Part III: Yeast, Metals, and Immune Response

Part III: Yeast, Metals, and Immune Response

September 15, 2019 0 By Ewald Bahringer


[MUSIC PLAYING] SPEAKER: Welcome. You’ve joined a
conversation about research into immune response
with Val Culotta, a professor in the Department
of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Now, Val, in previous
research, you didn’t work with
worms, but with yeast. What’s been the impact of
that move up the food chain? VAL CULOTTA: Good question. So now we’re going
to talk about yeast. This means Baker’s yeast,
the same yeast that’s used for making beer and bread. This is the non-pathogenic form. But it’s still the favorite
model organism of our lab. And that’s because it’s an
incredibly simple single celled organism. It’s even more
simpler and easier to work with than the worm. Over the years, yeast have
provided many breakthroughs in our understanding
of metals and biology, including the role of manganese. The basic processes of how
baker’s yeast handle manganese are likely to be preserved
all the way up to humans. But of course, the baker’s
yeast doesn’t tell us anything about manganese
in the immune response. They don’t have an
immune response. So what we’re doing now is
taking all the basic building blocks that baker’s
yeast has given us about manganese and biology. And we’re going to use
these blocks to build a story of metals in more
public health relevant areas, such as immunology. [MUSIC PLAYING]