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B. The Genome of an Important Wine-making Microbe is Sequenced

Narrator: This is Science Today. Researchers have sequenced the genome of a bacterium that is critical to wine production. Called oenococcus oeni, this lactic-acid bacteria helps de-acidify wine after fermentation. David Mills, a professor of viticulture and enology at the University of California, Davis helped lead the genome sequencing project in an effort to gain more insight into these fermentation microbes.

Mills: Just from the simple perspective of we'd like to make those fermentations run smoother, we'd like them to be healthier for the public, we'd like them to certainly be as flavorful as possible.

Narrator: Mills points out they are not dealing with recombinant DNA, or gene alteration.

Mills: Here, we're talking about just the fundamental knowledge of what does the genome contain? And what will it tell us about the metabolism and the genetics of those organisms and how they perform all these wonderful fermentations that we truly enjoy on a daily basis.

Narrator: The genome was sequenced at the UC-operated Joint Genome Institute. For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.