Anomalies in the growth kinetics of Saccharomyces cerevisiae strains in aerobic chemostat cultures

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J Indust Biotechnol 24: 231-236

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University of Cape Town

Aerobic glucose-limited chemostat cultivations were conducted with Saccharomyces cerevisiae strains NRRL Y132, ATCC 4126 and CBS 8066, using a complex medium. At low dilution rates all three strains utilised glucose oxidatively with high biomass yield coefficients, no ethanol production and very low steady-state residual glucose concentrations in the culture. Above a threshold dilution rate, respiro-fermentative (oxido-reductive) metabolism commenced, with simultaneous respiration and fermentation occurring, which is typical of Crabtree-positive yeasts. However, at high dilution rates the three strains responded differently. At high dilution rates S. cerevisiae CBS 8066 produced 7–8 g ethanol L−1 from 20 g glucose L−1 with concomitant low levels of residual glucose, which increased markedly only close to the wash-out dilution rate. By contrast, in the respiro-fermentative region both S. cerevisiae ATCC 4126 and NRRL Y132 produced much lower levels of ethanol (3–4 g L−1) than S. cerevisiae CBS 8066, concomitant with very high residual sugar concentrations, which was a significant deviation from Monod kinetics and appeared to be associated either with high growth rates or with a fermentative (or respiro-fermentative) metabolism. Supplementation of the cultures with inorganic or organic nutrients failed to improve ethanol production or glucose assimilation.