Generation of New Genotypic and Phenotypic Features in Artificial and Natural Yeast Hybrids

Walter P. Pfliegler1, Lea Atanasova2, Edina Karanyicz1, Matthias Sipiczki1,
Ursula Bond3, Irina S. Druzhinina2, Katja Sterflinger4 and Ksenija Lopandic4*

Department of Genetics and Applied Microbiology, University of Debrecen, Egyetem tér 1,
H-4032 Debrecen, Hungary

Research Area Biotechnology and Microbiology, Institute of Chemical Engineering,
Vienna University of Technology, Gumpendorferstrasse 1a, A-1060 Vienna, Austria

The School of Genetics and Microbiology, Trinity College, College Green, Dublin 2, Ireland

4VIBT-BOKU, University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences,
Department of Biotechnology, Muthgasse 11, A-1190 Vienna, Austria

Article history:

Received March 29, 2013

Accepted September 23, 2013

Key words:

Saccharomyces cerevisiae, S. uvarum, S. kudriavzevii, yeast interspecies hybrids, AFLP, karyotyping


Evolution and genome stabilization have mostly been studied on the Saccharomyces hybrids isolated from natural and alcoholic fermentation environments. Genetic and phenotypic properties have usually been compared to the laboratory and reference strains, as the true ancestors of the natural hybrid yeasts are unknown. In this way the exact impact of different parental fractions on the genome organization or metabolic activity of the hybrid yeasts is difficult to resolve completely. In the present work the evolution of geno- and phenotypic properties is studied in the interspecies hybrids created by the cross-breeding of S. cerevisiae with S. uvarum or S. kudriavzevii auxotrophic mutants. We hypothesized that the extent of genomic alterations in S. cerevisiae × S. uvarum and S. cerevisiae × S. kudriavzevii should affect the physiology of their F1 offspring in different ways. Our results, obtained by amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) genotyping and karyotyping analyses, showed that both subgenomes of the S. cerevisiae x S. uvarum and of S. cerevisiae × S. kudriavzevii hybrids experienced various modifications. However, the S. cerevisiae × S. kudriavzevii F1 hybrids underwent more severe genomic alterations than the S. cerevisiae × S. uvarum ones. Generation of the new genotypes also influenced the physiological performances of the hybrids and the occurrence of novel phenotypes. Significant differences in carbohydrate utilization and distinct growth dynamics at increasing concentrations of sodium chloride, urea and miconazole were observed within and between the S. cerevisiae × S. uvarum and S. cerevisiae × S. kudriavzevii hybrids. Parental strains also demonstrated different contributions to the final metabolic outcomes of the hybrid yeasts. A comparison of the genotypic properties of the artificial hybrids with several hybrid isolates from the wine-related environments and wastewater demonstrated a greater genetic variability of the S. cerevisiae × S. kudriavzevii hybrids. Saccharomyces cerevisiae × S. uvarum artificial and natural hybrids showed considerable differences in osmolyte tolerance and sensitivity to miconazole, whereas the S. cerevisiae × S. kudriavzevii hybrids exhibited differences also in maltotriose utilization. The results of this study suggest that chromosomal rearrangements and genomic reorganizations as post-hybridization processes may affect the phenotypic properties of the hybrid progeny substantially. Relative to their ancestors, the F1 segregants may generate different phenotypes, indicating novel routes of evolution in response to environmental growth conditions.

*Corresponding author:                                         
   +43 1 47654 6943

                                          +43 1 47654 6675

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