Grapevine (Vitis vinifera) is the most important fruit species in the modern world. Wine and table grapes sales contribute significantly to the economy of major wine producing countries. The most relevant goals in wine production concern quality and safety. In order to significantly improve the achievement of these objectives and to gain biological knowledge about cultivars, a genomic approach is the most reliable strategy. The recent
grapevine genome sequencing offers the opportunity to study the potential roles of genes and microRNAs (RiboNucleicAcid) in fruit maturation and other physiological and pathological processes. Although several systems allowing the analysis of plant genomes have been reported, none of them has been designed specifically for the functional analysis of grapevine genomes of cultivars under environmental stress in connection with microRNA data.
The technology offered by an Italian bio-informatics SME is designed for the functional analysis of grapevine genomes of cultivars present in Italy (Sicily). The system allows the analysis of RNA-seq experiments of two different cultivars, namely Nero d’ Avola and Nerello Mascalese. Samples were taken under different climatic conditions of phenological phases, diseases, and geographic locations. The system web interface is equipped with data analysis modules for grapevine genomes. In particular users may analyze the current genome assembly together with the RNA-seq data through a customized version of GBrowse (Genome Brows).
In addition the new techniques provided by modern genetics enable real-time monitoring of the health status of crops, leading to a preventive assessment of plant health, and the impact that pathologies may have on production, and therefore on the Human health.
The company is looking for license agreement to utilize the bioinformatics tools and/or technical cooperation agreement for further possible development of this technology.
Typical partners could be grapes and/or wine producers, agriculture farm, agro-industry firm.