Fruit Ripening

Significant molecular, genetic, biochemical, cellular, physical and visual transitions occur during fruit ripening. Among several processes:

  • degradation of cell wall components (to make fruits softer)

  • degradation of starch (to make fruits sweeter)

  • degradation of toxic compounds (to make fruits edible)

  • Chloroplast to Chromoplast transition (from green to colorful fruits)

  • Proteome remodeling

Ripening of climacteric fruits (such as tomato, apple, and banana) is induced by the gaseous hormone, Ethylene, whose biosynthesis and signaling perception are largely regulated by the UPS. Recently, it was shown that chromoplast biogenesis is also regulated by a UPS-related mechanism (CHLORAD). Furthermore, there is data suggesting the involvement of autophagy in fruit ripening.