Pichia fermentans

Genus/speciesPichia fermentans (Candida lambica anamorph, Candida monosaHansenula fermentans, Pichia dombrowskii, Mycoderma lambica)

Classification: Ascomycete, teleomorph


  • Cell: Reproduces by budding, ovoidal to ellipsoidal, occur singly, in pairs or in short chains, simple to complex pseudohyphae.
  • Colony: Cream colored to yellowish; rapid growth; reach maturity in 72 hours
  • Spore: 2-4 hat-shaped ascospores per ascus.
  • Zygote: Conjugated cells may sporulate, asci may also be unconjugated.
  • Ascus: Evanescent.
  • Liquid Growth: Thin to thick climbing pellicles are formed.
Pichia fermentans Pichia fermentans Pichia fermentans

Physiological Traits:

  • Fermentation: Glucose
  • Assimilation: D-Xylose, Succinate, Lactate, Citrate, Glycerol, Ethanol; variable: Glucosamine,  no assimilation of nitrate, Ethylamine, Lysine, Cadaverine and Glucosamine used as sole N source; tryptophan use variable; no growth on vitamin-free medium, requires thiamin and some strains biotin.
  • Growth: 37 C: variable.
  • Growth Sensitivities: some strains resistant to 10% NaCl and to high glucose concentrations
  • Chromosome bands: 2 reported.

Ecological Traits:

Pichia is a member of normal flora of skin, mouth, vagina, and stool.  It is also found in the environment, particularly on leaves, flowers, water, and soil.  Found on fruit surfaces sometimes, most notably in grapes.

Distinguishing Features:

Lack of arthroconidia is the major microscopic feature which differentiates Candida from Trichosporon and Geotrichum, the two genera that produce abundant arthroconidia.

Role in wine:

Part of the native flora of grape skins.  Used for beer making sometimes (lambic).


  • SO2:
  • Sorbate­­­­­:
  • DMDC:
  • pH:
  • Acids:
  • Ethanol: <5% v="" li="">
  • Anaerobiosis:
  • Heat: