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High external sucrose concentration inhibits the expansion of detached tomato fruits grown in a novel semi-open device

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The effect of sap sucrose concentration on fruit expansion is poorly understood. We investigated the effects of sucrose concentration on growth of tomato fruits, detached from the plant after the cell multiplication phase. A semi-open device was built to grow detached fruits, where the fruit pedicel was immersed in a nutrient solution which was automatically replaced each day. About 22 d after anthesis, tomato fruits were harvested, disinfected in alcohol, and placed in the device with a sterile nutrient solution containing 5% sucrose. After about 1 wk, the sucrose concentration was either increased to 15% or maintained at 5%. The fruit expansion rate decreased when the sucrose concentration was increased, and after about 1 wk, these fruits weighed less than those grown at 5% sucrose. Although all the fruits in the device grew much less than those maintained on the plant, a high sap sucrose concentration applied to the excised fruits after the cell multiplication phase inhibited the expansion of tomato fruits. The device and method developed here will be useful for future studies of fruit growth.

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The authors thank D Grassely and M Tisiot (Centre Technique Interprofessionnel des Fruits et Légumes, Balandran, France) who provided the fruits for this experiment. This work was supported by grants (Innovating Project) of the Environment and Agronomy Department of INRA, Paris, France.

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Correspondence to Philippe Bussières.

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Editor: J. Finer

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Bussières, P., Bertin, N., Morris, C.E. et al. High external sucrose concentration inhibits the expansion of detached tomato fruits grown in a novel semi-open device. In Vitro Cell.Dev.Biol.-Plant 47, 743–751 (2011).

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  • Fruit growth
  • In vitro culture
  • Sterile medium
  • Sucrose
  • Tomato fruit