Effect of Maturity and Geographical Region on Anthocyanin Content of Sour Cherries (Prunus cerasus var. marasca)

Sandra Pedisić1*, Verica Dragović-Uzelac2, Branka Levaj2 and Dubravka Škevin2

Faculty of Food Technology and Biotechnology, Zadar Centre, P. Kasandrića 6, HR-23000 Zadar, Croatia

2Faculty of Food Technology and Biotechnology, University of Zagreb, Pierottijeva 6, HR-10000 Zagreb, Croatia

Article history:

Received June 15, 2009
Accepted December 2, 2009

Key words:

sour cherry, Marasca variety, anthocyanins, colour, ripening


The influence of different stages of maturity on the anthocyanin content and colour parameters in three sour cherry Marasca ecotypes grown in two Dalmatian geographical regions has been studied. Anthocyanins were determined by HPLC-UV/VIS PDA analysis and the colour of fruit flesh and skin was measured by tristimulus colourimeter (CIELAB system). The major anthocyanins in all ecotypes at all stages of maturity were cyanidin 3-glucosylrutinoside and cyanidin 3-rutinoside, whereas pelargonidin glycosides were determined in lower concentrations. During ripening, anthocyanins did not change uniformly, but in most ecotypes they were determined in higher concentrations at the last stage of maturity (3.18 to 19.75 g per kg of dry matter). The formation of dark red, almost black colour in ripe Marasca cherries decreased redness (a*), brightness (L*) and colour intensity (C*). The results of two-way ANOVA test indicated that the growing region significantly influenced the accumulation of individual anthocyanins and L* value during ripening, while ecotype and the interaction between the growing region and the ecotype significantly affected total anthocyanin content of sour cherry.


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