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Application of Methyl-jasmonate in passion fruit (Passiflora edulis Sims F. flavicarpa Degener) for phenolic biofortification: characterization of biological activity and quality attribute.

Abstract

The main objective of this study is to investigate the effect of methyl-jasmonate (MeJa) on the maturation of passion fruit (Passiflora edulis Sims) with regards to volatile compounds in the pulp and as a biofortifier of phenolic compounds in passion fruit peel, seeds, and pulp. There is a scientific gap in our understanding of the use of MeJa in passion fruit. Due to its characteristic aroma and flavor, passion fruit is widely consumed around the world. Passion fruit is an economically important tropical fruit in Brazil, but information about the influences on passion fruit ripening and the mechanisms behind aroma formation and antioxidant properties is limited. MeJa is a volatile phytohormone that affects the ripening of both climacteric and non-climacteric fruits, and its mechanisms of action are believed to be associated with ethylene. From a sensory quality perspective, studies on fruits have shown that MeJa could modulate the formation of volatile compounds, which are responsible for aroma and flavor. Recently, methyl-jasmonate (MeJa) has been linked to an increase in the antioxidant capacity of fruits, particularly in the content of phenolic compounds, which have been well documented for their role in preventing or reducing oxidative damage. During metabolic processes, free radicals are continuously produced, and antioxidant defense mechanisms are activated to limit their intracellular levels and prevent damage caused by these radicals, including an increase in several biochemical and physiological parameters associated with inflammation. Chronic diseases have been associated with a continuous stimulus in gene expression pathways linked to the inflammatory response. Therefore, the current study is innovative as it proposes to use ex-vivo laboratory techniques (cellular models) to determine cell viability and anti-inflammatory activity of cells treated with an extract from ripe passion fruit biofortified by exposure to MeJa. Other specific objectives for evaluating passion fruit pulp include the impact on fruit sensory quality, as determined by the formation of volatile aroma compounds, the quantitative and qualitative determination of phenolic compounds, the ability to deactivate reactive oxygen species, and an in vivo study of toxicity using the Galleria mellonella model." (AU)

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