On that occasion, the researchers presented the results collected in the three-year study, where 290 samples of native potatoes from Chiloé, existing in a germoplasm bank, were analyzed to assess their level of anthocyanins. These are pigments in fruits and vegetables that provide important benefits to human health.

The aim of the presented work was to gather genetic information to support improvement and generation programs of new varieties of potatoes, with higher nutritional properties, especially in relation to their level of antioxidants.
The project had the international support of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research  (BMBF) of Germany and the National Commission of Scientific and Technological Research of Chile, Conicyt.

During the final seminar, the relationship between genetics and phenotypic characteristics such as skin color and pulp, as well as the content of polyphenols and anthocyanins, both in the potato germoplasm bank samples and in the crosses between them, was shown.

The presentation was made to an academic audience in the premises of the Icytal building, on the Isla Teja campus in Valdivia.