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Melatonin Inhibits Ethylene Synthesis via Nitric Oxide Regulation To Delay Postharvest Senescence in Pears

Liu, Jianlong, Yang, Jie, Zhang, Haiqi, Cong, Liu, Zhai, Rui, Yang, Chengquan, Wang, Zhigang, Ma, Fengwang, Xu, Lingfei
Journal of agricultural and food chemistry 2019 v.67 no.8 pp. 2279-2288
Pyrus communis, cultivars, ethylene, ethylene production, fruits, gene expression regulation, genes, melatonin, nitric oxide, nitric oxide synthase, pears, ripening
Understanding ripening and senescence processes in postharvest stored fruit is key to the identification and implementation of effective treatment methods. Here, we explored the effects of exogenous applications of melatonin (MT) and nitric oxide (NO) on ripening and softening processes in three cultivars of European pear (Pyrus communis L.). The results showed that MT and NO played important roles in the two processes: they decreased the rate of upregulation of PcCel and PcPG, inhibited expression of ethylene synthetase genes (PcACS and PcACO), and reduced rates of respiration and ethylene production. MT increased activity of NO synthase through upregulation of expression of PcNOS that subsequently led to an increase in NO content. However, when NO synthesis was inhibited, the delaying effect of MT on fruit senescence was almost eliminated. These findings indicate that MT acted on the upstream process of NO synthesis that then delayed senescence in pear fruit.