Yeast gene map could save live and better beer and wine!

February 12, 2009

(ChattahBox) — After all the wasteful studies research, science has discovered something completely worthwhile for society: how to make better beer and wine. Oh yeah and the research might help fight disease to in the future.

Researchers have mapped the DNA of dozens of strains of yeast used for brewing, baking and biofuels, Ed Louis of the University of Nottingham in Britain and colleagues reported in the journal Nature.
Yeast has long been used as a model for studying cancer, ageing and diseases like Alzheimer’s in humans because many of its genes are similar to ours. It also has as many genetic variations as human DNA, the researchers said.

The team mapped the genes of more than 70 strains of yeast used around the world for baking bread, brewing beer and making wine. They also looked at wild strains found in oak bark.

Because the genetic map of yeast is much smaller than the human genome, the researchers were able to more quickly and cheaply map all the genetic differences in many different strains, Louis said.

This also means brewers can pick the best strains to make beer with more flavour or perhaps help vintners bottle wine that lasts longer after opening, .

“We now have a view of the variation across the entire species, which will allow us to make better combinations for better uses of things like beer and wine,” Louis said in a telephone interview.

“I’m going to be using it to create better strains for biofuel production.”


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