Genome Technology Center

Complex trait analysis in yeast


Lars Steinmetz
Michelle Nguyen
Raquel Kuehn
Adam Deutschbauer
Patrick Flaherty
Ulrich Schlecht
Ronald W. Davis

Most of our knowledge of how sequence variants affect phenotype is based on the study of traits and diseases that are conditioned by single genes. However in nature, only a small proportion of the diversity in a population can be attributed to single gene variants. The vast majority of phenotypic variation results from multiple genetic and or environmental influences. Since the phenotypes themselves are often quantitative and their inheritance follows non-Mendelian or complex patterns identifying the underlying genes has been difficult.

We developed a new approach to quantitative trait dissection named reciprocal hemizygosity analysis that successfully identified 4 genes involved in high-temperature growth and 3 genes involved in sporulation efficiency in yeast. Our goal is to further apply and develop this technology to identify additional genetic variants for quantitative traits to achieve the most comprehensive genetic description of a quantitative trait achieved to date.

Relevant publications:


updated December 1, 2008

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