Qualitative and nutraceutical characterization of ancient Italian and commercial pear cultivars

D. Ceccarelli, L. Principio, E. Caboni
Pear (Pyrus communis L.) fruit is rich in health promoting antioxidant compounds such as phenolic compounds. In Italy, pear is an important crop and its production is the third in the world. However, in the last years the use of a small number of cultivars has resulted in a loss of agrobiodiversity, thus there is a growing interest for the agrobiodiversity recovery and valorization of local cultivars also through the studies of nutraceutical fruit properties. This study was aimed to characterize the quality traits and nutraceutical properties of peel and pulp of 2 Italian old local pear cultivars (‘Angelica’ and ‘Mastantuono’) currently conserved at the National Fruit Tree Germplasm of CREA-OFA, Rome, in comparison with two of the most cultivated cultivars in Italy, ‘Conference’ and ‘Coscia’. Qualitative and nutraceutical characterization of fruits at full ripening was performed. Total soluble solids (TSS) were measured by digital refractometer and titratable acidity (TA) by volumetric titration. The antioxidant activity (AA) was measured by the DPPH method and determination of total phenolic compounds (TPC) and total anthocyanins (TAC) was performed by spectrophotometric analyses. As in the other fruit species, TSS and TA values were found to be related to the genotype and both AA and TPC were significantly higher in the peel than in the flesh in all the cultivars and also vary in relation to the genotype. ‘Angelica’ showed the highest AA, TPC and TAC content in the peel. ‘Mastantuono’ also showed a good AA, TPC and TAC content in peel. In flesh the highest value of TPC was found in ‘Mastantuono’. These preliminary results represent a contribution toward the re-valuation of ancient pear cultivars as potential source of bioactive compounds and for their use in breeding programs.
Ceccarelli, D., Principio, L. and Caboni, E. (2021). Qualitative and nutraceutical characterization of ancient Italian and commercial pear cultivars. Acta Hortic. 1307, 457-462
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2021.1307.69
anthocyanins, antioxidant activity, Pyrus communis L., total phenolic compounds, titratable acidity, total soluble solids

Acta Horticulturae