The role of russetting during moisture loss in 'Conference' pears

Russetting is a skin-feature present mainly in 'Conference' pears. It basically is a layer of cork cells that form in reaction to micro-cracks in the skin during rapid elongation of the pear fruit. While cork, in theory, is less permeable to water than a cuticle layer on the skin, we recently observed positive relations between russetting and moisture loss.

The student's task will be to test the hypothesis that russeted pear skin is more permeable than unrusseted skin. To this end the student will have access to:

  • datasets with information on pears including their moisture loss after storage
  • pears from different origins with different levels of russetting.

Used skills

The work will be carried out at both HPP and WFBR.
Skills that the student will employ are: Fruit Physiology, Creative experiment design, Multivariate analysis, Academic writing and Microscopy (optional).


Interested in doing a BSc or MSc thesis at HPP? Please contact the HPP student coordinator Katharina Hanika.