Author: Y. Hafez 1
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  • 1 Hungarian Academy of Sciences Plant Protection Institute H-1525 Budapest P.O. Box 102 Hungary
  • 2 Kafrelsheikh University Department of Agricultural Botany (Plant Pathology Branch), Faculty of Agriculture Kafr-El-Sheikh Egypt
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Pepper fruits were sprayed with benzothiadiazole (BTH) and hydrogen peroxide (H 2 O 2 ) three times after harvest. Three days after the third spray, pepper fruits were inoculated with Botrytis cinerea (10 5 conidia/ml under 20 °C, 99% relative humidity). Under postharvest conditions (without artificial inoculation) BTH at 0.9 mM and H 2 O 2 at 20 or 50 mM reduced the weight loss, natural rot rate and nitrate content, however, ascorbic acid content and the shelf-life of fruits were increased significantly.When pepper fruits were inoculated with the fungus and treated with BTH (0.9 mM) and H 2 O 2 (50 mM) treatments, disease severity was reduced to 29.6 and 34%, respectively, as compared with the control (77.3%). Diameter of necrotic lesions were 1.2 and 1.38 mm, respectively, as compared with the control (2.8 mm).BTH (0.9 mM) and H 2 O 2 (50 mM) increased the level of endogenous H 2 O 2 and total phenolic contents 3–6 days after inoculation (dai) which are considered to play a pivotal role in plant disease resistance. Activities of the antioxidant enzymes dehydroascorbate reductase (DHAR), ascorbate peroxidase (APX), catalase (CAT) and peroxidase (POX) decreased at 3 and 6 dai then increased between 9–15 dai. The effectiveness of BTH treatment was always higher than that of 50 mM H 2 O 2 (high concentration).Low concentration of H 2 O 2 (20 mM) enhanced the antioxidant activities in infected fruits, however, the level of H 2 O 2 and total phenolic compound contents were not altered significantly, thus, the fungus was not inhibited.The results showed that BTH (0.9 mM) and H 2 O 2 (50 mM) treatments enhanced disease resistance against the fungus early after inoculation by elevating the level of endogenous H 2 O 2 and phenolic contents. Low concentration of H 2 O 2 (20 mM) was able to increase activity of antioxidants which may contribute to symptom’s resistance but did not inhibit the pathogen importantly. It would seem that BTH and H 2 O 2 could be suitable to control postharvest diseases.

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