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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2011, Article ID 954140, 5 pages
Review Article

The Budding Yeast “Saccharomyces cerevisiae” as a Drug Discovery Tool to Identify Plant-Derived Natural Products with Anti-Proliferative Properties

1Laboratoire de Génétique et Biotechnologies, Faculté des Sciences, Université Mohamed Premier, Oujda 60000, Morocco
2Département de Biologie, Faculté des Sciences, Université Mohamed Premier, Oujda 60000, Morocco
3Department of Biochemistry, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada M5S 1A8
4Terrence Donnelly Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Research, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada M5S 1A8
5Faculté Pluridisciplinaire de Nador, Université Mohamed Premier, B.P: 300 Selouane 62700, Morocco

Received 25 November 2008; Accepted 28 May 2009

Copyright © 2011 Bouchra Qaddouri et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae is a valuable system to study cell-cycle regulation, which is defective in cancer cells. Due to the highly conserved nature of the cell-cycle machinery between yeast and humans, yeast studies are directly relevant to anticancer-drug discovery. The budding yeast is also an excellent model system for identifying and studying antifungal compounds because of the functional conservation of fungal genes. Moreover, yeast studies have also contributed greatly to our understanding of the biological targets and modes of action of bioactive compounds. Understanding the mechanism of action of clinically relevant compounds is essential for the design of improved second-generation molecules. Here we describe our methodology for screening a library of plant-derived natural products in yeast in order to identify and characterize new compounds with anti-proliferative properties.