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The budding yeast life cycle: More complex than anticipated?

TitleThe budding yeast life cycle: More complex than anticipated?
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsFischer, G, Liti, G, Llorente, B
Date Published2021 Jan

The budding yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, has served as a model for nearly a century to understand the principles of the eukaryotic life cycle. The canonical life cycle of S. cerevisiae comprises a regular alternation between haploid and diploid phases. Haploid gametes generated by sporulation are expected to quickly restore the diploid phase mainly through inbreeding via intratetrad mating or haploselfing, thereby promoting genome homozygotization. However, recent large population genomics data unveiled that heterozygosity and polyploidy are unexpectedly common. This raises the interesting paradox of a haplo-diplobiontic species being well-adapted to inbreeding and able to maintain high levels of heterozygosity and polyploidy, thereby suggesting an unanticipated complexity of the yeast life cycle. Here, we propose that unprogrammed mating type switching, heterothallism, reduced spore formation and viability, cell-cell fusion and dioecy could play key and uncharted contributions to generate and maintain heterozygosity through polyploidization.

Alternate JournalYeast
PubMed ID33197073

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