Latest research from the Fuchs lab: GRBV and WVV1 in wild grapevines throughout California, but not New York!

Congratulations to Libby on her research article published in Plant Disease! This research is the result of collaborative research involving extension experts from throughout New York State and California. Grabloviruses, grapevine red blotch virus and wild Vitis virus 1 were found in California wild vines in higher abundance closer to vineyards. Genetic diversity of GRBV and WVV1 isolates from wild vines and the spatial proximity of infected vines to commercial grape production suggest that GRBV is moving predominantly from cultivated to wild vines, rather than the opposite. However, wild vines may still serve as a source of inoculum for GRBV near vineyards. Good news for New York- GRBV and WVV1 were not found in any wild vines from NY state.

Libby Cieniewicz and Keith Perry locating and collecting wild grapevine samples in California.

Thank you to everyone involved in this research!

Marc to serve as next President of ICVG

Congratulations to Marc Fuchs on becoming the 3rd President of the International Council for the Study of Virus and Virus-like Diseases of the Grapevine (ICVG). At the 19th meeting of ICVG in Santiago, Chile April 9-12, 2018, Professor Giovanni Martelli handed the torch to Marc as the next leader of ICVG.

It is a testament to Marc’s commitment to and excellence in grapevine virology research and as a worldwide leader in the field. The members of Fuchs lab are very proud and excited for the future of ICVG! Congratulations, Marc!


Fuchs and Perry labs fulfill Koch’s postulates for grapevine red blotch virus as the causal agent of red blotch disease

To address the etiological role of GRBV in the recently recognized red blotch disease of grapevine, infectious GRBV clones were engineered from the genome of each of the two previously identified phylogenetic clades for Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated inoculations of tissue culture-grown Vitis spp. plants. Following agroinoculation and one or two dormancy cycles, systemic GRBV infection was detected by multiplex PCR in V. vinifera exhibiting foliar disease symptoms but not in asymptomatic vines.  Altogether, our agroinoculation and therapeutic experiments fulfilled Koch’s postulates and revealed the causative role of GRBV in red blotch disease.

Read more here!

Red blotch disease symptoms on Vitis vinifera cv. Cabernet Sauvignon (left) and asymptomatic control plant (right) in a growth chamber three months post-agroinoculation with GRBV and the empty vector control, respectively.


Graduate student outreach for plant science

Libby Cieniewicz and Larissa Osterbaan, among other SIPS-PPPMB graduate students, led efforts to conduct outreach with elementary school students at Northeast Elementary School in Ithaca, NY. Read more on the SIPS blog here

Libby Cieniewicz and Bill Weldon engage 5th graders in the purpose of the epidermis, gas exchange, and photosynthesis. Trandescantia plants make beautiful models for viewing epidermis cells and guard cells.