Areca nut (seed of Areca catechu) is consumed by people from different parts of Asia, including India. The four major alkaloids present in areca nut are arecoline, arecaidine, guvacoline and guvacine. Upon cutting, the nut reveals two kinds of regions; white and brown. In our present study, we have monitored the formation of these two regions within the nut during maturation, using the non-invasive techniques of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and volume localized magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS). Electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI MS) and desorption electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (DESI MS) imaging have been used to study the associated change in the alkaloid contents of these two regions during the growth of the nut. Our study reveals that white and brown regions start forming within the nut when the liquid within starts solidifying. At the final stage of maturity, arecoline, arecaidine and guvacoline get segregated in the brown region whereas guvacine gets to the white region of the nut. The transport of molecules with maturity and corresponding pattern formation are expected to be associated with a multitude of physiochemical changes.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Plant Science