Exploring the potential of comparative de novo transcriptomics to classify Saccharomyces brewing yeasts

Jürgen Behr, Meike Kliche, Andreas Geißler, Rudi F. Vogel

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1 Scopus citations


In this work the potential of comparative transcriptomics was explored of Saccharomyces (S.) cerevisiae and S. pastorianus for their discrimination. This way an alternative should be demonstrated to comparative genomics, which can be difficult as a result of their aneuoploid genomes composed of mosaics of the parental genomes. Strains were selected according to their application in beer brewing, i.e. top and bottom fermenting yeasts. Comparative transcriptomics was performed for four strains each of commercially available S. cerevisiae (top fermenting) and Saccharomyces pastorianus (bottom fermenting) brewing yeasts grown at two different temperatures to mid-exponential growth phase. A non-reference based approach was chosen in the form of alignment against a de novo assembled brewery-associated pan transcriptome to exclude bias introduced by manual selection of reference genomes. The result is an analysis workflow for self-contained comparative transcriptomics of Saccharomyces yeasts including, but not limited to, the analysis of core and accessory gene expression, functional analysis and metabolic classification. The functionality of this workflow is demonstrated along the principal differentiation of accessory transcriptomes of S. cerevisiae versus S. pastorianus strains. Hence, this work provides a concept enabling studies under different brewing conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0238924
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number9 September 2020
StatePublished - Sep 2020


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