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Characterization of Bacillus megaterium, Bacillus pumilus, and Paenibacillus polymyxa isolated from a Pinot noir wine from Western Washington State

von Cosmos, Nicolas H., Watson, Bruce A., Fellman, J.K., Mattinson, D.S., Edwards, Charles G.
Food microbiology 2017 v.67 pp. 6-16
Bacillus megaterium, Bacillus pumilus, Paenibacillus polymyxa, bacteria, ethanol, grape juice, odors, pH, sulfur dioxide, titratable acidity, wines, Washington (state)
This report provides the first confirmed evidence of Bacillus-like bacteria present in a wine from Washington State. These bacteria were isolated from a 2013 Pinot noir wine whose aroma was sensorially described as being ‘dirty’ or ‘pond scum.’ Based on physiological traits and genetic sequencing, three bacterial isolates were identified as Bacillus megaterium (strain NHO-1), Bacillus pumilus (strain NHO-2), and Paenibacillus polymyxa (strain NHO-3). These bacteria grew in synthetic media of low pH (pH 3.5) while some survived ethanol concentrations up to 15% v/v. However, none tolerated molecular SO2 concentrations ≥0.4 mg/l. Growth of strains NHO-1 and NHO-3 in a Merlot grape juice resulted in increases of titratable and volatile acidities while decreases in titratable acidity were noted for NHO-2.