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Clarissa J. Maroon-Lango, Mary Ann Guaragna, Ramon Jordan, John Hammond, Murali Bandla, Steve Marquardt, and John R. Stommel

Pepino mosaic virus (PepMV) was first found in pepino (Solanum muricatum) growing in coastal Peru in 1974 and described in 1980; it reappeared in protected tomato (Lycopersiconesculentum) in the Netherlands in 1999. Since then, it has been reported to occur in tomato in several countries including Austria, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Peru, Spain and the Canary Islands, the United Kingdom, and in 11 states within the United States. Three strains of PepMV found in the United States have been cloned and sequenced. Full-length genomic sequences were obtained for two strains, PepMV-US1 and PepMV-US2, from co-infected tomato plant samples from Arizona. The 3'-end sequence of PepMV-US3 came from infected tomato fruits from Maryland. The genome organization, motifs and domains typical of the genus Potexvirus, and of other PepMV isolates, were found in full-length sequences of both US1 and US2 isolates. Direct comparison of US1 and US2 at the nucleotide level revealed an 86.3% identity; whereas, when individually compared to the French and Spanish isolates, which share ∼99% identity at the nucleotide level, US1 and US2 had 82% and 79% identities to each, respectively. Pair-wise gene-for-gene comparisons between United States and European isolates revealed a similar trend. While unique, US1 is more closely related to the previously reported European isolates than is US2. The CP of US3 is nearly identical to the European isolates at the amino acid level. None of 18 tomato germplasm accessions or 10 cultivars were resistant to mechanical inoculation with US3; in contrast, no infection was detected in nine pepper cultivars or four germplasm accessions. Plants grown from seeds of infected tomato fruits did not test positive for PepMV.

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John R. Stommel, Mary J. Camp, Judith M. Dumm, Kathleen G. Haynes, Yaguang Luo, and Anne Marie Schoevaars

Fresh pepper (Capsicum) fruit that are sliced and/or diced are referred to as fresh-cut products. The current report evaluates the inheritance of postharvest attributes that contribute to pepper fresh-cut quality. Marketable green fruit of large-fruited Capsicum annuum accessions with bell and related pod types (Class 1), C. annuum accessions with jalapeno and serrano pod types (Class 2), and thin-walled “aji”-like tabasco pod types from Capsicum baccatum, Capsicum frutescens, and Capsicum chinense (Class 3) were processed and stored up to 14 days in selective oxygen transmission rate packaging. Fresh-cut attributes were influenced by genotype as well as year. For all pod types, O2 and CO2 partial pressures in storage packages, tissue weight loss, and electrolyte leakage differed among accessions, days of storage, and years of testing. Percent O2 declined and CO2 and electrolyte leakage generally increased during storage. Some accessions in Class 1 and Class 2 maintained acceptable product quality during storage. Changes in fruit weight loss were small with greater weight loss observed in Class 1 accessions relative to weight loss for Class 2 and Class 3. Broad-sense heritability for fresh-cut attributes was moderate to low indicating that it will be difficult to breed for fresh-cut quality.