Phylogenetics analysis of North American native Cynthiana/Norton grape variety using dna microsatellite markers

Lelan Parker, Patricia Bordallo, Violeta Colova


'Cynthiana'/'Norton' is considered the best American native grape variety for fine wine with suspected tolerance to PD (Pierce's disease) and proven low susceptibility to foliar and fruit disease. This variety has been successfully grown for commercial wine production for more then a century in the Eastern United States, and over a decade in Louisiana under the PD area. Given that this grape variety also produces color stable wines, it has great possibility in Florida but needs to be evaluated before it can be recommended. DNA microsatellites are proven to be the markers of choice for this purpose because they are diffused in a codominant Mendelian manner. Using the methods of molecular analysis the parent cultivars and the offspring can be recognized and the pedigree describing the genetic history of the grape variety can be reconstructed. By examining the microsatellite allele composition of an individual and its two presumptive parents, it is possible to confirm or reject the proposed parentage. We are using an already published set of 13 pairs of SSR primers designed for other Vitis sp. For purpose to develop more specific markers, 'Norton' publicly available expressed sequence tags (ESTs) were used to screen for SSR. Two hundred two SSRs out of 2,101 ESTs were located, and the promising SSR primers were synthesized for specific amplification in the targeted grape accessions. It is assumed that 'Cynthiana'/'Norton' is originated from Vitis aestivalis Michaux. We are investigating the phylogenetics of 'Cynthiana'/'Norton' grape via data mining in the existing North American grape germplasm collections, ampelographic analysis and specifically expressed in the variety microsatellite markers. This study is expected to identify the phylogenetics and genetic make up of 'Cynthiana'/'Norton' grape and to verify to the growers that this particular grape variety carry tolerance to Pierce's disease and is appropriate for high quality red wine production under Florida environmental conditions.


Vitis aestivalis; Michaux; SSR markers; ampelography; grape genetics

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Proc. Fla. State Hort. Soc.     ISSN 0886-7283