Viticulture & Enology Research Updates | Actualizaciones de investigación en viticultura y enología

Over the past five years, the Oregon Wine Board has allocated nearly $2 million of the industry’s funding to scientific research projects. Jason Tosch, OWB Director and Research Committee Chair, will provide an overview of how this important investment is informed by the priorities outlined in the OWB’s Strategic Plan for Research. He will also share how to find out more about past and current projects and how to get involved in the Research Committee’s work.

Scientists whose work has been funded through Oregon Wine Board grants share updates on their work.

View the Session Recordings

  1. Oregon Wine Board Research Update
  2. Grapevine Trunk Diseases in Oregon Vineyards: A Pilot Project on Epidemiology and Management

Impacts of Proximity of Smoke on Vineyard and Variety (funded by OWB and Erath Family Foundation)

  1. Improved Understanding of Virus Transmission and Management of Key Vector(s) Associated with Grapevine Red Blotch Virus
  2. Microscopy of Red Blotch: A Whole New Perspective for Developing Mechanistic Understanding of the Disease and its Prevention by Examining Cellular Details of the Infection
  1. Terroir and Microbiomes: Examining the Impacts of Environmental Variations and Farming Practices on Wine Grape Microbiomes
  2. Elucidating Brettanomyces Paths of Entry into the Cellar
  3. Utilizing Malolactic Fermentation as a Tool to Prevent Brettanomyces Bruxellensis Wine Spoilage

Botrytis Bunch Rot – Who, Where, When, and What to Use

Fitness Differences in QoI Resistant Grape Powdery Mildew

Determine the Role of VitviARF4, and Auxin Messenger, During the Ripening Onset

Grape Powdery Mildew

Ver las grabaciones

  1. Oregon Wine Board Research Update
  2. Grapevine Trunk Diseases in Oregon Vineyards: A Pilot Project on Epidemiology and Management

Impacts of Proximity of Smoke on Vineyard and Variety (funded by OWB and Erath Family Foundation)

  1. Improved Understanding of Virus Transmission and Management of Key Vector(s) Associated with Grapevine Red Blotch Virus
  2. Microscopy of Red Blotch: A Whole New Perspective for Developing Mechanistic Understanding of the Disease and its Prevention by Examining Cellular Details of the Infection
  1. Terroir and Microbiomes: Examining the Impacts of Environmental Variations and Farming Practices on Wine Grape Microbiomes
  2. Elucidating Brettanomyces Paths of Entry into the Cellar
  3. Utilizing Malolactic Fermentation as a Tool to Prevent Brettanomyces Bruxellensis Wine Spoilage

Speaker Bios

A native of Oregon’s Tualatin Valley, Jason Tosch has made his career farming premium quality wine grapes in the North Willamette Valley. As a member of the Oregon Wine Board of Directors Jason serves in a leadership role for the Oregon wine industry’s grape and wine research and sustainability-focused communities. Jason earned his degree in horticulture from Oregon State University.

Jason is grateful for the accelerated growth of the Oregon wine industry over the last few decades, witnessing a positive impact in our rural communities. His leadership role for the Stoller Wine Group allows him to be a part of a sustainable farming community that values the preservation of Oregon’s beautiful landscape and diverse native habitat along with its ability to push the envelope, growing some of the most amazing wines in the world—wines for his children, and generations beyond, to grow and love.

Dr. Achala KC is an assistant professor at the department of botany and plant pathology at Oregon State University. She is a plant pathologist stationed in OSU’s Southern Oregon Research and Extension Center in Central Point. She earned her master’s and Ph.D. degrees in plant pathology from North Dakota State University in Fargo and completed post-doctoral training in tree fruit pathology from the University of Florida in Gainesville. Her research programs at OSU are focused on understanding the epidemiology of tree fruit and wine grape diseases and developing integrated disease management programs. Grapevine red blotch disease and grapevine trunk diseases are her current active research areas under the wine grape disease program.
Dr. James Osborne is an associate professor and enology extension specialist in the food science and technology department at Oregon State University and a member of the Oregon Wine Research Institute. He received his Ph.D. from Washington State University in 2005 researching interactions between wine yeast and bacteria, after which he spent time in his native New Zealand working at the University of Auckland. His current research focuses on the impact of wine microorganisms on wine quality. James provides outreach programs for the Oregon wine industry such as technical workshops and seminars to aid in the transfer of relevant research results to winery application. In addition, James teaches undergraduate and graduate classes in support of the enology and viticulture program at Oregon State University.
Dr. Elizabeth Tomasino is an associate professor of enology at Oregon State University and a core member of the Oregon Wine Research Institute. At OSU her work focuses on wine sensory analysis and wine chemistry analysis, as well as teaching undergraduate and graduate enology courses. Her academic background includes microbiology, winemaking, sensory science, chemistry and food science. She earned her Ph.D. in oenology from Lincoln University in New Zealand. Besides her studies she has also worked for several wine companies including E & J Gallo, Yalumba Winery, Robert Mondavi Winery, Giesen Wine Estates and Pernod Ricard NZ. These experiences have helped fuel her interest in applied wine research. A specific area of Elizabeth’s work investigates the relationships between aroma chemical composition and sensory perception in wine, focusing on determining causation of different sensory properties. Another main area of research includes impact fo smoke exposure to grapes and wine in the vineyard.
Dr. Michael C. Qian is a full professor of flavor chemistry at Oregon State University, and a core member of Oregon Wine Research Institute. He received his BS in Chemistry from Wuhan University, MS from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota. Professor Qian’s research involves both fundamental understanding and practical application of flavor chemistry in food and beverages, focusing on wine and wine grapes. He has made significant contributions to the basic knowledge of viticultural practices on flavor and flavor precursor formation in wine grapes and the implication to wine quality, including off-flavor analysis and formation mechanisms, such as sulfur off-flavor, atypical aging, and smoke taint. He has published over 100 research papers and given over 170 technical presentations at national and international conferences. Due to his leadership in professional society and scientific contribution, he was elected as a fellow of the American Chemical Society.
Dr. Bhaskar Bondada is an associate professor of viticulture engaged in research, teaching and extension activities supporting the viticulture and enology program located at Washington State University Tri-Cities. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Arkansas in 1994. Before joining the faculty at WSU, Bhaskar did his very last postdoc at UC Davis, CA. His research focuses on grapevine physiology, with interests in both basic and applied research geared to address the wine industry’s goals. Bhaskar has published his research in a range of scholarly plant biology journals. He has delivered over 40 talks at major national and international conferences, including invited talks and seminars, and lectures at international universities. In addition to conducting research, Bhaskar is passionate about teaching viticulture classes, advises graduate students, serves on various academic and graduate committees, advises prospective students interested in viticulture and enology, and manages the teaching vineyard at the Tri-Cities campus.
Dr. Vaughn Walton serves as a leader in OSU’s horticultural pest management team in diverse integrated pest management programmatic areas. He has established a strong local and internationally recognized extramurally funded program. His work includes research in two focus areas: 1) small fruit IPM and 2) IPM of pests on tree crops. He has specifically focused on spotted-wing Drosophila, brown marmorated stink bug, mites, mealybugs, scale insects and tortricids. Vaughn employs both ecological and mechanistic information to manage these pests within a whole-system perspective.
Dr. Jeremy Weisz is a microbial ecologist in the department of biology at Linfield University. He received his Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina in 2006 and has been on the faculty at Linfield since 2010. His research focuses on understanding interactions that plants and animals have with their microbiomes, the microbes that live on and in them. He has been studying microbiomes on wine grapes since 2014, including recent projects on the impacts of farming practices on grape microbiomes, funded by the Oregon Wine Board.
Dr. Chris Curtin is an expert in fermentation microbiology, particularly the impact of yeasts on fermented beverage flavor. Prior to joining Oregon State University in 2016, Curtin led biosciences research at the Australian Wine Research Institute, where he was responsible for development of novel yeast strains and strategies to mitigate spoilage by Brettanomyces yeasts. Since joining OSU, Curtin’s laboratory uses ‘omics tools to better understand the role of yeasts and bacteria in a range of fermented beverages, such as wine, beer and kombucha, where despite harboring a core set of the same species, the outcomes are quite different.
Alex Wong received his bachelor’s degree in cell/developmental molecular biology at the University of Pittsburgh in 2016. From there he earned his master’s degree in plant pathology at Virginia Tech with Dr. Mizuho Nita, where he studied biological control of crown gall disease in grapevines. After graduating, Alex joined Walt Mahaffee’s lab as a Ph.D. student in the Oregon State University botany and plant pathology department in 2018 and currently studies fungicide resistance and integrative management of grape powdery mildew and Botrytis bunch rot.
Chelsea Newbold is a master’s student in the department of botany and plant pathology at Oregon State University, working with Dr. Walt Mahaffee. Their work focuses on understanding the fitness of QoI/FRAC 11 resistant Erysiphe necator.
Dr. Laurent Deluc is an associate professor at Oregon State University and a core faculty member of the Oregon Wine Research Institute. Laurent works on genomics and genetic engineering of grapevines. His research focuses on how genes function during plant development and in response to stress. His team has developed several research programs ranging from the control of the ripening onset in grape berries to the use of modern gene editing tools to characterize gene-to-trait relationship in the context of drought and plant pathogen interactions. Such knowledge can be used for the future development of targeted accelerated breeding in grapevines.
Dr. Walt Mahaffee is a research plant pathologist with USDA-Agriculture Research Service with a B.S. in clinical microbiology, and M.S. and Ph.D. in plant pathology from Auburn University. His team’s research spans numerous disciplines to develop sustainable methods for managing diseases of horticulture crops and has resulted in the commercial implementation of several biological control agents, disease forecasting models, and cultural practices for disease management in horticulture crops. Current projects include inoculum detection and quantification, fungicide resistance, disease forecasting and epidemiology, turbulent airflow modeling and pathogen dispersion, and pathogen ecology.