Skip to main content
ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Wenatchee, Washington » Physiology and Pathology of Tree Fruits Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #211134

Title: Regulating ethylene action in tree fruit ripening: what we need to know.

item Mattheis, James

Submitted to: ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting Abstracts
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/30/2007
Publication Date: 10/15/2007
Citation: Mattheis, J.P. 2007. Regulating ethylene action in tree fruit ripening: what we need to know.. ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting Abstracts.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Inhibition of ethylene action by 1-MCP in climacteric tree fruit including apple and pear has confirmed a number of ripening and senescence processes are regulated by ethylene. For apple, respiration and acid loss, softening, volatile production, and chlorophyll metabolism are slowed in the absence of ethylene action resulting in delayed ripening and a greatly extended marketing period. While similar responses are inducible with 1-MCP in pears, a lack of predictability as to when the capacity to ripen is regained currently limits wide scale commercialization. Inhibition of ethylene action via postharvest 1-MCP exposure can also prevent development of a number of physilogical disorders including superficial scald, soft scald, and senescent core flush, however, other disorders including peel and cortex CO subscript 2 injury can be exacerbated following 1-MCP exposure. The physiological mechanisms by which some of these disorders proceed is poorly understood and remains to be elucidated. Recent availability of a 1-MCP formulation suitable for field use is allowing characterization of ethylene-dependent pre-harvest developmental processes. Of particular interest is the role of ethylene in peel pigment metabolism including anthocyanin, xanthophyll, and carotenoid accumulation, chlorophyll degradation, fruit abscission, and pre-harvest firmness loss. The horticultural utility of this formulation is also a subject of current research.