Evaluation of sugar yeast consumption by measuring electrical medium resistance

Martin Lucas Zamora, Gabriel Alfredo Ruiz, Carmelo Jose Felice


The real-time monitoring of alcoholic fermentation (sugar consumption) is very important in industrial processes. Several techniques (i.e., using a biosensor) have been proposed to realize this goal. In this work, we propose a new method to follow sugar yeast consumption. This novel method is based on the changes in the medium resistance (Rm) that are induced by the CO2 bubbles produced during a fermentative process. We applied a 50-mV and 700-Hz signal to 75 ml of a yeast suspension in a tripolar cell. A gold electrode was used as the working electrode, whereas an Ag/AgCl electrode and a stainless-steel electrode served as the reference and counter electrodes, respectively. We then added glucose to the yeast suspension and obtained a 700% increase in the Rm after 8 minutes. The addition of sucrose instead of glucose as the carbon source resulted in a 1200% increase in the Rm. To confirm that these changes are the result of CO2 bubbles in the fermentation medium, we designed a tetrapolar cell in which CO2 gas was insufflated at the bottom of the cell and concluded that the changes were due to CO2 bubbles produced during the fermentation. Consequently, this new method is a low-cost and rapid technology to follow the sugar consumption in yeast.


Yeast;sugar consumption; monitoring; CO2; medium resistance

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5617/jeb.664