High resolution mass spectrometry imaging reveals the occurrence of phenylphenalenone-type compounds in red paracytic stomata and red epidermis tissue of Musa acuminata ssp. zebrina cv. 'Rowe Red'.

PMID 26004822


The banana epidermis and in particular their stomata are conducive sites for the penetration of pathogenic fungi which can severely limit global banana production. The red pseudostem of the ornamental banana Musa acuminata ssp. zebrina cv. 'Rowe Red' was used to study the chemical constituents of the epidermal cell layer using matrix-free laser desorption/ionization Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometric imaging (LDI-FT-ICR-MSI). The high resolution of this technique allowed phenylphenalenone-type compounds to be located in single plant cells. Some of these secondary metabolites were identified as constitutive compounds and found in specialized epidermal cells in banana pseudostem tissue. Especially the red paracytic stomata revealed higher signal intensities of certain phenylphenalenones than normal epidermis cells. The ease of detection of polycyclic aromatic compounds on the cellular level is discussed with regard to future investigations of plant-pathogen interactions.