Diploid genome assembly of the Malbec grapevine cultivar enables haplotype-aware analysis of transcriptomic differences underlying clonal phenotypic variation

Calderón L, Carbonell-Bejerano P, Muñoz C, Bree L, Sola C, Bergamin D, Tulle W, Gomez-Talquenca S, Lanz C, Royo C, Ibáñez J, Martinez-Zapater JM, Weigel D, Lijavetzky D

Published: 1 December 2023 in bioRxiv
DOI: 10.1101/2023.11.30.569420

Grapevine cultivars (Vitis vinifera L. ssp. vinifera) must be clonally propagated because of their highly heterozygous genomes. Malbec, a France-originated cultivar appreciated for the production of high-quality wines, is the offspring of cultivars Prunelard and Magdeleine Noire des Charentes. Here, we have built a diploid genome assembly of Malbec, after trio binning of PacBio long reads into the two haploid complements inherited from either parent. After haplotype-aware deduplication and corrections, complete assemblies for the two haplophases were obtained with very low haplotype switch-error rate (25% of polymorphic regions. Gene annotation including RNA-seq transcriptome assembly and ab initio prediction evidence resulted in similar gene model numbers for both haplophases. The annotated diploid assembly was exploited in the transcriptomic comparison of four clonal accessions of Malbec that exhibited variation in berry composition traits. Analysis of the ripening pericarp transcriptome using either haplophases as reference yielded similar results, although some differences were observed. Particularly, among the differentially expressed genes in the Magdeleine-inherited haplotype, we observed an over-representation of hypothetically hemizygous genes. The higher berry anthocyanin content of clonal accession 595 was associated with increased abscisic acid responses, leading to overexpression of secondary metabolism genes and deregulation of genes associated to abiotic stress response. Overall, the results highlight the importance of producing diploid assemblies to fully represent the genomic diversity of highly heterozygous woody crop cultivars and to unveil the molecular bases of clonal phenotypic variation.

Agencia Nacional de Promoción Científica y Tecnológica PICT2018-02381
CONICET BIO2017-86375-R
European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme - Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant 797460
Max Planck Society no grant ID listed
Ministerio de Ciencia, Tecnología e Innovación/ Agencia Nacional de Promoción Científica y Tecnológica - CDTI IBEROGEN - Ministerio de Ciencia, Tecnología e Innovación no grant ID listed