The Biochemistry of the Grape Berry

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Grapes (Vitis spp.) are economically significant fruit species. Many scientific advances have been achieved in understanding physiological, biochemical, and molecular aspects of grape berry ...
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Mineral Compounds in the Grape Berry

Pp. 23-43 (21)

V. Martins, A. Cunha, H. Gerós, M. Hanana and E. Blumwald

Abstract

Both organic and inorganic compounds are vital for grapevine health and maintenance of vigour suitable for fruit production. In particular, the mineral soil composition has an essential influence on grape quality and on the organoleptic properties of wine. Grape berries are very rich in K; however, other mineral elements such as N, Ca, P, Mg, S and several micronutrients affect berry development and maturation in ways that have not always been acknowledged. Some of these compounds directly affect berry set and yield, whereas others act indirectly by modulating vine physiology. In addition, the complex interaction between mineral elements and organic molecules also renders different outcomes in vine and grape berry. The present chapter provides an overview on the dynamics of the major mineral compounds in the grapevine, especially in the berry, and on the contribution of each element to berry quality and yield. Special emphasis is given to K, since it is the main cation in must and wine and plays a decisive role in berry development and wine quality.

Keywords:

Calcium, Copper, Iron, Macronutrients, Magnesium, Micronutrients, Molybdenum, Nitrogen, Osmolyte, Phosphorus, Potassium, Potassium Transporters, Sodium, Sulfur, Zinc.

Affiliation:

Departamento de Biologia, Universidade do Minho, Campus de Gualtar, 4710-057 Braga, Portugal