The role of the membrane lipid composition in the oxidative stress tolerance of different wine yeasts

Jennifer Vázquez, Karlheinz Grillitsch, Günther Daum, Albert Mas, Gemma Beltran*, María Jesús Torija

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Oxidative stress is a common stress in yeasts during the stages of the winemaking process in which aerobic growth occurs, and it can modify the cellular lipid composition. The aim of this study was to evaluate the oxidative stress tolerance of two non-conventional yeasts (Torulaspora delbrueckii and Metschnikowia pulcherrima) compared to Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Therefore, their resistance against H2O2, the ROS production and the cellular lipid composition were assessed. The results showed that the non-Saccharomyces yeasts used in this study exhibited higher resistance to H2O2 stress and lower ROS accumulation than Saccharomyces. Regarding the cellular lipid composition, the two non-Saccharomyces species studied here displayed a high percentage of polyunsaturated fatty acids, which resulted in more fluid membranes. This result could indicate that these yeasts have been evolutionarily adapted to have better resistance against the oxidative stress. Furthermore, under external oxidative stress, non-Saccharomyces yeasts were better able to adapt their lipid composition as a defense mechanism by decreasing their percentage of polyunsaturated fatty acids and squalene and increasing their monounsaturated fatty acids.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-154
Number of pages12
JournalFood Microbiology
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2019


  • Fatty acids
  • Non-Saccharomyces
  • Phospholipids
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae
  • Sterols

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Microbiology


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