Author Topic: Dozens more types of lager possible due to yeast breeding  (Read 623 times)

Offline salmon1a

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Dozens more types of lager possible due to yeast breeding
« on: September 26, 2015, 03:58:49 PM »
Interesting work regarding new lager strains.  This article highlights new breeding done on lager yeasts performed by a group of Belgian scientists.  http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/dozens-more-types-lager-possible-6516345

Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Dozens more types of lager possible due to yeast breeding
« Reply #1 on: September 26, 2015, 04:11:28 PM »
Bummer, couldn't get the actual article to open.

Offline salmon1a

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Re: Dozens more types of lager possible due to yeast breeding
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2015, 04:14:14 PM »
I think you have to answer a couple of questions to view the article - I've got it saved as a pdf file if you can't access it.

Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Dozens more types of lager possible due to yeast breeding
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2015, 04:42:54 PM »
Can you copy and paste as a post?

Offline 69franx

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Re: Dozens more types of lager possible due to yeast breeding
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2015, 04:45:52 PM »
It opened for me. Good read but not a lot of details yet. I would say they are years away from production scale. Article seems written for beer people by non beer people. The resulting beer tasted "great" no descriptors
Frank L.
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Offline denny

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Re: Dozens more types of lager possible due to yeast breeding
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2015, 05:31:39 PM »
And I wonder what difference it will really make?  Of course, no one will know until these strains are produced and tested on a wider scale, but there's much less variation in lager yeasts than in ale yeasts.  I wonder what kind of new flavors can be produced?
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Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Dozens more types of lager possible due to yeast breeding
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2015, 05:39:56 PM »
I saw the use of the word "breed". How do you actually breed yeast? Wouldn't it be mutations,  or GMO?

Offline erockrph

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Re: Dozens more types of lager possible due to yeast breeding
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2015, 06:16:48 PM »
And I wonder what difference it will really make?  Of course, no one will know until these strains are produced and tested on a wider scale, but there's much less variation in lager yeasts than in ale yeasts. I wonder what kind of new flavors can be produced?
I'm with you on this. The great thing about all the new hop varieties coming to market is that there are all these new flavors that everyone wants to use in their beers. For lager yeasts, I can't really imagine I'd want something that produces new flavor profiles.

Now for Belgian/English/Brett/etc. strains, I'm all in.
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Re: Dozens more types of lager possible due to yeast breeding
« Reply #8 on: September 26, 2015, 06:34:32 PM »
Jim, yeast can reproduce two different ways.  The first way that a yeast cell can reproduce is by budding a new daughter cell.  The scientific term for this type of reproduction is mitosis.  Mitosis is asexual reproduction. The second type of reproduction is meiosis, or sexual reproduction.  During meiosis, a cell doubles its DNA and then splits the doubled DNA between four spores, each of which contains half of the mother cell's DNA. These spores are known as haploid cells they have half of the mother cell's chromosomes.  The four haploid cells are divided into two a cells and two α (the Greek letter for alpha) halpoid cells.  The a and α cells are basically different sexes, which means that an a cell can mate with an α cell, forming a new diploid cell, basically, the same process that happens when a sperm cell (haploid cell) fertilizes an egg (haploid cell).

Meiosis in brewing strains is rare due to the polyploid nature of brewing yeast. Many strains are triploids.  Triploid strains are basically sterile due to the difficulty of undergoing meiosis.  Tetraploid strains have an even number of sets of chromosomes, but many brewing strains are not perfect tetraploids.  They are what are known as aneuploids.  Aneuploidy in yeast means that the total number of chromsomes is not evenly divisible by 16.   The strains within the Frohberg  (allotetraploid) and Saaz (allotriploid) families of lager yeast that have been sequenced all exhibit aneuploidy. 

The lack of genetic diversity in lager yeast is due to fact that Frohberg and Saaz families are from one or two hybridization events (the number of hybridization events is a debated topic).  Many modern scientists question brewing scientists did not inadvertently discard other hybrids during the early days of pure cultures.  The differences in lager strains today are the result of selective pressure
« Last Edit: September 27, 2015, 11:06:50 PM by S. cerevisiae »

Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Dozens more types of lager possible due to yeast breeding
« Reply #9 on: September 26, 2015, 06:48:11 PM »
Awesome, thanks Mark. Slightly deep end for me, but the take away is great. I learn something every day here.