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Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2008 Jan;77(5):1093-109. Epub 2007 Oct 16.

Acetaldehyde addition throughout the growth phase alleviates the phenotypic effect of zinc deficiency in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

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  • 1UMR 1083 Sciences pour l'oenologie, INRA, 2 place Viala, 34060, Montpellier Cedex 1, France.


During experiments to determine the effects of exogenously added acetaldehyde on pure cultures of various yeast strains, we discovered that an early acetaldehyde perfusion during the growth phase allowed several yeasts to partially overcome the phenotypic effects of zinc depletion during alcoholic fermentation. We, therefore, performed genome-wide expression and proteomic analysis on an industrial Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast strain (VL1) growing in zinc-replete or zinc-depleted conditions in the presence of perfused acetaldehyde to identify molecular markers of this effect. Zinc depletion severely affects ethanol production and therefore nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) regeneration, although we observed partial compensation by the upregulation of the poorly efficient Fe-dependent Adh4p in our conditions. A coordinate metabolic response was indeed observed in response to the early acetaldehyde perfusion, and particularly of the lower part of glycolysis, leading to the cellular replenishment of NAD cofactor. These various findings suggest that acetaldehyde exchange between strains may inhibit the growth of some yeast strains while encouraging the growth of others. This phenomenon could be particularly important for understanding the ecology of colonization of complex fermentation media by S. cerevisiae after elimination of non-Saccharomyces yeasts.

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