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Anthocyanins: Biosynthesis, Functions, and Applications

  • The first to focus exclusively on the anthocyanins, for which there has been a burgeoning literature in recent years
  • Covers all aspects of the biosynthesis and function of anthocyanins in plants, involving disciplines ranging from chemistry to biotechnology to medicine
  • Thus, the scope of the book in relation to anthocyanins is far greater than that of its competitors
  • Contains the most up-to-date information on the health properties of red pigmented fruits and vegetables

By: Kevin Gould(Editor), Kevin Davies(Editor), Chris Winefield(Editor)

329 pages, plates with 9 colour illustrations; 11 b/w illustrations, tables


Paperback | Sep 2014 | #221743 | ISBN-13: 9781489989550
Availability: Usually dispatched within 1 week Details
NHBS Price: £119.99 $168/€135 approx
Hardback | Dec 2008 | #175198 | ISBN-13: 9780387773346
Availability: Usually dispatched within 1 week Details
NHBS Price: £149.99 $210/€169 approx

About this book

In recent years, knowledge of anthocyanin pigments has undergone unprecedented expansion. Indeed, the molecular genetic control of anthocyanin biosynthesis is now one of the best understood of all secondary metabolic pathways. Advances in analytical technology have led to the discovery of many novel anthocyanin compounds, dramatically enriching the palette used by plant breeders to introduce vibrant new colours into horticultural crops. The food industry, too, has benefited from this research; methods for stabilizing the colours of anthocyanins extracted from cell cultures have been optimized, opening the way for their use as natural food colourings.

Recent scientific research has also focused on the possible benefits to human health from the ingestion of anthocyanin-rich foods. Anthocyanins are remarkably potent antioxidants. These pigments, especially in conjunction with other flavonoids, have been associated with reductions in the incidence and severity of many other non-infectious diseases, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease and certain cancers.

Finally, there has been significant progress in our understanding of the benefits of anthocyanins to plants themselves. Originally considered an extravagance without a purpose, anthocyanins are now implicated in multifarious vital functions. These include the attraction of pollinators and frugivores, defense from herbivores, and protection from environmental stressors. Anthocyanins are highly versatile and enormously useful to plants.

Anthocyanins: Biosynthesis, Functions, and Applications covers the biosynthesis and function of anthocyanins (and the related proanthocyanidins) in plants, and their applications in agriculture, food products, and human health. Anthocyanins: Biosynthesis, Functions, and Applications addresses wide-ranging issues that include human nutrition, the pastoral sector, cell culture production systems, food colourants, flower and fruit color, plant biotic interactions, and the responses of plants to environmental stress.


- Preface
- Anthocyanins and tannins in human health
- Metabolic engineering of flavonoid biosynthesis in microorganisms
- Plant Cell Culture Production of Anthocyanins
- Anthocyanins and tannins in viticulture and wine
- Molecular regulation of anthocyanin biosynthesis
- Anthocyanins as food colorants
- Anthocyanin function in plants
- Manipulating anthocyanins in flowers
- Anthocyanins in fruits
- Manipulating anthocyanins and tannins for the pastoral industry
- Index

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Kevin Gould is an Associate Professor in Biological Sciences at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, where he teaches plant development and physiological plant ecology. He has a long-standing research interest in the functional significance of anthocyanins in leaves, stems and roots.

Chris Winefield is a Senior Lecturer in Plant Biotechnology and Biochemistry at Lincoln University, New Zealand, where he teaches plant biochemistry and biotechnology applications in modern plant biology. He has a long-standing research interest in the metabolism and molecular biology of plant secondary metabolites, especially the production of anthocyanins in ornamental flower crops. Latterly he has begun work characterizing metabolic pathways responsible for the formation of flavor and aroma compounds in wine grape.

Kevin Davies leads the Plant Pigments Team of Crop & Food Research, Palmerston North, New Zealand. His group studies the molecular genetics of pigment biosynthesis in ornamentals, fruit and vegetables. A particular interest is the transcriptional regulation of flavonoid biosynthesis.

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