Assessment of variability in lignan and fatty acid content in the germplasm of Sesamum indicum L.

  • Aejaz Ahmad Dar
  • Pavan Kumar Kancharla
  • Kishan Chandra
  • Yaspal Singh Sodhi
  • Neelakantan ArumugamEmail author
Original Article


Information on the variability available in lignan and fatty acid content in the oilseed crop of Sesamum indicum has been limited. This article presents and discusses the composition, quantity, and variability available for the two traits in the sesame germplasm that are grown in diverse agro climatic regions of India. HPLC and GC analysis of sesame seeds harvested over a period of three crop seasons revealed a considerable amount of variability in lignan and fatty acids. The antioxidant lignans sesamol, sesamin and sesamolin were observed to be in the range of 0.16–3.24, 2.10–5.98 and 1.52–3.76 mg/g of seed, respectively. Similarly oleic and linoleic acids, respectively, have ranged from 34.71 to 45.61% and 38.49 to 49.60%. The black sesame seeds were found rich in sesamin, sesamolin, total lignan content and oleic acid and are thus identified nutritionally and pharmaceutically more important than white and brown seeds. Pearson statistics showed a strong correlation between the components within a particular trait and also some correlation was found between the traits. The study revealed promising cultivars for use in sesame breeding aimed at improving lignan and fatty acid contents, and can be thus directly used in human foods, nutrition, health and welfare.


Sesamum indicum L. Seed coat colour Lignans Fatty acids HPLC GC Pearson correlation 



We acknowledge NBPGR, New Delhi for providing the germplasm used in this study. We acknowledge University Grants Commission-Special Assistance Programme (UGC-SAP) New Delhi and DBT, Govt. of India, BUILDER program (BT/PR14554/INF/22/125/2010) for financial assistance.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that there is no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

13197_2018_3564_MOESM1_ESM.doc (60 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 60 kb)
13197_2018_3564_MOESM2_ESM.docx (18 kb)
Supplementary material 2 (DOCX 17 kb)


  1. Bedigian D (2004) History and lore of sesame in Southwest Asia. Econ Bot 58:329–353CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bhunia RK, Chakraborty A, Kaur R, Gayatri T, Bhat KV, Basu A, Maiti MK, Sen SK (2015) Analysis of fatty acid and lignan composition of Indian germplasm of sesame to evaluate their nutrional merits. J Am Oil Chem Soc 92:65–76CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Carlsson AS, LaBrie ST, Kinney AJ, Wettstein-Knowles P, Browse JA (2000) KAS2 cDNA complements the phenotypes of the Arabidopsis fab1 mutant that differs in a single residue bordering the substrate binding pocket. Plant J 29:761–770CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Cheng FC, Jinn TR, Hou RC, Tzen JTC (2006) Neuroprotective effects of sesamin and sesamolin on gerbil brain in cerebral ischemia. Int J Biomed Sci 2:284–288Google Scholar
  5. Cho KM, Ha TJ, Lee YB, Seo WD, Kim JY, Ryu HW, Jeong SH, Kang YM, Lee JH (2013) Soluble phenolics and antioxidant properties of soybean (Glycine max L.) cultivars with varying seed coat colours. J Funct Foods 5:1065–1076CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Coni E, Podesta E, Catone T (2004) Oxidizability of different vegetables oils evaluated by thermogravimetric analysis. Thermochim Acta 418:11–15CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Cooney RV, Custer LJ, Okinaka L, Franke AA (2001) Effects of dietary sesame seeds on plasma tocopherol levels. Nutr Cancer 39:66–71CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Dar AA, Arumugam N (2013) Lignans of sesame: purification methods, biological activities and biosynthesis—a review. Bioorg Chem 50:1–10CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Dar AA, Verma NK, Arumugam N (2015) An updated method for isolation, purification and characterization of clinically important antioxidant lignans—sesamin and sesamolin from sesame oil. Ind Crop Prod 64:201–208CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Fatemi SH, Hammond EG (1980) Analysis of oleate, linoleate and linolenate hydroperoxides in oxidized ester mixtures. Lipids 15:379–385CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Hemalatha S, Ghafoorunissa (2004) Lignans and tocopherols in Indian sesame cultivars. J Am Oil Chem Soc 81:467–470CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Kamal-Eldin A, Appelqvist LA, Yousif G (1994) Lignan analysis in seed oils from four Sesamum species: comparison of different chromatographic methods. J Am Oil Chem Soc 71:141–147CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Kim JH, Seo WD, Lee SK, Lee YB, Park CH, Ryu HW, Lee JH (2014) Comparative assessment of compositional components, antioxidant effects, and lignan extractions form Korean white and black sesame (Sesamum indicum L.) seeds for different crop years. J Funct Foods 7:495–505CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Kupiec T (2004) Quality-control analytical methods: high-performance liquid chromatography. Int J Pharm Compd 8:223–227Google Scholar
  15. Moazzami AA, Kamal-Eldin A (2006) Sesame seed is a rich of dietary lignans. J Am Oil Chem Soc 83:719–723CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Moazzami AA, Haese SL, Kamal-Eldin A (2007) Lignan contents in sesame seeds and products. Eur J Lipid Sci Technol 109:1022–1027CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Mondal N, Bhat KV, Srivastava PS (2010) Variation in fatty acid composition in Indian germplasm of sesame. J Am Oil Chem Soc 87:1263–1269CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Patil A, Taware SP, Oak MD, Tamhankar SA, Rao VS (2007) Improvement of oil quality in soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merrill] by mutation breeding. J Am Oil Chem Soc 84:1117–1124CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Pleines S, Friedt W (1988) Breeding for improved C18 fatty acid composition in rapeseed (Brassica napus L.). Eur J Lipid Sci Technol 90:167–171Google Scholar
  20. Rahman SM, Takagi Y, Kinoshita T (1996) Genetic control of high oleic acid content in the seed oil of two soybean mutants. Crop Sci 36:1125–1128CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Rangkadilok N, Pholphana N, Wongyai CMW, Saengsooksree K, Nookabkaew S, Satayavivad J (2010) Variation of sesamin, sesamolin and tocopherols in sesame (Sesamum indicum L.) seeds and oil products in Thailand. Food Chem 122:724–730CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Sahu GR, Mukerji P, Singh BB, Singh RB (1980) Induced polygenetic variability in safflower (Carthamus tinctorius L.). J Cytol Genet 15:81–85Google Scholar
  23. Savant KD, Kothekar VS (2011) Induction of variability in fatty acid profile in sesame (Sesamum indicum L.). J Phytol 3:01–03Google Scholar
  24. Shi L, Liu R, Jin Q, Wang X (2017) The contents of lignans in sesame seeds and commercial sesame oils of China. J Am Oil Chem Soc. Google Scholar
  25. Suja KP, Jayalekshmy A, Arumughan C (2004) Free radical scavenging behavior of antioxidant compounds of sesame (Sesamum indicum L.) in DPPH(*) system. J Agric Food Chem 52:912–915CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Thies W (1971) Schnelle und einfache Analysen der Fettsaurezusammensetzung in einzelnen RapsKotyledonen I. Gaschromatographische und papierchromatographische Methoden. Z. Pflanzenzuchtg 65:181–202Google Scholar
  27. Uzun B, Arslan C, Furat S (2008) Variation in fatty acid compositions, oil content and oil yield in a germplasm collection of sesame (Sesamum indicum L.). J Am Oil Chem Soc 85:1135–1142CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Velasco L, Martinez JMF, DeHaro A (1997) Induced variability for C18 unsaturated fatty acids in Ethiopian mustard. Can J Plant Sci 77:91–95CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Visavadiya NP, Narasimhacharya AVRL (2008) Sesame as a hypocholesteraemic and antioxidant dietary component. Food Chem Toxicol 46:1889–1895CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Wang L, Zhang Y, Li P, Wang X, Zhang W, Wei W, Zhang X (2012) HPLC analysis of seed sesamin and sesamolin variation in a sesame germplasm collection in China. J Am Oil Chem Soc 89:1011–1020CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Were BA, Onkware AO, Gudu S, Welander M, Carlsson AS (2006) Seed oil content and fatty acid composition in East African sesame (Sesamum indicum L.) accessions evaluated over 3 years. Field Crops Res 97:254–260CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Williamson S, Morris JB, Quentin N, Pye QN, Chandrashekhar DK (2008) A survey of sesamin and composition of tocopherol variability from seeds of eleven diverse Sesame (Sesamum indicum L.) genotypes using HPLC-PAD-ECDK. Phytochem Anal 19:311–322CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Yermanos DM, Hemstreet S, Saleeb W, Huszar CK (1972) Oil content and composition of the seed in the world collection of sesame introductions. J Am Oil Chem Soc 49:20–23CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Yokota T, Matsuzaki Y, Koyama M, Hitomi T, Kawanaka M, Enoki-Konishi M et al (2007) Sesamin, a lignan of sesame, down-regulates cyclin D1 protein expression in human tumor cells. Cancer Sci 98:1447–1453CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Zhang H, Mia H, Wan L, Qu L, Liu H, Wang Q, Yue M (2013) Genome sequencing of the important oilseed crop Sesamum indicum L. Genome Biol 14:401Google Scholar
  36. Zhao L, Niu J, Dangs Z, Li Y, Xie X, Guan T, Tian C (2009) Evaluation of lignan contents of newly bred flax varieties (lines) in China. Sci Agric Sin 42:454–459Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Association of Food Scientists & Technologists (India) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Aejaz Ahmad Dar
    • 1
  • Pavan Kumar Kancharla
    • 1
  • Kishan Chandra
    • 1
  • Yaspal Singh Sodhi
    • 2
  • Neelakantan Arumugam
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Biotechnology, School of Life SciencesPondicherry UniversityPuducherryIndia
  2. 2.Department of Genetics, Centre for Genetic Manipulation of Crop PlantsUniversity of DelhiNew DelhiIndia

Personalised recommendations