(NEWSER) – If wine tends to give you a hangover, science may have a solution, and it starts with a "genome knife." The phrase refers to an enzyme called RNA-guided Cas9 nuclease that's able to knock down a longstanding hurdle to genetic engineering in fermented foods, a researcher at the University of Illinois explains in a press release. It's a little complicated, but the strains of yeast that ferment wine (along with beer and bread) are "polyploid" strains.
Those strains "contain multiple copies of genes in the genome," says Yong-Su Jin, whose study was published in Applied and Environmental Microbiology. The difficulty comes into play when you try to alter a gene in one copy of the genome. Essentially, you can't: "An unaltered copy would correct the one that had been changed." The enzyme fixes that problem.
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