Espa

PROJECT

Sesamothisis in a few words

Σουσάμι

The small seed of the plant “Sesamum indicum” has managed for years to attract the interest of the public eye and the scientists interest, thanks to the many and important beneficial effects it has on the human body. The beneficial and healing properties of this tiny seed were also known in ancient Greece, where sesame extracts were used as herbal ingredients to combat hypertension and to produce medicines.

Κουλούρι με σουσάμι

Hippocrates described it as one of the best products for human health. Sesame is a very affordable while rich nutritional-wise source, mainly in proteins, oil, vitamins and trace elements. 

Sesame and its derivatives are considered products of high nutritional value, both for their high quality oil and for their high biological value protein. Sesame oil shows remarkable resistance to oxidation compared to other oils, which is mainly due to the presence of substances with antioxidant properties. What makes sesame so special is the fact that it is a food with plant protein of high biological value (18-25% ), while it is rich in vitamins (B1, B2, E, niacin), which are suitable for sensitive age groups and are necessary for better health of the nervous system.

Χημειο

Sesame proteins are rich in sulfur amino acids (methionine, arginine, leucine, tryptophan), which in combination with foods containing lysine, acquire greater nutritional value, and contribute to good health of many organs, such as the liver and kidneys. According to international estimates, while demand has recently increased by about 6%, the increase in production over the same period is hardly approaching 4% so its production must be increased. To date, 705 different sesame varieties have been sequenced in China where nucleotide differences have been recorded, 56 agronomic characteristics have been investigated in 4 different environments identifying 549 linked gene regions. Analysis of major gene regions identified 46 candidate genes, including genes related to oil content, fatty acid biosynthesis, and yield.

Σουσάμι

Sesame has a lower yield compared to other cultivated plants due to its high height, low yield index, and sensitivity to biotic and abiotic factors. Therefore, new dwarf or semi-dwarf sesame varieties should be explored, as was the case with the “green revolution”, which is characterized by the cultivation of dwarf or dwarf wheat and rice varieties in order to achieve an increased harvest rate and improved adaptation. in terms of irrigated and fertile environments, usually occupied by taller plants. The big disadvantage of sesame cultivation is the shaking of the seed during its maturation which entails high production costs and large seed losses.

The purpose of the proposal is the resettlement of sesame cultivation in Greece, the repatriation of Greek varieties, the application of new chemical technologies to understand molecular mechanisms that control major biosynthetic pathways and resistance to drought, increase employment and growth from the creation of new varieties and new products.

Σουσάμι

Objectives of the research program

The small seed of the plant “Sesamum indicum” has managed for years to attract the interest of the public eye and the scientists interest, thanks to the many and important beneficial effects it has on the human body. The beneficial and healing properties of this tiny seed were also known in ancient Greece, where sesame extracts were used as herbal ingredients to combat hypertension and to produce medicines.

Hippocrates described it as one of the best products for human health. Sesame is a very affordable while rich nutritional-wise source, mainly in proteins, oil, vitamins and trace elements. Sesame and its derivatives are considered products of high nutritional value, both for their high quality oil and for their high biological value protein. Sesame oil shows remarkable resistance to oxidation compared to other oils, which is mainly due to the presence of substances with antioxidant properties. What makes sesame so special is the fact that it is a food with plant protein of high biological value (18-25% ), while it is rich in vitamins (B1, B2, E, niacin), which are suitable for sensitive age groups and are necessary for better health of the nervous system.

It is also a food with plant protein of high biological value, while it is rich in vitamins necessary for better health of the nervous system. Sesame proteins are rich in sulfur amino acids which in combination with foods containing lysine, acquire greater nutritional value. The recognized nutritional and medicinal value of sesame seeds and the current consumer tendency to crave such foods have in recent years increased global demand at a faster rate than production, while demand has recently increased by about 6%, increasing production in at the same time approaches with difficulty 4%. In total, the EU in 2015 imported 161 thousand tons of sesame worth 288 million euros, with Greece in second place.

In 2016, the interest for the cultivation of sesame increased. A team of Chinese researchers in 2016, published the updated genome of sesame and presented a detailed map of its two important characteristics, the height and color of the seed. The same group sequenced 705 different varieties, identified 549 gene regions and 46 candidate genes, including genes related to oil content, fatty acid biosynthesis and yield. Thus, with the sequencing of Greek varieties, tools will be developed for the directed improvement and selection of varieties that will solve the problems of cultivation and will make it attractive to the producer. The big disadvantage of sesame cultivation is the shaking of the seed during ripening. So sesame growers are forced to harvest the whole plant to gather them in a haystack where they are left to mature and threshed at great labor cost. It also shows a significant reduction in yield due to the non-simultaneous maturation of the seeds.

The proposal will go beyond the knowledge so far. The genes of selected Greek varieties will be sequenced to understand the genome, to establish the varieties and to assist in the improvement. The transcript of the Greek varieties found in the genetic material bank and / or those that will be repatriated to understand the mechanisms of production of valuable biomolecules, the shaking of the seed and the design of functional indicators for the variety improvement. The valuable biomolecules of Greek sesame will be identified with metabolic technologies.

The purpose of the Sesame Opened proposal is the application of innovative technologies such as phenomic, genomic, transcriptional and metabolic as a tool to restore sesame cultivation in Greece, to solve basic cultivation problems and the production of new products.

Research bodies

logo SPOREAS

The seed production and commercial company SPOREAS  (A. TSIOTSIOS & S.IA EU) was founded in 1990.They specialize in the production and marketing of propagating material of cereals, livestock plants and oil plants. They are very active in the marketing of all kinds of agricultural products, in the market for the purpose of exploitation or resale of all kinds of machinery, in the primary processing for themselves and for third parties of the aforementioned agricultural products, in the trade of fertilizers and pesticides and finally in imports and exports to and from any country of all the above products and goods.

logo INEB

INEV-CERTH is active in Agrobiotechnology where they contribute decisively to

mapping, utilization and promotion of Greek biodiversity. In close collaboration with producers, companies and academics (i) identifies in a modern way, using – home technologies, species and varieties from the flora and fauna of our country and food products from the specific species and varieties (ii) guides the development of improved varieties and develops new foods with special nutritional characteristics and (iii) utilizes various microorganisms and plants

as “factories” producing high value materials in an environmentally friendly way.

logo ELGO - DIMITRA

The research objectives of IGBFP-ELGO DIMITRA follow the modern trends of agricultural research internationally, implementing objectives primarily of the national and the global agricultural strategy, especially in terms of collection, evaluation, documentation, conservation, genetic and molecular improvement. of phytogenetic resources and the rescue and preservation of valuable local traditional varieties of the country. IGBFP produces and transfers know-how through the research actions it develops in order to serve the objectives of the applied research for the benefit of the primary production in the above sectors.The work of the IGBFP Genetic Material Conservation Bank (TGY) concerns the collection, reproduction, conservation and evaluation of domestic traditional varieties and their wild native species, the assessment of their degree of genetic erosion and the identification of areas with important genetic for in situ conservation, ie in their natural environment or for on-farm conservation for endangered traditional varieties. TGY currently maintains ex situ conservation, ie away from their natural environment, more than 14,000 samples of collection of domestic traditional varieties and wild relatives of cultivated species. The data of the whole collection are recorded in a database, so they are easily processed, but also the exchange of genetic material and information with other genetic material banks or competent international organizations, as well as with research institutes in the country. In addition, TGY represents Greece in international networks and working groups for the preparation of plans for the protection and utilization of phytogenetic resources and is the national representative in the Documentation and Information Network, actively participated in the creation of the EURISCO database and serves as a National Focal Point in the European documentation network. It also advises the Ministry of Regional Development and other bodies on issues related to biodiversity and the conservation of phytogenetic resources and suggests to the Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and other research missions in our country by foreign research institutes to collect genetic material, which must be done under the responsibility and supervision of the TGY.

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