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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Wenatchee, Washington » Physiology and Pathology of Tree Fruits Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #373738

Research Project: Developmental Genomics and Metabolomics Influencing Temperate Tree Fruit Quality

Location: Physiology and Pathology of Tree Fruits Research

Title: Metabolic adaptation of apple and pear peel during transitions in the postharvest environment [abstract]

item Rudell, David

Submitted to: American Chemical Society Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/9/2020
Publication Date: 8/18/2020
Citation: Rudell Jr, D.R. 2020. Metabolic adaptation of apple and pear peel during transitions in the postharvest environment [abstract]. American Chemical Society Abstracts. AGFD 110.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Fruit peel is a dynamic organ integral to apple and pear physiology and quality. The outermost portion of the peel, or epidermis, is not only important for fruit appearance, it is the protective barrier responsible critical processes such as excluding spoilage pathogens and regulating gas, solute, and water exchange. Apple and pear peel are also metabolic engines responsible for producing photosynthetic and respiratory energy and many other processes central to fruit quality, including pigment and aroma production. As a protective barrier, the outer epidermal cells produce, and are sometimes surrounded by, layers of the polyester cutin which is, in turn, intercalated and overlaid with a complex waxy mixture that includes nonacosane and various quantities of other alkanes, alcohols, fatty acids, triglycerides, and free and conjugated forms of ursane, oleane, and betulane triterpenes, and hydroxycinnamates. Peel tissue is dynamic and changes as fruit react to conditions in the orchard all the way through the cold chain, even producing event-specific volatile signals. Different metabolic reactions to the environment and potential positive and negative consequences to fruit surface chemistry, integrity, and quality as well as opportunities afforded using predictable metabolic changes to modify storage conditions or assess whether specific apples and pears will survive the cold chain will be discussed.