Department of Wine & Food Science, University of Adelaide, Glen Osmond, South Australia 5064, Australia; Australian Research Council Industrial Transformation Training Centre for Innovative Wine Production, Glen Osmond, South Australia 5064, Australia. Electronic address: [Email]
Wine fermentations typically involve the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. However, many other yeast species participate to the fermentation process, some with interesting oenological traits. In this study the species Torulaspora delbrueckii, used occasionally in mixed or sequential fermentation with S. cerevisiae to improve wine sensory profile, was investigated to understand the physiological differences between the two. Next generation sequencing was used to characterize the transcriptome of T. delbrueckii and highlight the different genomic response of these yeasts during growth under wine-like conditions. Of particular interest were the basic differences in the glucose fermentation pathway and the formation of aromatic and flavour compounds such as glycerol, esters and acetic acid. Paralog genes were missing in glycolysis and glycerol biosynthesis in T. delbrueckii. Results indicate the tendency of T. delbrueckii to produce less acetic acid relied on a higher expression of alcoholic fermentation related genes, whereas acetate esters were influenced by the absence of esterases, ATF1-2. Additionally, in the Δbap2 S. cerevisiae strain, the final concentration of short branched chain ethyl esters (SBCEEs) was related to branched chain amino acid (BCAA) uptake. In conclusion, different adaption strategies are apparent for T. delbrueckii and S. cerevisiae yeasts, an understanding of which will allow winemakers to make better use of such microbial tools to achieve a desired wine sensory outcome.