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  • a ICAR-Directorate of Rapeseed Mustard Research, Bharatpur, Rajsthan-321303, India
  • b The University of the South Pacific, Suva, Fiji
  • c Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), Vivekananda Parvatiya Krishi Anusandhan Sansthan (VPKAS), Almora 263601, Uttarakhand, India
  • d ICAR-Sugarcane Breeding Institute, Coimbatore-641007, Tamil Nadu, India
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The present paper reports that significant genetic variability was evident in Fe, Zn, β-carotene, and phytic acid (phytate, PA) contents in a set of 39 diverse maize genotypes collected from maize breeding programme of hill agriculture, India. The Fe, Zn, β-carotene, and PA concentrations were found to be in the range 19.31–50.64 mg kg−1, 12.60–37.18 mg kg−1, 0.17–8.27 µg g−1, and 6.59–7.13 g kg−1, respectively. The genotypes V335, V420, V393, V416, V414, V372, and V351 were identified to have higher concentration of β-carotene, Fe, and Zn but lower amount of PA. Possible availability of the minerals Fe and Zn was determined using molar ratio between PA as inhibitor and β-carotene as promoter for their absorption. The micronutrient molar ratio showed that Fe and Zn traits could be dependent of each other. Low R2 value revealed relation between β-carotene and kernel colour. The selected genotypes could be considered as potential sources of favourable genes for further breeding programs to develop micronutrient enriched maize cultivars.

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