First genetically engineered prototype wine yeast

Date or time period: 1990

First prototype wine yeasts constructed by transformation with specific genes contained on a DNA plasmid, by a process called genetic engineering. The novel genes conferred unambiguous markers which enabled the efficiency of inoculation to be easily monitored. Teams were led by Bussey in Canada and Langridge and Henschke in Australia. This development paved the way for targeted development of yeast with novel and enhanced winemaking properties[1][2].


  1. Boone et al AJEV 1990
  2. Petering et al AJEV 1991