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Correlation among metabolic changes in tea plant Camellia sinensis (L.) shoots, green tea quality and the application of cow manure to tea plantation soils

Sun, L., Fan, K., Wang, L., Ma, D., Wang, Y., Kong, X., Li, H., Ren, Y. and Ding, Z. (2021) Correlation among metabolic changes in tea plant Camellia sinensis (L.) shoots, green tea quality and the application of cow manure to tea plantation soils. Molecules, 26 (20). Article 6180.

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Abstract

Traditionally, the supplement of organic manure in tea plantations has been a common approach to improving soil fertility and promoting terroir compounds, as manifested by the coordinated increase in yield and quality for the resulting teas. However, information regarding the effect of organic manure in the metabolome of tea plants is still inadequate. The metabolite profiles of tea shoots applied with cow manure, urea or no fertilizer were studied using gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC–MS). In total, 73 metabolites were detected, and the modulated metabolites included mainly amino acids, organic acids and fatty acids. In particular, glutamine, quinic acid and proline accumulated more in tea shoots in soils treated with cow manure, but octadecanoic acid, hexadecanoic acid and eicosanoic acid were drastically reduced. Pearson correlation analysis indicated that organic acids and amino acids in tea shoots were the two major metabolite groups among the three treatments. The analysis of metabolic pathways demonstrated that the cow manure treatment significantly changed the enrichment of pathways related to amino acids, sugars and fatty acids. Sensory evaluation showed that the quality of green teas was higher when the plants used to make the tea were grown in soil treated with cow manure rather than urea during spring and late summer. The results indicated that the application of cow manure in soils changed the metabolic characteristics of tea shoots and improved the qualities of the resulting teas.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): College of Science, Health, Engineering and Education
Publisher: MDPI
Copyright: © 2021 by the authors
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/62735
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