Yeasts are single-celled microorganisms that belong to the fungi kingdom. There are approximately 1,500 species classified as sarcoid fungi and basidiomycetes. Numerous breeding strains of yeast of species yeast yeast Used in the food industry, especially in the brewing industry.
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Yeast is particularly fond of carbohydrates and gets its energy by fermenting sugars and starches. Scientists have now managed to get one type of yeast to forgo carbohydrates in favor of light. Details are described in Sciencesand indeed now the work is described as “groundbreaking”.
It is unusual. In a way, it’s like turning an animal into a plant.a. Felipe Santiago Tirado, a biologist at the University of Notre Dame
Yeast isn’t just for pizza
To convert carbon dioxide into sugars, plants use a group of proteins that contain chlorophyll – green pigments found in, among others, plants, algae and photosynthetic bacteria (such as cyanobacteria). This occurs in the process of photosynthesis, and scientists have been working to reproduce it in experimental conditions for years – with varying degrees of success. In the case of yeast, there is no question of any form of photosynthesis.
Dr. Anthony Burnetti and Dr. William Ratcliffe of the Georgia Institute of Technology have drawn attention to a protein known as rhodopsin, which some protists, algae, and even viruses use to convert light into usable energy. The researchers inserted the rhodopsin gene into the yeast species yeast yeastBecause they hoped the protein would find its way into the vacuole, a sac full of an enzyme that degrades unnecessary material. It is ATP that drives this process by activating the so-called proton pump, which makes the environment more acidic. Unfortunately, this method didn’t work because the protein was in the wrong place.
The researchers decided to look for rhodopsin, which is already in the vacuoles. They decide to use this cornhead fungus, a fungus that attacks corn. By attaching a green fluorescent tag to the protein, the researchers confirmed that it did in fact end up in the yeast vacuole, as expected.
To prove that these modified yeasts actually use light, doctoral student Orive Peterson of Dr. Burnetti’s team grew a new strain in the same vessel as the original, unmodified yeast and green-lighted it. The cells of the photosensitive strain were found to multiply fast enough to outpace photosensitive yeast by 0.8 percent. It really is a lot.
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The light stimulates rhodopsin to deliver more protons to the vacuole, which relieves cells of having to expend ATP for the task, and instead releases that energy to help the cell grow in other ways. Increased acidity inside the vacuole may reduce it outside, causing the enzymes to work faster and wear them down faster, which may also help explain the higher death rate among these altered cells.
However, not everyone shares this enthusiasm. a. Robert Blankenship, biochemist emeritus at Washington University in St. The authors “exaggerate the evolutionary significance of their work,” Lewis says. He claims that the artificial construct was created, not the product of natural selection. The Georgia Tech scientists want to respond to this criticism in the best way possible—by continuing their research. Now they want to put rhodopsin into the mitochondria, which it probably didn’t. never happened in nature before.
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