Pseudohyphal growth is induced in Saccharomyces cerevisiae by a combination of stress and cAMP signalling

Antonie Van Leeuwenhoek. 2000 Aug;78(2):187-94. doi: 10.1023/a:1026594407609.


In Saccharomyces cerevisiae pseudohyphae formation may be triggered by nitrogen deprivation and is stimulated by cAMP. It was observed that even in a medium with an adequate nitrogen supply, cAMP can induce pseudohyphal growth when S. cerevisiae uses ethanol as carbon source. This led us to investigate the effects of the carbon source and of a variety of stresses on yeast morphology. Pseudohyphae formation and invasive growth were observed in a rich medium (YP) with poor carbon sources such as lactate or ethanol. External cAMP was required for the morphogenetic transition in one genetic background, but was dispensable in strain sigma 1278b which has been shown to have an overactive Ras2/cAMP pathway. Pseudohyphal growth and invasiveness also took place in YPD plates when the yeast was subjected to different stresses: a mild heat-stress (37 degrees C), an osmotic stress (1 m NACl), or addition of compounds which affect the lipid bilayer organization of the cell membrane (aliphatic alcohols at 2%) or alter the glucan structure of the cell wall (Congo red). We conclude that pseudohyphal growth is a physiological response not only to starvation but also to a stressful environment; it appears to require the coordinate action of a MAP kinase cascade and a cAMP-dependent pathway.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Physiological*
  • Benzenesulfonates
  • Carbohydrate Metabolism
  • Culture Media
  • Cyclic AMP / pharmacology
  • Cyclic AMP / physiology*
  • Fluorescent Dyes
  • Indoles
  • Microscopy, Fluorescence
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / cytology
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / growth & development*
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / physiology
  • Signal Transduction*


  • Benzenesulfonates
  • Culture Media
  • Fluorescent Dyes
  • Indoles
  • DAPI
  • C.I. Fluorescent Brightening Agent 28
  • Cyclic AMP