Researchers map Corvina DNA, revealing unique genes that make the variety ideal for dried-grape wines

According to a report circulated today by the Italian media, researchers at the University of Verona have completed mapping of the DNA contained in the Corvina grape variety, the main grape utilized in the production of wines from Valpolicella, including dried-grape wines Amarone and Recioto. The decoding marks the first time ever, according to the report, that DNA has been mapped for an indigenous Italian grape variety.

Researchers Massimo Delledonne and Mario Pezzotti were able to confirm what they already suspected: the Corvina grape contains genes that become active when the fruit is exposed to “hypo-hydraulic stress,” i.e., water deprivation during the drying process (called appasimento in Italian). These genes, which are absent in other red grapes like Pinot Noir, help to create and preserve the characteristic aromas and flavors of Amarone as the berries are dried.

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One thought on “Researchers map Corvina DNA, revealing unique genes that make the variety ideal for dried-grape wines

  1. Very interesting; was there more detail as to what grapes Corvina may have originated from or are the “parent” grape? It will be quite intersting to see the genetic tree of grape varieties such as these once more DNA coding is complete.

    (side note: I believe appassimento has two s’s, but I am not fluent in Italian)

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