Researchers invent new method to create hybrid yeast strains

UW-Madison researchers have developed a new method for creating hybrid yeast strains for use in commercial fermentation and brewing.

An info sheet from the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation shows interspecies yeast hybrids are needed to produce certain fermented beverages. For example, the globally popular lager beer is made with hybrids of Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Saccharomyces eubayanus — two common yeast species.

The current process for creating improved hybrids is “cumbersome,” according to WARF, as it can require genetic modification. And that has led some to question their safety.