Control of enzymatic browning in potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) by sense and antisense RNA from tomato polyphenol oxidase

J Agric Food Chem. 2001 Feb;49(2):652-7. doi: 10.1021/jf001217f.


Polyphenol oxidase (PPO) activity of Russet Burbank potato was inhibited by sense and antisense PPO RNAs expressed from a tomato PPO cDNA under the control of the 35S promoter from the cauliflower mosaic virus. Transgenic Russet Burbank potato plants from 37 different lines were grown in the field. PPO activity and the level of enzymatic browning were measured in the tubers harvested from the field. Of the tubers from 28 transgenic lines that were sampled, tubers from 5 lines exhibited reduced browning. The level of PPO activity correlated with the reduction in enzymatic browning in these lines. These results indicate that expression of tomato PPO RNA in sense or antisense orientation inhibits PPO activity and enzymatic browning in the major commercial potato cultivar. Expression of tomato PPO RNA in sense orientation led to the greatest decrease in PPO activity and enzymatic browning, possibly due to cosuppression. These results suggest that expression of closely related heterologous genes can be used to prevent enzymatic browning in a wide variety of food crops without the application of various food additives.

MeSH terms

  • Biotechnology / methods
  • Catechol Oxidase / genetics*
  • Catechol Oxidase / metabolism
  • Food Handling / methods*
  • Food Technology / methods
  • Lycopersicon esculentum / enzymology*
  • Lycopersicon esculentum / genetics*
  • Maillard Reaction
  • Plants, Genetically Modified*
  • RNA, Antisense / genetics*
  • RNA, Plant / genetics*
  • Solanum tuberosum*


  • RNA, Antisense
  • RNA, Plant
  • Catechol Oxidase