2003 Volume 67 Issue 6 Pages 1267-1271
The methyl esters of carboxylic acids are characteristic olfactory volatile compounds for the sweet aroma of snake fruit, (Salacca edulis, Reinw) cv. Pondoh. Although methanol was not detected as a volatile constituent, the crude enzymes showed activity to synthesize the methyl esters in the presence of acyl-CoA and methanol. Therefore, the biosynthetic origin of methanol was investigated, resulting in the detection of pectin methyl transferase activity in the flesh. This pectin methyl transferase activity increased during fruit maturation, in parallel with the level of methanol originating from hand-squeezed juice and with the methyl esters extracted from flesh of the fruit. Based on these results, the origin of methanol was confirmed to be the methyl esters of pectins. The crude enzyme also catalyzed the formation of methyl hexanoate, one of the esters of the fruit, in the presence of methyl pectins and hexanoyl-CoA that were used as precursors for a model reaction.
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