Antonie van Leeuwenhoek

, Volume 100, Issue 4, pp 497–506 | Cite as

Yeast communities associated with artisanal mezcal fermentations from Agave salmiana

  • A. Verdugo Valdez
  • L. Segura Garcia
  • M. Kirchmayr
  • P. Ramírez Rodríguez
  • A. González Esquinca
  • R. Coria
  • A. Gschaedler Mathis
Original Paper


The aims of this work were to characterize the fermentation process of mezcal from San Luis Potosi, México and identify the yeasts present in the fermentation using molecular culture-dependent methods (RFLP of the 5.8S-ITS and sequencing of the D1/D2 domain) and also by using a culture-independent method (DGGE). The alcoholic fermentations of two separate musts obtained from Agave salmiana were analyzed. Sugar, ethanol and major volatile compounds concentrations were higher in the first fermentation, which shows the importance of having a quality standard for raw materials, particularly in the concentration of fructans, in order to produce fermented Agave salmiana must with similar characteristics. One hundred ninety-two (192) different yeast colonies were identified, from those present on WL agar plates, by RFLP analysis of the ITS1-5.8S- ITS2 from the rRNA gene, with restriction endonucleases, HhaI, HaeIII and HinfI. The identified yeasts were: Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Kluyveromyces marxianus, Pichia kluyveri, Zygosaccharomyces bailii, Clavispora lusitaniae, Torulaspora delbrueckii, Candida ethanolica and Saccharomyces exiguus. These identifications were confirmed by sequencing the D1-D2 region of the 26S rRNA gene. With the PCR-DGGE method, bands corresponding to S. cerevisiae, K. marxianus and T. delbrueckii were clearly detected, confirming the results obtained with classic techniques.


Mezcal Yeast diversity Fermentation process RFLP DGGE 



This study was developed within the PhD research program (Ciencias Biológicas) from Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, and supported by the SEP-CONACYT # 24556 project. The authors thank Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACyT) for economic support (grant for the PhD to Verdugo Valdez A.) and the distillery “Real de Magueyes” for their interest and help.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. Verdugo Valdez
    • 1
  • L. Segura Garcia
    • 2
  • M. Kirchmayr
    • 2
  • P. Ramírez Rodríguez
    • 2
  • A. González Esquinca
    • 1
  • R. Coria
    • 3
  • A. Gschaedler Mathis
    • 2
  1. 1.Facultad de Ciencias BiológicasUniversidad de Ciencias y Artes de ChiapasTuxtla GutiérrezMéxico
  2. 2.Centro de Investigación y Asistencia en Tecnología y Diseño del Estado de Jalisco A.CGuadalajaraMéxico
  3. 3.Instituto de Fisiología Celular, Circuito Exterior S/N Ciudad UniversitariaUniversidad Nacional Autónoma de MéxicoCoyoacánMéxico

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