Scientists have engineered a chromosome entirely from scratch that will contribute to the production of the world’s first synthetic yeast.
Researchers in the Manchester Institute of Biotechnology (MIB) at The University of Manchester have created the tRNA Neochromosome – a chromosome that is new to nature.
It forms part of a wider project (Sc2.0) that has now successfully synthesised all 16 native chromosomes in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, common baker’s yeast, and aims to combine them to form a fully synthetic cell.
The international team has already combined six and a half synthetic chromosomes in a functional cell. It is the first time scientists have written a eukaryotic genome from scratch.
Yeasts are a common workhorse of industrial biotechnological processes as they allow valuable chemicals to be produced more efficiently, economically, and sustainably. They are often used in the production of biofuels, pharmaceuticals, flavours and fragrances, as well as in the more well-known fermentation processes of bread-making and beer-brewing. Read more