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Formation and transformation of pigments during the fruit ripening of Capsicum annuum cv. Bola and Agridulce

Minguez-Mosquera, M.I., Hornero-Mendez, D.
Journal of agricultural and food chemistry 1994 v.42 no.1 pp. 38-44
Capsicum annuum, ripening, chlorophyll, carotenoids, biosynthesis, metabolism, cultivars
The photosynthetic pigments of the Capsicum annuum cv. Bola Agridulce were monitored during ripening. Whereas the chlorophyllic pigments, as well as lutein and neoxanthin, disappeared, beta-carotene and violaxanthin increased in concentration and other carotenoid pigments were form de novo: zeaxanthin, capsanthin, capsorubin, beta-cryptoxanthin, and capsolutein. The biosynthesis of cryptocapsin was not detected. The concentration increase of the carotenoids was always greater in the Agridulce variety at the totally ripe stage, but the concentration decreases in both varieties with successive harvests. Those pigments that are the final products of the biosynthetic pathway (red pigments) represent a lower percentage of the total pigments in the last harvest, compared with other pigments such as, beta-carotene, violaxanthin, and beta-cryptoxanthin, which, as intermediates in the synthesis of the red pigments, are present in somewhat higher percentages, and for this reason the provitamin A value increased with successive harvests in each variety.