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Physiological and transcriptomic response of Saccharomyces pastorianus to cold storage

Somani, Abhishek; Box, Wendy G.; Smart, Katherine A.; Powell, Chris D.


Wendy G. Box

Katherine A. Smart


Removal of yeast biomass at the end of fermentation, followed by a period of storage before re-inoculation into a subsequent fermentation, is common in the brewing industry. Storage is typically conducted at cold temperatures to preserve yeast quality, a practice which has unfavourable cost and environmental implications. To determine the potential for alleviating these effects, the transcriptomic and physiological response of Saccharomyces pastorianus strain W34/70 to standard (4°C) and elevated (10°C) storage temperatures was explored. Higher temperatures resulted in increased expression of genes associated with the production and mobilisation of intracellular glycogen, trehalose, glycerol and fatty acids, although these observations were limited to early stages of storage. Intracellular trehalose and glycerol concentrations were higher at 4°C than at 10°C, as a consequence of the cellular response to cold stress. However, significant changes in glycogen degradation or cellular fatty acid composition did not occur between the two sets of populations, ensuring that cell viability remained consistent. It is anticipated that this data may lead to changes in standard practice for handling yeast cultures, without compromising yeast quality. This work has significance not only for the brewing industry, but also for food and biofuel sectors requiring short term storage of liquid yeast.


Somani, A., Box, W. G., Smart, K. A., & Powell, C. D. (2019). Physiological and transcriptomic response of Saccharomyces pastorianus to cold storage. FEMS Yeast Research, 19(4), Article foz025.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Feb 18, 2019
Online Publication Date Mar 27, 2019
Publication Date 2019-06
Deposit Date Mar 28, 2019
Publicly Available Date Mar 28, 2020
Journal FEMS Yeast Research
Print ISSN 1567-1356
Electronic ISSN 1567-1364
Publisher Oxford University Press
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 19
Issue 4
Article Number foz025
Keywords Brewing, cold shock, lager yeast, membrane fluidity, repitching, yeast stress
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information This is a pre-copyedited, author-produced version of an article accepted for publication in FEMS Yeast Research following peer review. The version of record is available online at: