Potatoes genetically modifiedto resist black spotting and high levels of acrylamide The web link I visited brought me tothe U.S. Food & Administration website. I was brought to a page listinggenetically engineered plants and crops that were improved to resist disease,have improvement in growth, and resist fast ripening or bruising.
I chose towrite about BNF No. 152. The plant that was genetically engineered was thepotato. The developer, J.R.
Simplot, called it the V11 potato. Simplotdeveloped this potato using recombinant DNA techniques. The gene segments aimed to be reducedor silenced were from PPO5 gene, ASN1 gene, and R1 and PhL promoters. The genesegment from PPO5 gene encodes polyphenol oxidase 5 and its source is solanumverrucosum. The function of PPO5 is to catalyze o-quinone and o-diphenols whichpolymerize to form melanin. If PPO5 is reduced, the coloration of oxidizedtissue is reduced. The purpose of introducing this gene segment was to preventblack spot bruises on the potatoes by lowering the endogenous enzyme levels.
The second trait introduced to the V11 potato are gene segments from the ASN1gene which encodes asparagine synthase1. The source of the ASN1 gene segmentwas Solanum tuberosum var. Ranger Russet and this segment reduced levels offree asparagine in the potato plant. The last trait introduced was from R1 andPhL promoters. The source was also Solanum tuberosum var. Ranger Russet. ThePhL gene encodes phosphorylase that degrades starch by a release of a glucosephosphate gene.
A reduction of PhL lowered levels of reducing-sugars whichlowers the forming of acrylamide when heated. The R1 gene encodes a starch R1gene that accelerates phosphates ATP. It is responsible for phosphorylationwhich packs crystalline within starch and becomes more attainable todegradation. The loss of R1 impairs this process and reduces accumulation ofreducing sugars. The overall purpose J.R. Simplot Companygenetically modified their potatoes was so that they contain less asparaginethat turns into acrylamide during the frying of potatoes and to prevent blackspot bruising.
The developer company and the FDA have both concluded that theV11 potato is safe for consumption and is not different in composition fromother potatoes on the market. However, since 93% of potatoes are used for humanfood there are concerns about the effects of high levels of free asparagine uponheating of the potatoes. The free asparagine can have a reaction to reducingsugars and can cause a safety concern.
This is why the V11 potato has to becorrectly genetically modified in order to avoid these adverse effects. There has been other research worksabout the ASN1 gene and its reduction to produce less of acrylamide in heat. Acrylamide is produced in foods while cookingwith high temperatures.
Acrylamide has introduced health concerns. Friedpotatoes contain an immense amount of acrylamide. One way to inhibit acrylamideis to attain potato cultivars that have little contents of asparagine. PlantBiotechnol generated a number of silencing lines of potato by targeting genesASN1 and ASn2. The transcription levels of the gene were closely tied withreducing sugar and asparagine content. Fried potatoes from ASN1/ASN2 silencinglines contained only one-fifteenth of the acrylamide content.
In conclusion, acrylamidemitigation strategy on developing potato cultivars with low reducing sugars isprobable to be a plentiful approach for minimizing the acrylamide formation potentialof fried potatoes.