Grasas y Aceites, Vol 71, No 3 (2020)

Authentication of olive oil based on DNA analysis

A. Batrinou
Department of Food Science and Technology. Faculty of Food Sciences, University of West Attica, Greece

I. F. Strati
Department of Food Science and Technology. Faculty of Food Sciences, University of West Attica, Greece

D. Houhoula
Department of Food Science and Technology. Faculty of Food Sciences, University of West Attica, Greece

J. Tsaknis
Department of Food Science and Technology. Faculty of Food Sciences, University of West Attica, Greece

V. J. Sinanoglou
Department of Food Science and Technology. Faculty of Food Sciences, University of West Attica, Greece


Olive oil, which has been produced mainly in the Mediterranean area since the ancient times, has a high nutritional value linked to many health benefits. Extra virgin, which is the purest form of olive oil, has excellent quality and premium prices. Many cases of adulteration and fraud necessitate the development of reliable and accurate methods for olive oil authentication. DNA-based methods analyze the residual DNA extracted from olive oil and use molecular markers for genetic identification of different species, subspecies or cultivars because these markers act as signs which reflect distinct genetic profiles. This study reviews the process by which DNA from olive oil is extracted and analyzed by the most recently used markers in the authentication of olive oil, such as Simple Sequence Repeats (SSR) or microsatellites and the single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). Methods of analysis such as qPCR and digital PCR are also discussed with a special emphasis placed on the method of High-Resolution Melting (HRM), a post-polymerase chain reaction method, which enables rapid, high performing identification of genetic variants in the DNA regions of interest without sequencing, and may differentiate very similar cultivars which differ in only one nucleotide in a specific locus.


Authentication; Genetic Markers; (HRM); Olive oil; (SNPs); (SSR)

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