yeast image

Saccharomyces cerevisiae (Yeast)

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Scientific Name: Saccharomyces cerevisiae

Organism Facts:

  • Yeast are single cell eukaryotic microorganisms instrumental to winemaking, baking, and brewing since ancient times.
  • The function of many proteins important in human biology were first discovered by studying their counterparts in yeast.
  • Yeast studies sorted out the cell cycle, an orderly sequence of events in which a cell duplicates its contents and divides into two.
  • The knowledge gained from studying this organism has benefited millions of people since many drugs used to treat cancer act by interfering with the cell cycle. 

Which UI Department of Biology researchers study this organism:

Fassler lab

Malkova lab

Malone lab

Why UI Department of Biology researchers use this organism:

  • Study how genes are turned on or off in response to a change in the environment.
  • Study how chromosomes behave during meiosis, a special type of cell division necessary for sexual reproduction.