Submitted to: Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/4/2002
Publication Date: 9/1/2002
Citation: GONG, Y., FAN, X., MATTHEIS, J.P. RESPONSES OF 'BING' AND 'RAINIER' SWEET CHERRIES TO ETHYLENE AND 1-METHYLCYCLOPROPENE. JOURNAL OF AMERICAN SOCIETY OF HORTICULTURE SCIENCE. 2002. v. 127(5). p. 831-835. Interpretive Summary: Sweet cherry fruit are highly perishable and require careful handling after harvest to maintain optimal fruit quality. Ripening of sweet cherries is a continuous process that is not regulated by ethylene, a gas produced by many different climacteric fruit including banana, apple, pear and tomato. Ethylene produced naturally by those fruit promotes ripening, and while sweet cherry fruit ripen without producing much ethylene, sweet cherries can respond to ethylene if the gas is present. There are a number of compounds that inhibit ethylene action and prevent ethylene from promoting ripening of climacteric fruit, however, the response of non-climacteric fruit, including sweet cherry, to treatment with these compounds is unknown. Two sweet cherry cultivars, 'Bing' and 'Rainier', were used what if any responses could be blocked by use of the ethylene action inhibitor 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP). Treatment with 1-MCP did not prevent changes in fruit color, stem browning, or respiration induced by exposure to ethylene, indicating ripening of sweet cherry fruit proceeds independently of ethylene action.
Technical Abstract: 'Bing' and 'Rainier' sweet cherry (Prunus avium) fruit treated with 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) were stored at 20 deg C in air or 35uLL**-1 ethylene. Ethylene production by both 'Bing' and 'Rainier' fruit stored in air was transiently stimulated following 1-MCP treatments, however, there were no significant effects of 1-MCP on respiration rate. Exogenous ethylene stimulated respiration regardless of prior treatment with 1-MCP. Although 1-MCP treatment reduced the increase in 'Bing' respiration induced by ethylene, the reduction was smaller than the effect of 1-MCP in climacteric fruit. These results suggest that stimulation of sweet cherry fruit respiration by ethylene occurs via a process that may be independent of receptors to which 1-MCP binds. Postharvest changes in fruit color and development of stem browning were not altered by 1-MCP treatment, and exogenous ethylene accelerated the development of stem browning regardless of prior treatment with 1-MCP.