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Defense response of tomato fruit at different maturity stages to salicylic acid and ethephon

Wang, Yu-Ying, Li, Bo-Qiang, Qin, Guo-Zheng, Li, Li, Tian, Shi-Ping
Scientia horticulturae 2011 v.129 no.2 pp. 183-188
Botrytis cinerea, accelerated ripening, disease incidence, disease resistance, ethephon, ethylene, ethylene production, fruit diseases, fruit maturity, fruits, genes, induced resistance, lycopene, ripening, salicylic acid, tomatoes
In order to elucidate whether fruit maturity stage influence the induced resistance of exogenous elicitors in tomato and the involved mechanisms, we investigated the defense responses of tomato fruits against Botrytis cinerea, ethylene production and internal quality following treatments of fruit with salicylic acid (SA) or ethephon (ET) at mature green (MG) and breaker (BR). SA significantly suppressed decay and disease incidence in tomato fruits at both MG and BR stages, along with higher expression level of PR1 gene after 2days of treatment. All fruits treated by SA had lower contents of ethylene and lycopene. The ET-treated fruit at both maturity stages showed lower disease incidence and higher level of PR2 and PR3 expression compared with the control fruit. ET treatment significantly enhanced ethylene and lycopene contents, and accelerated fruit ripening. Our results suggest that SA and ET induced disease resistance in fruits by mediating the expression of different pathogenesis-related genes and have different effects on fruit ripening, which in turn influences the disease resistance of tomato fruits.