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Brettanomyces bruxellensis, a survivalist prepared for the wine apocalypse and other beverages

Smith, Brendan D., Divol, Benoit
Food microbiology 2016 v.59 pp. 161-175
Saccharomyces cerevisiae, anaerobic conditions, beers, carbon dioxide fixation, ciders, ethanol production, niches, nutrient requirements, red wines, spoilage, yeasts
Brettanomyces bruxellensis is a common red wine spoilage yeast. Yet, in addition to wine, it has been isolated from other ecological niches that are just as nutritionally deficient as wine. B. bruxellensis can therefore be regarded as a survivor, well adapted to colonise harsh environments not often inhabited by other yeasts. This review is focused on the nutritional requirements of B. bruxellensis and the relevance thereof for its adaptation to the different matrices within which it occurs. Furthermore, the environmental conditions necessary (e.g. aerobic or anaerobic conditions) for the assimilation of the carbon or nitrogenous sources are discussed in this review. From literature, several confusing inconsistencies, regarding nutritional sources necessary for B. bruxellensis survival, in these specialist ecological niches are evidenced. The main focus of this review is wine but other products and niches that B. bruxellensis inhabits namely beer, cider, fruit juices and bioethanol production plants are also considered. This review highlights the lack of knowledge regarding B. bruxellensis when considering its nutritional requirements in comparison to Saccharomyces cerevisiae. However, there is a large enough body of evidence showing that the nutritional needs of B. bruxellensis are meagre, explaining its ability to colonise harsh environments.