Cucurbit Genetics Cooperative Report 7:46-48 (article
Association of Fruit Quality with Seed Characters and Oil and
Protein Content of Muskmelon Seeds
T. A. More and V. S. Seshadri
Division of Vegetable Crops, Indian Agricultural Research
Institute, New Delhi 110012, India
Seeds of certain cucurbits are well known sources of oil and
protein, although none have been used commercially (1). Madaan
et al. (3) reported that muskmelon seeds are a potential source
of edible oil. Our objective was to assess the variability of
seed oil and protein content, in relation to seed and kernel
weight, and total soluble solids (TSS) in muskmelon.
Oil and protein content of 78 collections from 10 countries were
expressed as a percent of seed weight and kernel percentage. Oil
content was estimated by the cold percolation method of Kartha
and Sethi (2). Nitrogen content was determined by the micro-
Kjeldhal method, and was expressed as total protein (N x 6.25).
Kernel percentage was expressed as a percent of seed weight.
Table 1 summarizes the data for each country.
Table 1. Average oil and protein content (% of seed weight), 100-
seed weight (g), kernel percentage (of seed weight), and total
soluble solids (%) of 78 muskmelons from 10 countries.
Number of collections
Total soluble solids
USA and Australia
SE (D) +/-
Highest oil content was in a collection from Pakistan. Highest
protein content was in the Bulgarian collection. Seed weight of
the Bulgarian collection was the heaviest, but the collection
from Pakistan had the highest kernel percentage. Highest TSS was
in the collection from Pakistan.
Non-dessert types of India were lower in oil and protein content,
seed weight and kernel percentage, compared to the dessert types.
There was not much difference between cantaloupes of USA and
Australia, and noncantaloup dessert types of India, for oil and
protein content. In that context, our results indicate that
dessert types with higher TSS content were superior in seed
Most of the correlations among oil and protein content, 100-seed
weight, kernel percentage, and TSS were positive and significant
(Table 2). The correlations of oil content with kernel
percentage and protein with seed weight and kernel percentage
were especially high.
Table 2. Correlation coefficients (r) for oil and protein content
(% of seed weight), 100-seed weight (g), kernel percentage, and
total soluble solids of 78 muskmelons from 10 countries.z
Total soluble solids
zSignificant at 0.01 (**) levels.
These results suggest that oil and protein content could be
improved by selection for high 100-seed weight and high kernel
percentage. These data also suggest that selection for dessert
qualities resulted in simultaneous improvement in oil and protein
content through higher seed weight and kernel percentage.
- Girgis, P. and F. Said. 1968. Lesser known Nigerian edible oils
and fats. I. Characteristics of melon seed oil. J. Sci. Food
- Kartha, A.R.S. and A.S. Sethi. 1957. Cold percolation method
for rapid gravimetric estimation of oil in small quantities of
oil seeds. Indian J. Agric. Sci. 27:211-217.
- Madaan, T.R., T.A. More, B.M. Lal and V.S. Seshadri. 1982. A
study of seeds of muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) a lesser
known source of edible oil. J. Sci. Food Agric. 33:973-978.