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Molecules 2016, 21(9), 1106;

Elucidation of Differential Accumulation of 1-Phenylethanol in Flowers and Leaves of Tea (Camellia sinensis) Plants

Guangdong Food and Drug Vocational College, Longdongbei Road 321, Tianhe District, Guangzhou 510520, China
Key Laboratory of South China Agricultural Plant Molecular Analysis and Genetic Improvement & Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Applied Botany, South China Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xingke Road 723, Tianhe District, Guangzhou 510650, China
Graduate School of Science and Technology, Shizuoka University, 3-5-1 Johoku, Naka-ku, Hamamatsu 432-8561, Japan
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Luca Forti
Received: 1 August 2016 / Revised: 16 August 2016 / Accepted: 19 August 2016 / Published: 23 August 2016
(This article belongs to the Collection Recent Advances in Flavors and Fragrances)
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1-Phenylethanol (1PE) is a major aromatic volatile in tea (Camellia sinensis) flowers, whereas it occurs in a much smaller amounts in leaves. Enzymes involved in the formation of 1PE in plants and the reason why 1PE differentially accumulates in plants is unknown. In the present study, enzymes in the last step leading from acetophenone to 1PE were isolated from tea flowers by traditional biochemical chromatography. The two types of partially purified enzymes were proposed to be responsible for formations of (R)-1PE and (S)-1PE, respectively. Tea leaves also contained such enzymes having equivalent activities with flowers. Stable isotope labeling experiments indicated that weak transformation from l-phenylalanine to acetophenone in leaves mainly resulted in little occurrence of 1PE in leaves. This study provided an example that differential distribution of some metabolites in plant tissues was not only determined by enzyme(s) in the last step of metabolite formation, but also can be due to substrate availability. View Full-Text
Keywords: aroma; biosynthesis; Camellia sinensis; 1-phenylethanol; tea; volatile aroma; biosynthesis; Camellia sinensis; 1-phenylethanol; tea; volatile

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Dong, F.; Zhou, Y.; Zeng, L.; Peng, Q.; Chen, Y.; Zhang, L.; Su, X.; Watanabe, N.; Yang, Z. Elucidation of Differential Accumulation of 1-Phenylethanol in Flowers and Leaves of Tea (Camellia sinensis) Plants. Molecules 2016, 21, 1106.

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