BIOCHEMICAL ATTRIBUTES OF DATES AT THREE MATURATION STAGES
Keywords:Antioxidant activity, Date palm, Enzymes, Phenolic contents, Protein contents, Sugars profile
The date fruit is a primary component of the human diet in many countries with arid and semiarid climates. The present study reflects the relationship of different biochemical attributes with progressive date fruit developmental stages. The study involved eight date palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) cultivars from Pakistan examined at three different edible stages of dates (khalal, rutab and tamar). The antiradical efficiency (2.14–0.36), antioxidant enzymes (catalase and peroxidase), total phenolic contents (468.99–108 mg GAE/100g, FW) and the soluble protein contents (5.73–2.75 g/100g) were higher in higher at khalal and thereafter, but declined at fully ripened (tamar) stage. Moreover, glucose (16.92–31.66%) and fructose (15.25–30.58%) have lower quantity at khalal and higher quantity at tamar stage, whereas non-reducing (sucrose) sugars were present only at khalal and rutab stage fruits. Makran and Chohara cultivars revealed best overall values in examined compounds. Our results revealed that variation in different biochemical attributes is mainly depended on the difference in fruit maturity stage and cultivar. Cultivars exhibiting high values of beneficial biochemical attributes may be considered for the expansion of date palm cultivation.