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Influence of Colchicine-Induced Polyploidy on Capsaicin Concentration in Peppers

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Colchicine is a chemical known for inhibiting mitosis during eukaryotic cellular reproduction by halting the tubulin formation necessary for the division of the chromosomes. The meristem is the primary source

Colchicine is a chemical known for inhibiting mitosis during eukaryotic cellular reproduction by halting the tubulin formation necessary for the division of the chromosomes. The meristem is the primary source of mitosis in developing flowering plants, and it was the focus of our research to determine if the hindrance of mitosis would interfere with the production of capsaicinoids within pungent pepper plants. Moruga Scorpion peppers have one of the world's highest concentration of capsaicinoids with Scoville Heat Units (SHU) averaging 1.2 million SHU (Bannister, 2012). The highest concentration of these capsaicinoids are within the placental and endocarp regions of the fruit, which are the primary location for capsaicinoid biosynthesis (Aza-Gonzalez & Nunez-Palenius, 2010). Hindering mitosis from the earliest stage of development could lead to phenotypic abnormalities within those placental and endocarp regions, quite possibly through the mechanism of the induced polyploidy. In many cases, this polymerization interference is beneficial in cultivating plants with characterized polyploidy due to its desired increased size of fruits and leaves. Due to the lethal nature of colchicine, there is threshold of effectiveness where it may induce polyploidy or it may result in fatality. This first stage of this research sought to determine which lethal dose was required to elicit a polyploid response or lead to seed unviability. The second stage was analyzing capsaicin concentration within the fruit of the mature dosed plants to determine whether there was an effect on the capsaicinoids, and whether polyploidy played a role in those effects. The final inspection of this research was in germinating the seeds from the hottest F1 pepper that had developed the fruit the slowest of all the doses, and determining whether there were any effects on the germination or seedling development.

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  • 2016-12

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Investigation of Parameters that Affect Capsaicin Stability During Culinary Techniques

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Capsaicin and dihydrocapsaicin account for 90% of capsaicinoids when it comes to the pungency of peppers. Capsaicin stability was investigated through a cooking and storage parameter where three different tests

Capsaicin and dihydrocapsaicin account for 90% of capsaicinoids when it comes to the pungency of peppers. Capsaicin stability was investigated through a cooking and storage parameter where three different tests were done; cooking duration, cooking temperature, and storage stability. The concentration of capsaicinoids was quantified through gas chromatography-mass spectrometry where those values were then used to determine the total Scoville heat units (SHU). Furthermore, half-life was determined by finding the decay rate during cooking and storage. Results showed that there was an increase in degradation of capsaicinoids concentration when peppers were cooked for a long period of time. Degradation rate increases with increasing temperatures as would be expected by the Arrhenius equation. Hence, if a maximum pungency is wanted, it is best to cook the least time as possible or add the peppers towards the end of the culinary technique. This would help by cooking the peppers for a short period of time while not being exposed to the high temperature long enough before significant degradation occurs. Lastly, the storage stability results interpreted that a maximum potency of the peppers can be retained in a freezer or refrigerator opposed to an open room temperature environment or exposure from the sun. Furthermore, the stability of peppers has a long shelf life with even that the worse storage condition's half-life value was 113.5 months (9.5 years). Thus, peppers do not need to be bought frequently because its potency will last for several years.

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  • 2017-12

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Understanding the role of human TRPV1 S1-S4 membrane domain in temperature and ligand activation

Description

Transient receptor potential vanilloid member 1 (TRPV1) is a membrane protein ion channel that functions as a heat and capsaicin receptor. In addition to activation by hot temperature and vanilloid

Transient receptor potential vanilloid member 1 (TRPV1) is a membrane protein ion channel that functions as a heat and capsaicin receptor. In addition to activation by hot temperature and vanilloid compounds such as capsaicin, TRPV1 is modulated by various stimuli including acidic pH, endogenous lipids, diverse biological and synthetic chemical ligands, and modulatory proteins. Due to its sensitivity to noxious stimuli such as high temperature and pungent chemicals, there has been significant evidence that TRPV1 participates in a variety of human physiological and pathophysiological pathways, raising the potential of TRPV1 as an attractive therapeutic target. However, the polymodal nature of TRPV1 function has complicated clinical application because the TRPV1 activation mechanisms from different modes have generally been enigmatic. Consequently, tremendous efforts have put into dissecting the mechanisms of different activation modes, but numerous questions remain to be answered.

The studies conducted in this dissertation probed the role of the S1-S4 membrane domain in temperature and ligand activation of human TRPV1. Temperature-dependent solution nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy for thermodynamic and mechanistic studies of the S1-S4 domain. From these results, a potential temperature sensing mechanism of TRPV1, initiated from the S1-S4 domain, was proposed. Additionally, direct binding of various ligands to the S1-S4 domain were used to ascertain the interaction site and the affinities (Kd) of various ligands to this domain. These results are the first to study the isolated S1-S4 domain of human TRPV1 and many results indicate that the S1-S4 domain is crucial for both temperature-sensing and is the general receptor binding site central to chemical activation.

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  • 2019