Abstract: Chilling-related postharvest rind breakdown of navel oranges is a significant economic problem worldwide. Chilling injury (CI) symptoms on navel orange fruit vary, and descriptive classification is generally ad hoc, making inter-study comparisons difficult. In this study, external symptoms of CI were related to patterns of cellular collapse in affected flavedo tissue, and a classification system developed to aid consistent symptom identification and improve communication within the supply chain. Potential markers of senescence were evaluated because older fruit were found to be more susceptible to CI. Electrolyte leakage, moisture content and protein content of flavedo tissue were ineffective indicators of both senescence and chilling stress. Rind colour and internal maturity were generally good indicators of fruit age, but lacked sensitivity over short time periods to be of use. Although there was a strong seasonal effect on CI incidence, pre-storage treatments, including hot water and methyl jasmonate, generally reduced the incidence of CI.Because these treatments elicit defence responses that protect tissue from chilling stress, the response and efficiency of plant defence systems is probably an important factor in chilling tolerance. The concentration of lipid hydroperoxides (LOOH) in flavedo tissue was lower in fruit that were stored at a chilling temperature (1deg C) compared to fruit that were stored at a non-chilling temperature (12deg C) and lipid peroxidation did not increase during storage at 1deg C. There was also a lower concentration of LOOH in the chilling sensitive variety than in the chilling tolerant variety. Therefore, increased lipid peroxidation is not related to chilling stress and subsequent injury but the results do suggest a role for LOOH in stress signalling. Antioxidant activity in the lipophilic fraction of flavedo tissue extracts increased as fruit senesced and was strongly correlated with carotenoid content. LOOH concentrations in flavedo tissue also increased as fruit senesced. The antioxidant activity of both the lipophilic and hydrophilic fractions of flavedo tissue extracts was higher in fruit stored at 12deg C than in fruit stored at 1deg C.
Thesis (Ph.D.) - La Trobe University, 2007.
Originally part of the Australasian Digital Theses (ADT) database.
Submission note: A thesis submitted in total fulfilment for the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy [to the School of Life Sciences], Faculty of Science, Technology and Engineering, La Trobe University, Bundoora.
This thesis contained third party copyright material which has been removed. The thesis author retains all proprietary rights (such as copyright and patent rights) over all other content of this thesis, and has granted La Trobe University permission to reproduce and communicate this version of the thesis.