Abstract: Volatiles from flowers at three blooming stages of nine citrus cultivars were analyzed by headspace-solid phase microextraction (HS-SPME)-GC-MS. Up to 110 volatiles were detected, with 42 tentatively identified from citrus flowers for the first time. Highest amounts of volatiles were present in fully opened flowers of most citrus, except for pomelos. All cultivars were characterized by a high percentage of either oxygenated monoterpenes or monoterpene hydrocarbons, and the presence of a high percentage of nitrogen containing compounds was also observed. Flower volatiles varied qualitatively and quantitatively among citrus types during blooming. Limonene was the most abundant flower volatile only in citrons; α-citral and β-citral ranked 2nd and 3rd only for Bergamot, and unopened flowers of Ponkan had a higher amount of linalool and β-pinene while much lower amount of γ-terpinene and p-cymene than Satsuma. Taking the average of all cultivars, linalool and limonene were the top two volatiles for all blooming stages; β-pinene ranked 3rd in unopened flowers, while indole ranked 3rd for half opened and fully opened flower volatiles. As flowers bloomed, methyl anthranilate increased while 2-hexenal and p-cymene decreased. In some cases, a volatile could be high in both unopened and fully opened flowers but low in half opened ones. Through multivariate analysis, the nine citrus cultivars were clustered into three groups, consistent with the three true citrus types. Furthermore, an influence of blooming stages on clustering was observed, especially with hybrids Satsuma and Huyou. Altogether, it was suggested that flower volatiles can be suitable markers for revealing the genetic relationships between citrus cultivars but the same blooming stage needs to be strictly controlled.
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Azam, M.; Song, M.; Fan, F.; Zhang, B.; Xu, Y.; Xu, C.; Chen, K. Comparative Analysis of Flower Volatiles from Nine Citrus at Three Blooming Stages. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14, 22346-22367.
Azam M, Song M, Fan F, Zhang B, Xu Y, Xu C, Chen K. Comparative Analysis of Flower Volatiles from Nine Citrus at Three Blooming Stages. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2013; 14(11):22346-22367.
Azam, Muhammad; Song, Min; Fan, Fangjuan; Zhang, Bo; Xu, Yaying; Xu, Changjie; Chen, Kunsong. 2013. "Comparative Analysis of Flower Volatiles from Nine Citrus at Three Blooming Stages." Int. J. Mol. Sci. 14, no. 11: 22346-22367.