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Yeast interactions under winemaking conditions, attenuation of wine ethanol content

AuthorsMorales, Pilar ; Tronchoni, Jordi ; Rodrigues, Alda Joao; Curiel, José Antonio ; González García, Ramón
Issue Date18-Jun-2017
CitationBIOTEC 2017
AbstractSaccharomyces cerevisiae is the main yeast species involved in winemaking. However, other yeast play a relevant role in this process, including, Hanseniaspora/Kloeckera, Pichia, Candida or Metschnikowia strains, the main species during the initial stages of spontaneous grape wine fermentation. Nowadays oenologists are trying to recover some of the fragrances of traditional wines by gathering together the advantages of microbiological control and those of the metabolic diversity of natural fermentation, by developing yeast starters from wine yeast species alternative to S. cerevisiae (collectively known as non-Saccharomyces in the field). These starters are used in combination with conventional S. cerevisiae starters to ensure complete sugar fermentation. Physiological and ecological interactions between the different yeast species and strains acquire a high relevance under this new scenario. In this context, our research group is exploring and exploiting the metabolic diversity of non-Saccharomyces wine yeasts to address one of the major current challenges of the winemaking industry, especially in warm climate wine producing regions, the steady increase in ethanol content of wines experienced over the last 30 years. This problem is related to global climate changes, as well as new wine stiles, both contributing to increasing sugar content of grapes at harvest. Our approach consists in using selected strains of, preferably, Crabtree negative yeast species, and controlled aeration during the first stages of fermentation, in order to favour sugar consumption by respiratory metabolism, rather than by fermentation. Final alcohol content of wine is reduced in the same percentage as that of sugar consumed by this pathway. Development of such alternative wine fermentation procedures requires a better understanding of factors affecting respiro-fermentative balance in different wine yeast species, the impact of environmental factors on acetic acid production (the major potential drawback of oxygenation), competition of different starters for scarce nutrients (nitrogen and vitamins), or chemical oxidation of quality related wine components. In addition, we are using transcriptomic approaches to elucidate some of the mechanisms underlying wine yeast inter-specific interactions. Our findings indicate that S. cerevisiae responds to the presence of yeasts belonging to other species by further activating its already quick sugar consumption pathways2 . In addition, nitrogen catabolite repression seems to be partially relieved (higher expression of genes under the control of Gln3p; see Figure 1), apparently helping balance sugar and nitrogen consumption for biomass production. The nitrogen utilization response of S. cerevisiae, is stronger for yeasts showing a closer phylogenetic relationship. At least in the case of Torulaspora delbrueckii, there is a reciprocal response in terms of the activation of glucose consuming pathways. However, this response is delayed, as compared to S. cerevisiae.
DescriptionTrabajo presentado en el Congreso Nacional de Biotecnología (BIOTEC), celebrado en Murcia (España), del 18 al 21 de junio de 2017.
Appears in Collections:(ICVV) Comunicaciones congresos
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