Evaluation of Gamma Irradiation Effects on Brazilian Orange Melon (Cucumis melo L.)

AbstractOrange flesh melons (Cucumis melo L. var. inodorus) is widely cultivated in Brazil, especially in the Northeast region. The study was carried out to determine the effects of gamma irradiation at doses 0.5 and 1.0 kGy on the carotenoids, sugars, volatile, flavor and sensory characteristics. High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC), Gas Chromatography (GC) and Mass Spectrometry (MS) were used to identify and quantify carotenoids, sugars and volatile compounds. Sensorial analysis was performed by untrained tasters using a just right scale. Were evaluated the suitability of the intensity of firmness. There were no significant changes in the parameters of pH, total titratable acidity, total soluble solids analyzed on samples. Determinations of total carotenoids, volatile compounds, the levels of sugar and flavor and firmness parameters indicated that the best irradiation dose was 0.5 kGy. The orange melon is good source of carotenoids (23,800μg.100g-1), being the major compound β-carotene, can be employed to combat hypovitaminosis A.

Keywordscarotenoids, GC-MS, HPLC, irradiation, orange melon.

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