Molecular Regulation of Fruit Ripening

Osorio, Sonia; Scossa, Federico; Fernie, Alisdair R.
May 2013
Frontiers in Plant Science;May2013, Vol. 4, p1
Academic Journal
Fruit ripening is a highly coordinated developmental process that coincides with seed maturation. The ripening process is regulated by thousands of genes that control progressive softening and/or lignification of pericarp layers, accumulation of sugars, acids, pigments, and release of volatiles. Key to crop improvement is a deeper understanding of the processes underlying fruit ripening. In tomato, mutations blocking the transition to ripe fruits have provided insights into the role of ethylene and its associated molecular networks involved in the control of ripening. However, the role of other plant hormones is still poorly understood. In this review, we describe how plant hormones, transcription factors and epigenetic changes are intimately related to provide a tight control of the ripening process. Recent findings from comparative genomics and system biology approaches are discussed.


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