Search on : Yeasts 2011




 Link to MycoBank:
 Link to previous version of yeast database:
 Associated species:
Kurtzman & Herman) van der Walt & von Arx
 Ecology:Yarrowia lipolytica is widespread in nature, as seen from
the sources of isolation, some of which are given above. Substrates
high in lipids are a common source of this species. Whether Y. lipolytica
has a primary habitat in nature is unknown, but it is often found
in marine environments (Hagler and Mendonça-Hagler 1979),
including hyper-saline waters such as the Dead Sea and the Great
Salt Lake of Utah, USA (Butinar et al. 2005).
 Biotechnology:Yarrowia lipolytica has several physiological properties
of industrial significance. The species is well-known for production
of proteases and lipases, and utilization of n-paraffins
(Ogrydziak 1988, Peters and Nelson 1948, Tsugawa et al. 1969). This
last property focused interest on Y. lipolytica as a potential source of
yeast protein from hydrocarbons, a popular idea in an era of low cost
petroleum. The discovery in the late 1960s that high yields of citric
acid were produced by Y. lipolytica (Yamada 1977) signaled a dramatic
change in the fermentation industry, because the yields of this
industrially important acidulant were then about twice that obtained
from Aspergillus niger, the industry mainstay since the early 1900s.
A. niger has regained its market share for production of citric acid in
sugar-based fermentations, but Y. lipolytica is an attractive species
for citric acid biosynthesis from glycerol, a byproduct of biodiesel
fuel manufacture from vegetable oils (Levinson et al. 2007). Another
use for Y. lipolytica is synthesis of cerebrosides, which are of medical
significance (Rupci´c and Mari´c 2004).
 Clinical importance:On the basis of occasional clinical isolations,
Y. lipolytica has been viewed as an emerging pathogen (Hazen 1995,
Walsh et al. 2004), and Jacques and Casaregola (2008) pointed out
that the common occurrence of Y. lipolytica on cheeses and other
foods provides a ready source of inoculum to those people who may
be susceptible to infection. Belet et al. (2006) reported catheterinduced
infections in two infants by Y. lipolytica and the successful
treatment of these infections using a mixture of caspofungin and
amphotericin B.
 Type strain:
 Type species of genus:
 Gene sequence accession numbers, type strain:D1/D2 LSU
rRNA5U40080. Additional gene sequences for other strains of
Y. lipolytica were given by Fitzpatrick et al. (2006) and James et al.
 Origin of the strains studied:NRRL YB-423 (CBS 6124), type strain
of Y. lipolytica, NRRL YB-419, NRRL YB-420, NRRL YB-421 (CBS 6125),
NRRL YB-422, all isolated by L.J. Wickerham from milled corn (maize)
fiber tailings, Illinois, USA; NRRL Y-321 (CBS 2071), type strain of Pseudomonilia deformans (which is closely related to Y. lipolytica), isolated
from a fingernail, Austria, F. Zach; NRRL Y-323 (CBS 2070), type
strain of Monilia cornealis, from a corneal lesion, Italy, G. Pollaccii;
NRRL Y-1094, NRRL Y-1095 (CBS 6317), unknown source, USA?, used
for citric acid production from hydrocarbons; NRRL Y-5383 NRRL
Y-5386, from petroleum storage tanks in Iowa and South Dakota,
USA, R.S. Flippin; NRRL Y-7207, NRRL Y-7208, from cold-stored frankfurters,
USA, D.G. Ahearn; NRRL Y-7484, from sputum, Cleveland,
Ohio, USA, J.W. Heller; NRRL Y-7751NRRL Y-7757, from refrigerated
meat products, Virginia, USA, R.W. Bothast; NRRL Y-7817, from
refrigerated Canadian bacon, Peoria, Illinois, USA, C.P. Kurtzman;
NRRL Y-11853 (IBFM 183), NRRL Y-11854 (IBFM 184), authentic
strains of Saccharomycopsis pseudolipolytica, both from soil, Russia,
V.M. Blagodatskaya.
 Type strain:NRRL YB-423 
 Synonyms:Endomycopsis lipolytica Wickerham, Kurtzman & Herman (1970b)
Saccharomycopsis lipolytica (Wickerham, Kurtzman & Herman)
Yarrow (1972)
Mycotorula lipolytica F.C. Harrison (1928)
Torula lipolytica (F.C. Harrison) Jacobsen (Lodder 1934)
Candida lipolytica (F.C. Harrison) Diddens & Lodder (1942)
Azymoprocandida lipolytica (F.C. Harrison) Novák & Zsolt (1961)
Monilia cornealis Nannizzi (in Bencini and Federici 1928)1
Proteomyces cornealis (Nannizzi) Dodge (1935)
Candida olea van Rij & Verona (1949)1
Candida paralipolytica K. Yamada & Ota (1963)1
Candida lipolytica (F.C. Harrison) Diddens & Lodder var. thermotolerans
Blagodatskaya & Kocková-Kratochvílová (1973)1
Candida oleophila Iizuka, Shimizu, Ishii & Nakajima (1967) nom. nud.1
Torulopsis petrophilum Takeda, Iguchi, Tsuzuki & Nakano (1972) nom.
Candida petrophilum Takeda, Iguchi, Tsuzuki & Nakano (1972) nom.
Candida pseudolipolytica Blagodatskaja & Kocková-Kratochvílová
Saccharomycopsis pseudolipolytica Blagodatskaya (1979)2
 Basis for synonymy:Synonymy determined from: 1ITS sequences and D1/D2 LSU rRNA gene
sequences (Knutsen et al. 2007), 2 D1/D2 LSU rRNA gene sequences
(C.P. Kurtzman, unpublished data).
 Anamorph:Candida lipolytica (F.C. Harrison) Diddens & Lodder 
 Systematics:Yarrowia lipolytica is awidely reported contaminant
in dairy and meat products. The dairy products which most often
show a high population of Y. lipolytica, include sour and curd cheeses
(Lopandic et al. 2006, Vasdinyei and Deák 2003) as well as firm cheeses
such as Gouda (Welthagen and Viljoen 1998). Deák (2001) and Ismail
et al. (2000) reported Y. lipolytica to be common on raw poultry products,
and to show significant growth on these products at refrigeration
temperatures. Y. lipolytica also appears to be common on the
traditional sausages of southern Italy (Gardini et al. 2001).


 Growth on YM/malt agar:After 3 days at 25C, the cells are
spherical, ellipsoidal or elongate, 3533.315 μm, and occur singly,
in pairs or small clusters. Growth is butyrous to hyphal, and tannishwhite
in color.
 Growth on the surface of assimilation media:Pellicles are formed,
and may be thin or rather thick.
 Dalmau plate cultures on potato and corn meal agar media:After 7 days at 25C,
growth under the coverglass shows pseudohyphae, and true hyphae
are usually present as well. The septa of true hyphae have a single
central micropore that lacks tapered edges (Kreger-van Rij and
Veenhuis 1973a). Aerobic growth is white to tannish-white and
smoothglistening to dull and convoluted. Colony margins may be
entire or lobed.


 Formation of ascospores:This species is heterothallic. Asci are
unconjugated, and may form from natural diploids or from diploids
resulting from conjugation of complementary mating types. Asci are
usually produced on hyphal cells, but infrequently an ascus will arise
on a single blastoconidium. Asci may be either stalked or sessile, and
they become deliquescent as they mature. Generally, one to four
ascospores are formed in each ascus (Fig. 82.2). Ascospore shape is
quite variable, and is determined in part by the mating types paired.
Ascospores from NRRL YB-423-33NRRL YB-423-12 are spherical,
hat-shaped or irregular, and may be roughened, whereas ascospores
from NRRL YB-4213NRRL YB-423-12 are hemispherical and somewhat
saucer-like. Ascospores were observed on YM agar after 37
days at 25C. Herman (1971b) reported increased fertility and ascosporulation
when complementary mating types were paired on
restricted growth (RG) medium.
 Complementary mating types:NRRL YB-423-3 (CBS 6124.1) and
NRRL YB-423-12 (CBS 6124.2), single-ascospore isolates from NRRL


 D-Glucose (F1):- 
 D-Galactose (F2):- 
 Maltose (F3):- 
 Sucrose (F5):- 
 a,a-Trehalose (F6):- 
 Lactose (F8):- 
 Raffinose (F11):- 
Assimilations & growth tests
Temperatures growths tests :
at 4ºC ?
at 12ºC ?
at 15ºC ?
at 19ºC yes
at 21ºC ?
at 25ºC yes
at 30ºC yes
at 35ºC ?
at 37ºC variable
at 40ºC ?
at 42ºC ?
at 45ºC ?
Glucose +
Inulin -
Sucrose -
Raffinose -
Melibiose -
Galactose -, +
Lactose -
Trehalose -
Maltose -
Melezitose -
Methyl-α-D-glucoside -
Soluble starch -
Cellobiose -, +
Salicin -, +
L-Sorbose -, +
L-Rhamnose -
D-Xylose -
L-Arabinose -
D-Arabinose -
D-Ribose -, +
Methanol -
Ethanol +
Glycerol +
Erythritol +
Ribitol -, +
Galactitol -
D-Mannitol +
D-Glucitol +
myo-Inositol -
DL-Lactate +
Succinate +
Citrate +
D-Gluconate -, +
D-Glucosamine -
N-Acetyl-D-glucosamine +
Hexadecane +
Nitrate -
Nitrite ?
Vitamin-free -
2-Keto-D-gluconate -
5-Keto-D-gluconate -
Saccharate -
Xylitol ?
L-Arabinitol ?
Arbutin ?
Propane 1,2 diol ?
Butane 2,3 diol ?
Cadaverine ?
Creatinine ?
L-Lysine ?
Ethylamine ?
50% Glucose ?
10% NaCl/5% glucose -
Starch formation -
Urease -
Gelatin liquefaction +
Cycloheximide 0.01% ?
Cycloheximide 0.1% ?
 Diazonium Blue B reaction (M4):- 
 Coenzyme Q system:9 
 Cell carbohydrates:Cell walls contain galactomannans (Gorin and
Spencer 1970).


 26S Remarks:

26S Statistics for Yarrowia lipolytica:
Average similarity between strains: 99.6431%
Observed minimum similarity with central strain: 97.9775%
Similarity between type and central strain: 0%
Statistics based on 112 sequences.

 rDNA sequences 26S:
 ITS Remarks:

ITS Statistics for Yarrowia lipolytica:
Average similarity between strains: 98.754%
Observed minimum similarity with central strain: 95.7447%
Similarity between type and central strain: 95.7447%
Statistics based on 108 sequences.

 rDNA sequences ITS:
 Molecular % G+C (Average):49.9 
 Type sequences:LSU-U40080