Grapevine genetics and breeding: BREEDVITIS

Group members: 
Cristina Menéndez Menéndez: 
Professor and researcher, University of La Rioja
María del Mar Hernández Álamos: 
Professor and researcher, University of La Rioja
María García Pastor: 
Carolina Castillo Río: 

Research interests:

Our group focuses in two research lines: the study of agronomic and enological traits relevant for grapevine breeding and the interaction grapevine-fungal populations, specifically filamentous fungi and powdery mildew.

On the first line, our work is aimed to analyze the genetic determinants of agronomic parameters such as phenology, productivity and berry quality and enological traits related to polyphenolic content of berries and seeds. The main objective is to identify candidate genes for specific traits in the grapevine genome by using DNA markers, genetic mapping and QTL analysis. The ultimate goal is the selection of genotypes with better adaptation to climate change in collaboration with breeding nurseries.

The group is also involved in the study of fungal biodiversity on the grapevine ecosystem. Our interest has been focused on understanding the relationships between powdery mildew and its host; in order to do so, different populations of the pathogen at the morphological, physiological and genetic levels have been analyzed. This knowledge can be applied to the development of programs to control this disease with less dependence on chemical treatments.


Hernández, M.M.; Menéndez, C.M. 2019. Influence of seasonality and management practices on diversity and composition of fungal communities in vineyard soils. Applied Soil Ecology, 135: 113–119.

Hernández, M.M.; Song, S.; Menéndez, C.M. 2016. Influence of genetic and vintage factors in flavan-3-ol composition of grape seeds of a segregating Vitis vinifera population. J. Sci. Food Agric. DOI: 10.1002/jsfa.7720.

Song S., Hernández, M.M., Provedo, I., Menéndez C.M. 2014. Segregation and associations of enological and agronomic traits in Graciano × Tempranillo wine grape progeny (Vitis vinifera L.). Euphytica, 195 (2): 259 – 277.

Pérez-Moreno, M.; Martínez-Vidaurre, J.M.; Menéndez, C.M.; García-Escudero, E.; Pérez-Moreno, I.; Marco-Mancebón, V.S.; Martínez-Zapater, J.M.; Hernández, M.M.; Chavarri-Mardones, J.B. 2013. La biodiversidad funcional para conseguir una viticultura sostenible. Cuaderno de Campo, 51: 32-33.

Hernández, M.M.; Martínez Villar, M.E.; Pease, C.; Pérez Moreno, I; Marco Mancebón, V. 2012. Compatibility of the enthomopathogenic fungus Beauveria bassiana with flufenoxuron and azadirachtin against Tetranychus urticae. Exp. App. Acarol. 58 (4): 395-405.

Hernández, M.M.; Pérez-Moreno, I.; Menéndez, C.M. 2009. Assessment of the variability for resistance to powdery mildew in grapevine germplasm from La Rioja. Acta Horticulturae, 827: 571 – 573.