Evidence suggests that a diet high in fruits and vegetables may reduce the risk of chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease and cancer, and phytochemicals including phenolics, flavonoids and carotenoids from fruits and vegetables may play a key role in reducing chronic disease risk. Recent research has proven that sour cherry (Prunus ce...rasus L.) is a valuable natural source of some bioactive compounds important in human health preservation.
In our work, we identified the total antioxidant capacity and ”antioxidant density” of sour cherry varieties named ”Újfehértói fürtös”, ”Debreceni bõtermõ”, ”Kántorjánosi” and ”Érdi bõtermõ” and those of the ”Bosnyák” sour cherry clones. ”Antioxidant density” is a biological value indicator obtained in a synthetic way, which indicates the antioxidant capacity of the particular food, e. g. fruit and vegetable, per 1 Calorie.
The antioxidant capacity of ’Debreceni bőtermő’, ’Újfehértói fürtös’ and ’Érdi bőtermő’ cultivars were determined by FRAP (Ferric Reducing Ability of Plasma), DPPH (1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl radical-scavenging activity) and photochemiluminescence method. In sour cherry, the most antioxidant effects of natural bioactive... compounds are anthocyanins. Our results show that the photochemiluminescence method out of applied assays is ratheris suitable to determine the antioxidant capacity of red soft fruits and tart cherries. The correlation is good between the determined anthocyanin concent by this technic and pH-differential spectrophotometry. However, both FRAP and DPPH assays are inaccurate.
The anthocyanin composition of ’Debreceni bőtermő’, ’Újfehértói fürtös’ and ’Érdi bőtermő’ ’Csengődi csokros’ sour cherry varieties were analised. There are big differences between the accumulation of anthocyanan compounds of cultivars. ’Csengődi csokros’ produce melatonin in large quantity. On the evidence of the results, we can say that the hungarian sour cherry cultivars are suitable for functional food development.
Although a high portion of domestic orchards is cultivated extensively, quality Hungarian sour cherry is a highly demanded product throughout Europe. Trees are slightly pruned, or not pruned at all. Thanks to the unique character of the species, older wood parts are pilling up. Thus, the interior of the canopy is inactive, fruits and shoots con...fine the exterior layer of the canopy.
We established pruning treatments in the sour cherry plantation in the Horticultural Exhibition Garden of the University of Debrecen, involving two age groups in two spacings. The trees are standing on seedling rootstock. The involved varieties were: Érdi bőtermő, Debreceni bőtermő and Kántorjánosi. We examined how to encourage shoot formation and the regeneration of older, pilling wood of the interior canopy parts.
Applying strong rejuvenating cuts, the most shoots were generated on the 3rd and 4th year laterals. Wood parts older than the 3rd year shall be removed by leaving short (2-3cm) stubs. This way, older, passive woodparts can also be made to burst out. From the examined varieties the Kántorjánosi showed the most favourable regenerative ability. Due to summer pruning, more shoots regenerated on the axis of the trees, than on those rejuvenated in the dormant season.
Agriculture has always been an important role in economy, food supplies, sustainability of society During our experimental work an effective extraction procedure has been developed for melatonin. Further chromatography was developed the quantitative and qualitative determination of melatonin. A compound that was equal to the standard was purifi...ed from the extract by preparative HPLC technique and the structure of the purified sample was confirmed by MALDI-TOF-MS and NMR analysis. Based on our measurements, harvested in the state of biological maturity Hungarian sour cherry cultivars contain high levels of melatonin.
Our results show that "VN4" variety has extremely high melatonin content, 9.893 ug g-1 and suggest that "VN4" which were selected from the "Bosnyák" varieties is melatonin accumulating. The average value of the melatonin content of Hungarian sour cherry cultivars is 2.319 ug g-1.
Plant diseases caused by phytoplasmas have increasing importance in all over the world for fruit growers. Lately, phytoplasma diseases occur on many fruit varieties and responsible for serious losses both in quality and quantity of fruit production. In the long-run these diseases cause destruction of fruit trees. The apricot phytoplasma disease... (Ca. Phytoplasma prunorum) was first reported in Europe in 1924 from France. In 1992 the disease has also been identified in Hungary. On the base of growers' signals serious damages of "Candidatus Phytoplasma prunorum" Seemüller and Schneider, 2004 (formerly: European stone fruit yellows phytoplasma) could be observed in different stone fruit plantations in the famous apricot-growing area nearby Gönc town, Northern-Hungary. Field examinations have been begun in 2009 in several stone fruit plantations in Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén County mainly in Gönc region which is one of the most important apricot growing regions in Hungary, named “Gönc Apricot Growing Area”. Our goals were to diagnose the occurrence of Ca. Phytoplasma prunorum on stone fruits (especially on apricot) in the North-Hungarian growing areas by visual diagnostics and confirm data by laboratory PCR-based examinations. All the 28 collected samples were tested in laboratory trials and at 13 samples from apricot, peach, sour cherry and wild plum were confirmed the presence of phytoplasma (ESFY). On the base of observations it seems evident that the notable losses caused by "Ca. Phytoplasma prunorum" is a new plant health problem to manage for fruit growers, especially apricot producers in Hungary.
Today’s programmes aiming at enhancement of fruit and vegetable consumption have been intensified. In the unanimous view of experts, different health problems, such as those of the immune system, inflammations, and even certain cancerous diseases can be prevented and/or cured with regular consumption of fresh (raw) fruit and vegetables. It is... well-known fact that among the biologically valuable components, antioxidant compounds – C- and E vitamins, as well as carotinoides – play an important role. In this field, Hungary can expect success in the future since it has excellent plant genetic stock. Regretfully, national data banks regarding cultivation technology, cultivation areas or varieties for fruits and vegetables and their antioxidant contents do not exist in Hungary. Nevertheless, in connection with the so-called “Hungaricums” its existence would be of urgent necessity. Such excellent Hungarian products are – among others – a lot of sour cherry varietiles, the Szeged green pepper and the Makó onion. They enjoy high priority as “Hungaricums” even in the European Union and such activities that support these kinds of products should be enhanced by intense and consequent research work, which may prove their role as functional foods. Presently’ the USA leads in the research of antioxidant compounds of sour cherry, and so far 17 of these compounds have been found partly in Hungarian varieties. Similar research on green, and ‘pritamin’ peppers have not gone so far since they were limited only for seasoning paprika. In Hungary, studies on onion and garlic have not been performed. It should be mentioned that due to the continental climate, these products may be cultivated, consumed or processed only in a limited period. Taking this into consideration, processing and conserving methods are needed which make the consumption of these fruit and vegetables as functional food possible year-round. Scientific establishment of this set of questions is of current concern, because consumption of these products could have an important role in improving the health status of the Hungarian population in the future.