Folia Horticulturae

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Ethylene production as a biochemical marker for bean cold tolerance

R. Hołubowicz*, A.A. Khan**

**Department of Seed Science and Nursery, Seed Science Division
**Faculty of Horticulture, Poznań Agricultural University
**Baranowo, 62-081 PrzeĽmierowo, Poland
**Department of Horticultural Sciences
**New York State Agricultural Experiment Station
**Sturtevant Hall, Cornell University
**Geneva, NY 14456, USA

A study on ethylene production on cold tolerant runner bean cultivar ‘Kelvedon Marvel’, cold tolerance common bean line ‘NY 5-161’ and cold-susceptible common bean cultivar ‘Bush Blue Lake 47’ (BBL 47) was conducted with the main goal of using this criterion as a biochemical marker for cold tolerance. Runner shoot tips when exposed to chilling temperatures showed better vigour, measured by the higher ethylene production capacity, in comparison with common bean shoot tips. Three-day-old germinated seeds of BBL 47, when exposed for 1 hour at -6°C had a lower rate of ethylene production than the same seeds kept for 1 hour at 25°C. Bean leaf disks, when excised, showed mechanical damage leading to ethylene production. When these disks are chilled, a further increase in ethylene production occurrs. This increase is attributed to chilling injury. As the pattern of changes in ethylene production in runner and common beans are the same following mechanical injury, it can be suggested that both injuries may involve a similar mechanism. The runner bean was found to have a greater capacity to convert 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid (ACC) to ethylene in both chilled and unchilled disks. Results indicate that ethylene production of excised primary leaf disks might be a useful biochemical marker for cold tolerance screening in beans.

Hołubowicz R., Khan A.A., 1989. Ethylene production as a biochemical marker for bean cold tolerance. Folia Horticulturae I/1: 5-19.