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J Agric Food Chem. 2010 Jul 28;58(14):8344-50. doi: 10.1021/jf100393w.

Production of volatile metabolites by grape-associated microorganisms.

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Institute of Environmental Biotechnology, Graz University of Technology, A-8010 Graz, Austria.


Plant-associated microorganisms fulfill important functions for their hosts. Whereas promotion of plant growth and health is well-studied, little is known about the impact of microorganisms on plant or fruit flavor. To analyze the production of volatiles of grape-associated microorganisms, samples of grapes of the red cultivar 'Blaufraenkisch' were taken during harvest time from four different vineyards in Burgenland (Austria). The production of volatiles was analyzed for the total culturable microbial communities (bacteria, yeasts, fungi) found on and in the grapes as well as for single isolates. The microbial communities produced clearly distinct aroma profiles for each vineyard and phylogenetic group. Furthermore, half of the grape-associated microorganisms produced a broad spectrum of volatile organic compounds. Exemplary, the spectrum was analyzed more in detail for three single isolates of Paenibacillus sp., Sporobolomyces roseus , and Aureobasidium pullulans . Well-known and typical flavor components of red wine were detected as being produced by microbes, for example, 2-methylbutanoic acid, 3-methyl-1-butanol, and ethyl octanoate.

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