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Biology Paper

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Postharvest Biology and Technology 16 (1999) 139 – 145

Ripening-related changes in ethylene production, respiration rate and cell-wall enzyme activity in goldenberry (Physalis peru6iana L.), a solanaceous species Gustavo D. Trinchero a, Gabriel O. Sozzi a,*, Ana M. Cerri b, Fernando Vilella b, Adela A. Fraschina a Departamento de Quımica, Facultad de Agronomıa, Uni6ersidad de Buenos Aires, A6da. San Martın 4453, ´ ´ ´ 1417 Buenos Aires, Argentina b Departamento de Produccion Vegetal, Facultad de Agronomıa, Uni6ersidad de Buenos Aires, A6da. San Martın 4453, ´ ´ ´ 1417 Buenos Aires, Argentina Received 22 July 1998; accepted 21 December 1998 a

Abstract The ripening of goldenberry (Physalis peru6iana) is associated with a conspicuous climacteric rise in carbon dioxide and ethylene production. Its respiration rate and ethylene biosynthesis can be classified as extremely high. Ethylene yields between 7 and 24 nmol h − 1 per g in the ripe/overripe stages thus compare favorably with production rates previously reported for tomato fruit. As the fruit color turns from green (chlorophyll) to yellowish orange (carotenoids) and a progressive softening occurs, several cell-wall enzyme changes arise. Pectinmethylesterase and aand b-galactosidase reach activity levels similar to those in tomato fruit. Pectinmethylesterase and a-galactosidase increase toward the ripe stage. a-Arabinofuranosidase and b-glucosidase show lower activities but with an increasing pattern during ripening. On the other hand, polygalacturonase and a-glucosidase activities are hardly noticeable. © 1999 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved. Keywords: Physalis peru6iana; Goldenberry; Ripening; Ethylene; Respiration; Firmness; Pigments; Cell-wall enzymes

1. Introduction Physalis peru6iana L., commonly known as goldenberry or cape gooseberry, is a solanaceous hairy plant native to tropical South America. This * Corresponding author. Tel.: + 54-11-45248087; fax: +5411-45148739. E-mail address:...