Proteomic and genomic analysis to improve the quality and safety of agricultural productions
AbstractFood health and quality are the keywords recurring both into the VII Framework Programme of EU, both in the PNR and development plans arranged by several Italian regions. Essentially, the increase and definition of quality of agri-food products represent necessary tools to give new impulse and renovation to this sector. The late developments of European and Italian laws show a clear trend towards the need to give consumer clear indications on different qualitative aspects of agri-food products, besides their microbiological security. The capacity to increase the quantity of secondary metabolites (vitamins and antioxidants) in crops is particularly interesting for the development of products with high health value (functional food). Breeding programmes have already obtained lines improved about these characteristics. The need to develop assessment strategies giving scientifically reliable information on traceability and health of food derived from genetically modified plants. Assessment of the risk coming from genetically modified plants is mainly based on the so-called “principle of substantial equivalence” or “of comparative safety”, claiming that a transgenic genotype shouldn’t show any substantial change with respect of the corresponding non-transgenic genotype. These changes are obviously considered healthy in case of the current commercial varieties. The new “-omics” disciplines such as genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics, born together with and subsequent to the complete sequencing of model genomes, can give an overview of first matters and food compositions, thus allowing the making of an overall assessment of their quality and safety. These new and sophisticated tools for molecular investigation can help and strengthen the commonly used methods, meeting the new requirements of traceability and authenticity certification.
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Copyright (c) 2008 Domenico Lafiandra, Stefania Masci, Giuseppe Reforgiato Recupero, Valeria Terzi, Domenico Carputo, Miriam Odoardi
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