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Funct Integr Genomics. 2010 Aug;10(3):367-81. doi: 10.1007/s10142-009-0145-8. Epub 2009 Oct 17.

Abscisic acid stimulated ripening and gene expression in berry skins of the Cabernet Sauvignon grape.

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Fundamental Research Division, National Research Institute of Brewing, 3-7-1 Kagamiyama, Higashi-Hiroshima, Hiroshima, 739-0046, Japan.


We investigated the effect of exogenous abscisic acid (ABA) application on the transcriptome as well as the phenolic profiles in the skins of Vitis vinifera cv. Cabernet Sauvignon grape berries grown on the vine and cultured in vitro. ABA application rapidly induced the accumulation of anthocyanin and flavonol. Correlatively, the structural genes in the phenylpropanoid and flavonoid pathways, their transcriptional regulators, as well as genes considered to be involved in the acylation and transport of anthocyanin into the vacuole, were upregulated by ABA treatment. The Genechip analysis showed that the ABA treatment significantly up- or downregulated a total of 345 and 1,482 transcripts in the skins of berries grown on the vine and cultured in vitro, respectively. Exogenous ABA modulated the transcripts associated with osmotic responses, stress responses, cell wall modification, auxin and ethylene metabolism and responses, in addition to the induction of anthocyanin biosynthetic genes, and reduced those associated with photosynthesis; approximately half of these transcripts were identical to the previously reported ripening-specific genes.

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