PhD student Emanuel Gaši attended a three-week training period which took place from 28th November to 16th December 2022 in the Laboratory for functional genomics, Institute for Sustainable Plant Protection, Turin, Italy. Under the guidance of PhD Giorgio Gambino, he gained knowledge on the detection and relative quantification of viruses in various grapevine tissues using real-time quantitative PCR methodology. Learned skills will be applied in further work at home Institute on real time qPCR machine which was acquired from the “MYCO GRAPE” project.

Welcome to the team!

Two other distinguished scientists joined the research team of our project: prof. Vicent Arbona and Ph.D. Miguel Gonzalez-Guzman, from Universitat Jaume I, Castello de la Plana, Spain. Their expertise is in the physiology and biochemistry of plants exposed to stressful conditions. Their focus in this project will be on the dynamics of grapevine hormones due to the interaction with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and viruses. We look forward to the newly established cooperation and expect interesting results!

European Researchers’ Night 2022

European Researchers’ Night 2022

On Friday, September 30, 2022, the European Night of Researchers was held. In Marmontova Street, visitors could discover interesting information about the microbiological world that shapes the life of the vine. We showed visitors the symptoms of vine viral diseases, mycorrhizal fungi on vine roots, and lots of other interactive content suitable for all ages.

See you next year at the Night of Researchers!

Participation in the Science Festival 2022

Our project was presented at the Science Festival 2022, whose main theme this time was – LIFE. PhD student Emanuel Gaši, mag. oecol., explained to numerous audiences in an original and interesting way how microorganisms form the pillar of life and how they are interrelated with all other organisms. The lecture “Invisible life of the Mediterranean – microorganisms as a pillar of life” is Emanuel’s first public presentation of the research topic in which he participates in this HRZZ project, we look forward to the upcoming ones …

Grafting of grapevine with virus-infected material

Before the grapevine starts to “wake up”, experts on grafting came to visit our greenhouse. They grafted our uninfected grapevines with buds of virus-infected grapevine by using the “chip budding” grafting method. The success of viral transfer will be determined in two months.

After grafting, pots were reorganized in groups containing one plant from every treatment. The pots will stay in this organization until the end of the experiment.

Determination of viral status in grapevine

We ran the RT-PCR method for the identification of viral isolates in selected grapevine plants that will be used as a viral source for our experiment. Few individuals were tested from the vineyard and we selected plants infected with only one virus (GLRaV-3) and plants that have mixed infections with five different viruses (GFkV, GVA, GLRaV-3, GLRaV-2, and GPGV). The tested grapevines will be used in the next experimental faze – infection of selected treatment with appropriate viral inoculum.

Presentation of the project: “Arbuscular mycorrhiza potential to modify grapevine defence against viruses”

As a part of the lecture series “Friday lectures at 15h” organized by the Institute for Adriatic crops, dr. sc. Tomislav Radić held a presentation of the project “Arbuscular mycorrhiza potential to modify grapevine defense against viruses” funded by the Croatian Science Foundation. Dr. Radić clarified to his audience the term “arbuscular mycorrhiza”, familiarized them with the setup of the experiment, pointed out the importance of this topic on a global and regional scale, and gave answers to many interesting questions that emerged through discussion.

Assessment of grapevine root colonization with arbuscular mychorrizal fungi

In grapevine individuals, inoculated with mychorrizal fungi Rhizophagus irregularis, the root colonization successfulness was determined. Microscopic quantification was carried out with a light microscope. We can report, with pleasure, that almost every specimen was colonized with the rate of colonization exceeding 90 %. This set of plants is ready for the next phase of the experiment.

Blue colored structures are hyphae, vesicles and arbuscules of the mychorizal fungi Rhizophagus irregularis

Methodological workshop “Determination of selected grapevine genes expression”

In the period from 19th to 22nd of September, dr. Raffaella Maria Balestrini held a methodological workshop on gene expression determination with qPCR. Using real samples, we went through all the steps necessary for successful relative quantification of gene expression. Introduction to methodology of this kind of analysis, will be of great importance for further progress of the project.