Phenolics were extracted from fruit cuticles of `Delicious', `Golden Delicious', `Empire', and `Cortland' apples, using either cuticular wax scraped from fruit peel or enzyme-isolated cuticles. The concentrations of free phenolics in fruit cuticle ranged from 8 to 45 mg•g-1, and bound phenolics ranged from 50 to 110 mg•g-1 in these cultivars. Free cuticular phenolic concentrations in the four cultivars were in the order `Golden Delicious' > `Delicious' > `Empire' > `Cortland'. In a linoleate emulsion (oil-in-water) system, diphenylamine (DPA, lipophilic) displayed higher antioxidant activity than methanol-extracted cuticular phenolics (hydrophilic). In an α-farnesene-hexane (bulk oil) system, however, antioxidant activities of methanol-extracted cuticular phenolics were higher than that of DPA. Lipid-soluble antioxidants (LSAs) from cuticle displayed higher activity in the linoleate emulsion system than in α-farnesene-hexane system. Only about 10% to 15% of the total LSA activity in fruit peel was detected in isolated fruit cuticle. Among the four cultivars, LSA activity in epidermal and hypodermal cells was similar in `Golden Delicious', `Empire', and `Cortland' apples, while `Delicious' had lower activity.
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