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James D. McCreight, Jack E. Staub, Anabel López-Sesé, and Sang-Min Chung

Genetic variation among 378 melon (Cucumis melo L.) germplasm accessions collected in India in 1992 and 26 accessions in China in 1994 was evaluated with 19 isozyme loci. `Top Mark' and `Green Flesh Honeydew', which represented two distinct C. melo ssp. melo L. groups, Cantalupensis and Inodorus, respectively, were used as reference cultivars. Genetic distances among accessions were calculated, and an initial cluster analysis using these distances resulted in 148 groups of varying size, ranging from two to 47 accessions. One accession from each of the 148 groups was chosen at random and used in a second cluster analysis that identified 11 accession groups. Group 1 was unique and consisted of only two C. melo ssp. agrestis (Naudin) Pangalo accessions. Two large branches were detected at cluster node 2. One branch was comprised of three groups of 3, 12, and 34 accessions, while the other branch contained seven groups of 2, 3, 14, 16, and 47 accessions, and the reference cultivars. Of the 148 accessions, 132 were from 41 sites in Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, India, which were distributed unequally across the 11 groups. The 14 Chinese accessions originating from seven provinces were also dispersed unequally in the four major cluster groups. `Top Mark' and `Green Flesh Honeydew' were genetically distinct and uniquely clustered in the same group. These results indicate that additional collections of melon germplasm should be made in eastern and southern India.

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Yosef Burger, Uzi Sa'ar, Asaph Distelfeld, Nurit Katzir, Yelena Yeselson, Shmuel Shen, and Arthur A. Schaffer

The sweet cultivars of Cucumis melo are characterized by high sucrose levels, together with low acid levels in the mature fruit flesh. The trait of high sugar accumulation in C. melo fruit is determined by a single recessive gene, suc. High acid content, conferred by a single dominant gene, So, is found only in C. melo varieties that do not accumulate high levels of sugar and are used for nondessert purposes. We combined the genetic traits of high acid content (low pH) and high sugar levels by crossing the nonsweet, high acid C. melo var. flexuosus, `Faqqous' (So/So, Suc/Suc), with high sugar, low acid C. melo genotypes (so/so, suc/suc) and generating the recombinant genotype So/—, suc/suc. Segregating F2 populations derived from the cross between `Faqqous' and a standard high sugar, low acid line showed that the traits of high sugar and low pH were inherited independently of each other. The accumulation of acid and sugar in the developing fruit of a recombinant high acid, high sugar breeding line, A6, were also temporally independent, with acid accumulation preceding the rise in sucrose levels. The low pH of A6 was correlated with the developmental increase in titratable acidity and particularly of citric acid levels. The combination of increased acidity and high sugar provides the melons with a unique taste due to a sugar to acid ratio not present in sweet C. melo cultivars. These results are discussed in terms of the evolution under domestication of C. melo.

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Yosef Burger, Uzi Saar, Nurit Katzir, Harry S. Paris, Yelena Yeselson, Ilan Levin, and Arthur A. Schaffer

Fruit sweetness is the major determinant of fruit quality in melons (Cucumis melo L.) and reflects the concentration of the three major soluble sugars, sucrose, glucose, and fructose, present in the fruit flesh. Of these three sugars, sucrose is the prime factor accounting for both the genetic and the environmental variability observed in sugar content of C. melo fruit. Faqqous (subsp. melo var. flexuosus), a cultivar having a low sucrose and total sugar content, was crossed with Noy Yizre'el (subsp. melo var. reticulatus), a cultivar having a high sucrose and total sugar content. F1 plants had a sucrose content averaging slightly higher than that of the low-sucrose parent, indicating that low sucrose content is nearly completely dominant. Segregation in the F2 and backcross progenies indicated that high sucrose accumulation in melon fruit flesh is conferred by a single recessive gene herein designated suc. When the high-sucrose parent was crossed with the moderate-sucrose landrace known as Persia 202 (subsp. melo var. reticulatus), the segregation in the filial and backcross progenies suggested that additional genetic factors affect the amount of sucrose accumulation.

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David W. Wolff and James R. Dunlap

Cucumis melo varieties show a great diversity of ripening and abscission phenotype, ethylene production, and postharvest keeping quality. As a preliminary step in the development of melons with improved shelf-life and modified ripening, we surveyed 100 genotypes of melons with diverse ripening characteristics for ethylene production rate and shelf-life. Genotypes representing seven melon types (Western shipper cantaloupes, Eastern cantaloupes, Long shelf life cantaloupes [LSL], Charenteis, Galias, Honeydews, Casabas) were planted in the field in a randomized complete block with three replications. C. melo var. reticulatus and C. melo var. inodorus were harvested 40 and 50 days post-anthesis, respectively, and brought in the lab for ethylene production measurement. Fruit at horticultural maturity were also harvested and stored at room temperature. After 7 days, a postharvest decay rating (1 = complete rot and collapse–5 = no softening or decay) was taken to determine relative shelf-life of the genotypes. Average ethylene production rate ranged from 44.44 to 0.64 nl·h–1·g–1 for Eastern cantaloupes and Casaba melons, respectively. A negative linear relationship was observed between ethylene production rate and postharvest decay rating. LSL cantaloupes had the lowest ethylene production rate of the netted, orange flesh types. The relationship between ethylene production rate and polymorphism for ACC oxidase (pMEL1) and ACC synthase (pMEACS1) cDNA probes is being investigated.

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Mario Orozco-Santos, Javier Farias-Larios, J. Gerardo López-Aguirre*, Emilio Sánchez-Arévalo, and Jaime Molina-Ochoa

In Central Pacific region, Mexico, are cultivated around 17,000 ha of cucurbitaceous. This crops are affected by wilt, this disease is caused by Fusarium oxysporum (F.o.) Schlechtend. Some farmers are using resistant varieties to this disease, but resistance is different to each cultivar. Soil fumigation is other way to control this pathogen. Soil solarization is a new alternative for Fusarium oxysporum control. The objective of this research was to evaluate the effect of soil solarization on Fusarium oxysporum for wilt control in muskmelon crop in Colima State. The experiment was carried out under field conditions, using Cantaloupe melon (Cucumis melo L.) Cv. Ovation, in Ixtla-huacán municipality during November-December. Clear plastic was used (thickness 110). Evaluation of solarization periods were 0, 10, 20, and 30 days. Experimental design was full random blocks, with four replications. Evaluated variables were: soil temperature at 5-,10-, and 20-cm soil depth, propagule number of Fusarium oxysporum in soil, wilt incidence and yield. For determine Fusarium oxysporum survival, a strain isolated from infected plants was used. Fungi was introduced in cloth bags, containing 10 gr of sterile sand with 10 mL of a suspension of 19,000 conidia/mL. Later were introduced four cloth bags per treatment at 5-,10-, and 20-cm soil depth. When plants were harvested, was taken the sick plants percentage. Results shown that soil solarization periods had not an effect on the propagule number at the soil depth for the solarization periods. Also soil solarization had not and effect on plant yield. Is necessary to do the same experiment during different season, as June-July or September-October, to have a higher soil temperature and humidity.

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D.J. Gray, D.W. McColley, and Michael E. Compton

A protocol for high-frequency somatic embryogenesis in Cucumis melo L. was developed using `Male Sterile A147 as a model cultivar. Basal halves of quiescent seed cotyledons were cultured on embryo induction (EI) medium containing concentration ranges of the auxin 2,4-D and the cytokinins BA, Bin, TDZ, or 2iP before transfer to embryo development (ED) medium. Medium with 2,4-D at 5 mg·liter-1 and TDZ at 0.1 mg·liter-1 was superior, with 49% of explants responding and an average of 3.3 somatic embryos per explant (6.8 somatic embryos per responding explant). More explants produced embryos when incubated on EI medium for 1 or 2 weeks (30% and 33%) than for 3 or 4 weeks or with no induction. However, 2 weeks was 2.9 times better than 1 week in terms of number of embryos per explant. One week of initial culture in darkness, followed by a 16 hour light/8 hour dark photoperiod, produced more responding explants (26%) than two or more weeks in darkness or no dark period at all; but 1 and 2 weeks of darkness resulted in a similar number of embryos per explant (2.1 and 2.8). Sucrose concentration in EI and ED media had a highly significant effect on embryo induction and development. EI medium with 3% sucrose resulted in more embryogenic explants than EI medium with 1.5% or 6% sucrose. However, treatments with 3% sucrose in EI medium and 3% or 6% sucrose in ED medium produced significantly more embryos per explant (8.5 and 11.9) than other treatments. Treatments did not affect embryo induction directly and regeneration per se but, instead, frequency and efficiency of somatic embryo development. The optimal treatments were tested with 51 other commercial varieties. All varieties underwent somatic embryogenesis, exhibiting a response of 5% to 100% explant response and 0.1-20.2 embryos per explant. Chemical names used: N-(phenylmethyl)-lH-purin-6-amine (benzyladenine or BA); N-(2-furanylmethyl)-lH-purin-6-amine (kinetin or BIN); N-phenyl-N'-1,2,3-thiadiazol-5-ylurea (thidiazuron or TDZ); N-(3-methyl-2-butenyl)-lH-purin-6-amine (2iP); (2,4-dichlorophenoxy) acetic acid (2,4-D).

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Ana Fita, Cristina Esteras, Belén Picó, and Fernando Nuez

In this article, we describe two melon ( Cucumis melo L.) breeding lines with the genetic background of a traditional nonclimacteric inodorus cultivar that show fruit characteristics similar to climacteric types. The breeding lines described

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W.A. Mackay, T.J Ng, and F.A. Hammerschlag

Cucumis melo L. (muskmelon) is susceptible to Myrothecium roridum at all stages of growth with no known source of resistance. Screening of regenerants from long-term cotyledonary-derived callus cultures of muskmelon cv. Hales Best (tolerant), Iroquois (susceptible), and Perlita (intermediate) was carried out to determine if novel plants with increased levels of resistance could be obtained. A detached-leaf bioassay was used to screen greenhouse-grown regenerants and seedlings of the three cultivars. Resistance was determined by measuring necrotic lesion diameter and chlorotic plus necrotic lesion diameter. No change in the level of resistance to M. roridum has thus far been observed. Thus, screening for somaclonal variation may not be aviable approach to recover resistance in muskmelon to M. roridum.

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Gene Lester

Hybrid honey dew muskmelon (Cucumis melo L. var. inodorus Naud.) fruit physiological maturity, the period of maximized or greatest compositional changes, occurs by 40 days after anthesis (DAA). Fruit maturity was determined by major changes in quality attributes: glucose, fructose, sucrose, and moisture content, firmness, mass, volume, and hypodermal-mesocarp plasma membrane specific H+-ATPase (E.C. activity. Fruit ripening occurs by 50 DAA, as determined by additional changes in the mentioned quality attributes, and by fruit abscission at 50 DAA. Fruit senescence begins with decreases in almost all quality attributes, H+-ATPase activity, protein content, by the largest increase in the total free sterol : total phospholipid (FS:PL) ratio, and in hypodermal-mesocarp lipoxygenase (E.C. activity. Physicochemical profiles of hybrid honey dew muskmelon fruit during growth and maturation should be useful to schedule commercial harvest of mature fruit, which is necessary for maximum honey dew fruit quality, extended shelf-life, and enhanced consumer satisfaction.

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Thanidchaya Puthmee, Kenji Takahashi, Midori Sugawara, Rieko Kawamata, Yoshie Motomura, Takashi Nishizawa, Toshiyuki Aikawa, and Wilawan Kumpoun

Soil. 18 7 14 Dos-Santos, N. Jiménez-Araujo, A. Rodríguez-Arcos, R. Fernández-Trujillo, J.P. 2011 Cell wall polysaccharides of near-isogenic lines of melon ( Cucumis melo L.) and their inbred parentals which show differential flesh firmness or