Genetic stabilization of Saccharomyces cerevisiae oenological strains by using benomyl
Keywords:Saccharomyces cerevisiae, benomyl, ploidy, sporulation, wine production
AbstractWild-type oenological strains of Saccharomyces cerevisiae are usually aneuploid and heterozygotes; thus, when they are used as starters in must fermentation the resulting wine characteristics may vary from year to year. Treatment of a wild-type S. cerevisiae oenological strain with benomyl (methyl-l-butylcarbamoyl-2-benzimidazole carbamate), an antifungal agent shown to cause chromosome loss in yeasts, resulted in a stable starter strain in which the parental oenological traits were unchanged. The oenological S. cerevisiae strain was treated with benomyl in two different ways (A and B), and sporulation ability and spore viability were subsequently assayed. Treatment A resulted in both the highest numbers of tetrads and a reduction in DNA cell content, while treatment B increased spore viability. Fermentation assays were carried out with spore clones obtained from treatment A, and the concentrations of glycerol, lactic acid, acetic acid, and ethanol resulting from the treated strains were found to be similar to those of the parental strain. Benomyl treatment thus achieved stable, highly sporulating oenological S. cerevisiae strains of low ploidy, but preserved the desirable oenological properties of the parental strain.
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