Medical research

Complex cellular machine visualized to yield new insights in cancer

Cellular machines that control chromosome structure, such as the RSC complex, are mutated in about one-fifth of all human cancers. Now, for the first time, scientists have developed a high-resolution visual map of this multi-protein ...

Oncology & Cancer

Overstuffed cancer cells may have an Achilles' heel

In a study using yeast cells and data from cancer cell lines, Johns Hopkins University scientists report they have found a potential weak spot among cancer cells that have extra sets of chromosomes, the structures that carry ...

Medical research

A moderate dose of novel form of stress promotes longevity

A newly described form of stress called chromatin architectural defect, or chromatin stress, triggers in cells a response that leads to a longer life. Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine and the Houston Methodist Research ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Patent-pending probiotic could disrupt Crohn's disease biofilms

Probiotics typically aim to rebalance bacteria populations in the gut, but new research suggests they may also help break apart stubborn biofilms. Biofilms are living microbial communities—they provide a haven for microbes ...

Medical research

Against gut instinct

By turning a pathogenic yeast into an immunity-conferring symbiont, a team of A*STAR researchers is unraveling mysteries behind gut evolution and universal vaccines

Oncology & Cancer

Douching: more harmful than helpful

(HealthDay)—Douching is the age-old practice of using a solution to attempt to clean the vagina, but there's only downsides to it.

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Yeast

Yeasts are eukaryotic microorganisms classified in the kingdom Fungi, with about 1,500 species currently described; they dominate fungal diversity in the oceans. Most reproduce asexually by budding, although a few do so by binary fission. Yeasts are unicellular, although some species with yeast forms may become multicellular through the formation of a string of connected budding cells known as pseudohyphae, or false hyphae as seen in most molds. Yeast size can vary greatly depending on the species, typically measuring 3–4 µm in diameter, although some yeasts can reach over 40 µm.

The yeast species Saccharomyces cerevisiae has been used in baking and fermenting alcoholic beverages for thousands of years. It is also extremely important as a model organism in modern cell biology research, and is one of the most thoroughly researched eukaryotic microorganisms. Researchers have used it to gather information about the biology of the eukaryotic cell and ultimately human biology. Other species of yeast, such as Candida albicans, are opportunistic pathogens and can cause infections in humans. Yeasts have recently been used to generate electricity in microbial fuel cells, and produce ethanol for the biofuel industry.

Yeasts do not form a specific taxonomic or phylogenetic grouping. At present it is estimated that only 1% of all yeast species have been described. The term "yeast" is often taken as a synonym for S. cerevisiae, but the phylogenetic diversity of yeasts is shown by their placement in both divisions Ascomycota and Basidiomycota. The budding yeasts ("true yeasts") are classified in the order Saccharomycetales.

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