Grapevine terpenic products: Linking quality associated flavour and aroma compounds in grapes and wine


Project Number
IWBT-P 14 02

Project title
Grapevine terpenic products: linking quality associated flavour and aroma compounds in grapes and wine

Project leader
Young, P R

Institution
University of Stellenbosch. Faculty of AgriSciences. Institute for Wine Biotechnology

Team members
Young, P R
Eyeghe-Bickong, H A
Bezuidenhout, I
Smit, S I

Project description
The terpenic composition of grapevine berries contributes to the varietal character of the grapes and resultant wine. A combination of the monoterpenes geraniol, linalool and nerol are, for example, responsible for the characteristic aroma of Muscat grapes (a terpenic grape variety). Terpenes also contribute to the aroma of non Muscat varieties: the sesquiterpene rotundone has been shown to be responsible for the peppery character of Shiraz grapes and wine. The estimated -46 terpenes identified in grapes (-30 in wines) are formed by the actions of the terpene synthase enzymes in the grape berries. The grapevine genome contains an estimated 89-144 terpene synthases encoding genes, clearly contributing to the complex terpenic composition of grape varieties. Understanding the basis of the varietal aromas of cultivars is still an active field of study, as is the impact of production practices in modulating the aromatic potential of the berries. Terpene synthases are central to the understanding of this important class of volatile aroma compounds. This project aims to understand the origin, regulation and fate of terpenes by linking grape terpene synthase gene expression to terpene composition in the complex grape matrix.

Poster(s)
Smit, S J, Young, P R and Vivier, M A. 2015. Exploring the planta role of sesquiterpenes in grapevine flowers. Paper presented at Terpnet 2015 Conference. 1-5 June 2015. Vancouver, Canada

Presentation(s)
Smit, S, Young, P R and Vivier, M A. 2014. Terpene synthesis: Promiscuous enzymes synthesising a multitude of terpenic products with diverse functions in the grapevine. Paper presented at 5th International Symposium on Macromolecules and Secondary Metabolites of Grapevine and Wines: MacroWine 2014. 7-10 September, Stellenbosch, South Africa.

Bezuidenhout, I, Young, P R, Jacobson, D, Smit, S, Potiron, A and Vivier, M A. 2014. Bridging the gap between the grapevine terpene synthase gene family and volatile terpenes found in the berry and wine. Paper presented at 5th International Symposium on Macromolecules and Secondary Metabolites of Grapevine and Wines: MacroWine 2014. 7-10 September 2014, Stellenbosch, South Africa.

Article
Young, P R. 2016. Functions of volatile terpenes in grapevines, WineLand, Mnth April
http://www.wineland.co.za/functions-of-volatile-terpenes-in-grapevines/

Thesis
Smit, S J. 2016. Grapevine terpenoids and their contribution to the flower volatilome. M Sc. Wine Biotechnology. Stellenbosch University, Stellenbosch.
http://scholar.sun.ac.za/handle/10019.1/98332

 

 

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