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Curr Opin Biotechnol. 2002 Oct;13(5):508-11.

Phytochemicals in plants: genomics-assisted plant improvement for nutritional and health benefits.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, USDA/ARS Children's Nutrition Research Center, Baylor College of Medicine, 1100 Bates Street, Houston, TX 77030, USA.


Plants are an important source of essential nutrients and health-beneficial components that are crucial for human life. Because the intake of these phytochemicals is not always adequate, the resources of plant biotechnology are being used to enhance the nutritional quality of our plant-based food supply. Various improvement strategies are feasible, depending on whether the phytochemical target is a major or minor constituent. Recent efforts in gene discovery and functional genomics are providing the necessary understanding to develop and evaluate different approaches to manipulate phytochemical composition.

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