Navigation Links
Novel gene increases yeast's appetite for plant sugars
Date:7/26/2011

MADISON For thousands of years, bakers and brewers have relied on yeast to convert sugar into alcohol and carbon dioxide. Yet, University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers eager to harness this talent for brewing biofuels have found when it comes to churning through sugars, these budding microbes can be picky eaters.

Published online this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, a Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center team identified several new genes that improve yeast's ability to use xylose, a five-carbon sugar that can make up nearly half of available plant sugars. If researchers can coax yeast into using most of these sugars, they can improve the efficiency of producing renewable fuels from biomass crops like corn stover or switchgrass.

"Strains of yeast that are currently used for biofuel production convert xylose to ethanol slowly and inefficiently, and only do so after all the glucose is exhausted," says the study's lead author Dana Wohlbach, a postdoctoral researcher at UW-Madison. "For industrial purposes, the faster a yeast can consume the sugars, the better, since more sugar consumption means more ethanol."

The team partnered with the Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute and sequenced the genomes of two types of fungi that reside in the habitats of bark beetles. Since woody biomass like bark contains a lot of xylose, these fungi were well adapted at using this type of sugar to both grow and also provide nutrients for the beetles.

Applying the power of comparative genomics to fungal ecology, scientists were able to rapidly identify genes that have potential for improving biomass conversion.

"By comparing the genome sequences and expression patterns of many yeasts rather than just looking at one we were able to identify elements common to all xylose-fermenting yeasts, and elements absent from non-xylose fermenting yeasts," says Wohlbach.

The team then introduced several genes into S. cerevisiae, which cannot normally consume xylose. By introducing one gene in particular, named CtAKR, the researchers significantly increased xylose consumption, an important step for economic biofuel production from plant material.

"This research has provided us with a great genomic toolset," says Wohlbach. "We're excited to explore new ways to increase yeast's ability to consume xylose and improve ethanol production for cellulosic biofuels."


'/>"/>

Contact: Margaret Broeren
mbroeren@glbrc.wisc.edu
608-890-2168
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Scientists identify novel inhibitor of human microRNA
2. Conaway Lab identifies novel mechanism for regulation of gene expression
3. LIAI launches new division to look at novel approaches to heart disease and inflammation
4. Childrens National researchers develop novel anti-tumor vaccine
5. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory scientists trace a novel way cells are disrupted in cancer
6. Novel publishing approach puts textbook in more hands
7. GEN reports on novel tools for deciphering biological networks
8. UT Southwestern researcher awarded Gates Foundation grant for novel vaccine development
9. 3-substituted indolones as novel therapeutic compounds for neurodegenerative conditions
10. Corn researchers discover novel gene shut-off mechanisms
11. A novel target for therapeutics against Staph infection
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/3/2016)... Sweden , February 4, 2016 --> ... amounted to SEK 1,351.5 M (105.0), up 1,187% compared with fourth quarter ... profit amounted to SEK 517.6 M (loss: 30.0). Earnings per ... operating activities was SEK 537.4 M (neg: 74.7). , ... , Revenues amounted to SEK 2,900.5 M (233.6), up 1,142% compared ...
(Date:2/2/2016)... , Feb. 2, 2016 This BCC ... bioinformatic market by reviewing the recent advances in ... that drive the field forward. Includes forecast through ... Identify the challenges and opportunities that exist in ... software solution developers, as well as IT and ...
(Date:2/1/2016)... Canada , February 1, 2016 ... technological advancements to drive global touchfree intuitive gesture control ... --> Rising sales of consumer electronics coupled ... gesture control market size through ... consumer electronics coupled with new technological advancements to drive ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/5/2016)... , Feb. 5, 2016 Australian-US drug discovery and ... today the appointment of a new Chairman, Mr John ... , effective immediately. James Garner , has ... Director and former Acting CEO, Mr Iain Ross , ... Director. --> James Garner , has also been ...
(Date:2/4/2016)... , ... February 04, 2016 ... ... presented by Bloomsburg University’s Digital Forensics Club, takes place February 5-6 at ... event features 20+ speakers and activities such as workshops and competitions for ...
(Date:2/4/2016)... , Feb. 4, 2016 ContraVir Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ... the development and commercialization of targeted antiviral therapies, announced ... Investor Conference 2016, to be held February 8-9, 2016, ... Group,s 2016 Disruptive Growth & Healthcare Conference, taking place ... 10-11, 2016. James Sapirstein , Chief Executive ...
(Date:2/4/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... February 04, 2016 , ... Many of ... for over 10 years. What sets them apart from other cuvette manufacturers is ... posted on their website. On top of this steady flow of inside information, ...
Breaking Biology Technology: