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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Geneva, New York » Grape Genetics Research Unit (GGRU) » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #365117

Research Project: Grapevine Genetics, Genomics and Molecular Breeding for Disease Resistance, Abiotic Stress Tolerance, and Improved Fruit Quality

Location: Grape Genetics Research Unit (GGRU)

Title: The phenotyping bottleneck: How grape breeders link desired traits to DNA markers

item MARTINSON, TIM - Cornell University
item Cadle-Davidson, Lance

Submitted to: Wine and Vines
Publication Type: Trade Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/1/2018
Publication Date: 1/3/2019
Citation: Martinson, T., Cadle Davidson, L.E. 2019. The phenotyping bottleneck: How grape breeders link desired traits to DNA markers. Wine and Vines. 142-145.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Before inexpensive DNA sequencing was available, grape breeders had to rely solely on traits observed in the field (phenotypes) to decide which new seedlings produced through crosses to keep and which to discard. This method of field phenotyping didn’t help them much in determining which and how many genes were involved, and whether or not the trait would survive a subsequent round of breeding intact. DNA markers and more extensive use of mapping populations have changed all that. Since about the year 2000, genetics researchers have been busy linking DNA sequences (called markers) to specific locations on grape chromosomes (called loci) that are associated with observed traits of grapevines in the field (called phenotypes). To date, they have identified markers for at least 13 different loci for powdery mildew resistance and 27 for downy mildew resistance. This article describes the modern approaches that grape scientists are using to more efficiently identify marker-trait associations for the development of improved grape varieties.