The budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae is a powerful model organism for studying fundamental aspects of eukaryotic cell biology. This Primer article presents a brief historical perspective on the emergence of this organism as a premier experimental system over the course of the past century. An overview of the central features of the S. cerevisiae genome, including the nature of its genetic elements and general organization, is also provided. Some of the most common experimental tools and resources available to yeast geneticists are presented in a way designed to engage and challenge undergraduate and graduate students eager to learn more about the experimental amenability of budding yeast. Finally, a discussion of several major discoveries derived from yeast studies highlights the far-reaching impact that the yeast system has had and will continue to have on our understanding of a variety of cellular processes relevant to all eukaryotes, including humans.
- Copyright © 2014 by the Genetics Society of America