Characteristic features of the unique house sake yeast strain Saccharomyces cerevisiae Km67 used for industrial sake brewing.

Research paper by Yoshifumi Y Takao, Toshinari T Takahashi, Tasuku T Yamada, Tetsuya T Goshima, Atsuko A Isogai, Kazuo K Sueno, Tsutomu T Fujii, Takeshi T Akao

Indexed on: 10 Jun '18Published on: 10 Jun '18Published in: Journal of bioscience and bioengineering


For several decades, almost all sake has been brewed with sake yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae Kyokai no. 7 (K7) group strains. Although the widespread use of these strains has contributed to sake quality improvement, it may have lessened the diversity of sake gustatory properties brought about by house sake yeast (indigenous yeast of sake brewery). Sake yeast S. cerevisiae strain Km67 derives from the house yeast strain of Kiku-masamune Sake Brewing Co., Ltd., and it has been playing a central role in industrial sake brewing for decades. By using DNA sequencing, we revealed that strain Km67 does not possess specific loss-of-function mutations of stress response-related genes, which are characteristic of K7 group strains. Km67 had higher stress tolerance than K7 group strains likely because of the more efficient function of the stress response and heat shock elements in this strain. Sensory evaluation and taste sensor analysis demonstrated that sake brewed with Km67 had characteristically thicker body than sake brewed with K7 group strains. Chemical analysis suggested that unique sensory properties of the sake brewed with Km67 were due to high citramalic acid concentration. Taken together, these results revealed that strain Km67 differs from K7 group strains by genetic background and confers unique chemical composition and taste qualities upon sake it generates. It is expected that sake quality and gustatory properties will be diversified by utilizing house yeast such as strain Km67. Copyright © 2018 The Society for Biotechnology, Japan. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.