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anaerobic yeast

Bruce G Adams bruce at hawaii.edu
Sun Aug 20 20:59:43 EST 1995

Fellow yeasties--just a follow up note on the recent discussion of providing
yeast with ergosterol when growing them anaerobically. Yeast won't grow under
strictly (very strictly) anaerobic conditions because the conversion of
squalene to the first sterol, lanosterol, requires molecular oxygen to form
the beta-hydroxyl group at the number 3 position in ring A, nothing will
substitute. Yeast are amazing oxygen scavengers  and it takes quite a bit of
effort to achieve anaerobic conditions sufficient to prevent growth on
defined medium--see Andreason, A.A., and T. J. B. Stier. 1953, J. Cell.
Compar. Physiology 41:23-26 (ancient history). Besides the usual methods, one
good way to provide an anaeroic environment is to bubble your misture,
nitrogen gas for e.g., through a culture of yeast--the yeast scavenge
whatever oxygen is left to make sterols. Aloha,
B.G. Adams
dept. Microbiology
Univ. Hawaii at Manoa

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