The Molecular Biology of Fruit Ripening
The past 15 years has witnessed an explosion in the number of research papers utilising techniques of molecular biology to answer questions about the developmental regulation of gene expression in higher plants. This paper will draw on research in the authors’ laboratory utilizing the tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum) as a model plant and the process of fruit ripening as a clearly defined developmental system which has been used to examine the regulation and biochemical function of specific changes in gene expression [for review see 9]. We shall provide an overview of the development of techniques for isolation, identification and subsequent manipulation of expression of individual genes implicated in the process of fruit ripening and show how manipulation of individual genes is of use both in fundamental and applied research on food crops.
KeywordsChlorophyll Europe Catalysis Respiration Polypeptide
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- 1.Biale JB, Young RE: Respiration and ripening in fruits-retrospect and prospect. In: Friend J, Rhodes MJC (eds) Recent Advances in the Biochemistry of Fruit and Vegetables, pp 1–39 Academic Press, London (1981).Google Scholar
- 4.Bird CR, Ray JA, Fletcher JD, Boniwell JM, Bird AS, Teulieres C, Blain I, Bramley PM, Schuch W: Using antisense RNA to study gene function: Inhibition of carotenoid biosynthesis in transgenic tomatoes. Bio-technology 9: 635–639 (1991).Google Scholar
- 7.Fray R, Grierson D: Identification and genetic analysis of normal and mutant phytoene synthase genes of tomato by sequencing, complementation and co-supression. Plant Mol. Biol. In Press (1993).Google Scholar
- 16.Hobson GE: The firmmess of tomato fruit in relation to polygalacturonase activity. J. Hort. Sci. 40: 66–72 (1965).Google Scholar
- 19.Jorgensen R: Altered gene expression in plants due to trans interactions between homologous genes. TIBTECH. 8: 340–344 (1990).Google Scholar
- 23.Maunders MJ, Holdsworth MJ, Slater A, Knapp JE, Bird CR, Schuch W, Grierson D: Ethylene stimulates the accumulation of ripening-related mRNAs in tomatoes. Plant Cell Envir. 10: 177–184 (1987).Google Scholar
- 27.Picton S, Gray J, AbuBaker U, Lowe A, Grierson D: cDNA cloning and characterisation of novel ripening-related mRNAs with altered patterns of accumulation in the ripening inhibitor (rin) tomato ripening mutant. Plant Mol.Biol. Submitted for publication (1993).Google Scholar
- 29.Redenbaugh K, Hiatt W, Martineau B, Kramer M, Sheehy R, Sanders R, Houck C, Emlay D: Safety Assessment of Genetically Engineered fruits and Vegetables. A Case study of the Flavr Savr™ Tomato. CRC Press, Boca Ratón, USA. (1992).Google Scholar
- 32.Schuch W, Hobson G, Kanczler J, Tucker G, Robertson D, Bright S, Bird C: Improvement of tomato fruit quality through genetic engineering. HortScience. 26: 1517–1520 (1991).Google Scholar