Molecular and genetic characterization of a non-climacteric phenotype in melon reveals two loci conferring altered ethylene response in fruit.
Fruit ripening and abscission are associated with an ethylene burst in several melon (Cucumis melo) genotypes. In cantaloupe as in other climacteric fruit, exogenous ethylene can prematurely induce abscission, ethylene production, and ripening. Melon genotypes without fruit abscission or without ethylene burst also exist and are, therefore, non-climacteric. In the nonabscising melon fruit PI 161375, exogenous ethylene failed to stimulate abscission, loss of firmness, ethylene production, and expression of all target genes tested. However, the PI 161375 etiolated seedlings displayed the usual ethylene-induced triple response. Genetic analysis on a population of recombinant cantaloupe Charentais x PI 161375 inbred lines in segregation for fruit abscission and ethylene production indicated that both characters are controlled by two independent loci, abscission layer (Al)-3 and Al-4. The non-climacteric phenotype in fruit tissues is attributable to ethylene insensitivity conferred by the recessive allelic forms from PI 161375. Five candidate genes (two ACO, two ACS, and ERS) that were localized on the melon genetic map did not exhibit colocalization with Al-3 or Al-4. (+info)
Characterization of an abscisic acid responsive gene homologue from Cucumis melo.
A cDNA and genomic DNA encoding an abscisic acid responsive gene (ASR) homologue (Asr1) was isolated from an inodorus melon, Cucumis melo var. kuwata, cDNA and genomic library. The Asr1 gene showed the strongest fruit-specific expression and differential expression profiles during fruit development, which were expressed from a low copy gene. The promoter region of the Asr1 gene contained several putative functional cis-elements, which may be involved in the response to plant hormones and environmental stresses. These results suggest that Asr1 may play an important role in the regulation of melon fruit ripening. (+info)
Multistate outbreaks of Salmonella serotype Poona infections associated with eating cantaloupe from Mexico--United States and Canada, 2000-2002.
Three multistate outbreaks of Salmonella serotype Poona infections associated with eating cantaloupe imported from Mexico occurred in the spring of consecutive years during 2000-2002. In each outbreak, the isolates had indistinguishable pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) patterns; the PFGE patterns observed in the 2000 and 2002 outbreaks were indistinguishable, but the pattern from 2001 was unique among them. Outbreaks were identified first by the California Department of Health Services (2000 and 2001) and the Washington State Department of Health (2002) and involved residents of 12 states and Canada. This report describes the investigations, which led ultimately to an import alert on cantaloupes from Mexico. To limit the potential for cantaloupe contamination, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) continues to work with the Mexican government on a food-safety program for the production, packing, and shipping of fresh cantaloupes. (+info)
Sphingomonas melonis sp. nov., a novel pathogen that causes brown spots on yellow Spanish melon fruits.
A polyphasic taxonomic study was performed on the phytopathogenic bacterial strains DAPP-PG 224(T) and DAPP-PG 228, which cause brown spot on yellow Spanish melon (Cucumis melo var. inodorus) fruits. Based on the presence of glucuronosyl ceramide (SGL-1) in cellular lipids, the results of fatty acid analysis and 16S rDNA sequence comparison, the strains had been identified as belonging to the genus Sphingomonas and as phylogenetically related to Sphingomonas mali, Sphingomonas pruni and Sphingomonas asaccharolytica. The levels of 16S rDNA sequence similarity of these three species to strain DAPP-PG 224(T) were respectively 98.0, 98.0 and 97.4%. DNA-DNA hybridization experiments between strains pathogenic on melon fruit and S. mali, S. pruni and S. asaccharolytica revealed < or = 16% relatedness. Based on these results, the two isolates studied are regarded as independent from the type strains of the three species mentioned above. Sphingomonas strains from melon fruits are recognized as forming a genetically and phenotypically discrete species and to be differentiated by phenotypic characteristics from all 29 named species of the genus. Thus, the name Sphingomonas melonis sp. nov. is proposed for the isolates from diseased melon fruits. The type strain is DAPP-PG 224(T) (= LMG 19484(T) = DSM 14444(T)). The G+C content of DNA of the type strain is 65.0 mol%. (+info)
Powdery mildew (Sphaerotheca fuliginea) resistance in melon is selectable at the haploid level.
The major cause of powdery mildew in melons (Cucumis melo L.) is the fungus Sphaerotheca fuliginea. There are several cultivar- and season-specific races of this fungus. In order to control powdery mildew, it is important to introduce resistance to fungal infection into new cultivars during melon breeding. Haploid breeding is a powerful tool for the production of pure lines. In this study, it was investigated whether powdery mildew resistance could be manifested at the haploid level from two disease-resistant melon lines, PMR 45 and WMR 29. the effects of various races of S. fuliginea on diploid and haploid plants of PMR 45 and WMR 29 and of a disease-susceptible line, Fuyu 3 were measured. The responses of haploid and diploid plants to powdery mildew were identical. In addition, haploids that were generated from hybrids between Fuyu 3 and disease-resistant lines were examined. Seven out of 13 haploids from a Fuyu 3xPMR 45 cross and 10 out of 12 haploids from a Fuyu 3xWMR 29 cross were classified as resistant plants because they showed the same responses as their disease-resistant diploid parents to the various fungal races. These results indicate that resistance in PMR 45 and WMR 29 is selectable at the haploid level. All of the plant responses were observed by microscopy. A possible mechanism for generating powdery mildew resistance in two different melon lines is discussed. (+info)
The folate precursor p-aminobenzoate is reversibly converted to its glucose ester in the plant cytosol.
Plants synthesize p-aminobenzoate (pABA) in chloroplasts and use it for folate synthesis in mitochondria. It has generally been supposed that pABA exists as the free acid in plant cells and that it moves between organelles in this form. Here we show that fruits and leaves of tomato and leaves of a diverse range of other plants have a high capacity to convert exogenously supplied pABA to its beta-D-glucopyranosyl ester (pABA-Glc), whereas yeast and Escherichia coli do not. High performance liquid chromatography analysis indicated that much of the endogenous pABA in fruit and leaf tissues is esterified and that the total pool of pABA (free plus esterified) varies greatly between tissues (from 0.2 to 11 nmol g-1 of fresh weight). UDP-glucose:pABA glucosyltransferase activity was readily detected in fruit and leaf extracts, and the reaction was found to be freely reversible. p-Aminobenzoic acid beta-D-glucopyranosyl ester esterase activity was also detected in extracts. Subcellular fractionation indicated that the glucosyltransferase and esterase activities are predominantly if not solely cytosolic. Taken together, these results show that reversible formation of pABA-Glc in the cytosol is interposed between pABA production in chloroplasts and pABA consumption in mitochondria. As pABA is a hydrophobic weak acid, its uncharged form is membrane-permeant, and its anion is consequently prone to distribute itself spontaneously among subcellular compartments according to their pH. Esterification of pABA may eliminate such errant behavior and provide a readily reclaimable storage form of pABA as well as a substrate for membrane transporters. (+info)
Ingestion of Salmonella enterica serotype Poona by a free-living mematode, Caenorhabditis elegans, and protection against inactivation by produce sanitizers.
Free-living nematodes are known to ingest food-borne pathogens and may serve as vectors to contaminate preharvest fruits and vegetables. Caenorhabditis elegans was selected as a model to study the effectiveness of sanitizers in killing Salmonella enterica serotype Poona ingested by free-living nematodes. Aqueous suspensions of adult worms that had fed on S. enterica serotype Poona were treated with produce sanitizers. Treatment with 20 microg of free chlorine/ml significantly (alpha = 0.05) reduced the population of S. enterica serotype Poona compared to results for treating worms with water (control). However, there was no significant difference in the number of S. enterica serotype Poona cells surviving treatments with 20 to 500 microg of chlorine/ml, suggesting that reductions caused by treatment with 20 microg of chlorine/ml resulted from inactivation of S. enterica serotype Poona on the surface of C. elegans but not cells protected by the worm cuticle after ingestion. Treatment with Sanova (850 or 1,200 microg/ml), an acidified sodium chlorite sanitizer, caused reductions of 5.74 and 6.34 log(10) CFU/worm, respectively, compared to reductions from treating worms with water. Treatment with 20 or 40 microg of Tsunami 200/ml, a peroxyacetic acid-based sanitizer, resulted in reductions of 4.83 and 5.34 log(10) CFU/worm, respectively, compared to numbers detected on or in worms treated with water. Among the organic acids evaluated at a concentration of 2%, acetic acid was the least effective in killing S. enterica serotype Poona and lactic acid was the most effective. Treatment with up to 500 microg of chlorine/ml, 1% hydrogen peroxide, 2,550 microg of Sanova/ml, 40 microg of Tsunami 200/ml, or 2% acetic, citric, or lactic acid had no effect on the viability or reproductive behavior of C. elegans. Treatments were also applied to cantaloupe rind and lettuce inoculated with S. enterica serotype Poona or C. elegans that had ingested S. enterica serotype Poona. Protection of ingested S. enterica serotype Poona against sanitizers applied to cantaloupe was not evident; however, ingestion afforded protection of the pathogen on lettuce. These results indicate that S. enterica serotype Poona ingested by C. elegans may be protected against treatment with chlorine and other sanitizers, although the basis for this protection remains unclear. (+info)
Plant eR genes that encode photorespiratory enzymes confer resistance against disease.
Downy mildew caused by the oomycete pathogen Pseudoperonospora cubensis is a devastating foliar disease of cucurbits worldwide. We previously demonstrated that the wild melon line PI 124111F (PI) is highly resistant to all pathotypes of P. cubensis. That resistance was controlled genetically by two partially dominant, complementary loci. Here, we show that unlike other plant disease resistance genes, which confer an ability to resist infection by pathogens expressing corresponding avirulence genes, the resistance of PI to P. cubensis is controlled by enhanced expression of the enzymatic resistance (eR) genes At1 and At2. These constitutively expressed genes encode the photorespiratory peroxisomal enzyme proteins glyoxylate aminotransferases. The low expression of At1 and At2 in susceptible melon lines is regulated mainly at the transcriptional level. This regulation is independent of infection with the pathogen. Transgenic melon plants overexpressing either of these eR genes displayed enhanced activity of glyoxylate aminotransferases and remarkable resistance against P. cubensis. The cloned eR genes provide a new resource for developing downy mildew-resistant melon varieties. (+info)