Yeast Phylogeny as a Model for Exploring Pathogenicity

Royal Mabelmroyal@nccu.eduNorth Carolina Central University
Sarah Councilscouncil@nccu.eduNorth Carolina Central University

Project Location


Student Audience

Introductory, Major

Scientific Domain

  • Evolution

Nature of the Research

  • Wet lab/bench research
  • Basic research

Core Concepts

  • Evolution: The diversity of life evolved over time by process of mutation, selection, and genetic change.

Core Competencies

  • Applying the process of science
  • Communicating and collaborating

Learning Objectives

  • Discuss why there is a need to study and compare various organisms.
  • Write effectively about biological concepts.
  • Calculate accurately scientific data that assist in information presentation and data interpretation.
  • Draw and identify biological structures as observed in the lab and recognize them in models as well as slides on the computer or under the microscope.


The course navigates the application of the scientific method and critical thinking to learn about the domains and kingdoms of life; introduces the principles of Mendelian genetics, evolutionary theory, diversity, and population ecology; and highlights the complexity of comparative animal biology with emphasis on human systems.  In our General Biology I (biodiversity) CURE lab, Baker’s yeast is included in phylogenetic analysis and compared with prokaryotes, plants, and animals.  Students design experiments using Candida albicans and Saccharomyces cerevisiae as model organisms to ask whether growth temperature is an important adaptation for human pathogens.   

Mabel, Royal North Carolina Central University
Council, Sarah North Carolina Central University