Author Topic: Lager yeast came from Patagonia  (Read 922 times)

Offline yso191

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Offline chezteth

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Re: Lager yeast came from Patagonia
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2014, 09:35:47 AM »
Interesting article. Thanks for sharing. It's amazing how something like yeast can travel so far.

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Re: Lager yeast came from Patagonia
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2014, 09:41:28 AM »
A couple years back, this was the topic at the BJCP luncheon at NHC.  Fascinating stuff.
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Offline S. cerevisiae

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Re: Lager yeast came from Patagonia
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2014, 01:55:50 PM »
It's a bit of stretch, but I like your subject line.  In reality, Saccharomyces pastorianus (a.k.a. lager yeast) is a hybrid of which one of the parents is an almost perfect match for the yeast species found in Patagonia; namely, Saccharomyces eubaynanus.  The other parent is a yet to be identified strain of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. 
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Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: Lager yeast came from Patagonia
« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2014, 11:35:47 AM »
I remember an earlier article discussing this.  I am not sure that I follow the "parent" strain concept - is it genetic drift or some other genetic combination presumably going on?
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Re: Lager yeast came from Patagonia
« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2014, 11:55:12 AM »
I remember an earlier article discussing this.  I am not sure that I follow the "parent" strain concept - is it genetic drift or some other genetic combination presumably going on?

there are times when yeast reproduce sexually rather than simply dividing. I do not understand how this works but I am told it does.
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Offline narcout

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Re: Lager yeast came from Patagonia
« Reply #6 on: April 25, 2014, 12:54:09 PM »
I remember an earlier article discussing this.  I am not sure that I follow the "parent" strain concept - is it genetic drift or some other genetic combination presumably going on?

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2556262/

Offline S. cerevisiae

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Re: Lager yeast came from Patagonia
« Reply #7 on: April 25, 2014, 02:42:00 PM »
Yes, Saccharomyces pastorianus (S. pastorianus or simply lager yeast) is the result of sexual reproduction.  S. pastorianus is an interspecies hybrid.   At the moment, one parent appears to be the Patagonian yeast species Saccharomyces eubayanus (S. eubayanus).  The other parent is a yet to be identified strain of Saccharomyces cerevisiae (S. cerevisiae or simply ale, baker’s, or wine yeast) that was more than likely already used in brewing in Europe.

Most yeast cell reproduction is asexual via budding.  Reproduction via budding is a biological process known as mitosis.  During mitosis, a complete copy of the parent cell’s genome is passed to the child cell.  In effect, the child cell is a clone of the parent cell.   However, in sexual reproduction, a biological process known as meiosis occurs.  Meiosis is a type of cell division that results in child cells that only possess half of their parent's genome.  These cells are what are known as haploid cells, meaning that they only have one set of chromosomes.  Put into human reproductive terms, sperm cells and eggs are haploid cells, each of which contains one set of twenty-three chromosomes.  When a sperm cell and an egg combine, they produce a diploid cell that contains two sets of twenty-three chromosomes.   In the case of yeast cells, haploid yeast cells contain sixteen chromosomes whereas diploid yeast cells contain two sets of sixteen chromosomes.

Now, what is really interesting about an interspecies hybrid brewing yeast strain like S. pastorianus is that it is almost a complete freak of nature.  Most brewing strains are polyploids that either do not sporulate or sporulate poorly.  Polyploids are cells that contain more than two sets of chromosomes, with most brewing strains falling into the triploid (three sets of chromosome) and tetraploid (four sets of chromosomes) classifications.  To further complicate matters, a condition known as aneuploidy is very common in brewing strains.  Aneuploidy is the result of the loss or addition of a chromosome that results in the total number of chromosomes not being a multiple of 16.  Down Syndrome is an example of aneuploidy in humans.  Children with Down Syndrome have an extra copy of chromosome 21 (i.e., children with Down Syndrome have 47 chromosomes instead of 46).

With that said, what I find completely fascinating about S. pastorianus is that the Saaz and the Frohberg families are polyploids.  The latest research from Carlsberg Laboratory hypothesizes that the Saaz strains are triploids (a.k.a. allotriploids) with one set of S. cerevisiae chromosomes and two sets of  S. eubayanus chromosomes whereas Frohberg strains are tetraploids (a.k.a. allotetraploids) with two sets of S. cerevisiae chromosomes and two sets of  S. eubayanus chromosomes.  This research also points to a single hybridization event instead of two separate events.  The research group at Carlsberg believes that the loss of the S. cerevisiae genetic contribution in the Saaz family is the result of environmental stress.  Their hypothesis is that Danish and Czech brewers historically fermented at lower temperatures than German and the Dutch brewers.  The use of lower primary fermentation temperatures resulted in the loss of S. cerevisiae genes, as S. pastorianus inherited its cold tolerance genes from S. eubayanus

http://www.g3journal.org/content/early/2014/02/26/g3.113.010090.full.pdf
« Last Edit: April 25, 2014, 04:59:07 PM by S. cerevisiae »
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Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: Lager yeast came from Patagonia
« Reply #8 on: April 26, 2014, 06:58:19 AM »
Thank you for the citation to the studies.  They were interesting, if not outright over my head in terms of the process description, but the discussion I found very engaging and understandable.  I wonder if we are at risk of losing current lager strains, if certain polyploids are in a process of shedding unnecessary S. Cerevisiae attributes over time.  I would think not, given the Wyeast and White Labs production facilities and capabilities, but from a paradigm perspective, it sounds like an evolutionary shift is occurring as a result of the advent of refrigeration.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Lager yeast came from Patagonia
« Reply #9 on: April 26, 2014, 10:47:40 AM »
A couple years back, this was the topic at the BJCP luncheon at NHC.  Fascinating stuff.
I found it interesting that the yeast are found in tree bark. Presentation is here.
http://www.bjcp.org/docs/LagerYeast.pdf
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Re: Lager yeast came from Patagonia
« Reply #10 on: April 26, 2014, 04:06:49 PM »
From what I understand, Saccharomyces ebayanus (S. eubayanus) is found in galls that grow on beech trees in Patagonia.   




The interesting thing about S. ebayanus growing on galls on beech trees is that beech was traditionally used as a clarifier during cold conditioning.  It is not a far stretch to assume that S. ebayanus hitched a ride to Europe during the Columbian Exchange.   One of the greatest ecological disasters in the history of mankind was the result of a microorganism hitching a ride on a tree.  Four billion American chestnut trees were killed by a tree pathogen that hitched a ride to the United States on Asian chestnut trees (Asian chestnut trees are resistent to the pathogen).   The American chestnut tree was once the major canopy tree on the East Coast. It was known as the East Cost redwood.   The pathogen is still alive and well in East Coast forests.




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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Lager yeast came from Patagonia
« Reply #11 on: April 26, 2014, 05:48:31 PM »
From what I understand, Saccharomyces ebayanus (S. eubayanus) is found in galls that grow on beech trees in Patagonia.   




The interesting thing about S. ebayanus growing on galls on beech trees is that beech was traditionally used as a clarifier during cold conditioning.  It is not a far stretch to assume that S. ebayanus hitched a ride to Europe during the Columbian Exchange.   One of the greatest ecological disasters in the history of mankind was the result of a microorganism hitching a ride on a tree.  Four billion American chestnut trees were killed by a tree pathogen that hitched a ride to the United States on Asian chestnut trees (Asian chestnut trees are resistent to the pathogen).   The American chestnut tree was once the major canopy tree on the East Coast. It was known as the East Cost redwood.   The pathogen is still alive and well in East Coast forests.
American chestnuts were large at the trunk and only about 100 ft high. One salient feature was the large lower limbs that spread far out, so that one tree could cover almost and acre ('under the spreading chestnut tree the village smithy stands'). They were the climax tree of the eastern forest. I was surprised to find that there are still some left in Michigan.

In my lifetime I have seen the Elms decimated by Dutch Elm disease, and the Ash trees almost wiped out in MI by the Emerald Ash Borer. One unintended consequence of global commerce.
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Offline S. cerevisiae

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Re: Lager yeast came from Patagonia
« Reply #12 on: April 27, 2014, 10:54:54 AM »
The American chestnut is a tree that is near and dear to my heart. I grew American chestnut trees for ten years before the blight finally took its toll on the last survivors (these trees survived heavy browsing by deer when they were young).  I grew the trees shown below from seedlings acquired from the American Chestnut Cooperators Foundation (ACCF), which is a different organization than the American Chestnut Foundation (ACF).  The ACCF is attempting to breed blight resistant trees from the survivors.  The ACF is breeding a hybrid that is mostly American Chestnut.   The introduction of hypovirulence (a virus that renders C. parasitica non-lethal) is helping to control C. parasitica infections, but  I am hoping to see a genetically-engineered tree that is 100% American Chestnut except for the insertion of the blight resistance genes in my lifetime.  Most Americans alive today have never eaten an American chestnut.  They taste much better than the Chinese and hybrid chestnuts that one can purchase in a grocery store.   

My grove with burrs (notice the dead trees)



A closeup shot of American chestnut burrs   



One of my American chestnut trees with a C. parasitica infection



A closeup shot of the infection



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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Lager yeast came from Patagonia
« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2014, 11:03:53 PM »
I am hoping to see a genetically-engineered tree that is 100% American Chestnut except for the insertion of the blight resistance genes in my lifetime.
Do you know of anyone working on it?  That is a relatively straightforward thing to do, the trick is identifying the necessary genes.
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Re: Lager yeast came from Patagonia
« Reply #14 on: May 01, 2014, 10:43:20 AM »
Dr. William Powell at SUNY-ESF has been working on a transgenic tree for quite some time. 

http://www.esf.edu/efb/powell/research.html


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