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Fruit Development and Quality Manipulation


Fruit quality is one of the most important agronomic traits for fruit research, and is determined by primary and secondary metabolites, such as sugars, organic acids, pigments and aroma volatiles, etc., produced and accumulated during fruit growth, development and ripening processes. Elucidation of the underlying metabolic molecular mechanisms responsible for changes in fruit quality profiles is essential for providing scientific guidance for improving the technology of the modern fruit tree industry.

With the development of biology, agronomy and analytical chemistry techniques, modern molecular biology and biotechnology have been widely applied to study the mechanism of fruit quality changes and its manipulation during fruit development and ripening.
Integrating traditional plant physiology with modern molecular biology, genomics, metabolomics and biotechnology, this research now focuses on the mechanisms of metabolism changes responsible for improvements in fruit quality. Based on the knowledge of the influence of environmental factors such as light, temperature, water and mineral elements, the final aim is to develop ways to manipulate quality and establish a system to support sustainable development of the fruit industry.

These studies were supported by the National Basic Research Program of China (973 program), the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the Special Fund for Agro-scientific Research in the Public Interest, the National Key Technology Research and Development Program of the Ministry of Science and Technology of China, the Science and Technology Department of Zhejiang Province. A series of papers were published in the Biotechnology Advances, Journal of Experimental Botany, Planta, Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, Plant Physiology and Biochemistry, and Plant Growth Regulation. The work has won several awards at provincial/ ministerial level.
The main current research areas include:
(1) Fruit quality formation and manipulation;
(2) Growth and its regulation in fruit trees and fruits;
(3) Growth and its regulation in fruit trees under protected cultivation;
(4) Integration and application of systems for high quality and safe fruit production.