The second abstract of one of the talks which will be held at our 2nd Symposium: "The Next 10 Years of Genome Content Management" on 29th March held at Cambridge, Babraham Research Campus.
The title is: Data delivery from yeast genomics to industrial biotechnology: problems and perspectives
Presented by: Ian Roberts, Curator, National Collection of Yeast Cultures, Institute of Food Research
"Yeasts are a group of predominantly single-celled fungi from which nearly 1,500 different biological species have been identified to date. They have a long evolutionary history and estimates suggest many more species (possibly ~90%) remain to be discovered. The known yeasts are used in a variety of industrial applications from probiotics and pharmaceuticals to fuels and fine chemicals. The baking or brewing yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae is by far the best-characterized. Indeed, a representative of this species was the first eukaryote to have its entire genome sequenced. The ‘complete’ genome of laboratory strain S288c was released in 1996. Since then, more than 100 additional Saccharomyces genomes have been published alongside genomes representative of a further 20 or so economically-important yeast species. Analyses of these genomes lead us to conclude that an extraordinary metabolic potential is available for exploitation, the vast majority of which has yet to be tapped. This potential is becoming increasingly accessible as a result of recent advances in both genome sequencing and computational biology. Examples of knowledge discovery in yeast genome databases and subsequent exploitation in industrial biotechnology can already be given. Remaining hurdles limiting efficient data delivery, and hence optimal utilization of genetic resources contributing to future food security, will be discussed from the perspectives of collection, curation and biomass exploitation."