Texture is a sensorial issue and relates to the interaction of food in the mouth during ingestion. As yet, it is not possible to use instrumental methods to replace a trained sensory panel. Furthermore, the relationships between the different levels of plant structure and texture are a long way from being understood. However, the increase in understanding of wall architecture in relation to cell adhesion provides a useful focus for research since this area is likely to provide some control over texture.
There is a paucity of information concerning the chemistry of cell-wall components at the edges of the cell faces. Apart from indirect evidence from epitope localisation studies and fluorescence microscopy, the composition of edge-of-face polymers is largely unknown. Moreover, the biochemical activities in this domain remain to be elucidated. This has significance not only from the textural perspective, but also as the basis of multi-cellularity in higher plants. The edge of the cell face results from metabolic events that occur during cell division. It provides the means by which the two daughter cells can adhere to each other and it is consequently fundamental to nearly every aspect of multi-cellular plant growth and development. Therefore this concept lends itself to basic research activities which would not only provide a greater understanding of plant morphology, but would also provide a potential leverage on the textural quality of plant-based foods.
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