Baker's and Brewer's Yeast


Fun Facts

  • Budding is the asexual form of reproduction because the daughter cell buds off the mother cell.  When doing this, the daughter cell leaves behind a budding scar on the mother cell.  A cell’s age can be determined by counting the number of budding scars. (Probiotic 2009)


  • The word, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, can be broken down into different Latin words.  Saccaro, meaning "sugar", myces, meaning "fungus", and cerevisiae, meaning "beer", thus translating into "sugar fungus of beer".  (Volk 2002)


  • Scientist found the exact strain of Saccharomyces cerevisiae in a bakery in the ruins of Ancient Egypt that dated back 5,000 years. (Volk 2002)



  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae isn’t just responsible for brewing beers, it also plays a role in making cider, wine, sprits and other alcoholic beverages.  The variety of beverages is caused by the variety of strains. (Bamforth 2003)


  •  One might ask, "If there are so many different types of strains why aren’t they all considered different species?"  In the early 1800’s taxonomists declared that all brewing yeast would be called Saccharomyces cerevisiae(Bamforth 2003)


  • In 1978 Saccharomyces cerevisiae was the first eukaryotic organism to have its DNA transformed. (Sharon 2010)



  • Only the wealthy or monks knew how to brew beer.  It was an important survival trait because so many of the waters were polluted with diseases, so beer was a safe way to stay hydrated.  Interestingly enough, Saccharomyces cerevisiae wasn't the reason for preventing diseases; it was really just because the boiled water used to make beer was hot enough to kill off common parasites.




  • In a normal population of Saccharomyces cerevisiae about 1% of yeast are abnormal because they can't respire.  (Mycology Guidebook 1974)

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