Changes in Growth and Antioxidant Status of Alfalfa Sprouts During Sprouting As Affected by Gamma Irradiation of Seeds

Changes in growth and antioxidant status of alfalfa sprouts during sprouting as affected by gamma irradiation of seeds
March 2004
Journal of Food Protection: Vol. 67, No. 3, pp. 561-566
Xuetong Fan,a Donald W. Thayer,a and Kimberly J. B. Sokoraia
aFood Safety Intervention Technologies Research Unit, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Eastern Regional Research Center, 600 East Mermaid Lane, Wyndmoor, Pennsylvania 19038, USA

Viking 3000 alfalfa seeds irradiated with gamma rays to doses of 0, 1, 2, 3, or 4 kGy were sprouted and allowed to grow for up to 8 days at 23°C. Germination, growth (yield and length), antioxidant capacity, and ascorbic acid (AA) were measured during sprouting. Results showed percent germination of the seeds and the rates of growth of the sprouts were inversely related to the radiation dose absorbed by the seeds. Both antioxidant capacity and AA content expressed on a fresh weight basis decreased during growth of the sprouts. Sprouts grown from irradiated seeds had greater antioxidant capacity and AA content on a fresh weight basis than those grown from nonirradiated seeds. However, when the nutritive values were expressed on a per gram of seed basis, irradiation had no effect on the nutritive values of sprouts.