Project 5.1.4

International scientific exchange program

Project summary

This project builds on the many formal and informal collaborations occurring between the AWRI and scientists in other countries to formalise institution-level links, facilitate data exchange on pre-competitive topics, develop joint projects and encourage world-class scientists to conduct sabbaticals at the AWRI.

Latest information

The BAG Alliance
The BAG Alliance is a trilateral partnership with L’lnstitut des Sciences de la Vigne et du Vin (ISVV) in Bordeaux, France, the AWRI and Hochschule Geisenheim (HSG), that aims to enhance research capability, accelerate research and improve the quality of technical outcomes for the wine industry.

As part of BAG Alliance activities, the AWRI participates in key PhD research projects with the alliance partners in Bordeaux and Geisenheim:

  • PhD research by Marta Avramova into the comparative and functional genomics of Dekkera (Brettanomyces) bruxellensis wine isolates from Australia, France and Germany commenced in 2015 in Bordeaux. The AWRI has provided DNA sequencing data, and a PhD student placement at the AWRI has been planned for six months from mid-2016.
  • To complement trials into climate change impacts on Riesling wine undertaken at Hochschule Geisenheim, the AWRI established in 2014/2015 a field trial into light and temperature effects in Riesling. The first grape samples were collected during the 2014/2015 growing season for metabolite profiling, and the results so far demonstrate significant impacts of light exposure of the bunch zone on grape composition and wine flavour.
  • ISVV in Bordeaux appointed in 2015 a PhD student, Jing Wu, to study climate change effects in Cabernet Sauvignon. Jing Wu has visited the AWRI to facilitate the establishment of a field experiment in the Barossa Valley for the 2015/2016 growing season, and to undertake training in metabolomics.

Collaboration in grape and wine metabolomics with Fondazione Edmund Mach, Italy
This project involves a comparison of the performance of non-targeted metabolomics profiling methods developed at the AWRI with specific HPLC-MS methods for the targeted quantification of common phenolic compounds. Results to date demonstrate that a much broader range of compounds in grape and wine samples can be detected and quantified through non-targeted metabolomics profiling. As part of the project metabolite profiles of Italian and Australian Shiraz and Pinot Noir grape and wine samples have also been established, and the results highlighted metabolites that are common or specific for either variety and related to the country of origin. This work also helped identify grape metabolites which undergo transformations during winemaking.

Knowledge exchange programs with European research networks
To facilitate the exchange of knowledge with European research networks, the AWRI is a member of the Oenodoc/Oenoviti International program, the Innovine – Innovation in the vineyard program, and is affiliated with the MicroWine Training Network.

Project Team

Dan Johnson
Markus Herderich