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Flavor Genes in Yeast Undergo CRISPR Grafting to Produce Rosier Wines, More Honied Beers

05:57 EST 8 Nov 2017 | Genetic Engineering News

A delicate hint of rose or honey, so welcome in wine and beer, greets our taste buds thanks to a flavor compound called phenylethyl acetate, or 2-PEAc. It has long been known to be produced in greater or lesser measure by different yeast strains, but exactly why some yeast strains generated more phenylethyl acetate, and produced superior alcoholic beverages, has been a mystery. No longer. The specific yeast genes that produce higher levels of the prized flavor molecule have been identified by scientists at the Center for Microbiology at VIB, in Belgium. These scientists used “applied pooled-segregant whole-genome sequence analysis” to find four quantitative trait loci (QTLs) responsible for high production of phenylethyl acetate. QTLs are swaths of DNA that contain multiple genes but only one causative gene. To go deeper, to identify the causative alleles, the scientists made use of CRISPR/Cas9 gene-editing technology. Details of this ...

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Bioinformatics is the application of computer software and hardware to the management of biological data to create useful information. Computers are used to gather, store, analyze and integrate biological and genetic information which can then be applied...