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A study of ethylene and carbon di oxide evolution from ethephon in tobacco

, : A study of ethylene and carbon di oxide evolution from ethephon in tobacco. Pesticide Biochemistry and Physiology 9(1): 1-8

Buffers and leaf discs of mature tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L.) were utilized to study [14C]ethylene and 14CO2 evolution from radiolabeled ethephon, (2-chloroethyl)phosphonic acid. Metabolic fate of [14C]ethephon in leaf discs was investigated by use of TLC, high-voltage paper electrophoresis, autoradiography and liquid scintillation spectroscopy. The evolution of labeled ethylene generally increased with increasing buffer pH, buffer volume and dosage of [14C]ethephon. [14C]Ethylene was evolved, increasingly with time, from [14C]ethephon either added to the buffer or applied to leaf discs. The rate of [14C]ethylene evolution was maximum during the 1st day and leveled off on the 4th day. More than 50% of the total [14C]ethylene evolution over a 96 h period was recovered during the first 24 h after [14C]ethephon application. No 14CO2 was evolved when [14C]ethephon was degraded in the presence of buffer or leaf discs. Only ethephon itself, and no detectable metabolite thereof, was discovered in the methanolic extract of the leaf disc tissue. An insignificant amount of 14C activity (approximately 2% of the extracted 14C) was detected in the residue. By means of gas chromatography, it was confirmed that in buffers and tobacco leaf tissue ethephon breaks down to release ethylene but not CO2.

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