Submitted to: Oklahoma Academy of Science Proceedings
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/6/1996
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: B-galactosidase has been implicated in playing a role in fruit ripening in tomato, pepper, and cantaloupe. Phomopsis cucurbitae is a latent pathogen of cantaloupe that invades the fruit epidermis during net development causing severe postharvest decay. The purpose of this study was to compare the activity of fruit B-galactosidases with that of P. cucurbitae B-galactosidase in regard to fruit age and tissue type (ie. inner mesocarp middle mesocarp, outer mesocarp, and exocarp). B-galactosidase activity increased in exocarp tissue as the fruit ripened but began to decrease in fruit harvested at 40 days after anthesis and stored for 10 days. P. cucurbitae was cultured on autoclaved fruit tissue types described above for 10 days and assayed each day for B-galactosidase activity was highest in cultures containing the fungus using outer mesocarp or exocarp tissue as substrates, regardless of fruit age. P. cucurbitae also produced high levels of B-galactosidase were found to have the highest activity in the outer fruit tissue. Fruit B-galactosidase may play a major role in fruit softening and fungal B-galactosidase may play an important role in fruit decay.