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Contribution of genomics to postharvest biology

Abstract : Purpose of review: This review aims at presenting the actual and potential contribution of genomics to the understanding of the fruit ripening process and to the genetic improvement of fruit quality and storability. Findings: The advent of high throughput technologies for the sequencing of mRNAs and genomic DNA has sped up the study of gene expression and the decoding of the genome of fruit species. Genomic resources are now available that facilitate the definition of molecular markers for marker-assisted breeding, the functional identification of genes involved in fruit quality traits, the understanding of the network of events underlying the fruit ripening process and of the impact of external factors such as postharvest treatments. Directions for future research: Up to now, the development of genomic tools for studying the fruit ripening process have been carried out mostly using tomato as a model fruit. There is a need for applying genomic methods to the understanding of fruit ripening in other species, particularly non-climacteric fruit. Efforts should also be directed towards the elucidation of the function of the genes in planta and of the regulation of their expression. So far, among the several hundreds of genes whose expression is altered during ripening, very few have well characterized functions. The number of genes for which a picture of the regulatory events is available is extremely limited.
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Jean-Claude Pech, Alain Latché. Contribution of genomics to postharvest biology. Stewart Postharvest Review, 2013, vol. 9, pp. 1-13. ⟨10.2212/spr.2013.4.2⟩. ⟨hal-00992704⟩

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