An In Vivo (Gallus gallus) Feeding Trial Demonstrating the Enhanced Iron Bioavailability Properties of the Fast Cooking Manteca Yellow Bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.)


USDA-ARS, Cornell University, Michigan State University


The common dry bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) is a globally produced pulse crop and an important source of micronutrients for millions of people across Latin America and Africa. Many of the preferred black and red seed types in these regions have seed coat polyphenols that inhibit the absorption of iron. Yellow beans are distinct from other market classes because they accumulate the antioxidant kaempferol 3-glucoside in their seed coats. Due to their fast cooking tendencies, yellow beans are often marketed at premium prices in the same geographical regions where dietary iron deficiency is a major health concern. Hence, this study compared the iron bioavailability of three faster cooking yellow beans with contrasting seed coat colors from Africa (Manteca, Amarillo, and Njano) to slower cooking white and red kidney commercial varieties. Iron status and iron bioavailability was assessed by the capacity of a bean based diet to generate and maintain total body hemoglobin iron (Hb-Fe) during a 6 week in vivo (Gallus gallus) feeding trial. Over the course of the experiment, animals fed yellow bean diets had significantly (p ≤ 0.05) higher Hb-Fe than animals fed the white or red kidney bean diet. This study shows that the Manteca yellow bean possess a rare combination of biochemical traits that result in faster cooking times and improved iron bioavailability. The Manteca yellow bean is worthy of germplasm enhancement to address iron deficiency in regions where beans are consumed as a dietary staple.

Analysis was performed by LC/MS using the Advion expression Compact Mass Spectrometer (CMS).