Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment

Biochemical, genetic and molecular basis of the novel and commercially important soft endosperm Makapuno coconut - A review


K. Deva Kumar, R. K. Gautam *, Israr Ahmad, S. Dam Roy, Archana Sharma

Recieved Date: 2014-05-12, Accepted Date: 2014-12-10


Coconut (Cocos nucifera L.) is a high valued plantation crop grown mainly for its liquid and solid endosperm. There is a rare coconut endosperm mutant, known as Makapuno, which is characterized by a soft, extra-thick kernel, partially or completely filling the nut water cavity. Such a fruit normally does not germinate. The Makapuno trait is governed by a recessive gene and otherwise Makapuno palms show normal variation in morphology, i.e. crown shape, colour of young fruit, inflorescence pigmentation etc. However, biochemical characters such as the activity of carbon metabolism enzymes (including pyruvate kinase, pyruvate decarboxylase), a poly (A)-binding protein, and a myb-like transcription factor were all upregulated. Makapuno glycolipid and phospholipid fractions are higher in oleic acid compared to the corresponding fractions from normal coconut. Makapuno palms are only propagated by embryo culture. Makapuno endosperm cells are round and loosely packed in contrast to normal coconut endosperm cells and its callus is larger. There is a huge commercial potential for Makapuno nuts for new and diversified food and specialty items. In view of the limited and scattered scientific information that is available, and supported by our experience on this coconut type, this paper reviews previous work on different aspects of this important genetic rarity in coconut.


Makapuno coconut, embryo culture, soft endosperm, recessive gene

Journal: Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment
Year: 2015
Volume: 13
Issue: 1
Category: Agriculture
Pages: 61-65

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