Metabolite profiling characterises chemotypes of Musa diploids and triploids at juvenile and preflowering growth stages
Bananas (Musa spp.) are consumed worldwide as dessert and cooking types. Edible banana varieties are for the most part seedless and sterile and therefore vegetatively propagated. This confers difficulties for breeding approaches against pressing biotic and abiotic threats and for the nutritional enhancement of banana pulp. A panel of banana accessions, representative of the diversity of wild and cultivated bananas, was analysed to assess the range of chemotypes available globally. The focus of this assessment was banana leaves at two growth stages (juvenile and pre-flowering), to see when during the plant growth metabolic differences can be established. The metabolic data corresponded to genomic trends reported in previous studies and demonstrated a link between metabolites/pathways and the genomes of M. acuminata and M. balbisiana. Furthermore, the vigour and resistance traits of M. balbisiana was connected to the phenolic composition and showed differences with the number of B genes in the hybrid accessions. Differences in the juvenile and pre-flowering data led to low correlation between the growth stages for prediction purposes.