Ascertaining the impact of inhibitors on the growth phenotype of yeast mutants can beuseful in elucidating the function of genes within the cell. Microtitre plates and robotics have been used to screen over 600 deletions from EUROSCARF, constructed in an FY1679 strain background, for sensitivity to various oxidants. These included the inorganic hydroperoxide, H2O2, an organic peroxide (cumene hydroperoxide) and a lipid hydroperoxide (linoleic acid hydroperoxide). These produce within the cell several different reactive oxygen species that can cause damage to DNA, proteins and lipids. Approximately 14% of deletants displayed sensitivity to at least one of the oxidants and there was also a distribution of deletants that showed sensitivity to all or different combinations of the oxidants. Deletants included genes encoding proteins involved in stress responses, heavy metal homeostasis and putative cell wall proteins. Although global mechanisms have been identified that provide general stress responses, these results imply that there are also distinct mechanisms involved in the protection of the cell against specific damage caused bydifferent oxidants. Further analysis of these genes may reveal unknown mechanisms protecting the cell against reactive oxygen species. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.