Metabolomic and elemental profiling of melon fruit quality as affected by genotype and environment
Research output: Contribution to journal › Journal article › Research › peer-review
Melon (Cucumis melo L.) is a global crop in terms of economic importance and nutritional quality. The aim of this study was to explore the variability in metabolite and elemental composition of several commercial varieties of melon in various environmental conditions. Volatile and non-volatile metabolites as well as mineral elements were profiled in the flesh of mature fruit, employing a range of complementary analytical technologies. More than 1,000 metabolite signatures and 19 mineral elements were determined. Data analyses revealed variations related to factors such as variety, growing season, contrasting agricultural management practices (greenhouse vs. field with or without fruit thinning) and planting date. Two hundred and ninety-one analytes discriminated two contrasting varieties, one from the var. inodorous group and the other from the var. cantaloupensis group. Two hundred and eighty analytes discriminated a short shelf-life from a mid-shelf-life variety within the var. cantaloupensis group. Three hundred and twenty-seven analytes discriminated two seasons, and two hundred and fifty-two analytes discriminated two contrasting agricultural management practices. The affected compound families greatly depended on the factor studied. The compositional variability of identified or partially identified compounds was used to study metabolite and mineral element co-regulation using correlation networks. The results confirm that metabolome and mineral element profiling are useful diagnostic tools to characterize the quality of fruits cultivated under commercial conditions. They can also provide knowledge on fruit metabolism and the mechanisms of plant response to environmental modifications, thereby paving the way for metabolomics-guided improvement of cultural practices for better fruit quality.
|Number of pages||21|
|Publication status||Published - 2013|