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Journal of Integrative Agriculture  2021, Vol. 20 Issue (8): 2126-2137    DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(20)63312-3
Special Issue: 园艺-分子生物合辑Horticulture — Genetics · Breeding
Horticulture Advanced Online Publication | Current Issue | Archive | Adv Search |
Preharvest application of melatonin induces anthocyanin accumulation and related gene upregulation in red pear (Pyrus ussuriensis)
SUN Hui-li1*, WANG Xin-yue1*, SHANG Ye1, WANG Xiao-qian1, 2, DU Guo-dong1, 2, LÜ De-guo1, 2 
1 College of Horticulture, Shenyang Agricultural University, Shenyang 110866, P.R.China
2 Key Laboratory of Fruit Quality Development and Regulation of Liaoning Province, Shenyang Agricultural University, Shenyang 110866, P.R.China
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花青素是决定梨果皮颜色的重要成分。研究发现褪黑素可以影响花青素代谢,但褪黑素采前处理对果实着色的作用尚不清楚。本试验以‘南红梨’为材料,研究了50、200 μM褪黑素采前喷施梨果实,对果皮着色、酚类物质含量及相关基因表达的影响。结果表明,褪黑素采前喷施可以显著影响梨果实着色,提高果皮中花青素和黄酮醇的含量,降低羟基肉桂酸和黄烷醇的含量,同时增加多数花青素合成基因和相关转录因子的相对表达量。此外,外源褪黑素处理促进了褪黑素合成相关基因的表达,从而增加果皮中内源褪黑素的含量。试验结果为探索褪黑素调控果实花青素代谢提供了新的思路,并有助于外源褪黑素在农业上的应用。

Anthocyanins are important components in the peel of red pears and contribute to the appearance of the fruit.  Melatonin application is known to affect anthocyanin biosynthesis, but the effect of preharvest melatonin application on fruit coloration remains largely unknown.  The objective of this study was to determine the effects of preharvest melatonin application on pigmentation, phenolic compounds, and the expression of related genes in Nanhong pear (Pyrus ussuriensis).  The applications were performed during the pre-color-change period by spraying 50 or 200 μmol L–1 of melatonin on fruits.  We found that treatment with melatonin had a significant effect on color development.  The concentrations of anthocyanins and favonols were enhanced by melatonin treatment, whereas hydroxycinnamate and favanol concentrations were reduced.  Quantitative real-time PCR analyses indicated that the transcription levels for most anthocyanin biosynthetic genes and anthocyanin-related transcription factors were induced by melatonin.  Melatonin application also stimulated the expression of melatonin biosynthesis-related genes and consequently caused an increase in endogenous melatonin concentration.  These results provide insights into melatonin-induced fruit coloration and will facilitate the application of exogenous melatonin in agriculture.
Keywords:  melatonin        anthocyanin       pear        phenolic        peel pigmentation  
Received: 24 March 2020   Accepted:
Fund: This research was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31701865), the earmarked fund for the China Agriculture Research System (CARS-28), and the Liaoning Provincial Natural Science Foundation of China (2019-MS-276).
Corresponding Authors:  Correspondence WANG Xiao-qian, Tel: +86-24-88487219, E-mail:; DU Guo-dong, Tel: +86-24-88487219, E-mail:    
About author:  * These authors contributed equally to this study.

Cite this article: 

SUN Hui-li, WANG Xin-yue, SHANG Ye, WANG Xiao-qian, DU Guo-dong, LÜ De-guo. 2021. Preharvest application of melatonin induces anthocyanin accumulation and related gene upregulation in red pear (Pyrus ussuriensis). Journal of Integrative Agriculture, 20(8): 2126-2137.

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