Chalmers University mutates yeast growth at higher temperatures

October 6, 2014 |

In Sweden, with a simple mutation, yeast can grow in higher than normal temperatures. Researchers at Chalmers demonstrate this in an article in the scientific journal Science. The findings may result in ethanol being more effectively manufactured for vehicle fuel, as well as increase the possibility of using residual waste as a raw material.

The yeast has not been gene modified by the researchers; rather, they have used adaptive laboratory ​​evolution to produce it. The method allows new characteristics to be produced without knowing which mutations are required to achieve them.

Three yeast cultivations were subjected to a temperature of about 40 degrees. After just over three months, when over 300 generations had passed, the yeast suddenly started to grow effectively in all three cultivations. The researchers analysed the genetic structure and metabolism in three yeast strains from each cultivation. They concluded that while several different mutations had occurred in the strains, all the strains had the mutation that produced fecosterol.

 

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Category: Research

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