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The First Anthocyanins appearing during the Ripening of Blueberries

Naturevolume 191pages498499 (1961) | Download Citation



ALTHOUGH a great deal is known of the anthocyanins of berries and other fruit, this knowledge is still quite superficial and fragmentary1. How and in what order the anthocyanins develop in the maturing berries has only been clarified in one case : the first anthocyanin compound to appear in Californian ‘Cabernet’ grapes was found to be the malvidin-3,5-diglucoside ; with advanced ripening of the grapes, malvidin-3-glucoside and delphinidin-3,5-diglucoside develop at almost the same time, while petunidin-3,5-diglucoside is the last to be formed2. Free malvidin was not observed in the grape skins until one week after the berries had developed the purple-red colour of complete maturity. These observations are noteworthy because they show that anthocyanins and not anthocyanidins are the first to appear during maturation. Furthermore, the first anthocyanin formed, malvidin-3,5-diglucoside, has quite a complicated structure. This anthocyanin is considered to be the dominant pigment in these grapes.

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    Suomalainen, H., and Eriksson, Chr., Lebensmittel-Untersuch. u. Forsch., 112, 197 (1960).

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    Bockian, A. H., Kepner, R. E., and Webb, A. D., J. Agric. Food Chem., 3, 695 (1955).

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    Li, K. C., and Wagenknecht, A. C., J. Amer. Chem. Soc., 78, 979 (1956).

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    Chandler, B. V., and Harper, K. A., Nature, 181, 131 (1958).

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    Harborne, J. B., J. Chromatography, 1, 473 (1958).

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    Robinson, R., Nature, 137, 172 (1936).

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  1. Research Laboratories of the State Alcohol Monopoly (Alko), Helsinki

    •  & A. J. A. KERÄNEN


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