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Integrated view on a eukaryotic osmoregulation system
Published on November 4, 2014 42 min
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My name is Stefan Hohmann, and I am a professor in molecular microbial physiology at the Department of Chemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden. I'm going to present today an integrated view on a eukaryotic osmoregulation system. My group, as well as a number of groups all over the world, have been working on osmoregulation and the osmotic stress response in the model organism, yeast saccharomyces cerevisiae for the last about 25 years. The integrated view that I'm going to present today is the result of both experimental studies using genetics, molecular biology, and metabolomics, combined with this theoretical studies using mathematical models and simulations and predictions using those models.
What is osmoregulation? Osmoregulation is an active process. It is the active regulation of the osmotic homeostasis of a cell or also of an entire organism, although my talk will mainly focus on a osmotic homeostasis of single cells the yeast, saccharomyces cerevisiae. So what are the main purposes of osmoregulation? One purpose is to maintain the sense cell's turgor pressure, and therefore the shape and the volume of cells. So in that sense, regulation has a significant role in cell morphology. Osmoregulation also controls the cell's water content and hence keeps the cell's fluids from becoming either too diluted or from becoming too concentrated. And I will come back to that point in a few moments. Homeostasis is something static, so it is difficult to study, actually, because of that reason. So therefore, regulation is very commonly observed as the adaptation to a osmotic stress. So the response of cells to rapid changes in the osmotic conditions of the environment.