Genetic variation in wheat grain quality is associated with differences in the galactolipid content of flour and the gas bubble properties of dough liquor.
Lipids affect the quality of wheat flour for breadmaking. One possible mechanism is stabilization of the gas cells which are formed during dough mixing and expanded during fermentation, leading to a greater loaf volume and evenness of texture. We therefore compared the lipidomic profiles of flour and dough liquor fractions (which contain surface-active components present at the gas bubble interface) from two sets of wheat lines differing in allelic variation at a QTL for loaf volume. Analyses of fractions from three field trials showed consistent increases in the contents of galactolipids (monogalactosyl diglyceride and digalactosyl diglyceride) in flour and dough liquor of the lines with the increasing (good quality) allele. Biophysical analysis showed that this was associated with greater elasticity of the dough liquor fraction. This is consistent with published studies reporting a relationship between galactolipids and breadmaking quality and suggests a mechanism of action for the QTL.