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Methods Mol Biol. 2017;1524:215-242.

Synchronization of Yeast.

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Department of Cell Biology and Biochemistry, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Lubbock, TX, USA.
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, University of Virginia, School of Medicine, Charlottesville, VA, USA.
Department of Biochemistry, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN, USA.
Department of Medical Education, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, 3601 4th St Rm 5C119, Lubbock, TX, 79430, USA.


The budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae and fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe are amongst the simplest and most powerful model systems for studying the genetics of cell cycle control. Because yeast grows very rapidly in a simple and economical media, large numbers of cells can easily be obtained for genetic, molecular, and biochemical studies of the cell cycle. The use of synchronized cultures greatly aids in the ease and interpretation of cell cycle studies. In principle, there are two general methods for obtaining synchronized yeast populations. Block-and-release methods can be used to induce cell cycle synchrony. Alternatively, centrifugal elutriation can be used to select synchronous populations. Because each method has innate advantages and disadvantages, the use of multiple approaches helps in generalizing results. An overview of the most commonly used methods to generate synchronized yeast cultures is presented along with working Notes: a section that includes practical comments, experimental considerations and observations, and hints regarding the pros and cons innate to each approach.


Block-and-release; Cell cycle; Centrifugal elutriation; Synchronization; Yeast

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