Yeast diversity in rice-cassava fermentations produced by the indigenous Tapirapé people of Brazil

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Rosane F. Schwan, Euziclei G. Almeida, Maria Aparecida G. Souza-Dias, Lene Jespersen

The Tapirapé people of the Tapi'itãwa tribe of Brazil produce several fermented foods and beverages, one of which is called 'cauim'. This beverage usually makes up the main staple food for adults and children. Several substrates are used in its production, including cassava, rice, corn, maize and peanuts. A fermentation using rice and cassava was conducted, and samples were collected at 4-h intervals for microbial analysis. The yeast population was low at the beginning of the fermentation and reached 6.9 x 10(7) CFU mL(-1) after 48 h. During the fermentation process common yeast species were identified by sequencing of the D1/D2 domain of the large-subunit (26S) rRNA gene. The predominant yeast species found was Candida tropicalis. Candida intermedia, Candida parapsilosis, Pichia guilliermondii, Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Trichosporon asahii were also found in high numbers during the fermentation. Exophiala dermatidis, often associated with blastomycosis, was found in the mass before inoculation and during the initial stages of the fermentation. Examination of these indigenous fermented foods may provide clues as to how food production and preservation can be expanded and thereby contribute to improve nutrition in native tribes in the region.
Original languageEnglish
JournalFEMS Yeast Research
Volume7
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)966-972
Number of pages7
ISSN1567-1356
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2007

    Research areas

  • LIFE - yeasts; indigenous food; rice–cassava fermentation; D1/D2 sequencing

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