Sim-type carnation flowers (Dianthus caryophyllus L., cv. Elliot's White) continuously treated with 50 mM or 100 mM 3-amino-1,2,4-triazole (amitrole) and held in the dark at 18°C did not exhibit a respiratory climacteric relative to dH2O-treated controls. No morphological changes symptomatic of floral senescence appeared in treated flowers until 12-15 days post-harvest. Other triazoles were not effective in prolonging senescence. Amitrole appears to inhibit ethylene biosynthesis by blocking the enzyme-mediated conversion of S-adenosyl-L-methionine to 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylate. Ethylene action appears to be progressively inhibited in that flowers held in treatment solution for 2 d or less responded to application of 10 uL/L exogenous ethylene whereas flowers held 10 d or longer exhibited no response. Electrophoretic resolution of total crude extracts evidenced protein synthesis as well as degradation. Western analysis and total activity assays showed an amitrole concentration-specific inhibition of catalase activity.
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