Storage of halved strawberry fruits affects aroma, phytochemical content and gene expression

R. Dhorajiwala, C. Roberts, S. Dimitrova, A. Baldwin, D. Davoli, R. Ludlow, S. Tu, S. Jones, N. Spadafora, C. Müller, H. Rogers
Strawberries are valued for their aroma and phytochemical content. However, they have a short shelf life and storage at low temperatures to prolong shelf life affects physiological and biochemical processes in the fruit. This impacts on their use in fresh cut ready-to-eat fruit salads. To assess changes in aroma and how these are related to phytochemical content and gene expression, Fragaria × ananassa 'Elsanta' strawberries were halved and stored at either 4 or 8°C for a period of 12 days. Phytochemical content was relatively unaffected whereas volatile organic compound profiles were distinct at different time points of storage. Gene expression changed significantly with storage over a 5-day period: a total of 1135 gene targets changed in expression (p<0.05; log2 fold change>1.5) with most changes between days 0 and 5 of storage. These included genes related to stress responses, and secondary metabolism. Real time PCR was used to verify expression profiles of two genes related to VOC classes represented in the aroma, showing changes in pattern of expression during storage.
Dhorajiwala, R., Roberts, C., Dimitrova, S., Baldwin, A., Davoli, D., Ludlow, R., Tu, S., Jones, S., Spadafora, N., Müller, C. and Rogers, H. (2021). Storage of halved strawberry fruits affects aroma, phytochemical content and gene expression. Acta Hortic. 1309, 887-896
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2021.1309.127
Fragaria × ananassa Duch., transcriptomics, phytochemicals, volatile organic compounds

Acta Horticulturae