On the way to the train station.
Still sleep in your eyes.
Trying to keep down the noise of small wheels on cobblestone.
You are awakened by an ancient aroma.
A bakery awaits around the corner.
The Yeastie Boys are among the VIPs of the microbial world. They have been powerful influencers since the beginning of human civilization as they helped design the bread we eat and share generation after generation. They are deeply embedded in our culture and social life.
Baker’s yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, loves carbohydrates and converts them to carbon dioxide and alcohols. This talent for fermentation is still used to produce bread and alcoholic beverages.
But as the interests and needs of human civilization developed, the yeasts have also been recruited as model organisms in genetics and cell biology. Their role in modern biotech continues to shape our future.
The spherical, single-cell yeasts come in different sizes from 3-4 µm up to 40 µm in diameter. They belong to the Eukaryota, equipped with a nucleus and various organelles. Sex is a matter of choice in the world of yeasts and they are famous for reproducing by budding. The nucleus splits and migrates into an attached small daughter cell, the bud. The daughter continues to grow and finally splits off.