Seed and fruit development studies

Funded by: Fondazione CARITRO
Project’s lifespan: 2017-2019

Unfavourable climatic conditions that hamper fertilization may compromise fruit production in different plant species. In the viticulture sector, climate heavily influences fruit development, which decreases when temperature or humidity are too high. In these conditions, it would be advantageous if fruit developed independently of fertilization, as is the case in seedless genotypes. This can be done on purpose in seed
varieties in bad weather conditions, or can be achieved with hormonal treatments, as it occurs with table grape.

The purpose of the APIRENIA project, in general, is to better understand the cytological and molecular mechanisms that regulate the seed and fruit formation in the vine. In particular, the project aims to:

  • extend the phenotypic description of some somatic variants, which so far was based mainly on the biometric analysis of seeds and grains

  • validate in lab the candidate genes and sequence polymorphisms resulting from transciptome comparison in Sangiovese and its seedless somatic variant

  • validate the function of a number of genes in model systems

New knowledge and the implementation of advanced selection and genetic engineering strategies are a first step forward in order to identify or develop new seedless genotypes, monitor fruit formation, optimize agricultural techniques and develop plant products in order to ensure that plants better adapt to climate change.

Project coordinator: Professor M. Stella Grando
Post-doc researcher: Paula Moreno Sanz

  • Research and Innovation Centre – Fondazione Edmund Mach 

  • Institute for Sustainable Plant Protection – CNR, Torino