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Bragantia

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Abstract

BENATTI, Luciana Benjamim; SILVAROLLA, Maria Bernadete  and  MAZZAFERA, Paulo. Characterisation of AC1: a naturally decaffeinated coffee. Bragantia [online]. 2012, vol.71, n.2, pp. 143-154. ISSN 0006-8705.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0006-87052012000200001.

We compared the biochemical characteristics of the beans of a naturally decaffeinated Arabica coffee (AC1) discovered in 2004 with those of the widely grown Brazilian Arabica cultivar "Mundo Novo" (MN). Although we observed differences during fruit development, the contents of amino acids, organic acids, chlorogenic acids, soluble sugars and trigonelline were similar in the ripe fruits of AC1 and MN. AC1 beans accumulated theobromine, and caffeine was almost entirely absent. Tests on the supply of [2-14C] adenine and enzymatic analysis of theobromine synthase and caffeine synthase in the endosperm of AC1 confirmed that, as in the leaves, caffeine synthesis is blocked during the methylation of theobromine to caffeine. The quality of the final coffee beverage obtained from AC1 was similar to that of MN.

Keywords : Coffea arabica; caffeine; decaffeination; beverage quality.

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