The development of new and improved grape cultivars is critical for the continuous growth of Florida’s grape and wine industry. The unit conducts research in grape genetics and system biology. The team is using both classical and molecular breeding to develop new cultivars with superior quality vinification/fresh fruit traits and high adaptability to warm and humid climate. The Center maintains the largest collection of southern muscadine and bunch grapes germplasm to support its breeding program.



Islam El-Sharkawy, Ph. D. , Assistant Professor,  Grape Genetics in Breeding, Program Lieder: (850) 599-8685 I

Ahmed Darwish, Ph.D., Research Scientist: (850) 412-7395I

Zhongbo Ren, Research Associate: (850) 412-7398 I


Pranavkumar Gajjar, Research Associate: (850)-7395 I
Michal Bennett-Smith, 
Undergraduate Research Assistant
(850) 412-7395
Research Project: "Evaluation of biochemical juice attributes and color-related traits in muscadine grape population".