Sensitivity of some Micronutrient Composition in two Nigerian Peppers to Treatment with Different Mutagens
This study was aimed at evaluating the mutants of two pepper varieties induced with different levels of three mutagens with a view of selecting mutant with higher biochemical content. Healthy dry seeds of two pepper accession (“Shombo” and “Tatase”) were used for the study. The seeds were divided into 13 sets:1 set which served as the control was untreated, 4 sets were exposed to varied gamma irradiation doses of 50, 100, 150 and 200 Gy(Grey) in the Gamma Irradiation Facility (GIF) at Nuclear Technology Centre (NTC), Sheda Science and Technology Complex, Abuja. Another 4 sets were exposed to varied X-rays doses of 40, 60, 80 and 100 KV, maintaining 5 mA per second for all the X – ray doses in the Radiology section, Veterinary Teaching Hospital, University of Nigeria, Nsukka. The remaining 4 sets were soaked in varied sodium azide concentrations of 0.01, 0.02, 0.03 and 0.04 % for 6hrs after pre-soaking the seeds for 6hrs in distilled water. The sodium azide solution was prepared by weighing 0.01, 0.02, 0.03, 0.04 g sodium azide powder using OHAUS AR3130 weighing balance and dissolved in 100ml of distilled water and shaken. This was carried out at the National Centre for Energy Research and Development, University of Nigeria, Nsukka. The seeds were nursed according to the separate treatments in nursery baskets filled with well filtered top soil mix with poultry manure according to Uguru (1999) and watered daily. Seedlings were then transplanted at 6 weeks when the seedlings were 5 to 10 cm tall to individual polybags filled with similar soil-manure mix in the Botanical Garden of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. The experiment was carried out using a 3 x 5 factorial experimental design laid out in a completely randomized design (CRD) of 10 replications for each set of treatments. The fruits were collected at harvest for biochemical analysis. The biochemical studies were carried out at the the Department of Crop Science Teachingand Research Laboratory, University of Nigeria, Nsukka. The fruits of each treatment studied were collected from the sample plants in each treatment into a bag where the fruits were mixed together and selected at random. The parameters evaluated were β – carotene, total carotenoids, capsaicin, ascorbic acid, proximate composition which includes crude proteins, crude fat, fibre, moisture and ash; the phytochemicals are flavonoids, alkaloids, tannin and phytate; and some mineral elements (iron, zinc and calcium). β – carotene, total carotenoids, ascorbic acid, proximate composition, flavonoids, phytate, iron, zinc and calcium were determined using the official methods described by the Association of Official Analytical Chemists (AOAC, 2005). Tannin was determined according to Folin Denis Spectrophotometric method (Pearson, 1976) while alkaloid was determined using a modified method described by Harbone (1973).