Policosanol (PC) is the common name for a mixture of high molecular weight (20-36 carbon) aliphatic primary alcohols, which are constituents of plant epicuticular waxes. Wheat germ oil has been reported to improve human physical fitness, and this effect is attributed to its high PC, specifically its high octacosanol (OC) content. Although the PC composition of wheat leaves has been studied extensively, information on PC content and composition of wheat grain fractions is scarce. The objective of this study was to examine the PC contents and compositions of wheat grain fractions of 31 varieties grown in Oklahoma. PC compositions of the samples were identified using a gas chromatograph coupled with a mass spectrometer. The PC content of wheat bran was higher than that of the germ, shorts, and flour. The Trego and Intrada varieties had the highest PC content among the 31 wheat varieties studied. Tetracosanol (C24), hexacosanol (C26), and OC (C28) were the major PC components in all varieties. This study showed that wheat varieties grown under identical growing conditions and management differ significantly in PC content and composition.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)