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Abstract

B. cinerea and C. atramentarium rotted wound-inoculated green tomato fruits and wounded or intact ripe fruits while G. cingulata developed rots only in ripe fruits. Pectic en-zymes were extracted from the fruit tissue rotted by B. cinerea and C. atramentarium but no pectic enzymes attributable to the fungus were detected in ripe fruits rotted by G. cingulata. G. cingulata produced endo-PG and endo-PL in vitro, C. atramentarium produced endo-PL in vitro and in vivo and B. cinerea produced exo-PG in vitro and in green fruits but endo-PG and endo-PL in ripe fruits. Well ripened tomato fruits contained high levels of endogenous PG. All three fungi produced proteolytic enzymes in vitro and in vivo. Proteases produced by G. cingulata and C. atramentarium had optimum activity at pH 9 to 10 and were not trypsin-like or chymotrypsin-like in nature. Protease produced by B. cinerea had optimum activity at pH 7 and showed both trypsin and chymotrypsin-like activity.

Proteins extracted from the cell walls of tomato fruits inhibited both the endo-PG and endo-PL produced by G. cingulata and the endo-PL produced by B. cinerea but did not in-hibit the activity of PGs produced by B. cinerea, the endo-PL produced by C. atramentarium or the endogenous PG from tomato fruits.

The cell wall proteins also contained trypsin and chymotrypsin inhibitor activity which inhibited 70 % of the activity of the protease produced by B. cinerea, but had little effect on the proteases produced by G. cingulata, C. atramentarium or the tomato endogenous protease.

Enzymes produced in vitro by G. cingulata macerated green tomato tissue more slowly than enzymes produced in vitro by C. atramentarium and B. cinerea and the rate of mation was further reduced in the presence of added cell wall proteins. Excess inhibitor of the little effect on the rate of maceration by the enzymes produced by C. atramentarium of the cinerea.