2009 saw the first description of Candida auris, a yeast pathogen of humans. C. auris has since grown into a global problem in intensive care settings, where it causes systemic infections in patients with underlying health issues. Recent whole-genome sequencing has discerned five C. auris clades with distinct phenotypic features which display genomic divergence on a DNA sequence and a chromosome structure level. In the absence of sexual reproduction in C. auris, the mechanism(s) behind the rapid genomic evolution of this emerging killer yeast have remained obscure. Yet, one important bit of information about chromosome organization was missing, the identification of the centromeres. In a recent study, Sanyal and co-workers (Narayanan et al. mBio 12:e00905-21, 2021, https://doi.org/10.1128/mBio.00905-21) filled this knowledge gap by mapping the centromeres in C. auris and its close relatives. This represents a major advance in the chromosome biology of the Candida/Clavispora clade.
- Candida auris
- karyotype evolution