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  • Author or Editor: Edward C. Sisler x
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Scatchard plots for ethylene binding in apples (Malus domestica Borkh.), which were harvested weekly for 5 weeks to include the ethylene climacteric rise, showed C50 values (concentration of ethylene needed to occupy 50% of the ethylene binding sites) of 0.10, 0.11, 0.34, 0.40, and 0.57 μl ethylene/liter-1, respectively, for each of the 5 weeks. Higher ethylene concentrations were required to saturate the binding sites during the climacteric rise than at other times. Diffusion of 14C-ethylene from the binding sites was curvilinear and did not show any indication of multiple binding sites. Ethylene was not metabolized by apple tissue.

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2,5-NBD, a compound which competes with ethylene for binding sites and inhibits ethylene action in plant tissues, was applied to ‘Delicious’ apples (Malus domestica Borkh.) as a gas in either a closed or flowing system. Apples held in the closed system for 30 days at 25C in either 2000 or 4000 µl 2,5-NBD/liter were as firm as fruit held equally long at 5C; apples held in air at 25C were 19 N softer. Softening appeared to be mediated by ethylene. Soluble solids content and starch loss were similar for fruit held in air or in 2,5-NBD at 25C. The fruit’s internal ethylene concentration showed that 500 or 2500 µl 2,5-NBD/liter suppressed, but did not completely inhibit, autocatalytic ethylene production. The preserving effect of 2,5-NBD diminished after 50 days at 25C. Chemical names used: Bicyclo [2-2-l]-hepta-2,5-diene (2,5-norbornadiene; 2,5-NBD).

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Mature green tomatoes (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill. cv. 674) were gassed with 160 to 275 μl/liter ethylene, depending upon the experiment, from either a Catalytic Generator or gas cylinder. Tomatoes were evaluated during subsequent ripening for fruit color development and taste. The combined results of two triangle difference taste tests indicated that the panel could tell a slight difference in taste of tomatoes based on gassing method. However, panelists did not reveal a strong preference for tomatoes from either method or consistently mention a certain characteristic that made the two groups of tomatoes different. Gas chromatographic analyses of the effluent from the Catalytic Generator indicated that several compounds other than ethylene were present.

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Pretreating `Victory Parade' potted miniature roses (Rosa hybrida L.) with photolyzed diazocyclopentadiene (DACP) inhibited the effects of exogenous ethylene (acceleration of leaf and bud drop). In an ethylene-free simulated interior environment, display life of the treated plants was also greater than that of the controls and similar to that of plants pretreated with the anionic silver thiosulfate complex (STS). DACP caused an increase in the binding constant for ethylene in petals and leaves of `Victory Parade' and `Cara Mia' (a cut-flower rose cultivar). Competitive kinetics for the effects of increasing ethylene concentrations on control and DACP-treated plants are consistent with the hypothesis that the effects of DACP are due to irreversible binding to the ethylene-binding site.

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A 6-hour fumigation of flowering Begonia ×elatior hybrida Fotsch. `Najada' and `Rosa', B. ×tuberhybrida Voss. `Non-Stop', Kalanchoe blossfeldiana Poelln. `Tropicana', and Rosa hybrida L. `Victory Parade' plants with 1-MCP, (formerly designated as SIS-X), a gaseous nonreversible ethylene binding inhibitor, strongly inhibited exogenous ethylene effects such as bud and flower drop, leaf abscission, and accelerated flower senescence. The inhibitory effects of 1-MCP increased linearly with concentration, and at 20 nl·liter-1 this compound gave equal protection to that afforded by spraying the plants with a 0.5 STS mm solution. Chemical names used: 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP), silver thiosulfate (STS).

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