Differences in Flower Transcriptome between Grapevine Clones Are Related to Their Cluster Compactness, Fruitfulness, and Berry Size

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Grimplet, Jérôme ; Tello, Javier ; Laguna, Natalia ; Ibáñez, Javier (2017)
  • Publisher: Frontiers Media S.A.
  • Journal: Frontiers in Plant Science, volume 8 (issn: 1664-462X, eissn: 1664-462X)
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.3389/fpls.2017.00632/full, doi: 10.3389/fpls.2017.00632, pmc: PMC5406470
  • Subject: Plant culture | SB1-1110 | cluster architecture | Vitis vinifera | transcriptomics | Plant Science | Original Research | phenotyping | somatic variation
    mesheuropmc: food and beverages

Grapevine cluster compactness has a clear impact on fruit quality and health status, as clusters with greater compactness are more susceptible to pests and diseases and ripen more asynchronously. Different parameters related to inflorescence and cluster architecture (length, width, branching, etc.), fruitfulness (number of berries, number of seeds) and berry size (length, width) contribute to the final level of compactness. From a collection of 501 clones of cultivar Garnacha Tinta, two compact and two loose clones with stable differences for cluster compactness-related traits were selected and phenotyped. Key organs and developmental stages were selected for sampling and transcriptomic analyses. Comparison of global gene expression patterns in flowers at the end of bloom allowed identification of potential gene networks with a role in determining the final berry number, berry size and ultimately cluster compactness. A large portion of the differentially expressed genes were found in networks related to cell division (carbohydrates uptake, cell wall metabolism, cell cycle, nucleic acids metabolism, cell division, DNA repair). Their greater expression level in flowers of compact clones indicated that the number of berries and the berry size at ripening appear related to the rate of cell replication in flowers during the early growth stages after pollination. In addition, fluctuations in auxin and gibberellin signaling and transport related gene expression support that they play a central role in fruit set and impact berry number and size. Other hormones, such as ethylene and jasmonate may differentially regulate indirect effects, such as defense mechanisms activation or polyphenols production. This is the first transcriptomic based analysis focused on the discovery of the underlying gene networks involved in grapevine traits of grapevine cluster compactness, berry number and berry size.
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