Sporulation genes associated with sporulation efficiency in natural isolates of yeast

PLoS One. 2013 Jul 17;8(7):e69765. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0069765. Print 2013.


Yeast sporulation efficiency is a quantitative trait and is known to vary among experimental populations and natural isolates. Some studies have uncovered the genetic basis of this variation and have identified the role of sporulation genes (IME1, RME1) and sporulation-associated genes (FKH2, PMS1, RAS2, RSF1, SWS2), as well as non-sporulation pathway genes (MKT1, TAO3) in maintaining this variation. However, these studies have been done mostly in experimental populations. Sporulation is a response to nutrient deprivation. Unlike laboratory strains, natural isolates have likely undergone multiple selections for quick adaptation to varying nutrient conditions. As a result, sporulation efficiency in natural isolates may have different genetic factors contributing to phenotypic variation. Using Saccharomyces cerevisiae strains in the genetically and environmentally diverse SGRP collection, we have identified genetic loci associated with sporulation efficiency variation in a set of sporulation and sporulation-associated genes. Using two independent methods for association mapping and correcting for population structure biases, our analysis identified two linked clusters containing 4 non-synonymous mutations in genes - HOS4, MCK1, SET3, and SPO74. Five regulatory polymorphisms in five genes such as MLS1 and CDC10 were also identified as putative candidates. Our results provide candidate genes contributing to phenotypic variation in the sporulation efficiency of natural isolates of yeast.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Lod Score
  • Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide
  • Spores, Fungal / genetics*
  • Yeasts / genetics
  • Yeasts / physiology*