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Patterns of genomic and phenomic diversity in wine and table grapes


Grapes are one of the most economically and culturally important crops worldwide, and they have been bred for both winemaking and fresh consumption. Here we evaluate patterns of diversity across 33 phenotypes collected over a 17-year period from 580 table and wine grape accessions that belong to one of the world's largest grape gene banks, the grape germplasm collection of the United States Department of Agriculture. We find that phenological events throughout the growing season are correlated, and quantify the marked difference in size between table and wine grapes. By pairing publicly available historical phenotype data with genome-wide polymorphism data, we identify large effect loci controlling traits that have been targeted during domestication and breeding, including hermaphroditism, lighter skin pigmentation and muscat aroma. Breeding for larger berries in table grapes was traditionally concentrated in geographic regions where Islam predominates and alcohol was prohibited, whereas wine grapes retained the ancestral smaller size that is more desirable for winemaking in predominantly Christian regions. We uncover a novel locus with a suggestive association with berry size that harbors a signature of positive selection for larger berries. Our results suggest that religious rules concerning alcohol consumption have had a marked impact on patterns of phenomic and genomic diversity in grapes.

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