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Postharvest Pathology and Mycotoxins

The Effect of Ethylene on Susceptibility of Robinson Tangerines to Anthracnose. G. Eldon Brown, Plant Pathologist III, Florida Department of Citrus, University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Agricultural Research and Education Center, P. O. Box 1088, Lake Alfred, FL 33850; Charles R. Barmore, Assistant Professor, University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Agricultural Research and Education Center, P. O. Box 1088, Lake Alfred, FL 33850. Phytopathology 67:120-123. Accepted for publication 25 August 1976. Copyright 1977 The American Phytopathological Society, 3340 Pilot Knob Road, St. Paul, MN 55121. All rights reserved.. DOI: 10.1094/Phyto-67-120.

The effect of ethylene on the development of anthracnose in mature, green-colored Robinson tangerines was twofold. Disease occurred when inoculated fruit were treated immediately with ethylene, but the incidence was reduced when fruit were exposed to ethylene for 3 days prior to inoculation. Ethylene stimulated disease, apparently by inducing the pathogen to develop infection hyphae that penetrated the peel tissue. Ethylene also induced resistance in green fruits, but this resistance did not develop rapidly enough to inhibit infection except when the ethylene treatment preceded inoculation. Tangerines with good natural orange color were resistant to anthracnose, but this was partially overcome by exposing fruit to 100 μliters ethylene per liter of air but not by exposure to 10 μliters.

Additional keywords: lignin, postharvest decay, Colletotrichum gloeosporioides.