Taking advantage of the natural genetic diversity of the vine as an option to face climate change.
The increase in the average annual temperature and the modification of the rainfall regime are two of the factors associated with climate change that have a greater impact on wine production, affecting both crop yield and fruit quality (Fraga et al. , 2012). This makes the viticulturist consider carrying out a series of changes and adjustments in his traditional production system as a measure of adaptation to this new climate scenario. Although the use of alternative cultivation systems (eg: irrigation systems, conduction, tillage, pruning, etc.) can be a solution in the short and medium term, long-term crop adaptation may require more profound changes, including replacing plant material. Given this, there are two alternatives: substitution by different vine varieties or by different clones of the same variety, both selected for their better tolerance to new climatic conditions.
Although it is estimated that there are around 5000 different varieties of vine in the world (This et al., 2006), most of these genetic resources are found in collections and germplasm banks, with only a small number of varieties being exploited.commercially. In fact, the cultivation of only five vine varieties (Airén, Tempranillo, Bobal, Garnacha and Monastrell) represent more than 60% of the total vineyard in our country (MAGRAMA, 2009), leading us to the idea of the great availability of Varietal genetic resources that exist but are poorly exploited. Thus, the prospecting, recovery and characterization of alternative vine varieties is presented as an interesting option to increase the diversity of our vineyards and to be able to face the threats of climate change.
On the other hand, clonal selection allows the selection of somatic variants (clones) of a certain variety to face new production challenges.. In the case at hand, clonal selection allows the selection of genotypes that have greater tolerance to new climatic conditions derived from climate change (Ibáñez et al., 2015). These clones can appear spontaneously on the vine, and can then be selected, characterized and certified for commercial exploitation. In fact, the success of the clonal selection process will depend mainly on the number of plants and buds that the selection team can analyze. It should be noted that this somatic variation has been an important source of genetic diversity during the historical processes of domestication and evolution, giving rise to the variability present today for many of the characters sought in current improvement processes (eg: color of the berry, presence / absence of seeds,Today there are various initiatives (both public and private) aimed at the analysis of clones for the selection of new genotypes with better productive aptitudes and better adaptation to new environmental conditions, presenting itself as a solution to the current and future needs of the vineyard.
Some European initiatives currently underway (“Innovine”) in which it is intended: To
exploit the genetic resources of the vine and select the genotypes with the greatest resistance to both biotic (fungi, insects) and abiotic (droughts, heat) pressure. The evaluation will be carried out using phenotyping techniques and genomic tools, both contrasted and novel.
Thanks to the evaluation of the available data on genetic sources, lay the foundations to launch an initiative to improve the vines that allows a concerted pre-selection effort to be carried out at European level.
Select the clones that are of interest due to the composition of their fruit in response to increased temperature or droughts. The remaining clones will be kept in collections that will be made available for other research and development projects.
European Innovine Project