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Contributed Talk 1: The Crabtree effect and its influences on fitness of yeast populations from natural isolates

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Mustapha Amrani.

Understanding Microbial Communities; Function, Structure and Dynamics

Co-author: Thomas Pfeiffer (Massey University)

Yeasts degrade sugars in order to produce ATP . Two metabolic pathways are distinguished in ATP production: respiration and fermentation. While the respiration pathway occurs in presence of oxygen and produces up to 38 ATP to the cell, fermentation does not require oxygen but is also much less efficient (2 ATP produced by sugar converted into ethanol). Despite the low efficiency of fermentation, a certain number of yeasts species (including the brewers yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae) have the ability to ferment sugar in aerobic conditions, this in addition to the respiration pathway when sugar concentration is sufficiently high. This is known as the Crabtree effect. It remains unclear why certain yeasts exhibit an aerobic alcoholic fermentation, and one explanation to this phenomenon relies on the increase in ATP production rate, which come at the cost of the production yield. This explanation is supported by the yield/rate trade-off theory. However this theory has not yet been conclusively supported by experiments. In my talk, I will introduce novel experimental approaches that might be used to investigate the yield/rate trade-off theory under the Crabtree effect in yeast from natural isolates.

This talk is part of the Isaac Newton Institute Seminar Series series.

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