Sugar metabolism under low light for butterhead lettuce and Arabidopsis.

MSc-thesis abstract (submitted 24 March 2014):
Fresh horticultural products are prone to degradation and reduction on quality due to minimal processing and other handling during postharvest stage. Sugar metabolism as a possible factor to extent postharvest life of the fresh horticultural products was investigated in this thesis work and butterhead lettuce (Lactuca sativa) was served as the main experimental object.
Besides butterhead lettuce, wild type Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana, ecotype Map-42) was also investigated.

Low-light storage was known to trigger sugar increase of fresh-cut lettuce (FCL). Possible processes which might contribute or affect the sugar metabolism such as photosynthesis, gluconeogenesis were tested. DCMU was proved to be an effective photosynthetic inhibitor within the system used and was able to significantly reduce the sugar increase under low-light storage. 3-MPA was used as a PEPCK inhibitor which is an enzyme involves in gluconeogenesis. However, 3-MPA did not greatly reduce the sugar-increase phenomenon under low-light storage.

Within the thesis work, effect of extra far-red light was also analyzed and it turned out that extra far-red light treatment was able to further enhance the sugar increase under low-light storage. The system of using Arabidopsis leaf discs showed similar behavior compared to FCL which indicated the possibility of using Arabidopsis as a model plant for future research on sugar metabolism under low-light storage.