Physiological diversity and trehalose accumulation in Schizosaccharomyces pombe strains isolated from spontaneous fermentations during the production of the artisanal Brazilian cachaça

Can J Microbiol. 2002 May;48(5):399-406. doi: 10.1139/w02-032.


Twenty-seven Schizosaccharomyces pombe isolates from seven cachaça distilleries were tested for maximum temperature of growth and fermentation, osmotolerance, ethanol resistance, invertase production, and trehalose accumulation. Two isolates were selected for studies of trehalose accumulation under heat shock and ethanol stress. The S. pombe isolates were also characterized by RAPD-PCR. The isolates were able to grow and ferment at 41 degrees C, resisted concentrations of 10% ethanol, and grew on 50% glucose medium. Four isolates yielded invertase activity of more than 100 micromol of reducing sugar x mg(-1) x min(-1). The S. pombe isolates were able to accumulate trehalose during stationary phase. Two isolates, strains UFMG-A533 and UFMG-A1000, submitted to a 15 min heat shock, were able to accumulate high trehalose levels. Strain UFMG-A533 had a marked reduction in viability during heat shock, but strain UFMG-A1000 preserved a viability rate of almost 20% after 15 min at 48 degrees C. No clear correlation was observed between trehalose accumulation and cell survival during ethanol stress. Strain UFMG-A1000 had higher trehalose accumulation levels than strain UFMG-A533 under conditions of combined heat treatment and ethanol stress. Molecular analysis showed that some strains are maintained during the whole cachaça production period; using the RAPD-PCR profiles, it was possible to group the isolates according to their isolation sites.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Alcoholic Beverages / microbiology*
  • Brazil
  • DNA, Fungal / analysis
  • Fermentation
  • Glycoside Hydrolases / metabolism
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Random Amplified Polymorphic DNA Technique
  • Saccharum / metabolism*
  • Saccharum / microbiology*
  • Schizosaccharomyces / classification*
  • Schizosaccharomyces / genetics
  • Schizosaccharomyces / metabolism
  • Schizosaccharomyces / physiology*
  • Trehalose / metabolism*
  • beta-Fructofuranosidase


  • DNA, Fungal
  • Trehalose
  • Glycoside Hydrolases
  • beta-Fructofuranosidase