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Ultraviolet-B radiation modifies the quantitative and qualitative profile of flavonoids and amino acids in grape berries

J. Martínez-Lüscher, N. Torres, G. Hilbert, T. Richard, M. Sánchez-Díaz, S. Delrot, J. Aguirreolea, I. Pascual, E. Gomès; Phytochemistry, Volume 102,

Grapevine cv. Tempranillo fruit-bearing cuttings were exposed to supplemental ultraviolet-B (UV-B) radiation under controlled conditions, in order to study its effect on grape traits, ripening, amino acids and flavonoid profile. 

The plants were exposed to two doses of UV-B biologically effective (5.98 and 9.66 kJ m−2 d−1), applied either from fruit set to ripeness or from the onset of veraison to ripeness. A 0 kJ m−2 d−1 treatment was included as a control. 

UV-B did not significantly modify grape berry size, but increased the relative mass of berry skin. Time to reach ripeness was not affected by UV-B, which may explain the lack of changes in technological maturity. 

The concentration of must extractable anthocyanins, colour density and skin flavonols were enhanced by UV-B, especially in plants exposed from fruit set. 

The quantitative and qualitative profile of grape skin flavonols were modified by UV-B radiation. Monosubstituted flavonols relative abundance increased proportionally to the accumulated UV-B doses. Furthermore, trisubstituted forms, which where predominant in non-exposed berries, were less abundant as UV-B exposure increased. 

Although total free amino acid content remained unaffected by the treatments, the increased levels of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), as well as the decrease in threonine, isoleucine, methionine, serine and glycine, revealed a potential influence of UV-B on the GABA-mediated signalling and amino acid metabolism. 

UV-B had an overall positive impact on grape berry composition.

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Published on 22/06/2015
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