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Revista mexicana de ciencias agrícolas

versão impressa ISSN 2007-0934

Rev. Mex. Cienc. Agríc vol.7 no.1 Texcoco Jan./Fev. 2016



Effect of resveratrol in cherimoyas under a transport simulation

Aaran Aquilino Morales Pérez1 

Omar Franco-Mora2  § 

Álvaro Castañeda-Vildólzola2 

Edgar Jesús Morales-Rosales2 

1Programa doctoral en Ciencias Agropecuarias y Recursos Naturales. Universidad Autónoma del Estado de México, Campus Universitario “El Cerrillo” Piedras Blancas. C. P. 50000, Toluca, Estado de México.

2Laboratorio de Horticultura, Centro de Investigación y Estudios Avanzados en Fitomejoramiento, Facultad de Ciencias Agrícolas. Tel: (01) 7222965518, Ext. 148. (;;


Once harvested, the cherimoya fruit matures for consumption in 3 to 7 days; during this period, it softens and is damaged by the post-harvest handling and transport. Resveratrol (RVS) has been shown to reduce the ratio of softening for cherimoyas. In this paper, in order to minimize the damages due to post-harvest handling and transport, 0 or 1.6 mm of RVS was applied to cherimoya ‘Fino de Jete’ at 8 or 15 days before harvest (DBH). Post-harvest handling and transport was simulated and the fruits were stored at room temperature (RT) between 15 and 20 oC. After 15 days of storage, the fruits treated with 1.6 mm of RVS at 15 DBH showed less (p< 0.05) dehydration (7.4%); the kinetics of the fresh weight was not different when 0 or 1.6 mm of RVS were applied at 8 DBH. With a dose of 1.6 mm of RVS, there was a decrease (p< 0.05) in the loss of fruit firmness (7.5 and 5.7%) and in the loss of skin firmness (9 and 3%) for both dates of application with regard to the control.

Keywords: Annona cherimola Mill.; climacteric; mechanical damages; post-harvest handling; transport


Una vez cosechada, la chirimoya madura para consumo en 3 a 7 d, en ese periodo se ablanda y se daña con el manejo poscosecha y la transportación. El resveratrol (RVS) ha demostrado reducir la tasa de ablandamiento de chirimoya. En este trabajo, para minimizar los daños por manejo poscosecha y transportación, se aplicó 0 ó 1.6 mM de RVS en chirimoya ‘Fino de Jete’ a los 8 o 15 d antes de la cosecha (DAC). Se simuló manejo poscosecha y transportación y los frutos se almacenaron a temperatura ambiente (TA) entre 15 y 20 °C. Después de 15 d de almacenamiento, los frutos tratados con 1.6 mM RVS 15 DAC presentaron menor (p< 0.05) deshidratación (7.4%); la cinetica del peso fresco no fue diferente cuando se aplicó 0 o 1.6 mM RVS a 8 DAC. Con una dosis de 1.6 mM de RVS se redujo (p< 0.05) la pérdida de firmeza del fruto (7.5 y 5.7%) y cáscara (9 y 3%) en ambas fechas de aplicación en relación al control.

Palabras clave: Annona cherimola Mill.; climatérico; daños mecánicos; manejo poscosecha; transportación

Harvested cherimoya (Annona cherimola Mill.) takes 3 to 7 days to mature (González et al., 2010) and becomes soft and delicate for its post-harvest handling and transport. Mechanical damages are the result of unsuitable harvesting, handling, and transport techniques and generate severe quality defects (Martínez-Romero et al., 2007). Furthermore, these incidences occur in an age of severe intrinsic physiological and morphological changes of the fruit, i.e. increase in the ratio of respiration and in the production of ethylene, enzymatic reactions, sucrose synthesis, etc. (Chonhechob et al., 2009). The mechanical damages are mainly the product of abrasion between fruit and adjoining materials (rocks, stems, and insects), impact with other fruit (Ericsson and Tahir, 1996) and prolonged vibrations during transport (Armstrong et al., 1995). Particularly in this species, losses of up to 39.3% are reported due to the effects of mechanical damage during handling and transport (Cerdas et al., 2007); the damages can be either visible or not, but regardless reduce the postharvest life (Vergano et al., 1992) and create economic losses.

In previous works, it was found that RVS, which is a polyphenol that promotes the lignification of the celular wall (Van Buren, 1986) and favors the protection against biotic and abiotic agents (Anterola and Lewis, 2002), decreases the softening ratio of cherimoya ‘Fino de Jete’ and ‘Bronceada’, without affecting its quality with regard to the color of the skin and pulp, smell, taste, content of reducing sugars and ascorbic acid (Morales et al., 2014). With this precedent, the objective of this work was to confirm the beneficial effect of RVS in decreasing the softening ratio in cherimoya ‘Fino de Jete’ under simulated conditions of post-harvest handling and transport.

Cherimoyas ‘Fino de Jete’ for the 2011 harvesting cycle were harvested from 13 year old trees in the Centro de Investigación Científico y Tecnológico del Estado de México (CICTAMEX) Foundation Salvador Sánchez Colín, located in Coatepec Harinas, Mexico, at 18º 46’ 38” north latitude, 99º 46’ 38” west longitude, and at 2 224 m above sea level. The fruits of the mid and basal part of six trees were treated with RVS, applying the solution directly to the fruit using a brush (Morales et al., 2014). In this manner, each tree received 4 treatments; fruits were applied 0 or 1.6 mm of RVS at 8 or 15 days before harvest (DBH). Once the fruit was harvested, it was wrapped in kraft paper and transported to the horticulture laboratory at the Universidad Autónoma del Estado de México.

The transport simulating equipment was designed with a 0.48 x 0.40 m platform with a 30 kg load capacity. It was equipped with a 1/10 HP Daycon motor model 3M137B, suitable with oscillatory and shaking movement, with repetitive cycles of 27 movements per minute and vibrations of 0.8 hertz. The fruit was placed in bulk in a plastic box and was subjected to transport simulation for 2 hours. Afterwards on every third day, from 1 day after harvest (DAH) up to 15 DAH, the loss of weight and firmness of the fruit and of the skin of the cherimoyas were determined (Morales et al., 2014), alongside biophysical variables that could be seen affected by the mechanical damages of post-harvest handling and transport. In order to determine these variables, 10 fruits per day were utilized, one per repetition in each treatment. The data was analyzed using an entirely random design with four treatments. The data was subject to an analysis of variance and a comparison of measurements using the Tukey test (p< 0.05) with a software SPSS version 19.

The application of 1.6 mm of RVS at 15 DBH decreased (p< 0.05) the weight loss ratio at only 5, 13, and 15 days of storage (Table 1), when compared to 0 mm of RVS. Whereas the application of 1.6 mm of RVS at 8 DBH did not make a difference in relation to its control by date. This data is not consistent in order to propose RVS as a means to reduce the weight loss ratio in cherimoya, which coincides with what was reported in cherimoya ‘Fino de Jete’ and ‘Bronceada’ (Morales et al., 2014). A decreasing effect with regard to the transpiration and dehydration in fruit of this species was not observed.

Table 1. Weight loss in cherimoya cv. Fino de Jete with the application of RVS at 8 and 15 DBH subject to transport simulation and stored at room temperature. 

Días antes de cosecha Resveratrol mM Pérdida de peso (%) en poscosecha (Días después de cosecha)
3 5 7 9 11 13 15
8 0 95.2 a 92.7 b 90.5 a 87.5 b 85.3 a 83.0 ab 80.5 ab
0.16 96.4 a 93.9 ab 92.2 a 90.0 ab 88.4 a 87.3 a 85.7 a
15 0 95.4 a 93.0 b 90.6 a 88.0 ab 85.8 a 82.0 b 78.0 b
0.16 96.8 a 95.8 a 92.9 a 91.0 a 89.0 a 87.4 a 85.8 a

At harvest, the fruit treated 8 DBH was less firm than that treated 15 DBH, independent of the RVS dose. This could suggest that with a longer exposure to RVS, the firmness of the fruit at harvest is greater. Subsequently, the fruit treated with 1.6 mm of RVS was firmer than its respective control for each date of application (Table 2), this being consistent starting from 7 and 5 DAH, for application at 8 DBH and 15 DBH, respectively. At the end of the storage period, 1.6 mm of RVS prevented softening due to damage by the handling and transport simulation in 7.5 and 5.7% for 15 and 8 DBH, respectively. Softening was reduced up to 78 and 54% at the end of 15 days of storage for cherimoya ‘Fino de Jete’ and ‘Bronceada’ without transport simulation when 1.6 mm was applied 15 DBH (Morales et al., 2014). In this work, the magnitude of reduction on the softening of the fruit with 1.6 mm of RVS was not observed; this lesser percentage of reduction in the ratio of softening was probably the effect of the transport simulation. It is known that handling and transport create losses of close to 40% of the production (Cerdas et al., 2007). The current results confirm what was reported by Jiménez et al. (2005), by observing that the application of RVS maintained the firmness of avocado (Persea americana Mill.), apple (Malus comunis L.), and pepper (Capsicum annuum), although the reason given by this author, i.e. less dehydration, was not observed in cherimoya ‘Fino de Jete’.

Table 2. Fruit firmness in cherimoya cv. Fino de Jete with the application of RVS at 8 and 15 DBH subject to transport simulation and storage at room temperature. 

Días antes de cosecha Resveratrol mM Firmeza de fruto (N) en poscosecha (días después de cosecha)
1 3 5 7 9 11 13 15
8 0 528.0 b 510.6 b 412.7 c 224.8 c 98.2 c 65.0 b 42.8 b 18.4 b
0.16 523.9 b 510.3 b 420.3 bc 237.8 b 114.6 b 86.3 a 67.1 a 48.2 a
15 0 540.8 a 519.9 ab 428.2 b 242.2 b 116.9 b 62.7 b 33.1 b 11.9 c
0.16 541.1 a 523.3 a 435.1 a 283.5 a 180.7 a 86.4 a 65.6 a 53.0 a

The firmness of the skin when the fruit was treated with 1.6 mm of RVS 15 DBH was greater (p< 0.05) in relation to the control in a constant manner from 7 DAH until the end of the storage. At 15 DAH, the skin was firmer in 9% with relation to the control. On the other hand, with 1.6 mm of RVS 8 DBH, the effects were similar only at 15 DAH; the skin was firmer in 3.1% (Table 3). The vibrations during the transport of the fruit are considered a type of stress (Chonhenchob et al., 2009). 1.6 mm of RVS 15 DBH maintained the cellular integrity possibly lignifying the wall of the fruit (Van Buren, 1986); thus, preventing the skin of the fruit to soften, favoring the resistance of the fruit in spite of the transport simulation and during storage at room temperature.

Table 3. Skin firmness in cherimoya cv. Fino de Jete with the application of RVS at 8 and 15 DBH subject to transport simulation and stored at room temperature. 

Días antes de cosecha Resveratrol mM Firmeza de cáscara (N) en poscosecha (días después de cosecha)
1 3 5 7 9 11 13 15
8 0 166.7 b 157.7 a 142.3 b 110.5 b 75.0 b 43.9 b 24.8 b 6.7 c
0.16 170.9 a 162.6 a 147.3 a 111.7 b 77.3 b 45.2 b 27.6 b 10.3 b
15 0 168.6 ab 162.0 a 147.1 a 108.1 b 73.6 b 43.6 b 25.9 b 6.1 c
0.16 170.7 ab 163.8 a 149.7 a 118.4 a 87.2 a 58.9 a 44.2 a 12.3 a


In conclusion, with 1.6 mm of RVS 15 DBH the cherimoya ‘Fino de Jete’ stored at room temperature and subject to transport simulation had its dehydration ratio slightly reduced, and mainly there was a decrease in the softening ratio of the fruit and of the skin. This work confirms the idea that resveratrol can help to increase the post-harvest life of cherimoya (Morales et al., 2014), in this case even under simulated conditions of handling and transport vibration.

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Received: October 2015; Accepted: January 2016

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