Potato tuber pectin structure is influenced by pectin methyl esterase activity and impacts on cooked potato texture

Heather A Ross, Kathryn M Wright, Gordon J McDougall, Alison G Roberts, Sean N Chapman, Wayne L Morris, Robert D Hancock, Derek Stewart, Gregory A Tucker, Euan K James, Mark A Taylor

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    24 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Although cooked potato tuber texture is an important trait that influences consumer preference, a detailed understanding of tuber textural properties at the molecular level is lacking. Previous work has identified tuber pectin methyl esterase activity (PME) as a potential factor impacting on textural properties. In this study, tuber PME isoform and gene expression profiles have been determined in potato germplasm with differing textural properties as assessed using an amended wedge fracture method and a sloughing assay, revealing major differences between the potato types. Differences in pectin structure between potato types with different textural properties were revealed using monoclonal antibodies specific for different pectic epitopes. Chemical analysis of tuber pectin clearly demonstrated that, in tubers containing a higher level of total PME activity, there was a reduced degree of methylation of cell wall pectin and consistently higher peak force and work done values during the fracture of cooked tuber samples, demonstrating the link between PME activity, the degree of methylation of cell wall pectin, and cooked tuber textural properties.
    © 2010 The Author(s).
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)371-381
    Number of pages11
    JournalJournal of experimental botany
    Volume62
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2011

    Keywords

    • cell wall
    • pectin
    • pectin methyl esterase
    • potato
    • texture
    • tuber

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