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Plant Mol Biol. 2003 Apr;51(6):851-7.

Pectate lyase gene expression and enzyme activity in ripening banana fruit.

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  • 1Horticulture Research International, Plant Genetics and Biotechnology Department, Wellesbourne, Warwickshire, CV35 9EF, UK.


Two distinct cDNA clones showing sequence homology to higher-plant pectate lyase (Pel) genes were isolated from ripening banana fruits. The transcripts were detected only in fruit tissue and both were strongly ripening-related. Yeast transformation with the most highly expressed Pel clone produced a recombinant protein with pectate lyase activity, demonstrating that this sequence was likely to encode a pectate lyase protein in planta. An assay developed for measuring the action of the endogenous enzyme from banana pulp tissue revealed a significant increase in calcium-dependent pectate lyase activity during ripening. The enhanced levels of enzyme activity corresponded with an increase in soluble polyuronides from banana pulp.

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