1. A major component of the lipids in aqueous (pH7.5) homogenates of tuber tissue from Solanum tuberosum was isolated and characterized as 9-(nona-1′,3′-dienoxy)non-8-enoic acid. 2. This novel unsaturated ether fatty acid derivative, which contains a butadienylvinyl ether function, has the structure: [Formula: see text] and is formed from linoleic acid by a sequence of enzymic reactions. 3. A precursor of the unsaturated ether derivative is 9-d-hydroperoxyoctadeca-10,12-dienoic acid, formed by the action of S. tuberosum lipoxygenase on linoleic acid. 4. An enzyme that converts the fatty acid hydroperoxide into the unsaturated ether derivative was isolated from S. tuberosum. The pH optimum of this enzyme is approx. 9, although the overall conversion of linoleic acid into the ether derivative is maximal at pH7.5. 5. An unusual feature of this pathway is the insertion of an oxygen atom into the alkyl chain of a fatty acid. 6. This novel mechanism may play a role in the breakdown of polyunsaturated fatty acids to volatile products in plants.

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