Characterization of melon pear fuit (Solanum muricatum Ait.) ecotypes cultivated in Chile

Marina Gambardella C.1, Claudia Botti G.1, Luis Faúndez Y.1 y Adriana Nario M.1

A morphological characterization of melon pear fruit local ecotypes was done with four selections that are normally cultivated in Chile. A characterization of these selections with four isozymes systems, using horizontal electophores in starch gels, was also done. The plants used for these studies were grown in a field trial in Ovalle (fourth region of Chile). In general, there were very few morphological differences among the four studied selections (stem, leaf, flower and fruit). Only Selection 2, obtained from small family orchards that presently cultivate this type known as "La Serena", showed significant differences in relation with the leaf form and its disposition. Also Selection 2 presented more sensibility to low temperatures. No differences in the zymograms of the four ecotypes were found for Malato deshydrogenase enzyme (MDH), Phosphoglucomutase (PGM), Phosphoglucoisomerase (PGI) and Leucinoaminopeptidase (LAP). These preliminary results would indicate a low level of genetic variability.

Keywords: melon pear fruit, Solanum muricatum, botanic characterization, isozymes.
1 Facultad de Ciencias Agrarias y Forestales, Universidad de Chile, Casilla 1004, Santiago. Chile