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Yeast biodiversity as a source of innovations in food and health

Objective

Cornucopia will train a new generation of young scientists focusing on less studied yeasts with interesting traits, which could be applied in the food and health sectors. Yeasts are a divergent group of fungi that predominantly exist as unicellular organisms. The baker's yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae is by far the best known because of its role in producing beverages, baking and recombinant drugs, such as insulin. S. cerevisiae is also the main model for the analysis of common features of all eukaryotic cells, and has been used in pioneering the development of several molecular biology, genomics and post-genomic tools. However, the yeast kingdom includes more than 1.500 other species that display a variety of unusual characteristics, and play an important role in their natural environments, but have so far been only poorly studied. These yeasts represent a large untapped potential to develop novel food and health related processes and products. We will make use of thousands strains available within Cornucopia to screen, using a variety of microbiological, analytical chemistry and bioinformatics techniques, for traits of interest to industry. such as ethanol-, acid- and osmo-tolerance, aromatic and off-flavor compounds and probiotic properties. Our young researchers will develop novel species-specific molecular, genetic and post-genomic tools to find out which genes determine the superior traits. They will “domesticate” new isolates so that they can be easily handled in the lab, and develop scale-up cultivations for applied purposes. We will benefit from yeast biodiversity and open new avenues within fundamental and applied research. Cornucopia, consists of seven leading yeast academic laboratories and three leading European industry partners, will provide a unique environment to develop strong academia and industry oriented careers, in-depth training in major experimental technologies used in yeast research and the industrial application of innovative ideas.
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Coordinator

LUNDS UNIVERSITET

Address

Paradisgatan 5c
22100 Lund

Sweden

Activity type

Higher or Secondary Education Establishments

EU Contribution

€ 746 702

Administrative Contact

Wolfgang Knecht (Mr.)

Participants (9)

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KOBENHAVNS UNIVERSITET

Denmark

EU Contribution

€ 281 399

VIB VZW

Belgium

EU Contribution

€ 450 600

UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI MILANO

Italy

EU Contribution

€ 241 153

FYZIOLOGICKY USTAV AKADEMIE VED CESKE REPUBLIKY VEREJNA VYZKUMNA INSTITUCE (VVI)

Czechia

EU Contribution

€ 221 264

KONINKLIJKE NEDERLANDSE AKADEMIE VAN WETENSCHAPPEN - KNAW

Netherlands

EU Contribution

€ 236 949

AGENCIA ESTATAL CONSEJO SUPERIOR DEINVESTIGACIONES CIENTIFICAS

Spain

EU Contribution

€ 225 936

CARLSBERG AS

Denmark

EU Contribution

€ 534 089

CHR. HANSEN A/S

Denmark

EU Contribution

€ 281 899

NIZO FOOD RESEARCH BV

Netherlands

EU Contribution

€ 206 784

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 264717

Status

Closed project

  • Start date

    1 February 2011

  • End date

    30 April 2015

Funded under:

FP7-PEOPLE

  • Overall budget:

    € 3 426 775

  • EU contribution

    € 3 426 775

Coordinated by:

LUNDS UNIVERSITET

Sweden