Fungal hydrophobins as predictors of the gushing activity of malt

Tuija Sarlin, Tiina Nakari-Setälä, Markus Linder, Merja Penttilä, Auli Haikara

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    107 Citations (Scopus)


    Fungal infection of barley and malt, particularly by strains of the genus Fusarium, is known to be a direct cause of beer gushing. We have shown previously that small fungal proteins, hydrophobins, isolated from strains of the genera Fusarium, Nigrospora and Trichoderma act as gushing factors in beer. A hydrophobin concentration as low as 0.003 ppm was sufficient to induce gushing. The gushing-inducing abilities of the isolated hydrophobins varied probably due to their structural differences. The hydrophobins did not affect beer foam stability. A correlation was observed between the hydrophobin level analyzed by the hydrophobin ELISA developed and the gushing potential of malt. The risk of gushing was found to increase with hydrophobin concentrations above 250 µg/g malt. The levels of hydrophobin and the Fusarium mycotoxin deoxynivalenol (DON) in malts were not correlated which indicated that the formation of those two fungal metabolites may not be linked. Furthermore, we did not observe a correlation between the DON content and the gushing potential of the malt studied. Our observations suggest that the accuracy of predicting gushing could be improved by measuring the amount of the actual gushing factors, hydrophobins, in barley or malt.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)105-111
    JournalJournal of the Institute of Brewing
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2005
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    • beer gushing
    • ELISA
    • hydrophobins
    • prediction of gushing risk in malt


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