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Chapter 21 : Biotechnology in the Food Industry

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Biotechnology in the Food Industry, Page 1 of 2

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Abstract:

The human body synthesizes 12 amino acids from scratch and depends on dietary sources for essential amino acids. Insufficient protein is the most pervasive macronutrient deficiency, but often the problem is not the total amount of protein consumed, but one or two amino acids. Researchers in India successfully increased the amino acid content of the potato by providing it with a gene from amaranth, a high-protein grain used in South American and Asian cultures for centuries. Micronutrients are food components, such as vitamins and minerals, needed in small amounts because they play key roles in specific cellular processes, such as oxygen transport (iron), hormone function (iodine), enzyme catalysis (zinc), or vision (vitamin A). Researchers from around the world are using recombinant DNA technology and plant breeding to increase the amounts of micronutrients in staple grains. Plant genetic diversity, created naturally through sexual reproduction, is a valuable natural resource that humans have exploited for centuries. Individual plants had traits people valued. They saved the seeds of those plants, grew them into parent plants for the next generation, selected the best of their offspring, and discarded the rest. The techniques for generating genetic diversity differ, but plant breeding, mutagenesis, and genetic engineering share the same objective: creating a crop variety with a new trait.

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21

Key Concept Ranking

Food Microbiology
0.61552155
Acetyl Coenzyme A
0.48773745
Fatty Acid Desaturase
0.41682637
Amino Acid Synthesis
0.41653952
0.61552155
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Figures

Image of Figure 21.1
Figure 21.1

Amaranth. Amaranth was a dietary staple of the Aztec and Inca Indians in pre-Columbian times. Each plant produces 40,000 to 60,000 seeds per growing season, and the leaves are also edible. The protein content of the seeds is significantly greater than that of other cereal grains, and the proteins contain large amounts of lysine, an essential amino acid. (Photograph courtesy of Cooperative Extension Service, University of California— Davis.)

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.2
Figure 21.2

Metabolic pathway engineering. To increase the amount of lysine produced by crop plants, molecular biologists inserted genes encoding enzymes (AK and DHDPS) that are resistant to lysine feedback inhibition control.

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.3
Figure 21.3

Ferritin. Iron is an essential micronutrient found in hemoglobin and a number of enzymes responsible for ATP synthesis. When exposed to water and oxygen, it forms rust-like molecules that are insoluble in water, so iron atoms must be stored and transported within watertight proteins. Ferritin is an iron storage molecule consisting of 24 identical subunits surrounding a hollow core that stores thousands of iron atoms. A ribbon model shows how the tightly packed atoms protect the iron atoms from water. A cross section of the molecule reveals the hollow core and tiny pores on the top, bottom, and sides that allow iron atoms to enter and leave when needed. (Images courtesy of the Protein Data Bank [http://www.pdb.org]. Image A is PDB entry 1FHA, submitted by D. M. Lawson. Image B is by David Goodsell, The Scripps Institute.)

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.4
Figure 21.4

Provitamin A synthesis. Provitamin A, also known as beta-carotene, is a lipid molecule. Rice naturally contains one of its precursors, geranylgeranyl-diphosphate. Scientists created transgene constructs that contained three enzymes that can convert geranylgeranyl- diphosphate to provitamin A: phytoene synthase, phytoene desaturase, and lycopene β-cyclase. They used -mediated transformation to insert the transgene into rice tissue cultures.

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.5
Figure 21.5

Golden Rice. High levels of beta-carotene, a pigment molecule found in many fruits and vegetables but not in rice grains, are responsible for the yellow rice grains on the right. Conventional rice is on the left. (Photograph courtesy of Louisiana State University .)

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.6
Figure 21.6

Synthesis of a fatty acid. Fatty acid synthesis begins as two molecules of acetyl coenzyme A (acetyl-CoA), shaded blue and orange, are joined by FAsyn1 to create a four-carbon molecule. Three more FAsyn enzymes each add an acetyl-CoA unit to the growing chain, creating a 10-carbon fatty acid.

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.7
Figure 21.7

Synthesizing saturated and unsaturated fatty acids. In a continuation of the process illustrated in Figure 21.6, a 16-carbon saturated fatty acid (palmitic acid) is synthesized by a number of FAsyn enzymes that are organized into a complex. If palmitic acid is released from FAsyn7 by the 16-carbon releasing enzyme, it can be used as is or converted to a monounsaturated fatty acid by the 16-carbon desaturase enzyme, which removes two hydrogen atoms. If it is not released, FAsyn8 converts the 16-carbon fatty acid to stearic acid, an 18-carbon fatty acid. Stearic acid can be converted to a 20-carbon fatty acid by FAsyn9 or released from FAsyn8 by the 18-carbon releasing enzyme. Desaturase enzymes convert stearic acid to oleic acid, linoleic acid, and ultimately linolenic acid (not shown), which has three double bonds.

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.8
Figure 21.8

and double bonds. The terms and refer to the placement of the hydrogens on the double-bonded carbons. In nature, most double bonds are , so enzymes have specific shapes that bind to bonds to break them or to place hydrogens on the same sides of the double bond. Hydrogenating double bonds by bubbling hydrogen through a container of fatty acids creates many fatty acids, because hydrogen placement is random.

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.9
Figure 21.9

Altering fatty acid profiles by breeding. Scientists have used recombinant DNA technology, mutagenesis, and breeding to shift the proportions of saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated oils in the most common oilseed crops. In this photograph, USDA geneticists are hand pollinating sunflowers to increase the amount of oleic acid, the fatty acid found in olive oil. (Photograph by Russ Hanson, courtesy of Agricultural Research Service, USDA.)

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.10
Figure 21.10

Altering fatty acid profiles with molecular techniques. Recombinant DNA techniques for blocking gene expression increased the percentage of monounsaturated fatty acids in soybean oil from approximately 23 to 90%.

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.11
Figure 21.11

Probiotics. Lactic acid bacteria, such as , pictured here, are helpful residents of the human digestive system. Yogurt and sour cream contain live cultures. (Photograph courtesy of Department of Education Human Genome Project and Utah State University.)

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.12
Figure 21.12

Fungal pathogen. Fungi are responsible for the majority of plant diseases. This scanning electron micrograph shows fungal hyphae invading barley. (Micrograph courtesy of the Center for Microscopy and Microanalysis, University of Queensland.)

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.13
Figure 21.13

Mycotoxins and food safety. Regular consumption of grains infected with mycotoxin-producing fungi can lead to chronic diseases. Corn grown in the Guatemalan highlands is harvested and graded as clean, spoiled, or rotten (right). Cornmeal for making tortillas consists of equal parts of each grade. Not surprisingly, this meal contains levels of mycotoxins (26 parts per million [ppm]) that are 100 times greater than cornmeal from corn grown in the United States (0.2 ppm). The toxicity problem is amplified by dosage. The average consumption of tortillas each day (14 to 16 ounces) is over 100 times greater than U.S. consumption (0.12 ounce). (Photographs courtesy of Ronald Riley, USDA Mycotoxins Laboratory.)

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.14
Figure 21.14

Meat inspection. The USDA Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) is responsible for ensuring that meat, poultry, fish, milk, and eggs are not contaminated by microbes when the products leave the processing facility. More than 7,500 FSIS inspectors inspect 6,000 privately owned processing plants annually. In addition, approximately 3 billion pounds of meat and poultry from 32 countries passes inspection for entry into the United States annually. (Photograph courtesy of FSIS, USDA.)

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.15
Figure 21.15

Food-borne illness. A species. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that bacteria cause from 1.5 to 4 million cases of food-borne illness annually in the United States.As few as 15 to 20 bacteria constitute an infectious dose. , the bacterium that often triggers food recalls, causes an average of 1,600 infections and 415 deaths/year in the United States. The infectious dose is much higher than that for (900 to 1,100 bacteria), but the symptoms of listeriosis are more severe. is an intracellular parasite. The bacterial cells (stained red with fluorescent dye) move throughout the infected cell using tail-like structures, which look like comet tails in this micrograph. (Photographs courtesy of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health [A], and Julie Theriot, Whitehead Institute [B].)

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.16
Figure 21.16

Mutagenesis breeding. Plant breeders subject crop seeds to mutagens, such as chemicals and X rays; plant the seeds; and determine if any of the plants that result have the desired trait.

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.17
Figure 21.17

Genetic diversity and plant breeding. Plant breeders incorporate naturally occurring desirable traits into existing crop varieties. In this instance, a mutant variety of cauliflower, with levels of beta-carotene more than 100 times greater than those of normal cauliflower, was discovered in a cauliflower field in Canada. (Photograph courtesy of David Garvin, USDA.)

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.18
Figure 21.18

Laboratory techniques in plant breeding. In protoplast fusion, scientists remove the cell walls from plant cells and force them together to combine their genomes. Modern plant breeding relies heavily on tissue culture to coax plant cells and tissues into becoming whole plants capable of reproduction. (Photographs courtesy of the International Seeds Consortium [A] and Agricultural Research Service, USDA [B].)

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.19
Figure 21.19

Genetic modification through breeding. Using modern plant breeding techniques, USDA scientists have produced carrot varieties in a range of colors, reflecting varying amounts of the different carotenoid pigments. The National Plant Genome Initiative has helped the breeders determine that 20 different genes are responsible for the rainbow of colors. However, they have not identified the genes or the proteins encoded by the genes. (Photograph by Stephen Ausmus, courtesy of the Agricultural Research Service, USDA.)

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Image of Figure 21.20
Figure 21.20

Medicinal plants. Foxglove (). Wormwood (). A number of pharmaceuticals are derived from plants. The foxglove is the source of digitalis, a heart medicine, and compounds extracted from wormwood have antimalarial properties. (Photographs courtesy of Thomas Barnes, University of Kentucky [A], and by Scott Bauer, courtesy of the Agricultural Research Service, USDA [B].)

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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References

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Tables

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Table 21.1

Micronutrients

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Table 21.2

Essential amino acids

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Table 21.3

Incomplete proteins in plants

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Table 21.4

Obesity and health: conditions related to excess weight

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Table 21.5

Dietary lipids

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Table 21.6

Fatty acids

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
Generic image for table
Table 21.7

Proportions of fatty acid types

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Table 21.8

Phytochemicals

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Table 21.9

Food-borne illness statistics for 2000

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Table 21.10

Laboratory techniques for crossbreeding plants

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Table 21.11

Overcoming the species barrier in plant breeding

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21
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Table 21.12

Comparing the safety and precision of plant breeding and biotechnology

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2005. Biotechnology in the Food Industry, p 535-568. In Biology and Biotechnology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816094.ch21

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