J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 1982, Vol. 24 ›› Issue (2): -.

• Research Articles •    

The Role of Polygalacturonase (PG) in the Ripening of Apple Fruits

Liang Yu-fa, AG Liang-de, Wang Ming-xin and Yi Wen-ji   

Abstract: Polygalacturonase (PG) activity and changes in respiratory intensity of apple fruits were investigated. The respiratory rate was decreased to a preclimacteric minimum from 30 Aug. to 20 Sept., Then increased to a climacteric peak (20–30 Sept.) and again drop down gradually with approaching the senescence stage. The PG activity was undetectable in a developing fruit until the onset climacteric phase. It rose rapidly after harvest, and reaching its highest level on 27 Oct. Just a month after the climacteric peak. The PG activity fell gradually. The amount of the fractions of pectic acid in fruits changed with the modifications of PG activity. With the ripening of fruits, the content of alcohol-soluble small molecules of pectic acids was increased from 12 to 13 5 mg/100 g of tissue, while the amount of alcohol- insoluble large molecules of pectic acids reduced from 530 to 280/100 g of tissue. PG activity would indicate the destruction of cell walls and the separation of cells. The onset of softening of fruits occurred 20 days after the rise of PG activity. It is supposed that the process of softening is directly controlled by PG activity.

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