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Effect of β-aminobutyric acid on cell wall modification and senescence in sweet cherry during storage at 20°C

Wang, Lei, Jin, Peng, Wang, Jing, Jiang, Lulu, Shan, Timin, Zheng, Yonghua
Food chemistry 2015 v.175 pp. 471-477
Prunus avium, cell wall components, cell walls, cellulose, cherries, fruit quality, hemicellulose, malondialdehyde, membrane permeability, pectinesterase, pectins, pericarp, polygalacturonase, scanning electron microscopy
The effects of postharvest β-aminobutyric acid (BABA) treatment on fruit firmness, pectin degrading enzymes, cell wall constituents and microstructural alterations of pericarp in sweet cherry fruit were investigated. BABA significantly delayed the decline of fruit firmness and inhibited the increase of membrane permeability and the accumulation of malondialdehyde in cherries. The BABA-treated fruit exhibited significantly higher contents of water-soluble pectin, CDTA-soluble pectin, Na2CO3-soluble pectin, total pectin, cellulose and hemicellulose than the control during storage. Activities of pectin degrading enzymes including polygalacturonase and pectinmethylesterase were markedly reduced by BABA treatment. Observations by scanning electron microscopy showed BABA maintained smooth cuticle and integrated structure of subepidermal cell in sweet cherry. These results suggest that the delay in fruit senescence by BABA may be due to depressed membrane permeability and malondialdehyde content, reduced activities of polygalacturonase and pectinmethylesterase, enhanced cell wall polysaccharides content, and integrated subepidermal cell structure in sweet cherry.