Wine Tasting & Microbial Diversity

Wine Tasting & Microbial Diversity

A study using Isohelix SK-2S Buccal Swabs has discovered that wine tasting has a washing effect on the tongue which causes lower microbiome diversity in professional wine tasters. This also affects how people taste, explaining why people can drink the same bottle of wine and perceive different flavours!

Washing Effect

Using the Isohelix SK-2S Buccal Swabs, the study collected DNA samples from the tongues of both professional wine tasters & non-professionals to compare the microbiome profiles between the two groups. They found that samples collected after wine tasting sessions had a lower microbial diversity than those taken prior to the tasting event. Therefore the study concluded that wine tasting sessions have a washing effect on the tongue, directly affecting microbiome diversity.

Sparkling Wine

As well as discovering the washing effect that wine has on the microbial diversity on the tongue, the study also discovered that this effect is increased when tasting sparkling wines! The comparison of bacterial diversity between samples collected before and after wine tasting, along with the presence of new bacterial taxa, indicated the direct effect of wine on the microbiome of frequent wine tasters, particularly in those tasting sparkling wines.

Putting Taste to the Test

In addition, results from an accompanying questionnaire found that having a long career in wine tasting effected taste perception compared to non-wine tasters, particularly in bitter or acidic food & drink. Results from these data suggest that changes in the microbial profile of the tongue have an effect on how we taste, giving some explanation as to why people can drink the same bottle of wine and perceive different flavours!

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