Functional analysis of the grapevine VvibZIPC22 indicates that this factor is involved in the regulation of different branches of the flavonoid pathway, either alone or together with other factors.
In grapevine, flavonoids constitute one of the most abundant subgroups of secondary metabolites, influencing the quality, health value, and typicity of wines. Their synthesis in many plant species is mainly regulated at the transcriptional level by modulation of flavonoid pathway genes either by single regulators or by complexes of different regulators. In particular, bZIP and MYB factors interact synergistically in the recognition of light response units present in the promoter of some genes of the pathway, thus mediating light-dependent flavonoid biosynthesis. We recently identified VvibZIPC22, a member of clade C of the grapevine bZIP family, in a quantitative trait locus (QTL) specifically associated with kaemperol content in mature berries. Here, to validate the involvement of this candidate gene in the fine regulation of flavonol biosynthesis, we characterized its function by in vitro and in vivo experiments. A role for this gene in the control of flavonol biosynthesis was indeed confirmed by its highest expression at flowering and during UV light-mediated induction, paralleled by accumulation of the flavonol synthase 1 transcript and flavonol compounds. The overexpression of VvibZIPC22 in tobacco caused a significant increase in several flavonoids in the flower, via induction of general and specific genes of the pathway. In agreement with this evidence, VvibZIPC22 was able to activate the promoters of specific genes of the flavonoid pathway, alone or together with other factors, as revealed by transient reporter assays. These findings, supported by in silico indications, allowed us to propose VvibZIPC22 as a new regulator of flavonoid biosynthesis in grapevine.
bZIP factors; co-expression analysis; flavonoids; gene expression; grapevine; luciferase assay; metabolic profiling; tobacco; transient expression.
Large-scale transcriptional studies aim to decipher the dynamic cellular responses to a stimulus, like different environmental conditions. In the era of high-throughput omics biology, the most used technologies for these purposes are microarray and RNA-Seq, whose data are usually required to be deposited in public repositories upon publication. Such repositories have the enormous potential to provide a comprehensive view of how different experimental conditions lead to expression changes, by comparing gene expression across all possible measured conditions. Unfortunately, this task is greatly impaired by differences among experimental platforms that make direct comparisons difficult. In this paper, we present the Vitis Expression Studies Platform Using COLOMBOS Compendia Instances (VESPUCCI), a gene expression compendium for grapevine which was built by adapting an approach originally developed for bacteria, and show how it can be used to investigate complex gene expression patterns. We integrated nearly all publicly available microarray and RNA-Seq expression data: 1608 gene expression samples from 10 different technological platforms. Each sample has been manually annotated using a controlled vocabulary developed ad hoc to ensure both human readability and computational tractability. Expression data in the compendium can be visually explored using several tools provided by the web interface or can be programmatically accessed using the REST interface. VESPUCCI is freely accessible at http://vespucci.colombos.fmach.it.
gene expression; grapevine; transcriptomics; compendium; microarray; RNA-Seq
During grape ripening, numerous transcriptional and metabolic changes are required in order to obtain colored, sweet, and flavored berries. There is evidence that ethylene, together with other signals, plays an important role in triggering the onset of ripening. Here, we report the functional characterization of a berry-specific Ethylene Responsive Factor (ERF), VviERF045, which is induced just before véraison and peaks at ripening. Phylogenetic analysis revealed it is close to the SHINE clade of ERFs, factors involved in the regulation of wax biosynthesis and cuticle morphology. Transgenic grapevines lines overexpressing VviERF045 were obtained, in vitro propagated, phenotypically characterized, and analyzed for the content of specific classes of metabolites. The effect of VviERF045 was correlated with the level of transgene expression, with high-expressing lines showing stunted growth, discolored and smaller leaves, and a lower level of chlorophylls and carotenoids. One line with intermediate expression, L15, was characterized at the transcriptomic level and showed 573 differentially expressed genes compared to wild type plants. Microscopy and gene expression analyses point toward a major role of VviERF045 in epidermis patterning by acting on waxes and cuticle. They also indicate that VviERF045 affects phenolic secondary metabolism and induces a reaction resembling a plant immune response with modulation of receptor like-kinases and pathogen related genes. These results suggest also a possible role of this transcription factor in berry ripening, likely related to changes in epidermis and cuticle of the berry, cell expansion, a decrease in photosynthetic capacity, and the activation of several defense related genes as well as from the phenylpropanoid metabolism. All these processes occur in the berry during ripening.
ERF; RNA-seq; over-expressing transgenic lines; VOCs; wax; Vitis vinifera
The integration of metabolic, molecular marker, and transcriptomic data from a segregating grapevine progeny provides novel insights into the genetic control of anthocyanin content and composition in ripe berries.
In the last decade, great progress has been made in clarifying the main determinants of anthocyanin accumulation in grape berry skin. However, the molecular details of the fine variation among cultivars, which ultimately contributes to wine typicity, are still not completely understood. To shed light on this issue, the grapes of 170 F1 progeny from the cross ‘Syrah’×’Pinot Noir’ were characterized at the mature stage for the content of 15 anthocyanins during four growing seasons. This huge data set was used in combination with a dense genetic map to detect genomic regions controlling the anthocyanin pathway both at key enzymatic points and at particular branches. Genes putatively involved in fine tuning the global regulation of anthocyanin biosynthesis were identified by exploring the gene predictions in the QTL (quantitative trait locus) confidence intervals and their expression profile during berry development in offspring with contrasting anthocyanin accumulation. New information on some aspects which had scarcely been investigated so far, such as anthocyanin transport into the vacuole, or completely neglected, such as acylation, is provided. These genes represent a valuable resource in grapevine molecular-based breeding programmes to improve both fruit and wine quality and to tailor wine sensory properties according to consumer demand.
Anthocyanin; berry; candidate gene; metabolic profiling; microarray; quantitative trait locus; Vitis vinifera.
Novel candidate genes for the fine regulation of flavonol content in ripe berries are identified through integration of transcriptional profiling and metabolic QTL analyses of a segregating grapevine progeny.
Flavonols are a ubiquitous class of flavonoids that accumulate preferentially in flowers and mature berries. Besides their photo-protective function, they play a fundamental role during winemaking, stabilizing the colour by co-pigmentation with anthocyanins and contributing to organoleptic characteristics. Although the general flavonol pathway has been genetically and biochemically elucidated, the genetic control of flavonol content and composition at harvest is still not clear. To this purpose, the grapes of 170 segregating F1 individuals from a ‘Syrah’×’Pinot Noir’ population were evaluated at the mature stage for the content of six flavonol aglycons in four seasons. Metabolic data in combination with genetic data enabled the identification of 16 mQTLs (metabolic quantitative trait loci). For the first time, major genetic control by the linkage group 2 (LG 2)/MYBA region on flavonol variation, in particular of tri-hydroxylated flavonols, is demonstrated. Moreover, seven regions specifically associated with the fine control of flavonol biosynthesis are identified. Gene expression profiling of two groups of individuals significantly divergent for their skin flavonol content identified a large set of differentially modulated transcripts. Among these, the transcripts coding for MYB and bZIP transcription factors, methyltranferases, and glucosyltranferases specific for flavonols, proteins, and factors belonging to the UV-B signalling pathway and co-localizing with the QTL regions are proposed as candidate genes for the fine regulation of flavonol content and composition in mature grapes.
Berry; flavonols; candidate gene; metabolic profiling; microarray; quantitative trait loci; segregating population; Vitis vinifera.
A collection of 175 melon (Cucumis melo L.) accessions (including wild relatives, feral types, landraces, breeding lines and commercial cultivars) from 50 countries was selected to study the phenotypic variability for ripening behavior and sugar accumulation. The variability of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) at 53 selected candidate genes involved in sugar accumulation and fruit ripening processes was studied, as well as their association with phenotypic variation of related traits.
The collection showed a strong genetic structure, defining seven groups plus a number of accessions that could not be associated to any of the groups (admixture), which fitted well with the botanical classification of melon varieties. The variability in candidate genes for ethylene, cell wall and sugar-related traits was high and similar to SNPs located in reference genes. Variability at ripening candidate genes had an important weight on the genetic stratification of melon germplasm, indicating that traditional farmers might have selected for ripening traits during cultivar diversification. A strong relationship was also found between the genetic structure and phenotypic diversity, which could hamper genetic association studies. Accessions belonging to the ameri group are the most appropriate for association analysis given the high phenotypic and molecular diversity within the group, and lack of genetic structure.
The most remarkable association was found between sugar content and SNPs in LG III, where a hotspot of sugar content QTLs has previously been defined. By studying the differences in allelic variation of SNPs within horticultural groups with specific phenotypic features, we also detected differential variation in sugar-related candidates located in LGIX and LGX, and in ripening-related candidates located in LGII and X, all in regions with previously mapped QTLs for the corresponding traits.
In the current study we have found an important variability at both the phenotypic and candidate gene levels for ripening behavior and sugar accumulation in melon fruit. By combination of differences in allelic diversity and association analysis, we have identified several candidate genes that may be involved in the melon phenotypic diversity.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12863-015-0183-2) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Melon; Climacteric ripening; Sugar; Germplasm collection
The ripening of fleshy fruits is a complex developmental program characterized by extensive transcriptomic and metabolic remodeling in the pericarp tissues (pulp and skin) making unripe green fruits soft, tasteful and colored. The onset of ripening is regulated by a plethora of endogenous signals tuned to external stimuli. In grapevine and tomato, which are classified as non-climacteric and climacteric species respectively, the accumulation of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and extensive modulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenging enzymes at the onset of ripening has been reported, suggesting that ROS could participate to the regulatory network of fruit development. In order to investigate this hypothesis, a comprehensive biochemical study of the oxidative events occurring at the beginning of ripening in Vitis vinifera cv. Pinot Noir has been undertaken.
ROS-specific staining allowed to visualize not only H2O2 but also singlet oxygen (1O2) in berry skin cells just before color change in distinct subcellular locations, i.e. cytosol and plastids. H2O2 peak in sample skins at véraison was confirmed by in vitro quantification and was supported by the concomitant increase of catalase activity. Membrane peroxidation was also observed by HPLC-MS on galactolipid species at véraison. Mono- and digalactosyl diacylglycerols were found peroxidized on one or both α-linolenic fatty acid chains, with a 13(S) absolute configuration implying the action of a specific enzyme. A lipoxygenase (PnLOXA), expressed at véraison and localizing inside the chloroplasts, was indeed able to catalyze membrane galactolipid peroxidation when overexpressed in tobacco leaves.
The present work demonstrates the controlled, harmless accumulation of specific ROS in distinct cellular compartments, i.e. cytosol and chloroplasts, at a definite developmental stage, the onset of grape berry ripening. These features strongly candidate ROS as cellular signals in fruit ripening and encourage further studies to identify downstream elements of this cascade. This paper also reports the transient galactolipid peroxidation carried out by a véraison-specific chloroplastic lipoxygenase. The function of peroxidized membranes, likely distinct from that of free fatty acids due to their structural role and tight interaction with photosynthesis protein complexes, has to be ascertained.
Chloroplastic lipoxygenase; Fruit ripening; Galactolipids; Hydrogen peroxide; Oxidative stress; Oxylipin; ROS; Singlet oxygen
Gibberellins (GAs) are involved in the regulation of flowering and fruit-set in grapes (Vitis vinifera L.), but the molecular mechanisms behind this process are mostly unknown. In this work, the family of grapevine GA oxidases involved in the biosynthesis and deactivation of GAs was characterized. Six putative GA 20-oxidase (GA20ox), three GA 3-oxidase (GA3ox), and eight GA 2-oxidase (GA2ox) proteins, the latter further divided into five C19-GA 2ox and three C20-GA2ox proteins, were identified. Phylogenetic analyses suggest a common origin of the GA3ox and C19-GA2ox groups and challenge previous evolutionary models. In vitro analysis revealed that all GA3ox and GA20ox enzymes prefer substrates of the non-13-hydroxylation pathway. In addition, ectopic expression of GA2ox genes in Arabidopsis thaliana confirmed the activity of their encoded proteins in vivo. The results show that bioactive GA1 accumulates in opening grapevine flowers, whereas at later developmental stages only GA4 is detected in the setting fruit. By studying the expression pattern of the grapevine GA oxidase genes in different organs, and at different stages of flowering and fruit-set, it is proposed that the pool of bioactive GAs is controlled by a fine regulation of the abundance and localization of GA oxidase transcripts.
Anthesis; fruit set; gibberellin 2β-hydroxylase; gibberellin 3β-hydroxylase; gibberellin metabolism; gibberellin oxidase; grapevine; inflorescence; Vitis vinifera.
Downy mildew, caused by Plasmopara viticola, is one of the most severe diseases of grapevine and is commonly controlled by fungicide treatments. The beneficial microorganism Trichoderma harzianum T39 (T39) can induce resistance to downy mildew, although the molecular events associated with this process have not yet been elucidated in grapevine. A next generation RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) approach was used to study global transcriptional changes associated with resistance induced by T39 in Vitis vinifera Pinot Noir leaves. The long-term aim was to develop strategies to optimize the use of this agent for downy mildew control.
More than 14.8 million paired-end reads were obtained for each biological replicate of T39-treated and control leaf samples collected before and 24 h after P. viticola inoculation. RNA-Seq analysis resulted in the identification of 7,024 differentially expressed genes, highlighting the complex transcriptional reprogramming of grapevine leaves during resistance induction and in response to pathogen inoculation. Our data show that T39 has a dual effect: it directly modulates genes related to the microbial recognition machinery, and it enhances the expression of defence-related processes after pathogen inoculation. Whereas several genes were commonly affected by P. viticola in control and T39-treated plants, opposing modulation of genes related to responses to stress and protein metabolism was found. T39-induced resistance partially inhibited some disease-related processes and specifically activated defence responses after P. viticola inoculation, causing a significant reduction of downy mildew symptoms.
The global transcriptional analysis revealed that defence processes known to be implicated in the reaction of resistant genotypes to downy mildew were partially activated by T39-induced resistance in susceptible grapevines. Genes identified in this work are an important source of markers for selecting novel resistance inducers and for the analysis of environmental conditions that might affect induced resistance mechanisms.
Induced resistance; Next generation sequencing; RNA-Seq; Transcriptomics; Gene expression; Vitis vinifera; Plant-pathogen interactions
Somatic mutation is a natural mechanism which allows plant growers to develop new cultivars. As a source of variation within a uniform genetic background, it also represents an ideal tool for studying the genetic make-up of important traits and for establishing gene functions. Layer-specific molecular characterization of the Pinot family of grape cultivars was conducted to provide an evolutionary explanation for the somatic mutations that have affected the locus of berry colour. Through the study of the structural dynamics along chromosome 2, a very large deletion present in a single Pinot gris cell layer was identified and characterized. This mutation reveals that Pinot gris and Pinot blanc arose independently from the ancestral Pinot noir, suggesting a novel parallel evolutionary model. This proposed ‘Pinot-model’ represents a breakthrough towards the full understanding of the mechanisms behind the formation of white, grey, red, and pink grape cultivars, and eventually of their specific enological aptitude.
Berry colour; grapevine; layer; molecular characterization; SSRs and SNPs; Vitis vinifera
Carotenoids are a heterogeneous group of plant isoprenoids primarily involved in photosynthesis. In plants the cleavage of carotenoids leads to the formation of the phytohormones abscisic acid and strigolactone, and C13-norisoprenoids involved in the characteristic flavour and aroma compounds in flowers and fruits and are of specific importance in the varietal character of grapes and wine. This work extends the previous reports of carotenoid gene expression and photosynthetic pigment analysis by providing an up-to-date pathway analysis and an important framework for the analysis of carotenoid metabolic pathways in grapevine.
Comparative genomics was used to identify 42 genes putatively involved in carotenoid biosynthesis/catabolism in grapevine. The genes are distributed on 16 of the 19 chromosomes and have been localised to the physical map of the heterozygous ENTAV115 grapevine sequence. Nine of the genes occur as single copies whereas the rest of the carotenoid metabolic genes have more than one paralogue. The cDNA copies of eleven corresponding genes from Vitis vinifera L. cv. Pinotage were characterised, and four where shown to be functional. Microarrays provided expression profiles of 39 accessions in the metabolic pathway during three berry developmental stages in Sauvignon blanc, whereas an optimised HPLC analysis provided the concentrations of individual carotenoids. This provides evidence of the functioning of the lutein epoxide cycle and the respective genes in grapevine. Similarly, orthologues of genes leading to the formation of strigolactone involved in shoot branching inhibition were identified: CCD7, CCD8 and MAX1. Moreover, the isoforms typically have different expression patterns, confirming the complex regulation of the pathway. Of particular interest is the expression pattern of the three VvNCEDs: Our results support previous findings that VvNCED3 is likely the isoform linked to ABA content in berries.
The carotenoid metabolic pathway is well characterised, and the genes and enzymes have been studied in a number of plants. The study of the 42 carotenoid pathway genes of grapevine showed that they share a high degree of similarity with other eudicots. Expression and pigment profiling of developing berries provided insights into the most complete grapevine carotenoid pathway representation. This study represents an important reference study for further characterisation of carotenoid biosynthesis and catabolism in grapevine.
Downy mildew, caused by the oomycete Plasmopara viticola, is a serious disease in Vitis vinifera, the most commonly cultivated grapevine species. Several wild Vitis species have instead been found to be resistant to this pathogen and have been used as a source to introgress resistance into a V. vinifera background. Stilbenoids represent the major phytoalexins in grapevine, and their toxicity is closely related to the specific compound. The aim of this study was to assess the resistance response to P. viticola of the Merzling × Teroldego cross by profiling the stilbenoid content of the leaves of an entire population and the transcriptome of resistant and susceptible individuals following infection.
A three-year analysis of the population's response to artificial inoculation showed that individuals were distributed in nine classes ranging from total resistance to total susceptibility. In addition, quantitative metabolite profiling of stilbenoids in the population, carried out using HPLC-DAD-MS, identified three distinct groups differing according to the concentrations present and the complexity of their profiles. The high producers were characterized by the presence of trans-resveratrol, trans-piceid, trans-pterostilbene and up to thirteen different viniferins, nine of them new in grapevine.
Accumulation of these compounds is consistent with a resistant phenotype and suggests that they may contribute to the resistance response.
A preliminary transcriptional study using cDNA-AFLP selected a set of genes modulated by the oomycete in a resistant genotype. The expression of this set of genes in resistant and susceptible genotypes of the progeny population was then assessed by comparative microarray analysis.
A group of 57 genes was found to be exclusively modulated in the resistant genotype suggesting that they are involved in the grapevine-P. viticola incompatible interaction. Functional annotation of these transcripts revealed that they belong to the categories defense response, photosynthesis, primary and secondary metabolism, signal transduction and transport.
This study reports the results of a combined metabolic and transcriptional profiling of a grapevine population segregating for resistance to P. viticola. Some resistant individuals were identified and further characterized at the molecular level. These results will be valuable to future grapevine breeding programs.
In response to pathogen attack, grapevine synthesizes phytoalexins belonging to the family of stilbenes. Grapevine cell cultures represent a good model system for studying the basic mechanisms of plant response to biotic and abiotic elicitors. Among these, modified β-cyclodextrins seem to act as true elicitors inducing strong production of the stilbene resveratrol.
The transcriptome changes of Vitis riparia × Vitis berlandieri grapevine cells in response to the modified β-cyclodextrin, DIMEB, were analyzed 2 and 6 h after treatment using a suppression subtractive hybridization experiment and a microarray analysis respectively. At both time points, we identified a specific set of induced genes belonging to the general phenylpropanoid metabolism, including stilbenes and hydroxycinnamates, and to defence proteins such as PR proteins and chitinases. At 6 h we also observed a down-regulation of the genes involved in cell division and cell-wall loosening.
We report the first large-scale study of the molecular effects of DIMEB, a resveratrol inducer, on grapevine cell cultures. This molecule seems to mimic a defence elicitor which enhances the physical barriers of the cell, stops cell division and induces phytoalexin synthesis.
Whole genome transcriptomics analysis is a very powerful approach because it gives an overview of the activity of genes in certain cells or tissue types. However, biological interpretation of such results can be rather tedious. MapMan is a software tool that displays large datasets (e.g. gene expression data) onto diagrams of metabolic pathways or other processes and thus enables easier interpretation of results. The grapevine (Vitis vinifera) genome sequence has recently become available bringing a new dimension into associated research. Two microarray platforms were designed based on the TIGR Gene Index database and used in several physiological studies.
To enable easy and effective visualization of those and further experiments, annotation of Vitis vinifera Gene Index (VvGI version 5) to MapMan ontology was set up. Due to specificities of grape physiology, we have created new pictorial representations focusing on three selected pathways: carotenoid pathway, terpenoid pathway and phenylpropanoid pathway, the products of these pathways being important for wine aroma, flavour and colour, as well as plant defence against pathogens. This new tool was validated on Affymetrix microarrays data obtained during berry ripening and it allowed the discovery of new aspects in process regulation. We here also present results on transcriptional profiling of grape plantlets after exposal to the fungal pathogen Eutypa lata using Operon microarrays including visualization of results with MapMan. The data show that the genes induced in infected plants, encode pathogenesis related proteins and enzymes of the flavonoid metabolism, which are well known as being responsive to fungal infection.
The extension of MapMan ontology to grapevine together with the newly constructed pictorial representations for carotenoid, terpenoid and phenylpropanoid metabolism provide an alternative approach to the analysis of grapevine gene expression experiments performed with Affymetrix or Operon microarrays. MapMan was first validated on an already published dataset and later used to obtain an overview of transcriptional changes in a susceptible grapevine – Eutypa lata interaction at the time of symptoms development, where we showed that the responsive genes belong to families known to be involved in the plant defence towards fungal infection (PR-proteins, enzymes of the phenylpropanoid pathway).
Worldwide, grapes and their derived products have a large market. The cultivated grape species Vitis vinifera has potential to become a model for fruit trees genetics. Like many plant species, it is highly heterozygous, which is an additional challenge to modern whole genome shotgun sequencing. In this paper a high quality draft genome sequence of a cultivated clone of V. vinifera Pinot Noir is presented.
We estimate the genome size of V. vinifera to be 504.6 Mb. Genomic sequences corresponding to 477.1 Mb were assembled in 2,093 metacontigs and 435.1 Mb were anchored to the 19 linkage groups (LGs). The number of predicted genes is 29,585, of which 96.1% were assigned to LGs. This assembly of the grape genome provides candidate genes implicated in traits relevant to grapevine cultivation, such as those influencing wine quality, via secondary metabolites, and those connected with the extreme susceptibility of grape to pathogens. Single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) distribution was consistent with a diffuse haplotype structure across the genome. Of around 2,000,000 SNPs, 1,751,176 were mapped to chromosomes and one or more of them were identified in 86.7% of anchored genes. The relative age of grape duplicated genes was estimated and this made possible to reveal a relatively recent Vitis-specific large scale duplication event concerning at least 10 chromosomes (duplication not reported before).
Sanger shotgun sequencing and highly efficient sequencing by synthesis (SBS), together with dedicated assembly programs, resolved a complex heterozygous genome. A consensus sequence of the genome and a set of mapped marker loci were generated. Homologous chromosomes of Pinot Noir differ by 11.2% of their DNA (hemizygous DNA plus chromosomal gaps). SNP markers are offered as a tool with the potential of introducing a new era in the molecular breeding of grape.
Grapevine (Vitis species) is among the most important fruit crops in terms of cultivated area and economic impact. Despite this relevance, little is known about the transcriptional changes and the regulatory circuits underlying the biochemical and physical changes occurring during berry development.
Fruit ripening in the non-climacteric crop species Vitis vinifera L. has been investigated at the transcriptional level by the use of the Affymetrix Vitis GeneChip® which contains approximately 14,500 unigenes. Gene expression data obtained from berries sampled before and after véraison in three growing years, were analyzed to identify genes specifically involved in fruit ripening and to investigate seasonal influences on the process. From these analyses a core set of 1477 genes was found which was similarly modulated in all seasons. We were able to separate ripening specific isoforms within gene families and to identify ripening related genes which appeared strongly regulated also by the seasonal weather conditions. Transcripts annotation by Gene Ontology vocabulary revealed five overrepresented functional categories of which cell wall organization and biogenesis, carbohydrate and secondary metabolisms and stress response were specifically induced during the ripening phase, while photosynthesis was strongly repressed. About 19% of the core gene set was characterized by genes involved in regulatory processes, such as transcription factors and transcripts related to hormonal metabolism and signal transduction. Auxin, ethylene and light emerged as the main stimuli influencing berry development. In addition, an oxidative burst, previously not detected in grapevine, characterized by rapid accumulation of H2O2 starting from véraison and by the modulation of many ROS scavenging enzymes, was observed.
The time-course gene expression analysis of grapevine berry development has identified the occurrence of two well distinct phases along the process. The pre-véraison phase represents a reprogramming stage of the cellular metabolism, characterized by the expression of numerous genes involved in hormonal signalling and transcriptional regulation. The post-véraison phase is characterized by the onset of a ripening-specialized metabolism responsible for the phenotypic traits of the ripe berry. Between the two phases, at véraison, an oxidative burst and the concurrent modulation of the anti-oxidative enzymatic network was observed. The large number of regulatory genes we have identified represents a powerful new resource for dissecting the mechanisms of fruit ripening control in non-climacteric plants.