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  • Author or Editor: David H. Picha x
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Changes in fructose, sucrose, and glucose were investigated in cured roots of `Beauregard', `Jewel' and `Travis' sweet potatoes stored at 15°C and 1.5°C for 8 wk. Samples of 6 roots each in triplicate were analyzed at 2 wk intervals. At each interval, samples were also heated for 5, 10, 20 or 40 min. at 100°C to determine changes in rate of maltose conversion. Roots stored at 15°C displayed gradual or no increase in sugars over the 8 wk. Roots stored at 1.5°C increased more rapidly in sugars, especially fructose, over the same time. `Jewel' had the greatest increase in the sugars when stored at 1.5°C. There was no consistent pattern of maltose conversion in roots stored at 15°C over the 8 wk storage time. Roots stored at 1.5°C displayed a reduction in ability to convert starch to maltose upon heating. Less maltose was produced with increasing time of storag at 1.5°C. `Beauregard' and `Jewel' changed the most, while `Travis' changed only slightly.

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`Beauregard' sweetpotato (Ipomoea batatas L. Lam) roots were maintained under different controlled atmospheres ranging from 0% to 21% O2 at 22 °C in two separate trials for 14 days to study changes in activities of pyruvate decarboxylase (PDC) and alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH). Trial I showed no difference in activities of PDC and ADH between 0% and 1% O2, or among 2%, 5%, and 21% O2. Both PDC and ADH activities were significantly higher at 0% and 1% O2 compared to the 2%, 5%, and 21% O2 atmospheres. In trial II, both enzyme activities were lower at 1.5% O2 than at 0% O2, but higher than at 10% and 21% O2 atmospheres. The combined data of the two trials showed a very strong correlation between PDC and ADH activities (R 2 = 0.86). In addition, a strong correlation existed between PDC activity and acetaldehyde concentration (R 2 = 0.95). The maximal activities were at pH 6.5 for PDC and at pH 8.5 for ADH in the direction of acetaldehyde-to-ethanol. The results suggest that 1.5% O2 is the critical point for the transition from aerobic to anaerobic metabolism in CA storage of sweetpotato roots, and PDC is the key enzyme in alcoholic fermentation.

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