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iTRAQ-based Protein Profiling and Fruit Quality Changes at Different Development Stages of Oriental Melon

Guo, Xiaoou, Xu, Jingjing, Cui, Xiaohui, Chen, Hao, Qi, Hongyan
BMC plant biology 2017 v.17 no.1 pp. 28
alcohols, alpha-linolenic acid, biochemical pathways, color, computer software, crops, developmental stages, ethylene production, firmness, flavor, flowering, fruit quality, genes, glycolysis, lipoxygenase, melons, odors, principal component analysis, protein composition, protein synthesis, proteins, proteomics, quantitative polymerase chain reaction, ripening, starch, sucrose, sugar content, texture, total soluble solids, volatile compounds
BACKGROUND: Oriental melon is one of the most popular crops for its nutritional and flavour quality. Components that determine melon quality, such as sugar, colour, texture, flavour and aroma, among other factors, accumulate in different developmental stages. Thus, correlating the proteomic profiles with the biochemical and physiological changes occurring in the oriental melon is very important for advancing our understanding of oriental melon quality in the ripening processes. RESULTS: iTRAQ-based protein profiling was conducted on ‘YuMeiren’ oriental melon fruit at different developmental stages. Physiological quality indices, including firmness, rind colour, soluble solids content (SSC), ethylene production, sugar content and volatile compounds were also characterized during four maturity periods of the melon, including 5, 15, 25 and 35 days after anthesis (DAA). A principal component analysis (PCA) revealed that the aroma volatiles at 5 DAA and 15 DAA were similar and separated from that of 35 DAA. More than 5835 proteins were identified and quantified in the two biological repeats and divided into 4 clusters by hierarchical cluster analysis. A functional analysis was performed using Blast2GO software based on the enrichment of a GO analysis for biological process, molecular function and cellular components. The main KEGG pathways, such as glycolysis, α-linolenic acid and starch and sucrose metabolism, were analyzed. The gene family members corresponding to differentially expressed proteins, including lipoxygenase (CmLOX01-18) and alcohol acetyltransferase (CmAAT1-4) involved in the α-linolenic acid metabolic pathway, were verified with real-time qPCR. The results showed that the expression patterns of 64.7% of the genes were consistent with the expression patterns of the corresponding proteins. CONCLUSIONS: This study combined the variation of the quality index and differentially expressed proteins of oriental melon at different developmental stages that laid the foundation for the subsequent protein and gene function validation.