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Kelly Ross, Gerry Neilsen and Denise Neilsen

’s capability to eliminate free radicals by the consumption of foods high in antioxidants may be beneficial, and studies have implicated phenolic compounds to be important phytochemicals because of their antioxidant activities ( Boyer and Liu, 2004 ; Rice

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Xin Zhao, Edward E. Carey, Janice E. Young, Weiqun Wang and Takeo Iwamoto

group of phytochemicals as a result of their great abundance in plant foods and consist chiefly of phenolic acids and flavonoids ( Dillard and German, 2000 ; Manach et al., 2004 ). Dietary phenolic compounds significantly contribute to the antioxidant

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Ki-Ho Son and Myung-Min Oh

( Brandt et al., 2004 ; Pennington and Fisher, 2009 ). In particular, phenolic compounds, which are one of the most widely occurring groups of phytochemicals, exhibit various types of physiological properties, including antioxidant activity ( Balasundram

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M.S. Padda and D.H. Picha

Sweetpotatoes may be potentially high in concentration of certain phytochemical compounds, including phenolics. Low temperature stress-induced phenolic compounds may enhance the nutraceutical value of sweetpotatoes. However, extended exposure to low temperature results in chilling injury. Cured and non-cured roots of `Beauregard' sweetpotatoes were exposed to low temperature storage (5 °C) for up to 4 weeks. The total phenolics and individual phenolic acid contents were determined at weekly intervals using Folin-Denis reagent and reversed-phase HPLC, respectively. Total phenolics and individual phenolic acids increased with length of low temperature exposure. Non-cured roots had a higher phenolic content than cured roots after 4 weeks. A 3-day exposure period to room temperature (22 °C) following removal from low temperature storage typically resulted in increased phenolics. In a comparison of different tissue locations, the highest phenolic content was found in peel tissue and the lowest in the pith tissue. The major individual phenolic acid in all root tissues was chlorogenic acid.

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Justine E. Vanden Heuvel*, Jessica L. Robidoux and Catherine C. Neto

Carbon supply reduction was used to investigate the relationship between total non-structural carbohydrate (TNSC) concentration in the vegetative tissue and the production of phenolic compounds in the fruit of grapevines. Potted, greenhouse-grown DeChaunac vines were partially defoliated on one of three dates (berry set, veraison, or 7 days pre-harvest) during the growing season. Light environment of the fruit clusters was not affected by defoliation. Seven days following defoliation, half of the vines were destructively harvested for carbohydrate analysis, while the remaining vines were kept for fruit analysis at maturity. Defoliation of vines at berry set and veraison significantly reduced TNSC concentration in the leaf tissue. Partial defoliation of vines at berry set reduced total flavonols by 24%, total anthocyanins by 33%, and total phenolics by 13% in the fruit compared to the control vines. At veraison, partial defoliation of vines reduced total flavonols by 8%, anthocyanins by 43%, and did not affect total phenolics. While flavonol and total phenolic content was not affected by defoliation 7 days prior to harvest, total anthocyanins were increased by 39%, although leaf TNSC concentration was not affected. Concentration of total flavonols and anthocyanins were positively correlated with TNSC in the leaves (r = 0.53 and r = 0.73, respectively) while total phenolic content was not correlated with TNSC. These results indicate that development of anthocyanins and flavonols in fruit is linked to carbohydrate availability from vegetative tissues during berry set and veraison.

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O.A. Sapko and Z.B. Shamina

Our studies concerned the peculiarities of phenol compound (PhC) formation in cultivated in vitro cells of Alhagi kirghisorum. To isolate cell strains with a high level of PhC biosynthesis, cells were sown on a medium containing parafluorophenylalanine (PFPA). To increase the number of resistant cell lines, the cells were treated with N-nitrose-N-methylurea (NMU). Four groups of individual clones were obtained: spontaneous, induced NMU, and resistant to PFPA. These clones differed in their intensity of growth, color, consistence, quantity, and PhC composition, as well as in their biological activity. Maximum differences were found in the clones with induced resistivity. In this group, clones with PhC content were at the level of control cells (40%), with high (33%) and low level of biosynthesis (27%). The PhC content in two more productive lines was 3.3 and 4.2 times higher than in controls. The induced NMU clones and clones with spontaneous resistivity to PFPA had biosynthesis levels similar to the control or 3 to 4 times lower than the latter. The biological PhC activity of a clone was tested by its effect on the processes of protein biosynthesis in a system without cells from rabbit reticulocytes. Eleven clones were found, the total PhC fractions of which in 40% to 99% inhibited protein biosynthesis.

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Xin Zhao, Edward Carey, James Nechols, Kim Williams and Weiqun Wang

Implications of dietary phenolic compounds for human health and disease prevention have been indicated by a body of literature. A greenhouse pot study was performed to investigate the impacts of fertilizer source and preventive insecticide application on phenolic compound levels in pac choi [Brassica rapa (L.) cv. Mei Qing]. A two-way randomized complete-block design with five replications was used in this experiment. Fertilizer source consisted of two levels: conventional fertilizer (pre-plant application of Osmocote slow-release fertilizer), and organic fertilizer (pre-plant application of vermicompost and fertigation with compost tea and fish emulsion). Insecticide application consisted of three levels: organic (pyrethrin) vs. conventional (permethrin), and a plain water control. At harvest, total phenolics and individual phenolic compounds in pac choi leaves (blades) were analyzed by Folin assay and HPLC, respectively. Head weight of pac choi was significantly higher under conventional fertilizer treatment, while it was not affected by insecticides. Total phenolic content of pac choi was significantly increased by organic fertilizer treatment. HPLC results indicated that organic fertilizer treatment resulted in significantly higher levels of individual phenolic compounds, including chlorogenic acid and ferulic acid. In contrast, preventive insecticide application showed little effect on the phenolics in pac choi. Correlation analysis excluded the influence of plant size (head weight) on phenolic content in pac choi. Differential N-forms, rates of nutrient release, and/or variable nutrient content in organic and conventional fertilizer treatments may contribute to elevated phenolic content in organically fertilized pac choi.

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D.M. Holcroft, M.I. Gil and A.A. Kader

Carbon dioxide-enriched atmospheres are used to reduce decay incidence and severity and extend the postharvest life of strawberries. However, depending on the cultivar, carbon dioxide concentrations of ≥20% can be detrimental to color (change from red to purple) and flavor (development of off-flavors). Our objective was to determine the effect of elevated carbon dioxide levels on the stability of the anthocyanins and other phenolic compounds to examine their role in color changes of strawberries. Freshly harvested strawberries were placed in jars ventilated continuously with air or air enriched with 10%, 20% or 40% carbon dioxide at 5°C for 10 days. Anthocyanins and other phenolics were extracted at 0, 5, and 10 days from homogenized samples. The samples were purified using Sep-pac C18 cartridges. The purified methanolic extract was injected directly into HPLC coupled to a photodiode array detector. Cyanidin-3-glucoside, pelargonidin-3-glucoside, and pelargonidin-3-rutinoside were identified as the major anthocyanins. After 5 and 10 days in storage there was a reduction in the total amount of anthocyanins. This degradation was lower in air than in carbon dioxide-treated strawberries, but the anthocyanin profile remained the same. Flavonols (e.g., quercetin and kaempferol derivatives) and phenolic acids (e.g., ellagic acid) decreased during storage, and this decrease was exacerbated by elevated carbon dioxide atmospheres. Carbon dioxide-induced changes in the quantities of the previously listed anthocyanins and phenolic compounds may be the cause of color changes from red to purple in strawberries.

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Wol-Soo Kim and Jung-An Jo

Pear (Pyrus pyrifolia) fruits of `Whangkeumbae' were produced from the organic orchard at Yongam, southwestern Korea, which was managed by spraying with chitin incubated solution (CIS) 15 times from petal fall stage, mid-April to late August, to control pests and diseases during the growing season. The CIS contained about 50 kinds of chitin digestive and/or effective microorganisms and other organic/inorganic biologically active substances by incubating the mixtures at 30 °C for 7 days. The soil had standard levels of chemical and physical properties in Korea, as well as 3.0% to 4.0% organic matter. The organic fruits showed higher soluble solid contents, and fruit firmness was increased in comparison to conventional fruits. The organic fruit skin changed in color from yellow to brown, and black spot occurred; however, there was no difference in flesh tissues in terms of colors and textures. The phenolic compounds were significantly increased in organic fruits and leaves, with especially higher levels for fruit skin than for flesh tissues. Free radical levels dropped sharply in organic fruit, but slowly in conventional fruits. The results showed that the organic pear fruits have higher levels of antioxidant activity, and also showed the phenomena related to the change in fruit skin color from yellow to brown.

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Daniel A. Stanley and Donald J. Huber

In previous studies, 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) was shown to significantly suppress peel degreening and appearance of senescent spotting of banana fruit (Stanley and Huber, 2004). In the present study, the effect of the ethylene antagonist on banana pulp soluble sugar levels and on peel soluble and total phenolics was measured. One hundred and sixty hands (10 boxes) of banana fruit (Musaacuminata cv. Cavendish) were treated with ethylene (300 μL·L-1, 24 h, 15 °C, 90% RH) at a commercial ripening facility in Bradenton, Fla., and transported by truck (15 °C) to the University of Florida. Fruit were sorted and placed in 174-L ripening chambers, where 80 hands received 500 nL·L-1 1-MCP for two 12-h periods at 18 °C, while the other 80 hands (controls) were maintained in identical containers without 1-MCP for equal time periods at 18 °C. Mean whole fruit firmness in both treatment groups was 140 N and decreased to 15 N (controls) and 30 N (1-MCP) by day 12. Soluble sugars in the pulp of control fruit achieved levels between 160–180 mg·g-1 fresh weight by day 8, while 1-MCP treated fruit required about 12 days to achieve similar soluble sugar levels. Total phenolic compounds present in peel tissue of control and 1-MCP treated fruit required 10 and 14 days, respectively, to achieve levels of about 4000 μg·g-1 fresh weight. Chlorogenic acid levels, a subset of total peel phenolic compounds, peaked above 500 μg·g-1 by day 10 in control fruit and by day 12 in 1-MCP treated fruit. Maintenance of fruit firmness along with the achievement of acceptable sugar levels of 1-MCP treated fruit demonstrate possible benefits of suppression of ethylene action for retail and processing markets for banana fruit.