WorldWideScience

Sample records for exoerythrocytic plasmodium parasites

  1. Mouse Model for Exoerythrocytic Stages of Plasmodium Falciparum Malaria Parasite,

    Science.gov (United States)

    1992-05-01

    scid/scid mice, originally obtained from planta ~ion of human hepatocytes into scid mice (scid hu-hep), Leonard Schultz (The Jackson Laboratories. Bar...used have been & Jingdong. Z. (1990) Imnuiniiol. Lett. 25. 71-76. valuable in the study of the malaria parasite, but these 16. Druilhe. P.. Puebla . R. M

  2. Optimization of an in vitro system to study the exo-erythrocytic stage of the human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Rossouw, C

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available stream_source_info Rossouw_2010.pdf.txt stream_content_type text/plain stream_size 13329 Content-Encoding UTF-8 stream_name Rossouw_2010.pdf.txt Content-Type text/plain; charset=UTF-8 INTRODUCTION Much research remains... scaffold and harvesting cells via the temperature change is currently being scaled up and a prototype bioreactor has been developed. Optimization of an in vitro system to study the exo-erythrocytic stage of the human Malaria Parasite, Plasmodium...

  3. Mortality and pathology in birds due to Plasmodium (Giovannolaia) homocircumflexum infection, with emphasis on the exoerythrocytic development of avian malaria parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ilgūnas, Mikas; Bukauskaitė, Dovilė; Palinauskas, Vaidas; Iezhova, Tatjana A; Dinhopl, Nora; Nedorost, Nora; Weissenbacher-Lang, Christiane; Weissenböck, Herbert; Valkiūnas, Gediminas

    2016-05-04

    Species of avian malaria parasites (Plasmodium) are widespread, but their virulence has been insufficiently investigated, particularly in wild birds. During avian malaria, several cycles of tissue merogony occur, and many Plasmodium spp. produce secondary exoerythrocytic meronts (phanerozoites), which are induced by merozoites developing in erythrocytic meronts. Phanerozoites markedly damage organs, but remain insufficiently investigated in the majority of described Plasmodium spp. Avian malaria parasite Plasmodium (Giovannolaia) homocircumflexum (lineage pCOLL4) is virulent and produces phanerozoites in domestic canaries Serinus canaria, but its pathogenicity in wild birds remains unknown. The aim of this study was to investigate the pathology caused by this infection in species of common European birds. One individual of Eurasian siskin Carduelis spinus, common crossbill Loxia curvirostra and common starling Sturnus vulgaris were exposed to P. homocircumflexum infection by intramuscular sub-inoculation of infected blood. The birds were maintained in captivity and parasitaemia was monitored until their death due to malaria. Brain, heart, lungs, liver, spleen, kidney, and a piece of breast muscle were examined using histology and chromogenic in situ hybridization (ISH) methods. All exposed birds developed malaria infection, survived the peak of parasitaemia, but suddenly died between 30 and 38 days post exposure when parasitaemia markedly decreased. Numerous phanerozoites were visible in histological sections of all organs and were particularly easily visualized after ISH processing. Blockage of brain capillaries with phanerozoites may have led to cerebral ischaemia, causing cerebral paralysis and is most likely the main reason of sudden death of all infected individuals. Inflammatory response was not visible around the brain, heart and muscle phanerozoites, and it was mild in parenchymal organs. The endothelial damage likely causes dysfunction and failure of

  4. Exo-erythrocytic development of avian malaria and related haemosporidian parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valkiūnas, Gediminas; Iezhova, Tatjana A

    2017-03-03

    Avian malaria parasites (Plasmodium spp.) and related haemosporidians (Haemosporida) are responsible for diseases which can be severe and even lethal in avian hosts. These parasites cause not only blood pathology, but also damage various organs due to extensive exo-erythrocytic development all over the body, which is not the case during Plasmodium infections in mammals. However, exo-erythrocytic development (tissue merogony or schizogony) remains the most poorly investigated part of life cycle in all groups of wildlife haemosporidian parasites. In spite of remarkable progress in studies of genetic diversity, ecology and evolutionary biology of avian haemosporidians during the past 20 years, there is not much progress in understanding patterns of exo-erythrocytic development in these parasites. The purpose of this review is to overview the main information on exo-erythrocytic development of avian Plasmodium species and related haemosporidian parasites as a baseline for assisting academic and veterinary medicine researchers in morphological identification of these parasites using tissue stages, and to define future research priorities in this field of avian malariology. The data were considered from peer-reviewed articles and histological material that was accessed in zoological collections in museums of Australia, Europe and the USA. Articles describing tissue stages of avian haemosporidians were included from 1908 to the present. Histological preparations of various organs infected with the exo-erythrocytic stages of different haemosporidian parasites were examined. In all, 229 published articles were included in this review. Exo-erythrocytic stages of avian Plasmodium, Fallisia, Haemoproteus, Leucocytozoon, and Akiba species were analysed, compared and illustrated. Morphological characters of tissue stages that can be used for diagnostic purposes were specified. Recent molecular studies combined with histological research show that avian haemosporidians are more

  5. Dual RNAseq shows the human mucosal immunity protein, MUC13, is a hallmark of Plasmodium exoerythrocytic infection

    KAUST Repository

    LaMonte, Gregory

    2017-10-03

    The exoerythrocytic stage of Plasmodium malaria infection is a critical window for prophylactic intervention. Using a genome-wide dual RNA sequencing of flow-sorted infected and uninfected hepatoma cells we identify the human mucosal immunity gene, Mucin13 (MUC13), as strongly upregulated during Plasmodium exoerythrocytic hepatic-stage infection. We confirm that MUC13 expression is upregulated in hepatoma cell lines and primary hepatocytes. In immunofluorescence assays, host MUC13 protein expression distinguishes infected cells from adjacent uninfected cells and shows similar colocalization with parasite biomarkers such as UIS4 and HSP70. We further show that localization patterns are species independent, distinguishing both P. berghei and P. vivax infected cells, and that MUC13 can be used to identify compounds that inhibit parasite replication in hepatocytes across all Human-infecting Plasmodium species. This data presents a novel interface of host-parasite interactions in Plasmodium, in that a component of host mucosal immunity is reprogrammed to assist the progression of infection.

  6. [Effect of environmental temperature, cryopreservation and aging on Plasmodium vivax sporozoites developing into exoerythrocytic stages].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, D; Lou, S; Shu, H; Fu, R; Ye, B

    1995-01-01

    After Anopheles stephensi mosquitoes with salivary infection of Plasmodium vivax were put in environments with temperatures of 30 +/- 1 degrees C, 26 +/- 1 degrees C or 13 +/- 1 degrees C for 5 d, their glands were aseptically dissected and sporozoites were collected and inoculated into HepG2-A16 cell monolayers. Seven days post-inoculation the cultured materials were harvested and the exoerythrocytic schizonts and hypnozoites were observed under the microscope by using immunoperoxidase staining technique. The results showed that the sporozoite developing rate of 30 +/- 1 degrees C group and 13 +/- 1 degrees C group was significantly lower than that of 26 +/- 1 degrees C group (0.33%, 0.35% and 0.75% respectively). The proportion of hypnozoites in the total number of EE forms was the highest in the low temperature group (62.5%) compared with 26 +/- 1 degrees C and 30 +/- 1 degrees C group (40.1% and 42.7% respectively). Suggesting that the low environmental temperature first affected the viability of tachysporozoites or the phenotype of sporozoites and thus resulted in heightened hypnozoite rate. This is parallel to the epidemiological data that in the regions of high latitute vivax malaria with long incubation period was more frequently observed. When the sporozoites within the body of mosquito were cryopreserved at -70 degrees C or in liquid nitrogen for 24 h or 5 d respectively, the proportion of hypnozoite increased 87.4% and 82.4%, respectively. However, cryopreservation did not inactivate all of the tachysporozoites, indicating that the resistance to ultralow temperature in bradysporozoite was much greater than that in tachysporozoites. Aging of sporozoites decreased their developing rate and the exoerythrocytic (EE) schizonts were found to grow sluggishly and asynchronously, indicating that the size of EE schizont and the age of sporozoites are in negative correlation. Meantime, proportion of the hyponozoite decreased significantly.

  7. Parasites Cryptosporidium parvum, Leishmania, Plasmodium ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    First page Back Continue Last page Overview Graphics. Parasites Cryptosporidium parvum, Leishmania, Plasmodium falciparum (malaria), Schistosoma. Cancer-associated antigens Carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA), melanoma-associated antigen, the MHC molecule HLA-B7.

  8. Description of the first cryptic avian malaria parasite, Plasmodium homocircumflexum n. sp., with experimental data on its virulence and development in avian hosts and mosquitoes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palinauskas, Vaidas; Žiegytė, Rita; Ilgūnas, Mikas; Iezhova, Tatjana A; Bernotienė, Rasa; Bolshakov, Casimir; Valkiūnas, Gediminas

    2015-01-01

    For over 100 years studies on avian haemosporidian parasite species have relied on similarities in their morphology to establish a species concept. Some exceptional cases have also included information about the life cycle and sporogonic development. More than 50 avian Plasmodium spp. have now been described. However, PCR-based studies show a much broader diversity of haemosporidian parasites, indicating the possible existence of a diverse group of cryptic species. In the present study, using both similarity and phylogenetic species definition concepts, we believe that we report the first characterised cryptic speciation case of an avian Plasmodium parasite. We used sequence information on the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene and constructed phylogenies of identified Plasmodium spp. to define their position in the phylogenetic tree. After analysis of blood stages, the morphology of the parasite was shown to be identical to Plasmodium circumflexum. However, the geographic distribution of the new parasite, the phylogenetic information, as well as patterns of development of infection, indicate that this parasite differs from P. circumflexum. Plasmodium homocircumflexum n. sp. was described based on information about genetic differences from described lineages, phylogenetic position and biological characters. This parasite develops parasitemia in experimentally infected birds - the domestic canary Serinus canaria domestica, siskin Carduelis spinus and crossbill Loxia curvirostra. Anaemia caused by high parasitemia, as well as cerebral paralysis caused by exoerythrocytic stages in the brain, are the main reasons for mortality. Exoerythrocytic stages also form in other organs (heart, kidneys, liver, lungs, spleen, intestines and pectoral muscles). DNA amplification was unsuccessful from faecal samples of heavily infected birds. The sporogonic development initiates, but is abortive, at the oocyst stage in two common European mosquito species, Culex pipiens pipiens (forms

  9. Helminth Parasites Alter Protection against Plasmodium Infection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salazar-Castañon, Víctor H.; Legorreta-Herrera, Martha

    2014-01-01

    More than one-third of the world's population is infected with one or more helminthic parasites. Helminth infections are prevalent throughout tropical and subtropical regions where malaria pathogens are transmitted. Malaria is the most widespread and deadliest parasitic disease. The severity of the disease is strongly related to parasite density and the host's immune responses. Furthermore, coinfections between both parasites occur frequently. However, little is known regarding how concomitant infection with helminths and Plasmodium affects the host's immune response. Helminthic infections are frequently massive, chronic, and strong inductors of a Th2-type response. This implies that infection by such parasites could alter the host's susceptibility to subsequent infections by Plasmodium. There are a number of reports on the interactions between helminths and Plasmodium; in some, the burden of Plasmodium parasites increased, but others reported a reduction in the parasite. This review focuses on explaining many of these discrepancies regarding helminth-Plasmodium coinfections in terms of the effects that helminths have on the immune system. In particular, it focuses on helminth-induced immunosuppression and the effects of cytokines controlling polarization toward the Th1 or Th2 arms of the immune response. PMID:25276830

  10. Occurrence of Plasmodium gallenaecium Parasites in Chickens ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A total of forty six Local Chickens (Gallus gallus) were obtained from Wudil Market in Wudil Local Government Area in January 2009. The birds were screened for malaria parasite by making thick and thin blood films on slides. The slides were examined for the presence of plasmodium parasite (parasitaemia Value). Results ...

  11. A Plasmodium falciparum strain expressing GFP throughout the parasite's life-cycle.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arthur M Talman

    Full Text Available The human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum is responsible for the majority of malaria-related deaths. Tools allowing the study of the basic biology of P. falciparum throughout the life cycle are critical to the development of new strategies to target the parasite within both human and mosquito hosts. We here present 3D7HT-GFP, a strain of P. falciparum constitutively expressing the Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP throughout the life cycle, which has retained its capacity to complete sporogonic development. The GFP expressing cassette was inserted in the Pf47 locus. Using this transgenic strain, parasite tracking and population dynamics studies in mosquito stages and exo-erythrocytic schizogony is greatly facilitated. The development of 3D7HT-GFP will permit a deeper understanding of the biology of parasite-host vector interactions, and facilitate the development of high-throughput malaria transmission assays and thus aid development of new intervention strategies against both parasite and mosquito.

  12. Expression of human CD81 differently affects host cell susceptibility to malaria sporozoites depending on the Plasmodium species.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Silvie, O.; Greco, C.; Franetich, J.F.; Dubart-Kupperschmitt, A.; Hannoun, L.; Gemert, G.J.A. van; Sauerwein, R.W.; Levy, S.; Boucheix, C.; Rubinstein, E.; Mazier, D.

    2006-01-01

    Plasmodium sporozoites can enter host cells by two distinct pathways, either through disruption of the plasma membrane followed by parasite transmigration through cells, or by formation of a parasitophorous vacuole (PV) where the parasite further differentiates into a replicative exo-erythrocytic

  13. Mitosis in the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum ▿

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerald, Noel; Mahajan, Babita; Kumar, Sanjai

    2011-01-01

    Malaria is caused by intraerythrocytic protozoan parasites belonging to Plasmodium spp. (phylum Apicomplexa) that produce significant morbidity and mortality, mostly in developing countries. Plasmodium parasites have a complex life cycle that includes multiple stages in anopheline mosquito vectors and vertebrate hosts. During the life cycle, the parasites undergo several cycles of extreme population growth within a brief span, and this is critical for their continued transmission and a contributing factor for their pathogenesis in the host. As with other eukaryotes, successful mitosis is an essential requirement for Plasmodium reproduction; however, some aspects of Plasmodium mitosis are quite distinct and not fully understood. In this review, we will discuss the current understanding of the architecture and key events of mitosis in Plasmodium falciparum and related parasites and compare them with the traditional mitotic events described for other eukaryotes. PMID:21317311

  14. Chimpanzee malaria parasites related to Plasmodium ovale in Africa

    OpenAIRE

    Duval, L.; Nerrienet, E.; Rousset, D.; Sadeuh Mba, S.A.; Houze, S.; Fourment, M.; Le Bras, J.; Robert, Vincent; Ariey, F.

    2009-01-01

    Since the 1970's, the diversity of Plasmodium parasites in African great apes has been neglected. Surprisingly, P. reichenowi, a chimpanzee parasite, is the only such parasite to have been molecularly characterized. This parasite is closely phylogenetically related to P. falciparum, the principal cause of the greatest malaria burden in humans. Studies of malaria parasites from anthropoid primates may provide relevant phylogenetic information, improving our understanding of the origin and evol...

  15. Chimpanzee malaria parasites related to Plasmodium ovale in Africa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linda Duval

    Full Text Available Since the 1970's, the diversity of Plasmodium parasites in African great apes has been neglected. Surprisingly, P. reichenowi, a chimpanzee parasite, is the only such parasite to have been molecularly characterized. This parasite is closely phylogenetically related to P. falciparum, the principal cause of the greatest malaria burden in humans. Studies of malaria parasites from anthropoid primates may provide relevant phylogenetic information, improving our understanding of the origin and evolutionary history of human malaria species. In this study, we screened 130 DNA samples from chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes and gorillas (Gorilla gorilla from Cameroon for Plasmodium infection, using cytochrome b molecular tools. Two chimpanzees from the subspecies Pan t. troglodytes presented single infections with Plasmodium strains molecularly related to the human malaria parasite P. ovale. These chimpanzee parasites and 13 human strains of P. ovale originated from a various sites in Africa and Asia were characterized using cytochrome b and cytochrome c oxidase 1 mitochondrial partial genes and nuclear ldh partial gene. Consistent with previous findings, two genetically distinct types of P. ovale, classical and variant, were observed in the human population from a variety of geographical locations. One chimpanzee Plasmodium strain was genetically identical, on all three markers tested, to variant P. ovale type. The other chimpanzee Plasmodium strain was different from P. ovale strains isolated from humans. This study provides the first evidence of possibility of natural cross-species exchange of P. ovale between humans and chimpanzees of the subspecies Pan t. troglodytes.

  16. Chimpanzee malaria parasites related to Plasmodium ovale in Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duval, Linda; Nerrienet, Eric; Rousset, Dominique; Sadeuh Mba, Serge Alain; Houze, Sandrine; Fourment, Mathieu; Le Bras, Jacques; Robert, Vincent; Ariey, Frederic

    2009-01-01

    Since the 1970's, the diversity of Plasmodium parasites in African great apes has been neglected. Surprisingly, P. reichenowi, a chimpanzee parasite, is the only such parasite to have been molecularly characterized. This parasite is closely phylogenetically related to P. falciparum, the principal cause of the greatest malaria burden in humans. Studies of malaria parasites from anthropoid primates may provide relevant phylogenetic information, improving our understanding of the origin and evolutionary history of human malaria species. In this study, we screened 130 DNA samples from chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and gorillas (Gorilla gorilla) from Cameroon for Plasmodium infection, using cytochrome b molecular tools. Two chimpanzees from the subspecies Pan t. troglodytes presented single infections with Plasmodium strains molecularly related to the human malaria parasite P. ovale. These chimpanzee parasites and 13 human strains of P. ovale originated from a various sites in Africa and Asia were characterized using cytochrome b and cytochrome c oxidase 1 mitochondrial partial genes and nuclear ldh partial gene. Consistent with previous findings, two genetically distinct types of P. ovale, classical and variant, were observed in the human population from a variety of geographical locations. One chimpanzee Plasmodium strain was genetically identical, on all three markers tested, to variant P. ovale type. The other chimpanzee Plasmodium strain was different from P. ovale strains isolated from humans. This study provides the first evidence of possibility of natural cross-species exchange of P. ovale between humans and chimpanzees of the subspecies Pan t. troglodytes.

  17. The Plasmodium bottleneck: malaria parasite losses in the mosquito vector

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Ryan C; Vega-Rodríguez, Joel; Jacobs-Lorena, Marcelo

    2014-01-01

    Nearly one million people are killed every year by the malaria parasite Plasmodium. Although the disease-causing forms of the parasite exist only in the human blood, mosquitoes of the genus Anopheles are the obligate vector for transmission. Here, we review the parasite life cycle in the vector and highlight the human and mosquito contributions that limit malaria parasite development in the mosquito host. We address parasite killing in its mosquito host and bottlenecks in parasite numbers that might guide intervention strategies to prevent transmission. PMID:25185005

  18. From malaria parasite point of view – Plasmodium falciparum evolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Agata Zerka

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Malaria is caused by infection with protozoan parasites belonging to the genus Plasmodium, which have arguably exerted the greatest selection pressure on humans in the history of our species. Besides humans, different Plasmodium parasites infect a wide range of animal hosts, from marine invertebrates to primates. On the other hand, individual Plasmodium species show high host specificity. The extraordinary evolution of Plasmodium probably began when a free-living red algae turned parasitic, and culminated with its ability to thrive inside a human red blood cell. Studies on the African apes generated new data on the evolution of malaria parasites in general and the deadliest human-specific species, Plasmodium falciparum, in particular. Initially, it was hypothesized that P. falciparum descended from the chimpanzee malaria parasite P. reichenowi, after the human and the chimp lineage diverged about 6 million years ago. However, a recently identified new species infecting gorillas, unexpectedly showed similarity to P. falciparum and was therefore named P. praefalciparum. That finding spurred an alternative hypothesis, which proposes that P. falciparum descended from its gorilla rather than chimp counterpart. In addition, the gorilla-to-human host shift may have occurred more recently (about 10 thousand years ago than the theoretical P. falciparum-P. reichenowi split. One of the key aims of the studies on Plasmodium evolution is to elucidate the mechanisms that allow the incessant host shifting and retaining the host specificity, especially in the case of human-specific species. Thorough understanding of these phenomena will be necessary to design effective malaria treatment and prevention strategies.

  19. [From malaria parasite point of view--Plasmodium falciparum evolution].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zerka, Agata; Kaczmarek, Radosław; Jaśkiewicz, Ewa

    2015-12-31

    Malaria is caused by infection with protozoan parasites belonging to the genus Plasmodium, which have arguably exerted the greatest selection pressure on humans in the history of our species. Besides humans, different Plasmodium parasites infect a wide range of animal hosts, from marine invertebrates to primates. On the other hand, individual Plasmodium species show high host specificity. The extraordinary evolution of Plasmodium probably began when a free-living red algae turned parasitic, and culminated with its ability to thrive inside a human red blood cell. Studies on the African apes generated new data on the evolution of malaria parasites in general and the deadliest human-specific species, Plasmodium falciparum, in particular. Initially, it was hypothesized that P. falciparum descended from the chimpanzee malaria parasite P. reichenowi, after the human and the chimp lineage diverged about 6 million years ago. However, a recently identified new species infecting gorillas, unexpectedly showed similarity to P. falciparum and was therefore named P. praefalciparum. That finding spurred an alternative hypothesis, which proposes that P. falciparum descended from its gorilla rather than chimp counterpart. In addition, the gorilla-to-human host shift may have occurred more recently (about 10 thousand years ago) than the theoretical P. falciparum-P. reichenowi split. One of the key aims of the studies on Plasmodium evolution is to elucidate the mechanisms that allow the incessant host shifting and retaining the host specificity, especially in the case of human-specific species. Thorough understanding of these phenomena will be necessary to design effective malaria treatment and prevention strategies.

  20. Serological evidence of discrete spatial clusters of Plasmodium falciparum parasites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bejon, Philip; Turner, Louise; Lavstsen, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    Malaria transmission may be considered to be homogenous with well-mixed parasite populations (as in the classic Ross/Macdonald models). Marked fine-scale heterogeneity of transmission has been observed in the field (i.e., over a few kilometres), but there are relatively few data on the degree...... of mixing. Since the Plasmodium falciparum Erythrocyte Membrane Protein 1 (PfEMP1) is highly polymorphic, the host's serological responses may be used to infer exposure to parasite sub-populations....

  1. Origin of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum in gorillas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Weimin; Li, Yingying; Learn, Gerald H; Rudicell, Rebecca S; Robertson, Joel D; Keele, Brandon F; Ndjango, Jean-Bosco N; Sanz, Crickette M; Morgan, David B; Locatelli, Sabrina; Gonder, Mary K; Kranzusch, Philip J; Walsh, Peter D; Delaporte, Eric; Mpoudi-Ngole, Eitel; Georgiev, Alexander V; Muller, Martin N; Shaw, George M; Peeters, Martine; Sharp, Paul M; Rayner, Julian C; Hahn, Beatrice H

    2010-09-23

    Plasmodium falciparum is the most prevalent and lethal of the malaria parasites infecting humans, yet the origin and evolutionary history of this important pathogen remain controversial. Here we develop a single-genome amplification strategy to identify and characterize Plasmodium spp. DNA sequences in faecal samples from wild-living apes. Among nearly 3,000 specimens collected from field sites throughout central Africa, we found Plasmodium infection in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and western gorillas (Gorilla gorilla), but not in eastern gorillas (Gorilla beringei) or bonobos (Pan paniscus). Ape plasmodial infections were highly prevalent, widely distributed and almost always made up of mixed parasite species. Analysis of more than 1,100 mitochondrial, apicoplast and nuclear gene sequences from chimpanzees and gorillas revealed that 99% grouped within one of six host-specific lineages representing distinct Plasmodium species within the subgenus Laverania. One of these from western gorillas comprised parasites that were nearly identical to P. falciparum. In phylogenetic analyses of full-length mitochondrial sequences, human P. falciparum formed a monophyletic lineage within the gorilla parasite radiation. These findings indicate that P. falciparum is of gorilla origin and not of chimpanzee, bonobo or ancient human origin.

  2. Origin of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum in gorillas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Weimin; Li, Yingying; Learn, Gerald H.; Rudicell, Rebecca S.; Robertson, Joel D.; Keele, Brandon F.; Ndjango, Jean-Bosco N.; Sanz, Crickette M.; Morgan, David B.; Locatelli, Sabrina; Gonder, Mary K.; Kranzusch, Philip J.; Walsh, Peter D.; Delaporte, Eric; Mpoudi-Ngole, Eitel; Georgiev, Alexander V.; Muller, Martin N.; Shaw, George M.; Peeters, Martine; Sharp, Paul M.; Rayner, Julian C.; Hahn, Beatrice H.

    2010-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum is the most prevalent and lethal of the malaria parasites infecting humans, yet the origin and evolutionary history of this important pathogen remain controversial. Here, we developed a novel polymerase chain reaction based single genome amplification strategy to identify and characterize Plasmodium spp. DNA sequences in fecal samples of wild-living apes. Among nearly 3,000 specimens collected from field sites throughout central Africa, we found Plasmodium infection in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and western gorillas (Gorilla gorilla), but not in eastern gorillas (Gorilla beringei) or bonobos (Pan paniscus). Ape plasmodial infections were highly prevalent, widely distributed, and almost always comprised of mixed parasite species. Analysis of more than 1,100 mitochondrial, apicoplast and nuclear gene sequences from chimpanzees and gorillas revealed that 99% grouped within one of six host-specific lineages representing distinct Plasmodium species within the subgenus Laverania. One of these from western gorillas was comprised of parasites that were nearly identical to P. falciparum. In phylogenetic analyses of full-length mitochondrial sequences, human P. falciparum formed a monophyletic lineage within the gorilla parasite radiation. These findings indicate that P. falciparum is of gorilla and not of chimpanzee, bonobo or ancient human origin. PMID:20864995

  3. African origin of the malaria parasite Plasmodium vivax.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Weimin; Li, Yingying; Shaw, Katharina S; Learn, Gerald H; Plenderleith, Lindsey J; Malenke, Jordan A; Sundararaman, Sesh A; Ramirez, Miguel A; Crystal, Patricia A; Smith, Andrew G; Bibollet-Ruche, Frederic; Ayouba, Ahidjo; Locatelli, Sabrina; Esteban, Amandine; Mouacha, Fatima; Guichet, Emilande; Butel, Christelle; Ahuka-Mundeke, Steve; Inogwabini, Bila-Isia; Ndjango, Jean-Bosco N; Speede, Sheri; Sanz, Crickette M; Morgan, David B; Gonder, Mary K; Kranzusch, Philip J; Walsh, Peter D; Georgiev, Alexander V; Muller, Martin N; Piel, Alex K; Stewart, Fiona A; Wilson, Michael L; Pusey, Anne E; Cui, Liwang; Wang, Zenglei; Färnert, Anna; Sutherland, Colin J; Nolder, Debbie; Hart, John A; Hart, Terese B; Bertolani, Paco; Gillis, Amethyst; LeBreton, Matthew; Tafon, Babila; Kiyang, John; Djoko, Cyrille F; Schneider, Bradley S; Wolfe, Nathan D; Mpoudi-Ngole, Eitel; Delaporte, Eric; Carter, Richard; Culleton, Richard L; Shaw, George M; Rayner, Julian C; Peeters, Martine; Hahn, Beatrice H; Sharp, Paul M

    2014-01-01

    Plasmodium vivax is the leading cause of human malaria in Asia and Latin America but is absent from most of central Africa due to the near fixation of a mutation that inhibits the expression of its receptor, the Duffy antigen, on human erythrocytes. The emergence of this protective allele is not understood because P. vivax is believed to have originated in Asia. Here we show, using a non-invasive approach, that wild chimpanzees and gorillas throughout central Africa are endemically infected with parasites that are closely related to human P. vivax. Sequence analyses reveal that ape parasites lack host specificity and are much more diverse than human parasites, which form a monophyletic lineage within the ape parasite radiation. These findings indicate that human P. vivax is of African origin and likely selected for the Duffy-negative mutation. All extant human P. vivax parasites are derived from a single ancestor that escaped out of Africa.

  4. ADP-ribosyltransferase in Plasmodium (malaria parasites).

    OpenAIRE

    Okolie, E E; Onyezili, N I

    1983-01-01

    The nuclei of Plasmodium yoelii nigeriensis contain an enzyme, ADP-ribosyltransferase, that will incorporate the ADP-ribose moiety of NAD+ into acid-insoluble product. The time, pH and temperature optima of this incorporation are 30 min, 8.5 and 25 degrees C respectively. Maximum stimulation of the enzyme activity is obtained with 1.0 mM-dithiothreitol or 2.0 mM-2-mercaptoethanol. Ca2+ and Mg2+ ions at optimum concentrations of 5 mM and 10 mM respectively stimulated the activity of the enzyme...

  5. Targeting NAD+ metabolism in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica K O'Hara

    Full Text Available Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+ is an essential metabolite utilized as a redox cofactor and enzyme substrate in numerous cellular processes. Elevated NAD+ levels have been observed in red blood cells infected with the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, but little is known regarding how the parasite generates NAD+. Here, we employed a mass spectrometry-based metabolomic approach to confirm that P. falciparum lacks the ability to synthesize NAD+ de novo and is reliant on the uptake of exogenous niacin. We characterized several enzymes in the NAD+ pathway and demonstrate cytoplasmic localization for all except the parasite nicotinamidase, which concentrates in the nucleus. One of these enzymes, the P. falciparum nicotinate mononucleotide adenylyltransferase (PfNMNAT, is essential for NAD+ metabolism and is highly diverged from the human homolog, but genetically similar to bacterial NMNATs. Our results demonstrate the enzymatic activity of PfNMNAT in vitro and demonstrate its ability to genetically complement the closely related Escherichia coli NMNAT. Due to the similarity of PfNMNAT to the bacterial enzyme, we tested a panel of previously identified bacterial NMNAT inhibitors and synthesized and screened twenty new derivatives, which demonstrate a range of potency against live parasite culture. These results highlight the importance of the parasite NAD+ metabolic pathway and provide both novel therapeutic targets and promising lead antimalarial compounds.

  6. Multiplication rate variation in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murray, Lee; Stewart, Lindsay B; Tarr, Sarah J; Ahouidi, Ambroise D; Diakite, Mahamadou; Amambua-Ngwa, Alfred; Conway, David J

    2017-07-25

    It is important to understand intrinsic variation in asexual blood stage multiplication rates of the most virulent human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. Here, multiplication rates of long-term laboratory adapted parasite clones and new clinical isolates were measured, using a newly standardised assay of growth from low starting density in replicate parallel cultures with erythrocytes from multiple different donors, across multiple cycles. Multiplication rates of long-term established clones were between 7.6 and 10.5 fold per 48 hours, with clone Dd2 having a higher rate than others (clones 3D7, HB3 and D10). Parasite clone-specific growth was then analysed in co-culture assays with all possible heterologous pairwise combinations. This showed that co-culture of different parasites did not affect their replication rates, indicating that there were no suppressive interactions operating between parasites. Multiplication rates of eleven new clinical isolates were measured after a few weeks of culture, and showed a spectrum of replication rates between 2.3 and 6.0 fold per 48 hours, the entire range being lower than for the long-term laboratory adapted clones. Multiplication rate estimates remained stable over time for several isolates tested repeatedly up to three months after culture initiation, indicating considerable persistence of this important trait variation.

  7. Comparative genomics of the neglected human malaria parasite Plasmodium vivax

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlton, Jane M.; Adams, John H.; Silva, Joana C.; Bidwell, Shelby L.; Lorenzi, Hernan; Caler, Elisabet; Crabtree, Jonathan; Angiuoli, Samuel V.; Merino, Emilio F.; Amedeo, Paolo; Cheng, Qin; Coulson, Richard M. R.; Crabb, Brendan S.; del Portillo, Hernando A.; Essien, Kobby; Feldblyum, Tamara V.; Fernandez-Becerra, Carmen; Gilson, Paul R.; Gueye, Amy H.; Guo, Xiang; Kang’a, Simon; Kooij, Taco W. A.; Korsinczky, Michael; Meyer, Esmeralda V.-S.; Nene, Vish; Paulsen, Ian; White, Owen; Ralph, Stuart A.; Ren, Qinghu; Sargeant, Tobias J.; Salzberg, Steven L.; Stoeckert, Christian J.; Sullivan, Steven A.; Yamamoto, Marcio Massao; Hoffman, Stephen L.; Wortman, Jennifer R.; Gardner, Malcolm J.; Galinski, Mary R.; Barnwell, John W.; Fraser-Liggett, Claire M.

    2008-01-01

    The human malaria parasite Plasmodium vivax is responsible for 25-40% of the ~515 million annual cases of malaria worldwide. Although seldom fatal, the parasite elicits severe and incapacitating clinical symptoms and often relapses months after a primary infection has cleared. Despite its importance as a major human pathogen, P. vivax is little studied because it cannot be propagated in the laboratory except in non-human primates. We determined the genome sequence of P. vivax in order to shed light on its distinctive biologic features, and as a means to drive development of new drugs and vaccines. Here we describe the synteny and isochore structure of P. vivax chromosomes, and show that the parasite resembles other malaria parasites in gene content and metabolic potential, but possesses novel gene families and potential alternate invasion pathways not recognized previously. Completion of the P. vivax genome provides the scientific community with a valuable resource that can be used to advance scientific investigation into this neglected species. PMID:18843361

  8. Species-specific escape of Plasmodium sporozoites from oocysts of avian, rodent, and human malarial parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orfano, Alessandra S; Nacif-Pimenta, Rafael; Duarte, Ana P M; Villegas, Luis M; Rodrigues, Nilton B; Pinto, Luciana C; Campos, Keillen M M; Pinilla, Yudi T; Chaves, Bárbara; Barbosa Guerra, Maria G V; Monteiro, Wuelton M; Smith, Ryan C; Molina-Cruz, Alvaro; Lacerda, Marcus V G; Secundino, Nágila F C; Jacobs-Lorena, Marcelo; Barillas-Mury, Carolina; Pimenta, Paulo F P

    2016-08-02

    Malaria is transmitted when an infected mosquito delivers Plasmodium sporozoites into a vertebrate host. There are many species of Plasmodium and, in general, the infection is host-specific. For example, Plasmodium gallinaceum is an avian parasite, while Plasmodium berghei infects mice. These two parasites have been extensively used as experimental models of malaria transmission. Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax are the most important agents of human malaria, a life-threatening disease of global importance. To complete their life cycle, Plasmodium parasites must traverse the mosquito midgut and form an oocyst that will divide continuously. Mature oocysts release thousands of sporozoites into the mosquito haemolymph that must reach the salivary gland to infect a new vertebrate host. The current understanding of the biology of oocyst formation and sporozoite release is mostly based on experimental infections with P. berghei, and the conclusions are generalized to other Plasmodium species that infect humans without further morphological analyses. Here, it is described the microanatomy of sporozoite escape from oocysts of four Plasmodium species: the two laboratory models, P. gallinaceum and P. berghei, and the two main species that cause malaria in humans, P. vivax and P. falciparum. It was found that sporozoites have species-specific mechanisms of escape from the oocyst. The two model species of Plasmodium had a common mechanism, in which the oocyst wall breaks down before sporozoites emerge. In contrast, P. vivax and P. falciparum sporozoites show a dynamic escape mechanism from the oocyst via polarized propulsion. This study demonstrated that Plasmodium species do not share a common mechanism of sporozoite escape, as previously thought, but show complex and species-specific mechanisms. In addition, the knowledge of this phenomenon in human Plasmodium can facilitate transmission-blocking studies and not those ones only based on the murine and avian models.

  9. The genome of the simian and human malaria parasite Plasmodium knowlesi

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pain, A; Böhme, U; Berry, A E

    2008-01-01

    Plasmodium knowlesi is an intracellular malaria parasite whose natural vertebrate host is Macaca fascicularis (the 'kra' monkey); however, it is now increasingly recognized as a significant cause of human malaria, particularly in southeast Asia. Plasmodium knowlesi was the first malaria parasite...... species in which antigenic variation was demonstrated, and it has a close phylogenetic relationship to Plasmodium vivax, the second most important species of human malaria parasite (reviewed in ref. 4). Despite their relatedness, there are important phenotypic differences between them, such as host blood...... cell preference, absence of a dormant liver stage or 'hypnozoite' in P. knowlesi, and length of the asexual cycle (reviewed in ref. 4). Here we present an analysis of the P. knowlesi (H strain, Pk1(A+) clone) nuclear genome sequence. This is the first monkey malaria parasite genome to be described...

  10. Standardizing estimates of the Plasmodium falciparum parasite rate

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Smith David L

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Plasmodium falciparum parasite rate (PfPR is a commonly reported index of malaria transmission intensity. PfPR rises after birth to a plateau before declining in older children and adults. Studies of populations with different age ranges generally report average PfPR, so age is an important source of heterogeneity in reported PfPR data. This confounds simple comparisons of PfPR surveys conducted at different times or places. Methods Several algorithms for standardizing PfPR were developed using 21 studies that stratify in detail PfPR by age. An additional 121 studies were found that recorded PfPR from the same population over at least two different age ranges; these paired estimates were used to evaluate these algorithms. The best algorithm was judged to be the one that described most of the variance when converting the PfPR pairs from one age-range to another. Results The analysis suggests that the relationship between PfPR and age is predictable across the observed range of malaria endemicity. PfPR reaches a peak after about two years and remains fairly constant in older children until age ten before declining throughout adolescence and adulthood. The PfPR pairs were poorly correlated; using one to predict the other would explain only 5% of the total variance. By contrast, the PfPR predicted by the best algorithm explained 72% of the variance. Conclusion The PfPR in older children is useful for standardization because it has good biological, epidemiological and statistical properties. It is also historically consistent with the classical categories of hypoendemic, mesoendemic and hyperendemic malaria. This algorithm provides a reliable method for standardizing PfPR for the purposes of comparing studies and mapping malaria endemicity. The scripts for doing so are freely available to all.

  11. Reduced erythrocyte susceptibility and increased host clearance of young parasites slows Plasmodium growth in a murine model of severe malaria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khoury, David S.; Cromer, Deborah; Best, Shannon E.; James, Kylie R.; Sebina, Ismail; Haque, Ashraful; Davenport, Miles P.

    2015-05-01

    The best correlate of malaria severity in human Plasmodium falciparum (Pf) infection is the total parasite load. Pf-infected humans could control parasite loads by two mechanisms, either decreasing parasite multiplication, or increasing parasite clearance. However, few studies have directly measured these two mechanisms in vivo. Here, we have directly quantified host clearance of parasites during Plasmodium infection in mice. We transferred labelled red blood cells (RBCs) from Plasmodium infected donors into uninfected and infected recipients, and tracked the fate of donor parasites by frequent blood sampling. We then applied age-based mathematical models to characterise parasite clearance in the recipient mice. Our analyses revealed an increased clearance of parasites in infected animals, particularly parasites of a younger developmental stage. However, the major decrease in parasite multiplication in infected mice was not mediated by increased clearance alone, but was accompanied by a significant reduction in the susceptibility of RBCs to parasitisation.

  12. The transcriptome of the avian malaria parasite Plasmodium ashfordi displays host-specific gene expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Videvall, Elin; Cornwallis, Charlie K; Ahrén, Dag; Palinauskas, Vaidas; Valkiūnas, Gediminas; Hellgren, Olof

    2017-06-01

    Malaria parasites (Plasmodium spp.) include some of the world's most widespread and virulent pathogens. Our knowledge of the molecular mechanisms these parasites use to invade and exploit their hosts other than in mice and primates is, however, extremely limited. It is therefore imperative to characterize transcriptome-wide gene expression from nonmodel malaria parasites and how this varies across individual hosts. Here, we used high-throughput Illumina RNA sequencing on blood from wild-caught Eurasian siskins experimentally infected with a clonal strain of the avian malaria parasite Plasmodium ashfordi (lineage GRW2). Using a bioinformatic multistep approach to filter out host transcripts, we successfully assembled the blood-stage transcriptome of P. ashfordi. A total of 11 954 expressed transcripts were identified, and 7860 were annotated with protein information. We quantified gene expression levels of all parasite transcripts across three hosts during two infection stages - peak and decreasing parasitemia. Interestingly, parasites from the same host displayed remarkably similar expression profiles during different infection stages, but showed large differences across hosts, indicating that P. ashfordi may adjust its gene expression to specific host individuals. We further show that the majority of transcripts are most similar to the human parasite Plasmodium falciparum, and a large number of red blood cell invasion genes were discovered, suggesting evolutionary conserved invasion strategies between mammalian and avian Plasmodium. The transcriptome of P. ashfordi and its host-specific gene expression advances our understanding of Plasmodium plasticity and is a valuable resource as it allows for further studies analysing gene evolution and comparisons of parasite gene expression. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. Comparative analysis of stage specific gene regulation of apicomplexan parasites: Plasmodium falciparum and Toxoplasma gondii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gopalakrishnan, Anusha M; López-Estraño, Carlos

    2010-08-01

    Apicomplexans comprise some of the most life threatening parasites infecting human and livestock and includes Plasmodium and Toxoplasma, the causative agents of malaria and toxoplasmosis respectively, in humans as well as Neospora caninum (abortion in livestock, neosporosis in dogs), Cryptosporidium (Diarrheal cryptosporidiosis and opportunistic infections in AIDS patients) and Eimeria (poultry coccidiosis). These parasites are characterized by a complex life cycle usually alternating between sexual and asexual cycles in different hosts. The need to adapt to different host environments demands a tight regulation of gene expression during parasite development. Therefore, the understanding of parasite biology will facilitate the control of the infection and the disease. In this review we emphasize the progress made so far in gene regulation in two medically important parasites, namely Plasmodium falciparum and Toxoplasma gondii, as well as other less known apicomplexan. The genome of both Plasmodium and Toxoplasma has been sequenced and since then there has been a significant progress in understanding the molecular mechanisms that control stage specific gene expression in the two parasites. In addition, the information gained in each of the parasite can be used in studying mechanisms that are still elusive in the other apicomplexans that are not readily available. Additionally, they can serve as model system for other disease causing Apicomplexan parasites.

  14. Proteomic profiling of Plasmodium sporozoite maturation identifies new proteins essential for parasite development and infectivity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lasonder, Edwin; Janse, Chris J; van Gemert, Geert-Jan

    2008-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum sporozoites that develop and mature inside an Anopheles mosquito initiate a malaria infection in humans. Here we report the first proteomic comparison of different parasite stages from the mosquito -- early and late oocysts containing midgut sporozoites, and the mature...... three previously uncharacterized Plasmodium proteins that appear to be essential for sporozoite development at distinct points of maturation in the mosquito. This study sheds light on the development and maturation of the malaria parasite in an Anopheles mosquito and also identifies proteins that may...

  15. Prevalence patterns of avian Plasmodium and Haemoproteus parasites and the influence of host relative abundance in southern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yanhua; Wu, Yuchun; Zhang, Qiang; Su, Dongdong; Zou, Fasheng

    2014-01-01

    Infectious diseases threaten the health and survival of wildlife populations. Consequently, relationships between host diversity, host abundance, and parasite infection are important aspects of disease ecology and conservation research. Here, we report on the prevalence patterns of avian Plasmodium and Haemoproteus infections and host relative abundance influence based on sampling 728 wild-caught birds representing 124 species at seven geographically widespread sites in southern China. The overall prevalence of two haemoprotozoan parasites, Plasmodium and Haemoproteus, was 29.5%, with 22.0% attributable to Haemoproteus and 7.8% to Plasmodium. Haemoproteus prevalence differed significantly among different avian host families, with the highest prevalence in Nectariniidae, Pycnonotidae and Muscicapidae, whereas Plasmodium prevalence varied significantly among host species. Seventy-nine mitochondrial lineages including 25 from Plasmodium and 54 from Haemoproteus were identified, 80% of which were described here for the first time. The phylogenetic relationships among these parasites indicated stronger host-species specificity for Haemoproteus than Plasmodium. Well-supported host-family (Timaliidae) specific clades were found in both Plasmodium and Haemoproteus. The Haemoproteus tree shows regional subclades, whereas the Plasmodium clades are "scattered" among different geographical regions. Interestingly, there were statistically significant variations in the prevalence of Plasmodium and Haemoproteus among the geographical regions. Furthermore, the prevalence of Plasmodium and Haemoproteus were not significantly correlated with host relative abundance. Further efforts will focus on exploring the relationships between parasite prevalence and sex, age, and immune defense of the host.

  16. Expression profiling of Plasmodium berghei HSP70 genes for generation of bright red fluorescent parasites.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marion Hliscs

    Full Text Available Live cell imaging of recombinant malarial parasites encoding fluorescent probes provides critical insights into parasite-host interactions and life cycle progression. In this study, we generated a red fluorescent line of the murine malarial parasite Plasmodium berghei. To allow constitutive and abundant expression of the mCherry protein we profiled expression of all members of the P. berghei heat shock protein 70 (HSP70 family. We identified PbHSP70/1, an invariant ortholog of Plasmodium falciparum HSP70-1, as the protein with the highest expression levels during Plasmodium blood, mosquito, and liver infection. Stable allelic insertion of a mCherry expression cassette into the PbHsp70/1 locus created constitutive red fluorescent P. berghei lines, termed Pbred. We show that these parasites can be used for live imaging of infected host cells and organs, including hepatocytes, erythrocytes, and whole Anopheles mosquitoes. Quantification of the fluorescence intensity of several Pbred parasite stages revealed significantly enhanced signal intensities in comparison to GFP expressed under the control of the constitutive EF1alpha promoter. We propose that systematic transcript profiling permits generation of reporter parasites, such as the Pbred lines described herein.

  17. Molecular cloning of a K+ channel from the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ellekvist, Peter; Ricke, Christina Høier; Litman, Thomas

    2004-01-01

    In most living cells, K(+) channels are important for the generation of the membrane potential and for volume regulation. The parasite Plasmodium falciparum, which causes malignant malaria, must be able to deal with large variations in the ambient K(+) concentration: it is exposed to high...

  18. Cytometric quantification of singlet oxygen in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Butzloff, Sabine; Groves, Matthew R; Wrenger, Carsten; Müller, Ingrid B

    The malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum proliferates within human erythrocytes and is thereby exposed to a variety of reactive oxygen species (ROS) such as hydrogen peroxide, hydroxyl radical, superoxide anion, and highly reactive singlet oxygen ((1)O(2)). While most ROS are already well studied

  19. Protein export marks the early phase of gametocytogenesis of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Silvestrini, F.; Lasonder, E.; Olivieri, A.; Camarda, G.; Schaijk, B.C.L. van; Sanchez, M.; Younis Younis, S.; Sauerwein, R.W.; Alano, P.

    2010-01-01

    Despite over a century of study of malaria parasites, parts of the Plasmodium falciparum life cycle remain virtually unknown. One of these is the early gametocyte stage, a round shaped cell morphologically similar to an asexual trophozoite in which major cellular transformations ensure subsequent

  20. Core genome components and lineage specific expansions in malaria parasites Plasmodium

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gu Jianying

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The increasing resistance of Plasmodium, the malaria parasites, to multiple commonly used drugs has underscored the urgent need to develop effective antimalarial drugs and vaccines. The new direction of genomics-driven target discovery has become possible with the completion of parasite genome sequencing, which can lead us to a better understanding of how the parasites develop the genetic variability that is associated with their response to environmental challenges and other adaptive phenotypes. Results We present the results of a comprehensive analysis of the genomes of six Plasmodium species, including two species that infect humans, one that infects monkeys, and three that infect rodents. The core genome shared by all six species is composed of 3,351 genes, which make up about 22%-65% of the genome repertoire. These components play important roles in fundamental functions as well as in parasite-specific activities. We further investigated the distribution and features of genes that have been expanded in specific Plasmodium lineage(s. Abundant duplicate genes are present in the six species, with 5%-9% of the whole genomes composed lineage specific radiations. The majority of these gene families are hypothetical proteins with unknown functions; a few may have predicted roles such as antigenic variation. Conclusions The core genome components in the malaria parasites have functions ranging from fundamental biological processes to roles in the complex networks that sustain the parasite-specific lifestyles appropriate to different hosts. They represent the minimum requirement to maintain a successful life cycle that spans vertebrate hosts and mosquito vectors. Lineage specific expansions (LSEs have given rise to abundant gene families in Plasmodium. Although the functions of most families remain unknown, these LSEs could reveal components in parasite networks that, by their enhanced genetic variability, can contribute to

  1. Plasmodium falciparum parasite prevalence in East Africa: A Review ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Data extraction: Studies of cross-sectional community estimates of Plasmodium falciparum prevalence among children aged 0-15 years were identified from a variety of sources including electronic searches of published material, manual review of pre-electronic peer reviewed journals and searches of libraries and archives ...

  2. Laser capture microdissection microscopy and genome sequencing of the avian malaria parasite, Plasmodium relictum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lutz, Holly L; Marra, Nicholas J; Grewe, Felix; Carlson, Jenny S; Palinauskas, Vaidas; Valkiūnas, Gediminas; Stanhope, Michael J

    2016-12-01

    Acquiring genomic material from avian malaria parasites for genome sequencing has proven problematic due to the nucleation of avian erythrocytes, which produces a large ratio of host to parasite DNA (∼1 million to 1 bp). We tested the ability of laser capture microdissection microscopy to isolate parasite cells from individual avian erythrocytes for four avian Plasmodium species, and subsequently applied whole genome amplification and Illumina sequencing methods to Plasmodium relictum (lineage pSGS1) to produce sequence reads of the P. relictum genome. We assembled ∼335 kbp of parasite DNA from this species, but were unable to completely avoid contamination by host DNA and other sources. However, it is clear that laser capture microdissection holds promise for the isolation of genomic material from haemosporidian parasites in intracellular life stages. In particular, laser capture microdissection may prove useful for isolating individual parasite species from co-infected hosts. Although not explicitly tested in this study, laser capture microdissection may also have important applications for isolation of rare parasite lineages and museum specimens for which no fresh material exists.

  3. Mitochondrial genes support a common origin of rodent malaria parasites and Plasmodium falciparum's relatives infecting great apes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Blanquart Samuel

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plasmodium falciparum is responsible for the most acute form of human malaria. Most recent studies demonstrate that it belongs to a monophyletic lineage specialized in the infection of great ape hosts. Several other Plasmodium species cause human malaria. They all belong to another distinct lineage of parasites which infect a wider range of primate species. All known mammalian malaria parasites appear to be monophyletic. Their clade includes the two previous distinct lineages of parasites of primates and great apes, one lineage of rodent parasites, and presumably Hepatocystis species. Plasmodium falciparum and great ape parasites are commonly thought to be the sister-group of all other mammal-infecting malaria parasites. However, some studies supported contradictory origins and found parasites of great apes to be closer to those of rodents, or to those of other primates. Results To distinguish between these mutually exclusive hypotheses on the origin of Plasmodium falciparum and its great ape infecting relatives, we performed a comprehensive phylogenetic analysis based on a data set of three mitochondrial genes from 33 to 84 malaria parasites. We showed that malarial mitochondrial genes have evolved slowly and are compositionally homogeneous. We estimated their phylogenetic relationships using Bayesian and maximum-likelihood methods. Inferred trees were checked for their robustness to the (i site selection, (ii assumptions of various probabilistic models, and (iii taxon sampling. Our results robustly support a common ancestry of rodent parasites and Plasmodium falciparum's relatives infecting great apes. Conclusions Our results refute the most common view of the origin of great ape malaria parasites, and instead demonstrate the robustness of a less well-established phylogenetic hypothesis, under which Plasmodium falciparum and its relatives infecting great apes are closely related to rodent parasites. This study sheds light

  4. Mitochondrial genes support a common origin of rodent malaria parasites and Plasmodium falciparum's relatives infecting great apes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blanquart, Samuel; Gascuel, Olivier

    2011-03-15

    Plasmodium falciparum is responsible for the most acute form of human malaria. Most recent studies demonstrate that it belongs to a monophyletic lineage specialized in the infection of great ape hosts. Several other Plasmodium species cause human malaria. They all belong to another distinct lineage of parasites which infect a wider range of primate species. All known mammalian malaria parasites appear to be monophyletic. Their clade includes the two previous distinct lineages of parasites of primates and great apes, one lineage of rodent parasites, and presumably Hepatocystis species. Plasmodium falciparum and great ape parasites are commonly thought to be the sister-group of all other mammal-infecting malaria parasites. However, some studies supported contradictory origins and found parasites of great apes to be closer to those of rodents, or to those of other primates. To distinguish between these mutually exclusive hypotheses on the origin of Plasmodium falciparum and its great ape infecting relatives, we performed a comprehensive phylogenetic analysis based on a data set of three mitochondrial genes from 33 to 84 malaria parasites. We showed that malarial mitochondrial genes have evolved slowly and are compositionally homogeneous. We estimated their phylogenetic relationships using Bayesian and maximum-likelihood methods. Inferred trees were checked for their robustness to the (i) site selection, (ii) assumptions of various probabilistic models, and (iii) taxon sampling. Our results robustly support a common ancestry of rodent parasites and Plasmodium falciparum's relatives infecting great apes. Our results refute the most common view of the origin of great ape malaria parasites, and instead demonstrate the robustness of a less well-established phylogenetic hypothesis, under which Plasmodium falciparum and its relatives infecting great apes are closely related to rodent parasites. This study sheds light on the evolutionary history of Plasmodium falciparum, a

  5. Droplet Microfluidics Platform for Highly Sensitive and Quantitative Detection of Malaria-Causing Plasmodium Parasites Based on Enzyme Activity Measurement

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Juul, Sissel; Nielsen, Christine Juul Fælled; Labouriau, Rodrigo

    2012-01-01

    We present an attractive new system for the specific and sensitive detection of the malaria-causing Plasmodium parasites. The system relies on isothermal conversion of single DNA cleavage–ligation events catalyzed specifically by the Plasmodium enzyme topoisomerase I to micrometer-sized products...... detectable at the single-molecule level. Combined with a droplet microfluidics lab-on-a-chip platform, this design allowed for sensitive, specific, and quantitative detection of all human-malaria-causing Plasmodium species in single drops of unprocessed blood with a detection limit of less than one parasite....../μL. Moreover, the setup allowed for detection of Plasmodium parasites in noninvasive saliva samples from infected patients. During recent years malaria transmission has declined worldwide, and with this the number of patients with low-parasite density has increased. Consequently, the need for accurate...

  6. DNA Repair Mechanisms and Their Biological Roles in the Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Andrew H.; Symington, Lorraine S.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Research into the complex genetic underpinnings of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum is entering a new era with the arrival of site-specific genome engineering. Previously restricted only to model systems but now expanded to most laboratory organisms, and even to humans for experimental gene therapy studies, this technology allows researchers to rapidly generate previously unattainable genetic modifications. This technological advance is dependent on DNA double-strand break repair (DSBR), specifically homologous recombination in the case of Plasmodium. Our understanding of DSBR in malaria parasites, however, is based largely on assumptions and knowledge taken from other model systems, which do not always hold true in Plasmodium. Here we describe the causes of double-strand breaks, the mechanisms of DSBR, and the differences between model systems and P. falciparum. These mechanisms drive basic parasite functions, such as meiosis, antigen diversification, and copy number variation, and allow the parasite to continually evolve in the contexts of host immune pressure and drug selection. Finally, we discuss the new technologies that leverage DSBR mechanisms to accelerate genetic investigations into this global infectious pathogen. PMID:25184562

  7. CD47 regulates the phagocytic clearance and replication of the Plasmodium yoelii malaria parasite.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banerjee, Rajdeep; Khandelwal, Sanjay; Kozakai, Yukiko; Sahu, Bikash; Kumar, Sanjai

    2015-03-10

    Several Plasmodium species exhibit a strong age-based preference for the red blood cells (RBC) they infect, which in turn is a major determinant of disease severity and pathogenesis. The molecular basis underlying this age constraint on the use of RBC and its influence on parasite burden is poorly understood. CD47 is a marker of self on most cells, including RBC, which, in conjunction with signal regulatory protein alpha (expressed on macrophages), prevents the clearance of cells by the immune system. In this report, we have investigated the role of CD47 on the growth and survival of nonlethal Plasmodium yoelii 17XNL (PyNL) malaria in C57BL/6 mice. By using a quantitative biotin-labeling procedure and a GFP-expressing parasite, we demonstrate that PyNL parasites preferentially infect high levels of CD47 (CD47(hi))-expressing young RBC. Importantly, C57BL/6 CD47(-/-) mice were highly resistant to PyNL infection and developed a 9.3-fold lower peak parasitemia than their wild-type (WT) counterparts. The enhanced resistance to malaria observed in CD47(-/-) mice was associated with a higher percentage of splenic F4/80(+) cells, and these cells had a higher percentage of phagocytized parasitized RBC than infected WT mice during the acute phase of infection, when parasitemia was rapidly rising. Furthermore, injection of CD47-neutralizing antibody caused a significant reduction in parasite burden in WT C57BL/6 mice. Together, these results strongly suggest that CD47(hi) young RBC may provide a shield to the malaria parasite from clearance by the phagocytic cells, which may be an immune escape mechanism used by Plasmodium parasites that preferentially infect young RBC.

  8. H2O2 dynamics in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahbari, Mahsa; Rahlfs, Stefan; Jortzik, Esther; Bogeski, Ivan; Becker, Katja

    2017-01-01

    Hydrogen peroxide is an important antimicrobial agent but is also crucially involved in redox signaling and pathogen-host cell interactions. As a basis for systematically investigating intracellular H2O2 dynamics and regulation in living malaria parasites, we established the genetically encoded fluorescent H2O2 sensors roGFP2-Orp1 and HyPer-3 in Plasmodium falciparum. Both ratiometric redox probes as well as the pH control SypHer were expressed in the cytosol of blood-stage parasites. Both redox sensors showed reproducible sensitivity towards H2O2 in the lower micromolar range in vitro and in the parasites. Due to the pH sensitivity of HyPer-3, we used parasites expressing roGFP2-Orp1 for evaluation of short-, medium-, and long-term effects of antimalarial drugs on H2O2 levels and detoxification in Plasmodium. None of the quinolines or artemisinins tested had detectable direct effects on the H2O2 homeostasis at pharmacologically relevant concentrations. However, pre-treatment of the cells with antimalarial drugs or heat shock led to a higher tolerance towards exogenous H2O2. The systematic evaluation and comparison of the two genetically encoded cytosolic H2O2 probes in malaria parasites provides a basis for studying parasite-host cell interactions or drug effects with spatio-temporal resolution while preserving cell integrity.

  9. Artesunate Tolerance in Transgenic Plasmodium falciparum Parasites Overexpressing a Tryptophan-Rich Protein▿†

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deplaine, Guillaume; Lavazec, Catherine; Bischoff, Emmanuel; Natalang, Onguma; Perrot, Sylvie; Guillotte-Blisnick, Micheline; Coppée, Jean-Yves; Pradines, Bruno; Mercereau-Puijalon, Odile; David, Peter H.

    2011-01-01

    Due to their rapid, potent action on young and mature intraerythrocytic stages, artemisinin derivatives are central to drug combination therapies for Plasmodium falciparum malaria. However, the evidence for emerging parasite resistance/tolerance to artemisinins in southeast Asia is of great concern. A better understanding of artemisinin-related drug activity and resistance mechanisms is urgently needed. A recent transcriptome study of parasites exposed to artesunate led us to identify a series of genes with modified levels of expression in the presence of the drug. The gene presenting the largest mRNA level increase, Pf10_0026 (PArt), encoding a hypothetical protein of unknown function, was chosen for further study. Immunodetection with PArt-specific sera showed that artesunate induced a dose-dependent increase of the protein level. Bioinformatic analysis showed that PArt belongs to a Plasmodium-specific gene family characterized by the presence of a tryptophan-rich domain with a novel hidden Markov model (HMM) profile. Gene disruption could not be achieved, suggesting an essential function. Transgenic parasites overexpressing PArt protein were generated and exhibited tolerance to a spike exposure to high doses of artesunate, with increased survival and reduced growth retardation compared to that of wild-type-treated controls. These data indicate the involvement of PArt in parasite defense mechanisms against artesunate. This is the first report of genetically manipulated parasites displaying a stable and reproducible decreased susceptibility to artesunate, providing new possibilities to investigate the parasite response to artemisinins. PMID:21464256

  10. A new lizard malaria parasite Plasmodium intabazwe n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Haemospororida: Plasmodiidae) in the Afromontane Pseudocordylus melanotus (Sauria: Cordylidae) with a review of African saurian malaria parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van As, Johann; Cook, Courtney A; Netherlands, Edward C; Smit, Nico J

    2016-08-08

    Saurian malaria parasites are diverse apicomplexan blood parasites including the family Plasmodiidae Mesnil, 1903, and have been studied since the early 1900s. Currently, at least 27 species of Plasmodium are recorded in African lizards, and to date only two species, Plasmodium zonuriae (Pienaar, 1962) and Plasmodium cordyli Telford, 1987, have been reported from the African endemic family Cordylidae. This paper presents a description of a new malaria parasite in a cordylid lizard and provides a phylogenetic hypothesis for saurian Plasmodium species from South Africa. Furthermore, it provides a tabular review of the Plasmodium species that to date have been formally described infecting species of African lizards. Blood samples were collected from 77 specimens of Pseudocordylus melanotus (A. Smith, 1838) from Platberg reserve in the Eastern Free State, and two specimens of Cordylus vittifer (Reichenow, 1887) from the Roodewalshoek conservancy in Mpumalanga (South Africa). Blood smears were Giemsa-stained, screened for haematozoa, specifically saurian malaria parasites, parasite stages were photographed and measured. A small volume was also preserved for TEM studies. Plasmodium and Haemoproteus primer sets, with a nested-polymerase chain reaction (PCR) protocol, were employed to target a fragment of the cytochrome-b (cyt-b) gene region. Resulting sequences of the saurian Plasmodium species' isolates were compared with each other and to other known Plasmodium spp. sequences in the GenBank database. The presence of P. zonuriae in both specimens of the type lizard host C. vittifer was confirmed using morphological characteristics, which subsequently allowed for the species' molecular characterisation. Of the 77 P. melanotus, 44 were parasitised by a Plasmodium species, which when compared morphologically to other African saurian Plasmodium spp. and molecularly to P. zonuriae, supported its description as a new species Plasmodium intabazwe n. sp. This is the first

  11. An Ancient Protein Phosphatase, SHLP1, Is Critical to Microneme Development in Plasmodium Ookinetes and Parasite Transmission

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva-Maria Patzewitz

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Signaling pathways controlled by reversible protein phosphorylation (catalyzed by kinases and phosphatases in the malaria parasite Plasmodium are of great interest, for both increased understanding of parasite biology and identification of novel drug targets. Here, we report a functional analysis in Plasmodium of an ancient bacterial Shewanella-like protein phosphatase (SHLP1 found only in bacteria, fungi, protists, and plants. SHLP1 is abundant in asexual blood stages and expressed at all stages of the parasite life cycle. shlp1 deletion results in a reduction in ookinete (zygote development, microneme formation, and complete ablation of oocyst formation, thereby blocking parasite transmission. This defect is carried by the female gamete and can be rescued by direct injection of mutant ookinetes into the mosquito hemocoel, where oocysts develop. This study emphasizes the varied functions of SHLP1 in Plasmodium ookinete biology and suggests that it could be a novel drug target for blocking parasite transmission.

  12. Testing sex ratio theory with the malaria parasite Plasmodium mexicanum in natural and experimental infections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neal, Allison T; Schall, Jos J

    2014-04-01

    The malaria parasite (Plasmodium) life history accords well with the assumptions of local mate competition (LMC) of sex ratio theory. Within a single meal of the blood-feeding vector, sexually dimorphic gametocyte cells produce gametes (females produce one, males several) that mate and undergo sexual recombination. The theory posits several factors drive the Plasmodium sex ratio: male fecundity (gametes/male gametocyte), number and relative abundance of parasite clones, and gametocyte density. We measured these traits for the lizard malaria parasite, Plasmodium mexicanum, with a large sample of natural infections and infections from experiments that manipulated clonal diversity. Sex ratio in single-clone infections was slightly female-biased, but matched predictions of theory for this low-fecundity species. Sex ratio was less female-biased in clonally diverse infections as predicted by LMC for the experimental, but not natural infections. Gametocyte density was not positively related to sex ratio. These results are explained by the P. mexicanum life history of naturally low clonal diversity and high gametocyte production. This is the first study of a natural malaria system that examines all traits relevant to LMC in individual vertebrate hosts and suggests a striking example of sex ratio theory having significance for human public health. © 2013 The Author(s). Evolution © 2013 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  13. Cellulose filtration of blood from malaria patients for improving ex vivo growth of Plasmodium falciparum parasites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mkumbaye, Sixbert I; Minja, Daniel T R; Jespersen, Jakob S

    2017-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Establishing in vitro Plasmodium falciparum culture lines from patient parasite isolates can offer deeper understanding of geographic variations of drug sensitivity and mechanisms of malaria pathogenesis and immunity. Cellulose column filtration of blood is an inexpensive, rapid...... and effective method for the removal of host factors, such as leucocytes and platelets, significantly improving the purification of parasite DNA in a blood sample. METHODS: In this study, the effect of cellulose column filtration of venous blood on the initial in vitro growth of P. falciparum parasite isolates....... falciparum merozoite surface protein 2 genotyping was performed using nested PCR on extracted genomic DNA, and the var gene transcript levels were investigated, using quantitative PCR on extracted RNA, at admission and 4 days of culture. RESULTS: The cellulose-filtered parasites grew to higher parasitaemia...

  14. Plasmodium berghei Deltap52&p36 Parasites Develop Independent of a Parasitophorous Vacuole Membrane in Huh-7 Liver Cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ploemen, I.H.; Croes, H.J.; Gemert, G.J. van; Wijers-Rouw, M.J.; Hermsen, C.C.; Sauerwein, R.W.

    2012-01-01

    The proteins P52 and P36 are expressed in the sporozoite stage of the murine malaria parasite Plasmodium berghei. Deltap52&p36 sporozoites lacking expression of both proteins are severely compromised in their capability to develop into liver stage parasites and abort development soon after invasion;

  15. Analysis of Antibodies Directed against Merozoite Surface Protein 1 of the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woehlbier, Ute; Epp, Christian; Kauth, Christian W.; Lutz, Rolf; Long, Carole A.; Coulibaly, Boubacar; Kouyaté, Bocar; Arevalo-Herrera, Myriam; Herrera, Sócrates; Bujard, Hermann

    2006-01-01

    The 190-kDa merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP-1) of Plasmodium falciparum, an essential component in the parasite's life cycle, is a primary candidate for a malaria vaccine. Rabbit antibodies elicited by the heterologously produced MSP-1 processing products p83, p30, p38, and p42, derived from strain 3D7, were analyzed for the potential to inhibit in vitro erythrocyte invasion by the parasite and parasite growth. Our data show that (i) epitopes recognized by antibodies, which inhibit parasite replication, are distributed throughout the entire MSP-1 molecule; (ii) when combined, antibodies specific for different regions of MSP-1 inhibit in a strictly additive manner; (iii) anti-MSP-1 antibodies interfere with erythrocyte invasion as well as with the intraerythrocytic growth of the parasite; and (iv) antibodies raised against MSP-1 of strain 3D7 strongly cross-inhibit replication of the heterologous strain FCB-1. Accordingly, anti-MSP-1 antibodies appear to be capable of interfering with parasite multiplication at more than one level. Since the overall immunogenicity profile of MSP-1 in rabbits closely resembles that found in sera of Aotus monkeys immunized with parasite-derived MSP-1 and of humans semi-immune to malaria from whom highly inhibiting antigen-specific antibodies were recovered, we consider the findings reported here to be relevant for the development of MSP-1-based vaccines against malaria. PMID:16428781

  16. Validation of the proteasome as a therapeutic target in Plasmodium using an epoxyketone inhibitor with parasite-specific toxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Hao; Ponder, Elizabeth L; Verdoes, Martijn; Asbjornsdottir, Kristijana H; Deu, Edgar; Edgington, Laura E; Lee, Jeong Tae; Kirk, Christopher J; Demo, Susan D; Williamson, Kim C; Bogyo, Matthew

    2012-12-21

    The Plasmodium proteasome has been suggested to be a potential antimalarial drug target; however, toxicity of inhibitors has prevented validation of this enzyme in vivo. We report a screen of a library of 670 analogs of the recent US Food and Drug Administration-approved inhibitor, carfilzomib, to identify compounds that selectively kill parasites. We identified one compound, PR3, that has significant parasite killing activity in vitro but dramatically reduced toxicity in host cells. We found that this parasite-specific toxicity is not due to selective targeting of the Plasmodium proteasome over the host proteasome, but instead is due to a lack of activity against one of the human proteasome subunits. Subsequently, we used PR3 to significantly reduce parasite load in Plasmodium berghei infected mice without host toxicity, thus validating the proteasome as a viable antimalarial drug target. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Consistent and contrasting properties of lineage-specific genes in the apicomplexan parasites Plasmodium and Theileria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kissinger Jessica C

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Lineage-specific genes, the genes that are restricted to a limited subset of related organisms, may be important in adaptation. In parasitic organisms, lineage-specific gene products are possible targets for vaccine development or therapeutics when these genes are absent from the host genome. Results In this study, we utilized comparative approaches based on a phylogenetic framework to characterize lineage-specific genes in the parasitic protozoan phylum Apicomplexa. Genes from species in two major apicomplexan genera, Plasmodium and Theileria, were categorized into six levels of lineage specificity based on a nine-species phylogeny. In both genera, lineage-specific genes tend to have a higher level of sequence divergence among sister species. In addition, species-specific genes possess a strong codon usage bias compared to other genes in the genome. We found that a large number of genus- or species-specific genes are putative surface antigens that may be involved in host-parasite interactions. Interestingly, the two parasite lineages exhibit several notable differences. In Plasmodium, the (G + C content at the third codon position increases with lineage specificity while Theileria shows the opposite trend. Surface antigens in Plasmodium are species-specific and mainly located in sub-telomeric regions. In contrast, surface antigens in Theileria are conserved at the genus level and distributed across the entire lengths of chromosomes. Conclusion Our results provide further support for the model that gene duplication followed by rapid divergence is a major mechanism for generating lineage-specific genes. The result that many lineage-specific genes are putative surface antigens supports the hypothesis that lineage-specific genes could be important in parasite adaptation. The contrasting properties between the lineage-specific genes in two major apicomplexan genera indicate that the mechanisms of generating lineage-specific genes

  18. Plasmodium Apicoplast Gln-tRNA Gln Biosynthesis Utilizes a Unique GatAB Amidotransferase Essential for Erythrocytic Stage Parasites

    KAUST Repository

    Mailu, Boniface M.

    2015-08-28

    © 2015 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc. The malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum apicoplast indirect aminoacylation pathway utilizes a non-discriminating glutamyl-tRNA synthetase to synthesize Glu-tRNAGln and a glutaminyl-tRNA amidotransferase to convert Glu-tRNAGln to Gln-tRNAGln. Here, we show that Plasmodium falciparum and other apicomplexans possess a unique heterodimeric glutamyltRNA amidotransferase consisting of GatA and GatB subunits (GatAB). We localized the P. falciparum GatA and GatB subunits to the apicoplast in blood stage parasites and demonstrated that recombinant GatAB converts Glu-tRNAGln to Gln-tRNAGln in vitro. We demonstrate that the apicoplast GatAB-catalyzed reaction is essential to the parasite blood stages because we could not delete the Plasmodium berghei gene encoding GatA in blood stage parasites in vivo. A phylogenetic analysis placed the split between Plasmodium GatB, archaeal GatE, and bacterial GatB prior to the phylogenetic divide between bacteria and archaea. Moreover, Plasmodium GatA also appears to have emerged prior to the bacterial-archaeal phylogenetic divide. Thus, although GatAB is found in Plasmodium, it emerged prior to the phylogenetic separation of archaea and bacteria.

  19. Time-lapse imaging of red blood cell invasion by the rodent malaria parasite Plasmodium yoelii.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kazuhide Yahata

    Full Text Available In order to propagate within the mammalian host, malaria parasites must invade red blood cells (RBCs. This process offers a window of opportunity in which to target the parasite with drugs or vaccines. However, most of the studies relating to RBC invasion have analyzed the molecular interactions of parasite proteins with host cells under static conditions, and the dynamics of these interactions remain largely unstudied. Time-lapse imaging of RBC invasion is a powerful technique to investigate cell invasion and has been reported for Plasmodium knowlesi and Plasmodium falciparum. However, experimental modification of genetic loci is laborious and time consuming for these species. We have established a system of time-lapse imaging for the rodent malaria parasite Plasmodium yoelii, for which modification of genetic loci is quicker and simpler. We compared the kinetics of RBC invasion by P. yoelii with that of P. falciparum and found that the overall kinetics during invasion were similar, with some exceptions. The most striking of these differences is that, following egress from the RBC, the shape of P. yoelii merozoites gradually changes from flat elongated ovals to spherical bodies, a process taking about 60 sec. During this period merozoites were able to attach to and deform the RBC membrane, but were not able to reorient and invade. We propose that this morphological change of P. yoelii merozoites may be related to the secretion or activation of invasion-related proteins. Thus the P. yoelii merozoite appears to be an excellent model to analyze the molecular dynamics of RBC invasion, particularly during the morphological transition phase, which could serve as an expanded window that cannot be observed in P. falciparum.

  20. The mechanism of erythrocyte invasion by the malarial parasite, Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farrow, Rachel E; Green, Judith; Katsimitsoulia, Zoe; Taylor, William R; Holder, Anthony A; Molloy, Justin E

    2011-12-01

    Plasmodium falciparum is the most virulent causative agent of malaria in man accounting for 80% of all malarial infections and 90% of the one million annual deaths attributed to malaria. P. falciparum is a unicellular, Apicomplexan parasite, that spends part of its lifecycle in the mosquito and part in man and it has evolved a special form of motility that enables it to burrow into animal cells, a process termed "host cell invasion". The acute, life threatening, phase of malarial infection arises when the merozoite form of the parasite undergoes multiple cycles of red blood cell invasion and rapid proliferation. Here, we discuss the molecular machinery that enables malarial parasites to invade red blood cells and we focus particularly on the ATP-driven acto-myosin motor that powers invasion. Crown Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Direct Tests of Enzymatic Heme Degradation by the Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sigala, Paul A.; Crowley, Jan R.; Hsieh, Samantha; Henderson, Jeffrey P.; Goldberg, Daniel E.

    2012-01-01

    Malaria parasites generate vast quantities of heme during blood stage infection via hemoglobin digestion and limited de novo biosynthesis, but it remains unclear if parasites metabolize heme for utilization or disposal. Recent in vitro experiments with a heme oxygenase (HO)-like protein from Plasmodium falciparum suggested that parasites may enzymatically degrade some heme to the canonical HO product, biliverdin (BV), or its downstream metabolite, bilirubin (BR). To directly test for BV and BR production by P. falciparum parasites, we DMSO-extracted equal numbers of infected and uninfected erythrocytes and developed a sensitive LC-MS/MS assay to quantify these tetrapyrroles. We found comparable low levels of BV and BR in both samples, suggesting the absence of HO activity in parasites. We further tested live parasites by targeted expression of a fluorescent BV-binding protein within the parasite cytosol, mitochondrion, and plant-like plastid. This probe could detect exogenously added BV but gave no signal indicative of endogenous BV production within parasites. Finally, we recombinantly expressed and tested the proposed heme degrading activity of the HO-like protein, PfHO. Although PfHO bound heme and protoporphyrin IX with modest affinity, it did not catalyze heme degradation in vivo within bacteria or in vitro in UV absorbance and HPLC assays. These observations are consistent with PfHO's lack of a heme-coordinating His residue and suggest an alternative function within parasites. We conclude that P. falciparum parasites lack a canonical HO pathway for heme degradation and thus rely fully on alternative mechanisms for heme detoxification and iron acquisition during blood stage infection. PMID:22992734

  2. Cellulose filtration of blood from malaria patients for improving ex vivo growth of Plasmodium falciparum parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mkumbaye, Sixbert I; Minja, Daniel T R; Jespersen, Jakob S; Alifrangis, Michael; Kavishe, Reginald A; Mwakalinga, Steven B; Lusingu, John P; Theander, Thor G; Lavstsen, Thomas; Wang, Christian W

    2017-02-10

    Establishing in vitro Plasmodium falciparum culture lines from patient parasite isolates can offer deeper understanding of geographic variations of drug sensitivity and mechanisms of malaria pathogenesis and immunity. Cellulose column filtration of blood is an inexpensive, rapid and effective method for the removal of host factors, such as leucocytes and platelets, significantly improving the purification of parasite DNA in a blood sample. In this study, the effect of cellulose column filtration of venous blood on the initial in vitro growth of P. falciparum parasite isolates from Tanzanian children admitted to hospital was tested. The parasites were allowed to expand in culture without subcultivation until 5 days after admission or the appearance of dead parasites and parasitaemia was determined daily. To investigate whether the filtration had an effect on clonality, P. falciparum merozoite surface protein 2 genotyping was performed using nested PCR on extracted genomic DNA, and the var gene transcript levels were investigated, using quantitative PCR on extracted RNA, at admission and 4 days of culture. The cellulose-filtered parasites grew to higher parasitaemia faster than non-filtered parasites seemingly due to a higher development ratio of ring stage parasites progressing into the late stages. Cellulose filtration had no apparent effect on clonality or var gene expression; however, evident differences were observed after only 4 days of culture in both the number of clones and transcript levels of var genes compared to the time of admission. Cellulose column filtration of parasitized blood is a cheap, applicable method for improving cultivation of P. falciparum field isolates for ex vivo based assays; however, when assessing phenotype and genotype of cultured parasites, in general, assumed to represent the in vivo infection, caution is advised.

  3. Wild Anopheles funestus mosquito genotypes are permissive for infection with the rodent malaria parasite, Plasmodium berghei.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiannong Xu

    Full Text Available Malaria parasites undergo complex developmental transitions within the mosquito vector. A commonly used laboratory model for studies of mosquito-malaria interaction is the rodent parasite, P. berghei. Anopheles funestus is a major malaria vector in sub-Saharan Africa but has received less attention than the sympatric species, Anopheles gambiae. The imminent completion of the A. funestus genome sequence will provide currently lacking molecular tools to describe malaria parasite interactions in this mosquito, but previous reports suggested that A. funestus is not permissive for P. berghei development.An A. funestus population was generated in the laboratory by capturing female wild mosquitoes in Mali, allowing them to oviposit, and rearing the eggs to adults. These F1 progeny of wild mosquitoes were allowed to feed on mice infected with a fluorescent P. berghei strain. Fluorescence microscopy was used to track parasite development inside the mosquito, salivary gland sporozoites were tested for infectivity to mice, and parasite development in A. funestus was compared to A. gambiae.P. berghei oocysts were detectable on A. funestus midguts by 7 days post-infection. By 18-20 days post-infection, sporozoites had invaded the median and distal lateral lobes of the salivary glands, and hemocoel sporozoites were observed in the hemolymph. Mosquitoes were capable of infecting mice via bite, demonstrating that A. funestus supports the complete life cycle of P. berghei. In a random sample of wild mosquito genotypes, A. funestus prevalence of infection and the characteristics of parasite development were similar to that observed in A. gambiae-P. berghei infections.The data presented in this study establish an experimental laboratory model for Plasmodium infection of A. funestus, an important vector of human malaria. Studying A. funestus-Plasmodium interactions is now feasible in a laboratory setting. This information lays the groundwork for exploitation of the

  4. Cloning, sequence and expression of the lactate dehydrogenase gene from the human malaria parasite, Plasmodium vivax.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turgut-Balik, Dilek; Akbulut, Ekrem; Shoemark, Debbie K; Celik, Venhar; Moreton, Kathleen M; Sessions, Richard B; Holbrook, J John; Brady, R Leo

    2004-07-01

    Increased drug resistance to anti-malarials highlights the need for the development of new therapeutics for the treatment of malaria. To this end, the lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) gene was cloned and sequenced from genomic DNA of Plasmodium vivax ( PvLDH) Belem strain. The 316 amino acid protein-coding region of the PvLDH gene was inserted into the prokaryotic expression vector pKK223-3 and a 34 kDa protein with LDH activity was expressed in E. coli. Structural differences between human LDHs and PfLDH make the latter an attractive target for inhibitors leading to novel anti-malarial drugs. The sequence similarity between PvLDH and PfLDH (90% residue identity and no insertions or deletions) indicate that the same approach could be applied to Plasmodium vivax, the most common human malaria parasite in the world.

  5. Plasmodium falciparum K76T pfcrt Gene Mutations and Parasite Population Structure, Haiti, 2006–2009

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charles, Macarthur; Das, Sanchita; Daniels, Rachel; Kirkman, Laura; Delva, Glavdia G.; Destine, Rodney; Escalante, Ananias; Villegas, Leopoldo; Daniels, Noah M.; Shigyo, Kristi; Volkman, Sarah K.; Pape, Jean W.

    2016-01-01

    Hispaniola is the only Caribbean island to which Plasmodium falciparum malaria remains endemic. Resistance to the antimalarial drug chloroquine has rarely been reported in Haiti, which is located on Hispaniola, but the K76T pfcrt (P. falciparum chloroquine resistance transporter) gene mutation that confers chloroquine resistance has been detected intermittently. We analyzed 901 patient samples collected during 2006–2009 and found 2 samples showed possible mixed parasite infections of genetically chloroquine-resistant and -sensitive parasites. Direct sequencing of the pfcrt resistance locus and single-nucleotide polymorphism barcoding did not definitively identify a resistant population, suggesting that sustained propagation of chloroquine-resistant parasites was not occurring in Haiti during the study period. Comparison of parasites from Haiti with those from Colombia, Panama, and Venezuela reveals a geographically distinct population with highly related parasites. Our findings indicate low genetic diversity in the parasite population and low levels of chloroquine resistance in Haiti, raising the possibility that reported cases may be of exogenous origin. PMID:27089479

  6. Molecular cloning and biochemical characterization of iron superoxide dismutase from the rodent malaria parasite Plasmodium vinckei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prakash, Kirtika; Goyal, Manish; Soni, Awakash; Siddiqui, Arif Jamal; Bhardwaj, Jyoti; Puri, Sunil K

    2014-12-01

    Plasmodium parasite utilizes superoxide dismutase family proteins to limit the toxicity of reactive oxygen species, such as produced through hemoglobin degradation. These proteins play an important role in parasite survival during intra-erythrocytic phase. We have identified, and biochemically characterized a putative iron dependent superoxide dismutase from rodent malaria parasite Plasmodium vinckei (PvSOD1). The recombinant PvSOD1 protein was purified to homogeneity through a combination of affinity and gel filtration chromatography. Crosslinking, Native-PAGE and FPLC gel filtration analyses documented that PvSOD1 exists as a dimer in solution, a common feature shared by other Fe-SODs. PvSOD1 is cytosolic in localization and its expression is comparatively higher during trophozoite as compared to that of ring and schizont stages. Enzymatic activity of recombinant PvSOD1 was validated using conventional zymogram analyses and xanthine-xanthine oxidase system. Under optimal conditions, PvSOD1 was highly active and catalyzed the dismutation of superoxide radicals. Furthermore, PvSOD1 showed activity over a broad range of pH and temperature. Inhibition studies suggested that PvSOD1 was inactivated by hydrogen peroxide, and peroxynitrite, but not by cyanide and azide. Since, PvSOD1 plays a central role in oxidative defense mechanism, therefore, characterization of PvSOD1 will be exploited in the screening of new superoxide dismutase inhibitors for their antimalarial activity. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Clustering approach for unsupervised segmentation of malarial Plasmodium vivax parasite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdul-Nasir, Aimi Salihah; Mashor, Mohd Yusoff; Mohamed, Zeehaida

    2017-10-01

    Malaria is a global health problem, particularly in Africa and south Asia where it causes countless deaths and morbidity cases. Efficient control and prompt of this disease require early detection and accurate diagnosis due to the large number of cases reported yearly. To achieve this aim, this paper proposes an image segmentation approach via unsupervised pixel segmentation of malaria parasite to automate the diagnosis of malaria. In this study, a modified clustering algorithm namely enhanced k-means (EKM) clustering, is proposed for malaria image segmentation. In the proposed EKM clustering, the concept of variance and a new version of transferring process for clustered members are used to assist the assignation of data to the proper centre during the process of clustering, so that good segmented malaria image can be generated. The effectiveness of the proposed EKM clustering has been analyzed qualitatively and quantitatively by comparing this algorithm with two popular image segmentation techniques namely Otsu's thresholding and k-means clustering. The experimental results show that the proposed EKM clustering has successfully segmented 100 malaria images of P. vivax species with segmentation accuracy, sensitivity and specificity of 99.20%, 87.53% and 99.58%, respectively. Hence, the proposed EKM clustering can be considered as an image segmentation tool for segmenting the malaria images.

  8. Assessing parasite clearance during uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum infection treated with artesunate monotherapy in Suriname

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vreden SGS

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Stephen GS Vreden,1 Rakesh D Bansie,2 Jeetendra K Jitan,3 Malti R Adhin4 1Foundation for Scientific Research Suriname (SWOS, 2Department of Internal Medicine, Academic Hospital Paramaribo, 3Department of Public Health, Ministry of Health, 4Department of Biochemistry, Anton de Kom University of Suriname, Paramaribo, Suriname Background: Artemisinin resistance in Plasmodium falciparum is suspected when the day 3 parasitemia is >10% when treated with artemisinin-based combination therapy or if >10% of patients treated with artemisinin-based combination therapy or artesunate monotherapy harbored parasites with half-lives ≥5 hours. Hence, a single-arm prospective efficacy trial was conducted in Suriname for uncomplicated P. falciparum infection treated with artesunate-based monotherapy for 3 days assessing day 3 parasitemia, treatment outcome after 28 days, and parasite half-life. Methods: The study was conducted in Paramaribo, the capital of Suriname, from July 2013 until July 2014. Patients with uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum infection were included and received artesunate mono-therapy for three days. Day 3 parasitaemia, treatment outcome after 28 days and parasite half-life were determined. The latter was assessed with the parasite clearance estimator from the WorldWide Antimalarial Resistance Network (WWARN. Results: Thirty-nine patients were included from July 2013 until July 2014. The day 3 parasitemia was 10%. Eight patients (20.5% could be followed up until day 28 and showed adequate clinical and parasitological response. Parasite half-life could only be determined from ten data series (25.7%. The median parasite half-life was 5.16 hours, and seven of these data series had a half-life ≥5 hours, still comprising 17.9% of the total data series. Conclusion: The low follow-up rate and the limited analyzable data series preclude clear conclusions about the efficacy of artesunate monotherapy in Suriname and the parasite half

  9. Population genomic structure and adaptation in the zoonotic malaria parasite Plasmodium knowlesi

    KAUST Repository

    Assefa, Samuel

    2015-10-06

    Malaria cases caused by the zoonotic parasite Plasmodium knowlesi are being increasingly reported throughout Southeast Asia and in travelers returning from the region. To test for evidence of signatures of selection or unusual population structure in this parasite, we surveyed genome sequence diversity in 48 clinical isolates recently sampled from Malaysian Borneo and in five lines maintained in laboratory rhesus macaques after isolation in the 1960s from Peninsular Malaysia and the Philippines. Overall genomewide nucleotide diversity (π = 6.03 × 10) was much higher than has been seen in worldwide samples of either of the major endemic malaria parasite species Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax. A remarkable substructure is revealed within P. knowlesi, consisting of two major sympatric clusters of the clinical isolates and a third cluster comprising the laboratory isolates. There was deep differentiation between the two clusters of clinical isolates [mean genomewide fixation index (F) = 0.21, with 9,293 SNPs having fixed differences of F = 1.0]. This differentiation showed marked heterogeneity across the genome, with mean F values of different chromosomes ranging from 0.08 to 0.34 and with further significant variation across regions within several chromosomes. Analysis of the largest cluster (cluster 1, 38 isolates) indicated long-term population growth, with negatively skewed allele frequency distributions (genomewide average Tajima\\'s D = -1.35). Against this background there was evidence of balancing selection on particular genes, including the circumsporozoite protein (csp) gene, which had the top Tajima\\'s D value (1.57), and scans of haplotype homozygosity implicate several genomic regions as being under recent positive selection.

  10. Multiple lineages of Avian malaria parasites (Plasmodium) in the Galapagos Islands and evidence for arrival via migratory birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levin, I I; Zwiers, P; Deem, S L; Geest, E A; Higashiguchi, J M; Iezhova, T A; Jiménez-Uzcátegui, G; Kim, D H; Morton, J P; Perlut, N G; Renfrew, R B; Sari, E H R; Valkiunas, G; Parker, P G

    2013-12-01

    Haemosporidian parasites in the genus Plasmodium were recently detected through molecular screening in the Galapagos Penguin (Spheniscus mendiculus). We summarized results of an archipelago-wide screen of 3726 endemic birds representing 22 species for Plasmodium spp. through a combination of molecular and microscopy techniques. Three additional Plasmodium lineages were present in Galapagos. Lineage A-infected penguins, Yellow Warblers (Setophaga petechia aureola), and one Medium Ground Finch (Geospiza fortis) and was detected at multiple sites in multiple years [corrected]. The other 3 lineages were each detected at one site and at one time; apparently, they were transient infections of parasites not established on the archipelago. No gametocytes were found in blood smears of infected individuals; thus, endemic Galapagos birds may be dead-end hosts for these Plasmodium lineages. Determining when and how parasites and pathogens arrive in Galapagos is key to developing conservation strategies to prevent and mitigate the effects of introduced diseases. To assess the potential for Plasmodium parasites to arrive via migratory birds, we analyzed blood samples from 438 North American breeding Bobolinks (Dolichonyx oryzivorus), the only songbird that regularly migrates through Galapagos. Two of the ephemeral Plasmodium lineages (B and C) found in Galapagos birds matched parasite sequences from Bobolinks. Although this is not confirmation that Bobolinks are responsible for introducing these lineages, evidence points to higher potential arrival rates of avian pathogens than previously thought. Linajes Múltiples de Parásitos de Malaria Aviar (Plasmodium) en las Islas Galápagos y Evidencia de su Arribo por Medio de Aves Migratorias. © 2013 Society for Conservation Biology.

  11. Geographic structure of Plasmodium vivax: microsatellite analysis of parasite populations from Sri Lanka, Myanmar, and Ethiopia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gunawardena, Sharmini; Karunaweera, Nadira D; Ferreira, Marcelo U

    2010-01-01

    Genetic diversity and population structure of Plasmodium vivax parasites can predict the origin and spread of novel variants within a population enabling population specific malaria control measures. We analyzed the genetic diversity and population structure of 425 P. vivax isolates from Sri Lanka.......8610 in Sri Lanka. Significant linkage disequilibrium was maintained. Population structure showed two clusters (Asian and African) according to geography and ancestry. Strong clustering of outbreak isolates from Sri Lanka and Ethiopia was observed. Predictive power of ancestry using two-thirds of the isolates...

  12. Plasmodium falciparum and intestinal parasitic co-infections in HIV-infected patients in Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akinbo, Frederick Olusegun; Okaka, Christopher Ehis; Omoregie, Richard

    2012-05-14

    Human co-infection with Plasmodium falciparum and helminthes is ubiquitous throughout Africa. This study aimed to determine the co-infections of Plasmodium falciparum infection in HIV and intestinal parasitic infections, and their immunological distribution, in Benin City, Nigeria. A total of 2,000 stool specimens from HIV-positive patients and 500 controls (HIV-negative individuals) were examined for ova, cysts, or parasites using standard procedures. In addition, patients' blood samples were analyzed for CD4 counts by flow cytometry and examined for Plasmodium falciparum by microscopy. The prevalence of single parasitic infection among HIV patients was 18.1% in males and 16.9% among females with no significant difference (p = 0.536) while gender was a risk factor in multiple parasitic infections (male versus female: 4.2% and 1.8% OR = 2.384; 95% CI = 1.371, 4.147) (p = 0.0025). Increasing age was not associated with increased risk of both single and multiple parasitic infections (p = 0.083; p = 0.248). CD4 + T cell count less than 200 cells/µl was a risk factor for acquiring single and multiple parasitic infections among HIV patients (OR = 5.565; 95% CI = 4.136, 7.486; p = 0.0001; OR = 4.283; 95% CI = 2.424, 7.566; p = 0.0001). The most common co-infection observed was between Plasmodium falciparum and Ascaris lumbricoides 43% (10) among HIV patients. This study provides evidence of co-infections between Plasmodium falciparum and intestinal parasites. Diagnosis of parasitic infections among HIV patients is advocated as this will enhance better management of HIV-infected patients.

  13. Conserved mosquito/parasite interactions affect development of Plasmodium falciparum in Africa.

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    Antonio M Mendes

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available In much of sub-Saharan Africa, the mosquito Anopheles gambiae is the main vector of the major human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. Convenient laboratory studies have identified mosquito genes that affect positively or negatively the developmental cycle of the model rodent parasite, P. berghei. Here, we use transcription profiling and reverse genetics to explore whether five disparate mosquito gene regulators of P. berghei development are also pertinent to A. gambiae/P. falciparum interactions in semi-natural conditions, using field isolates of this parasite and geographically related mosquitoes. We detected broadly similar albeit not identical transcriptional responses of these genes to the two parasite species. Gene silencing established that two genes affect similarly both parasites: infections are hindered by the intracellular local activator of actin cytoskeleton dynamics, WASP, but promoted by the hemolymph lipid transporter, ApoII/I. Since P. berghei is not a natural parasite of A. gambiae, these data suggest that the effects of these genes have not been drastically altered by constant interaction and co-evolution of A. gambiae and P. falciparum; this conclusion allowed us to investigate further the mode of action of these two genes in the laboratory model system using a suite of genetic tools and infection assays. We showed that both genes act at the level of midgut invasion during the parasite's developmental transition from ookinete to oocyst. ApoII/I also affects the early stages of oocyst development. These are the first mosquito genes whose significant effects on P. falciparum field isolates have been established by direct experimentation. Importantly, they validate for semi-field human malaria transmission the concept of parasite antagonists and agonists.

  14. Gibberellin biosynthetic inhibitors make human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum cells swell and rupture to death.

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    Tomoko Toyama

    Full Text Available Malaria remains as one of the most devastating infectious disease, and continues to exact an enormous toll in medical cost and days of labor lost especially in the tropics. Effective malaria control and eventual eradication remain a huge challenge, with efficacious antimalarials as important intervention/management tool. Clearly new alternative drugs that are more affordable and with fewer side effects are desirable. After preliminary in vitro assays with plant growth regulators and inhibitors, here, we focus on biosynthetic inhibitors of gibberellin, a plant hormone with many important roles in plant growth, and show their inhibitory effect on the growth of both apicomplexa, Plasmodium falciparum and Toxoplasma gondii. Treatment of P. falciparum cultures with the gibberellin biosynthetic inhibitors resulted in marked morphological changes that can be reversed to a certain degree under hyperosmotic environment. These unique observations suggest that changes in the parasite membrane permeability may explain the pleiotropic effects observed within the intracellular parasites.

  15. Gibberellin Biosynthetic Inhibitors Make Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum Cells Swell and Rupture to Death

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toyama, Tomoko; Tahara, Michiru; Nagamune, Kisaburo; Arimitsu, Kenji; Hamashima, Yoshio; Palacpac, Nirianne M. Q.; Kawaide, Hiroshi; Horii, Toshihiro; Tanabe, Kazuyuki

    2012-01-01

    Malaria remains as one of the most devastating infectious disease, and continues to exact an enormous toll in medical cost and days of labor lost especially in the tropics. Effective malaria control and eventual eradication remain a huge challenge, with efficacious antimalarials as important intervention/management tool. Clearly new alternative drugs that are more affordable and with fewer side effects are desirable. After preliminary in vitro assays with plant growth regulators and inhibitors, here, we focus on biosynthetic inhibitors of gibberellin, a plant hormone with many important roles in plant growth, and show their inhibitory effect on the growth of both apicomplexa, Plasmodium falciparum and Toxoplasma gondii. Treatment of P. falciparum cultures with the gibberellin biosynthetic inhibitors resulted in marked morphological changes that can be reversed to a certain degree under hyperosmotic environment. These unique observations suggest that changes in the parasite membrane permeability may explain the pleiotropic effects observed within the intracellular parasites. PMID:22412858

  16. Plasmodium falciparum-like parasites infecting wild apes in southern Cameroon do not represent a recurrent source of human malaria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sundararaman, Sesh A.; Liu, Weimin; Keele, Brandon F.; Learn, Gerald H.; Bittinger, Kyle; Mouacha, Fatima; Ahuka-Mundeke, Steve; Manske, Magnus; Sherrill-Mix, Scott; Li, Yingying; Malenke, Jordan A.; Delaporte, Eric; Laurent, Christian; Mpoudi Ngole, Eitel; Kwiatkowski, Dominic P.; Shaw, George M.; Rayner, Julian C.; Peeters, Martine; Sharp, Paul M.; Bushman, Frederic D.; Hahn, Beatrice H.

    2013-01-01

    Wild-living chimpanzees and gorillas harbor a multitude of Plasmodium species, including six of the subgenus Laverania, one of which served as the progenitor of Plasmodium falciparum. Despite the magnitude of this reservoir, it is unknown whether apes represent a source of human infections. Here, we used Plasmodium species-specific PCR, single-genome amplification, and 454 sequencing to screen humans from remote areas of southern Cameroon for ape Laverania infections. Among 1,402 blood samples, we found 1,000 to be Plasmodium mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) positive, all of which contained human parasites as determined by sequencing and/or restriction enzyme digestion. To exclude low-abundance infections, we subjected 514 of these samples to 454 sequencing, targeting a region of the mtDNA genome that distinguishes ape from human Laverania species. Using algorithms specifically developed to differentiate rare Plasmodium variants from 454-sequencing error, we identified single and mixed-species infections with P. falciparum, Plasmodium malariae, and/or Plasmodium ovale. However, none of the human samples contained ape Laverania parasites, including the gorilla precursor of P. falciparum. To characterize further the diversity of P. falciparum in Cameroon, we used single-genome amplification to amplify 3.4-kb mtDNA fragments from 229 infected humans. Phylogenetic analysis identified 62 new variants, all of which clustered with extant P. falciparum, providing further evidence that P. falciparum emerged following a single gorilla-to-human transmission. Thus, unlike Plasmodium knowlesi-infected macaques in southeast Asia, African apes harboring Laverania parasites do not seem to serve as a recurrent source of human malaria, a finding of import to ongoing control and eradication measures. PMID:23569255

  17. Malarial parasite diversity in chimpanzees: the value of comparative approaches to ascertain the evolution of Plasmodium falciparum antigens

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background Plasmodium falciparum shares its most recent common ancestor with parasites found in African apes; these species constitute the so-called Laverania clade. In this investigation, the evolutionary history of Plasmodium lineages found in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) was explored. Methods Here, the remainders of 74 blood samples collected as part of the chimpanzees’ routine health examinations were studied. For all positive samples with parasite lineages belonging to the Laverania clade, the complete mitochondrial genome (mtDNA), the gene encoding dihydrofolate reductase-thymidylate synthase (dhfr-ts), the chloroquine resistance transporter (Pfcrt), the circumsporozoite protein (csp), merozoite surface protein 2 (msp2), and the DBL-1 domain from var2CSA were amplified, cloned, and sequenced. Other Plasmodium species were included in the mtDNA, dhfr-ts, and csp analyses. Phylogenetic and evolutionary genetic analyses were performed, including molecular clock analyses on the mtDNA. Results/Conclusions Nine chimpanzees were malaria positive (12.2%); four of those infections were identified as P. falciparum, two as a Plasmodium reichenowi-like parasite or Plasmodium sp., one as Plasmodium gaboni, and two as Plasmodium malariae. All P. falciparum isolates were resistant to chloroquine indicating that the chimpanzees acquired such infections from humans in recent times. Such findings, however, are not sufficient for implicating chimpanzees as an animal reservoir for P. falciparum. Timing estimates support that the Laverania clade has co-existed with hominids for a long-period of time. The proposed species P. gaboni, Plasmodium billbrayi, and Plasmodium billcollinsi are monophyletic groups supporting that they are indeed different species. An expanded CSP phylogeny is presented, including all the Laverania species and other malarial parasites. Contrasting with other Plasmodium, the Laverania csp exhibits great conservation at the central tandem repeat region

  18. The emerging of the fifth malaria parasite (Plasmodium knowlesi: a public health concern?

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    Sergio Sabbatani

    Full Text Available After examining the most recent scientific evidences, which assessed the role of some malaria plasmodia that have monkeys as natural reservoirs, the authors focus their attention on Plasmodium knowlesi. The infective foci attributable to this last Plasmodium species have been identified during the last decade in Malaysia, in particular in the states of Sarawak and Sabah (Malaysian Borneo, and in the Pahang region (peninsular Malaysia. The significant relevance of molecular biology assays (polymerase chain reaction, or PCR, performed with specific primers for P. knowlesi, is underlined, since the traditional microscopic examination does not offer distinguishing features, especially when the differential diagnosis with Plasmodium malariae is of concern. Furthermore, Plasmodium knowlesi disease may be responsible of fatal cases, since its clinical presentation and course is more severe compared with those caused by P. malariae, paralleling a more elevated parasitemia. The most effective mosquito vector is represented by Anopheles latens; this mosquito is a parasite of both humans and monkeys. Among primates, the natural hosts are Macaca fascicularis, M. nemestina, M. inus, and Saimiri scirea. When remarking the possible severe evolution of P. knowlesi malaria, we underline the importance of an early recognition and a timely management, especially in patients who have their first onset in Western Hospitals, after journeys in Southeast Asian countries, and eventually participated in trekking excursions in the tropical forest. When malaria-like signs and symptoms are present, a timely diagnosis and treatment become crucial. In the light of its emerging epidemiological features, P. knowlesi may be added to the reknown human malaria parasites, whith includes P. vivax, P. ovale, P. malariae, and P. falciparum, as the fifth potential ethiologic agent of human malaria. Over the next few years, it will be mandatory to support an adequate surveillance and

  19. Transgenic Plasmodium parasites stably expressing Plasmodium vivax dihydrofolate reductase-thymidylate synthase as in vitro and in vivo models for antifolate screening

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    Yuthavong Yongyuth

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plasmodium vivax is the most prevalent cause of human malaria in tropical regions outside the African continent. The lack of a routine continuous in vitro culture of this parasite makes it difficult to develop specific drugs for this disease. To facilitate the development of anti-P. vivax drugs, bacterial and yeast surrogate models expressing the validated P. vivax target dihydrofolate reductase-thymidylate synthase (DHFR-TS have been generated; however, they can only be used as primary screening models because of significant differences in enzyme expression level and in vivo drug metabolism between the surrogate models and P. vivax parasites. Methods Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium berghei parasites were transfected with DNA constructs bearing P. vivax dhfr-ts pyrimethamine sensitive (wild-type and pyrimethamine resistant (mutant alleles. Double crossover homologous recombination was used to replace the endogenous dhfr-ts of P. falciparum and P. berghei parasites with P. vivax homologous genes. The integration of Pvdhfr-ts genes via allelic replacement was verified by Southern analysis and the transgenic parasites lines validated as models by standard drug screening assays. Results Transgenic P. falciparum and P. berghei lines stably expressing PvDHFR-TS replacing the endogenous parasite DHFR-TS were obtained. Anti-malarial drug screening assays showed that transgenic parasites expressing wild-type PvDHFR-TS were pyrimethamine-sensitive, whereas transgenic parasites expressing mutant PvDHFR-TS were pyrimethamine-resistant. The growth and sensitivity to other types of anti-malarial drugs in the transgenic parasites were otherwise indistinguishable from the parental parasites. Conclusion With the permanent integration of Pvdhfr-ts gene in the genome, the transgenic Plasmodium lines expressing PvDHFR-TS are genetically stable and will be useful for screening anti-P. vivax compounds targeting PvDHFR-TS. A similar approach

  20. Local parasite lineage sharing in temperate grassland birds provides clues about potential origins of Galapagos avian Plasmodium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levin, Iris I; Colborn, Rachel E; Kim, Daniel; Perlut, Noah G; Renfrew, Rosalind B; Parker, Patricia G

    2016-02-01

    Oceanic archipelagos are vulnerable to natural introduction of parasites via migratory birds. Our aim was to characterize the geographic origins of two Plasmodium parasite lineages detected in the Galapagos Islands and in North American breeding bobolinks (Dolichonyx oryzivorus) that regularly stop in Galapagos during migration to their South American overwintering sites. We used samples from a grassland breeding bird assemblage in Nebraska, United States, and parasite DNA sequences from the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador, to compare to global data in a DNA sequence registry. Homologous DNA sequences from parasites detected in bobolinks and more sedentary birds (e.g., brown-headed cowbirds Molothrus ater, and other co-occurring bird species resident on the North American breeding grounds) were compared to those recovered in previous studies from global sites. One parasite lineage that matched between Galapagos birds and the migratory bobolink, Plasmodium lineage B, was the most common lineage detected in the global MalAvi database, matching 49 sequences from unique host/site combinations, 41 of which were of South American origin. We did not detect lineage B in brown-headed cowbirds. The other Galapagos-bobolink match, Plasmodium lineage C, was identical to two other sequences from birds sampled in California. We detected a close variant of lineage C in brown-headed cowbirds. Taken together, this pattern suggests that bobolinks became infected with lineage B on the South American end of their migratory range, and with lineage C on the North American breeding grounds. Overall, we detected more parasite lineages in bobolinks than in cowbirds. Galapagos Plasmodium had similar host breadth compared to the non-Galapagos haemosporidian lineages detected in bobolinks, brown-headed cowbirds, and other grassland species. This study highlights the utility of global haemosporidian data in the context of migratory bird-parasite connectivity. It is possible that migratory bobolinks

  1. Autophagy-related Atg8 localizes to the apicoplast of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

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    Kei Kitamura

    Full Text Available Autophagy is a membrane-mediated degradation process, which is governed by sequential functions of Atg proteins. Although Atg proteins are highly conserved in eukaryotes, protozoa possess only a partial set of Atg proteins. Nonetheless, almost all protozoa have the complete factors belonging to the Atg8 conjugation system, namely, Atg3, Atg4, Atg7, and Atg8. Here, we report the biochemical properties and subcellular localization of the Atg8 protein of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum (PfAtg8. PfAtg8 is expressed during intra-erythrocytic development and associates with membranes likely as a lipid-conjugated form. Fluorescence microscopy and immunoelectron microscopy show that PfAtg8 localizes to the apicoplast, a four membrane-bound non-photosynthetic plastid. Autophagosome-like structures are not observed in the erythrocytic stages. These data suggest that, although Plasmodium parasites have lost most Atg proteins during evolution, they use the Atg8 conjugation system for the unique organelle, the apicoplast.

  2. Translational repression of the cpw-wpc gene family in the malaria parasite Plasmodium

    KAUST Repository

    Rao, Pavitra N.

    2016-06-14

    The technical challenges of working with the sexual stages of the malaria parasite Plasmodium have hindered the characterization of sexual stage antigens in the quest for a successful malaria transmission-blocking vaccine. One such predicted and largely uncharacterized group of sexual stage candidate antigens is the CPW-WPC family of proteins. CPW-WPC proteins are named for a characteristic domain that contains two conserved motifs, CPxxW and WPC. Conserved across Apicomplexa, this family is also present earlier in the Alveolata in the free-living, non-parasitophorous, photosynthetic chromerids, Chromera and Vitrella. In P. falciparum and P. berghei blood stage parasites the transcripts of all nine cpw-wpc genes have been detected in gametocytes. RNA immunoprecipitation followed by reverse transcriptase-PCR reveals all P. berghei cpw-wpc transcripts to be bound by the translational repressors DOZI and CITH, and thus are likely under translational control prior to transmission from the rodent host to the mosquito vector in P. berghei. The GFP tagging of two endogenous P. berghei genes confirmed translational silencing in the gametocyte and translation in ookinetes. Establishing a luciferase transgene assay we show that the 3′ untranslated region of PF3D7_1331400 controls protein expression of this reporter in P. falciparum gametocytes. Our analyses suggest that cpw-wpc genes are translationally silenced in gametocytes across Plasmodium spp. and activated during ookinete formation and thus may have a role in transmission to the mosquito.

  3. Infectivity of Plasmodium falciparum in Malaria-Naive Individuals Is Related to Knob Expression and Cytoadherence of the Parasite

    OpenAIRE

    Danielle I Stanisic; Gerrard, John; Fink, James; Griffin, Paul M.; Liu, Xue Q; Sundac, Lana; Sekuloski, Silvana; Rodriguez, Ingrid B.; Pingnet, Jolien; Yang, Yuedong; Zhou, Yaoqi; TRENHOLME, KATHARINE R.; Wang, Claire Y. T.; Hackett, Hazel; Chan, Jo-Anne A.

    2016-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum is the most virulent human malaria parasite because of its ability to cytoadhere in the microvasculature. Nonhuman primate studies demonstrated relationships among knob expression, cytoadherence, and infectivity. This has not been examined in humans. Cultured clinical-grade P. falciparum parasites (NF54, 7G8, and 3D7B) and ex vivo-derived cell banks were characterized. Knob and knob-associated histidine-rich protein expression, CD36 adhesion, and antibody recognition of ...

  4. Plasmodium falciparum K13 Mutations Differentially Impact Ozonide Susceptibility and Parasite Fitness In Vitro

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    Judith Straimer

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available The emergence and spread in Southeast Asia of Plasmodium falciparum resistance to artemisinin (ART derivatives, the cornerstone of first-line artemisinin-based combination therapies (ACTs, underscore the urgent need to identify suitable replacement drugs. Discovery and development efforts have identified a series of ozonides with attractive chemical and pharmacological properties that are being touted as suitable replacements. Partial resistance to ART, defined as delayed parasite clearance in malaria patients treated with an ART derivative or an ACT, has been associated with mutations in the P. falciparum K13 gene. In light of reports showing that ART derivatives and ozonides share similar modes of action, we have investigated whether parasites expressing mutant K13 are cross-resistant to the ozonides OZ439 (artefenomel and OZ227 (arterolane. This work used a panel of culture-adapted clinical isolates from Cambodia that were genetically edited to express variant forms of K13. Phenotypic analyses employed ring-stage survival assays (ring-stage survival assay from 0 to 3 h [RSA0–3h], whose results have earlier been shown to correlate with parasite clearance rates in patients. Our results document cross-resistance between OZ277 and dihydroartemisinin (DHA, a semisynthetic derivative of ART, in parasites carrying the K13 mutations C580Y, R539T, and I543T. For OZ439, we observed cross-resistance only for parasites that carried the rare K13 I543T mutation, with no evidence of cross-resistance afforded by the prevalent C580Y mutation. Mixed-culture competition experiments with isogenic lines carrying modified K13 revealed variable growth deficits depending on the K13 mutation and parasite strain and provide a rationale for the broad dissemination of the fitness-neutral K13 C580Y mutation throughout strains currently circulating in Southeast Asia.

  5. Genome-wide functional analysis of plasmodium protein phosphatases reveals key regulators of parasite development and differentiation

    KAUST Repository

    Guttery, David S.

    2014-07-09

    Reversible protein phosphorylation regulated by kinases and phosphatases controls many cellular processes. Although essential functions for the malaria parasite kinome have been reported, the roles of most protein phosphatases (PPs) during Plasmodium development are unknown. We report a functional analysis of the Plasmodium berghei protein phosphatome, which exhibits high conservation with the P. falciparum phosphatome and comprises 30 predicted PPs with differential and distinct expression patterns during various stages of the life cycle. Gene disruption analysis of P. berghei PPs reveals that half of the genes are likely essential for asexual blood stage development, whereas six are required for sexual development/sporogony in mosquitoes. Phenotypic screening coupled with transcriptome sequencing unveiled morphological changes and altered gene expression in deletion mutants of two N-myristoylated PPs. These findings provide systematic functional analyses of PPs in Plasmodium, identify how phosphatases regulate parasite development and differentiation, and can inform the identification of drug targets for malaria. © 2014 The Authors.

  6. Interruption of the blood-stage cycle of the malaria parasite, Plasmodium chabaudi, by protein tyrosine kinase inhibitors

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    M.L. Gazarini

    2003-11-01

    Full Text Available Malaria is a devastating disease caused by a unicellular protozoan, Plasmodium, which affects 3.7 million people every year. Resistance of the parasite to classical treatments such as chloroquine requires the development of new drugs. To gain insight into the mechanisms that control Plasmodium cell cycle, we have examined the effects of kinase inhibitors on the blood-stage cycle of the rodent malaria parasite, Plasmodium chabaudi. In vitro incubation of red blood cells for 17 h at 37ºC with the inhibitors led to a decrease in the percent of infected cells, compared to control treatment, as follows: genistein (200 µM - 75%, staurosporine (1 µM - 58%, R03 (1 µM - 75%, and tyrphostins B44 (100 µM - 66% and B46 (100 µM - 68%. All these treatments were shown to retard or prevent maturation of the intraerythrocytic parasites. The diverse concentration ranges at which these inhibitors exert their effects give a clue as to the types of signals that initiate the transitions between the different developmental stages of the parasite. The present data support our hypothesis that the maturation of the intraerythrocytic cycle of malaria parasites requires phosphorylation. In this respect, we have recently reported a high Ca2+ microenvironment surrounding the parasite within red blood cells. Several kinase activities are modulated by Ca2+. The molecular identification of the targets of these kinases could provide new strategies against malaria.

  7. Global histone analysis by mass spectrometry reveals a high content of acetylated lysine residues in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Trelle, Morten Beck; Salcedo-Amaya, Adriana M; Cohen, Adrian

    2009-01-01

    Post-translational modifications (PTMs) of histone tails play a key role in epigenetic regulation of gene expression in a range of organisms from yeast to human, however, little is known about histone proteins from the parasite that causes malaria in humans, Plasmodium falciparum. We characterized...

  8. Plasmodium falciparum parasites expressing pregnancy-specific variant surface antigens adhere strongly to the choriocarcinoma cell line BeWo

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Haase, Rikke N; Megnekou, Rosette; Lundquist, Maja

    2006-01-01

    Placenta-sequestering Plasmodium falciparum parasites causing pregnancy-associated malaria express pregnancy-specific variant surface antigens (VSA(PAM)). We report here that VSA(PAM)-expressing patient isolates adhere strongly to the choriocarcinoma cell line BeWo and that the BeWo line can...

  9. ADF2 is required for transformation of the ookinete and sporozoite in malaria parasite development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doi, Yuko; Shinzawa, Naoaki; Fukumoto, Shinya; Okano, Hideyuki; Kanuka, Hirotaka

    2010-07-09

    Malaria parasites undergo two rounding-up transformations in their life cycle: the ookinete-to-oocyst transformation in the mosquito midgut, and the sporozoite-to-EEF (exo-erythrocytic form) differentiation in the host hepatocyte. Both events are characterized by the loss of polarity, implying that cytoskeletal reorganization is involved. In other eukaryotes, regulation of the actin skeleton is fundamental to subcellular remodeling. Although filamentous actin is well known to be involved in the motility of apicomplexan parasites, its participation in their morphological regulation is still largely unexplored. Here we describe the fundamental role of Actin depolymerization factor 2 (ADF2), a vector-stage-specific ADF isoform, in morphological changes accompanying the parasite life cycle. Among protozoan parasites, Plasmodium is unique in having two actin and two ADF genes. Disruption of the ADF2 gene in the rodent malaria parasite P. berghei had no effect on ookinete development or its subsequent invasion of the midgut. However, both the ookinete-to-oocyst and sporozoite-to-EEF transformations showed significant defects. These results indicated that Plasmodium ADF2 plays a pivotal role in transformation in the malaria parasite life cycle. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Enzymatic Characterization of Recombinant Food Vacuole Plasmepsin 4 from the Rodent Malaria Parasite Plasmodium berghei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Peng; Robbins, Arthur H; Marzahn, Melissa R; McClung, Scott H; Yowell, Charles A; Stevens, Stanley M; Dame, John B; Dunn, Ben M

    2015-01-01

    The rodent malaria parasite Plasmodium berghei is a practical model organism for experimental studies of human malaria. Plasmepsins are a class of aspartic proteinase isoforms that exert multiple pathological effects in malaria parasites. Plasmepsins residing in the food vacuole (FV) of the parasite hydrolyze hemoglobin in red blood cells. In this study, we cloned PbPM4, the FV plasmepsin gene of P. berghei that encoded an N-terminally truncated pro-segment and the mature enzyme from genomic DNA. We over-expressed this PbPM4 zymogen as inclusion bodies (IB) in Escherichia coli, and purified the protein following in vitro IB refolding. Auto-maturation of the PbPM4 zymogen to mature enzyme was carried out at pH 4.5, 5.0, and 5.5. Interestingly, we found that the PbPM4 zymogen exhibited catalytic activity regardless of the presence of the pro-segment. We determined the optimal catalytic conditions for PbPM4 and studied enzyme kinetics on substrates and inhibitors of aspartic proteinases. Using combinatorial chemistry-based peptide libraries, we studied the active site preferences of PbPM4 at subsites S1, S2, S3, S1', S2' and S3'. Based on these results, we designed and synthesized a selective peptidomimetic compound and tested its inhibition of PbPM4, seven FV plasmepsins from human malaria parasites, and human cathepsin D (hcatD). We showed that this compound exhibited a >10-fold selectivity to PbPM4 and human malaria parasite plasmepsin 4 orthologs versus hcatD. Data from this study furthesr our understanding of enzymatic characteristics of the plasmepsin family and provides leads for anti-malarial drug design.

  11. Enzymatic Characterization of Recombinant Food Vacuole Plasmepsin 4 from the Rodent Malaria Parasite Plasmodium berghei.

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    Peng Liu

    Full Text Available The rodent malaria parasite Plasmodium berghei is a practical model organism for experimental studies of human malaria. Plasmepsins are a class of aspartic proteinase isoforms that exert multiple pathological effects in malaria parasites. Plasmepsins residing in the food vacuole (FV of the parasite hydrolyze hemoglobin in red blood cells. In this study, we cloned PbPM4, the FV plasmepsin gene of P. berghei that encoded an N-terminally truncated pro-segment and the mature enzyme from genomic DNA. We over-expressed this PbPM4 zymogen as inclusion bodies (IB in Escherichia coli, and purified the protein following in vitro IB refolding. Auto-maturation of the PbPM4 zymogen to mature enzyme was carried out at pH 4.5, 5.0, and 5.5. Interestingly, we found that the PbPM4 zymogen exhibited catalytic activity regardless of the presence of the pro-segment. We determined the optimal catalytic conditions for PbPM4 and studied enzyme kinetics on substrates and inhibitors of aspartic proteinases. Using combinatorial chemistry-based peptide libraries, we studied the active site preferences of PbPM4 at subsites S1, S2, S3, S1', S2' and S3'. Based on these results, we designed and synthesized a selective peptidomimetic compound and tested its inhibition of PbPM4, seven FV plasmepsins from human malaria parasites, and human cathepsin D (hcatD. We showed that this compound exhibited a >10-fold selectivity to PbPM4 and human malaria parasite plasmepsin 4 orthologs versus hcatD. Data from this study furthesr our understanding of enzymatic characteristics of the plasmepsin family and provides leads for anti-malarial drug design.

  12. Transition of Plasmodium sporozoites into liver stage-like forms is regulated by the RNA binding protein Pumilio

    KAUST Repository

    Gomes-Santos, Carina S. S.

    2011-05-19

    Many eukaryotic developmental and cell fate decisions that are effected post-transcriptionally involve RNA binding proteins as regulators of translation of key mRNAs. In malaria parasites (Plasmodium spp.), the development of round, non-motile and replicating exo-erythrocytic liver stage forms from slender, motile and cell-cycle arrested sporozoites is believed to depend on environmental changes experienced during the transmission of the parasite from the mosquito vector to the vertebrate host. Here we identify a Plasmodium member of the RNA binding protein family PUF as a key regulator of this transformation. In the absence of Pumilio-2 (Puf2) sporozoites initiate EEF development inside mosquito salivary glands independently of the normal transmission-associated environmental cues. Puf2- sporozoites exhibit genome-wide transcriptional changes that result in loss of gliding motility, cell traversal ability and reduction in infectivity, and, moreover, trigger metamorphosis typical of early Plasmodium intra-hepatic development. These data demonstrate that Puf2 is a key player in regulating sporozoite developmental control, and imply that transformation of salivary gland-resident sporozoites into liver stage-like parasites is regulated by a post-transcriptional mechanism. 2011 Gomes-Santos et al.

  13. Transition of Plasmodium sporozoites into liver stage-like forms is regulated by the RNA binding protein Pumilio.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carina S S Gomes-Santos

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Many eukaryotic developmental and cell fate decisions that are effected post-transcriptionally involve RNA binding proteins as regulators of translation of key mRNAs. In malaria parasites (Plasmodium spp., the development of round, non-motile and replicating exo-erythrocytic liver stage forms from slender, motile and cell-cycle arrested sporozoites is believed to depend on environmental changes experienced during the transmission of the parasite from the mosquito vector to the vertebrate host. Here we identify a Plasmodium member of the RNA binding protein family PUF as a key regulator of this transformation. In the absence of Pumilio-2 (Puf2 sporozoites initiate EEF development inside mosquito salivary glands independently of the normal transmission-associated environmental cues. Puf2- sporozoites exhibit genome-wide transcriptional changes that result in loss of gliding motility, cell traversal ability and reduction in infectivity, and, moreover, trigger metamorphosis typical of early Plasmodium intra-hepatic development. These data demonstrate that Puf2 is a key player in regulating sporozoite developmental control, and imply that transformation of salivary gland-resident sporozoites into liver stage-like parasites is regulated by a post-transcriptional mechanism.

  14. The exported chaperone Hsp70-x supports virulence functions for Plasmodium falciparum blood stage parasites.

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    Sarah C Charnaud

    Full Text Available Malaria is caused by five different Plasmodium spp. in humans each of which modifies the host erythrocyte to survive and replicate. The two main causes of malaria, P. falciparum and P. vivax, differ in their ability to cause severe disease, mainly due to differences in the cytoadhesion of infected erythrocytes (IE in the microvasculature. Cytoadhesion of P. falciparum in the brain leads to a large number of deaths each year and is a consequence of exported parasite proteins, some of which modify the erythrocyte cytoskeleton while others such as PfEMP1 project onto the erythrocyte surface where they bind to endothelial cells. Here we investigate the effects of knocking out an exported Hsp70-type chaperone termed Hsp70-x that is present in P. falciparum but not P. vivax. Although the growth of Δhsp70-x parasites was unaffected, the export of PfEMP1 cytoadherence proteins was delayed and Δhsp70-x IE had reduced adhesion. The Δhsp70-x IE were also more rigid than wild-type controls indicating changes in the way the parasites modified their host erythrocyte. To investigate the cause of this, transcriptional and translational changes in exported and chaperone proteins were monitored and some changes were observed. We propose that PfHsp70-x is not essential for survival in vitro, but may be required for the efficient export and functioning of some P. falciparum exported proteins.

  15. The Clp Chaperones and Proteases of the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bakkouri, Majida El; Pow, Andre; Mulichak, Anne; Cheung, Kevin L.Y.; Artz, Jennifer D.; Amani, Mehrnaz; Fell, Stuart; de Koning-Ward, Tania F.; Goodman, C. Dean; McFadden, Geoffrey I.; Ortega, Joaquin; Hui, Raymond; Houry, Walid A. (McMaster U.); (Melbourne); (Toronto); (Deakin); (HWMRI)

    2015-02-09

    The Clp chaperones and proteases play an important role in protein homeostasis in the cell. They are highly conserved across prokaryotes and found also in the mitochondria of eukaryotes and the chloroplasts of plants. They function mainly in the disaggregation, unfolding and degradation of native as well as misfolded proteins. Here, we provide a comprehensive analysis of the Clp chaperones and proteases in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. The parasite contains four Clp ATPases, which we term PfClpB1, PfClpB2, PfClpC and PfClpM. One PfClpP, the proteolytic subunit, and one PfClpR, which is an inactive version of the protease, were also identified. Expression of all Clp chaperones and proteases was confirmed in blood-stage parasites. The proteins were localized to the apicoplast, a non-photosynthetic organelle that accommodates several important metabolic pathways in P. falciparum, with the exception of PfClpB2 (also known as Hsp101), which was found in the parasitophorous vacuole. Both PfClpP and PfClpR form mostly homoheptameric rings as observed by size-exclusion chromatography, analytical ultracentrifugation and electron microscopy. The X-ray structure of PfClpP showed the protein as a compacted tetradecamer similar to that observed for Streptococcus pneumoniae and Mycobacterium tuberculosis ClpPs. Our data suggest the presence of a ClpCRP complex in the apicoplast of P. falciparum.

  16. Normocyte-binding protein required for human erythrocyte invasion by the zoonotic malaria parasitePlasmodium knowlesi

    KAUST Repository

    Moon, Robert W.

    2016-06-15

    The dominant cause of malaria in Malaysia is now Plasmodium knowlesi, a zoonotic parasite of cynomolgus macaque monkeys found throughout South East Asia. Comparative genomic analysis of parasites adapted to in vitro growth in either cynomolgus or human RBCs identified a genomic deletion that includes the gene encoding normocyte-binding protein Xa (NBPXa) in parasites growing in cynomolgus RBCs but not in human RBCs. Experimental deletion of the NBPXa gene in parasites adapted to growth in human RBCs (which retain the ability to grow in cynomolgus RBCs) restricted them to cynomolgus RBCs, demonstrating that this gene is selectively required for parasite multiplication and growth in human RBCs. NBPXa-null parasites could bind to human RBCs, but invasion of these cells was severely impaired. Therefore, NBPXa is identified as a key mediator of P. knowlesi human infection and may be a target for vaccine development against this emerging pathogen.

  17. A flow cytometric assay to quantify invasion of red blood cells by rodent Plasmodium parasites in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lelliott, Patrick M; Lampkin, Shelley; McMorran, Brendan J; Foote, Simon J; Burgio, Gaetan

    2014-03-17

    Malaria treatments are becoming less effective due to the rapid spread of drug resistant parasites. Increased understanding of the host/parasite interaction is crucial in order to develop treatments that will be less prone to resistance. Parasite invasion of the red blood cell (RBC) is a critical aspect of the parasite life cycle and is, therefore, a promising target for the development of malaria treatments. Assays for analysing parasite invasion in vitro have been developed, but no equivalent assays exist for in vivo studies. This article describes a novel flow cytometric in vivo parasite invasion assay. Experiments were conducted with mice infected with erythrocytic stages of Plasmodium chabaudi adami strain DS. Exogenously labelled blood cells were transfused into infected mice at schizogony, and collected blood samples stained and analysed using flow cytometry to specifically detect and measure proportions of labelled RBC containing newly invaded parasites. A combination of antibodies (CD45 and CD71) and fluorescent dyes, Hoechst (DNA) and JC-1 (mitochondrial membrane potential), were used to differentiate parasitized RBCs from uninfected cells, RBCs containing Howell-Jolly bodies, leukocytes and RBC progenitors. Blood cells were treated ex vivo with proteases to examine the effects on in vivo parasite invasion. The staining and flow cytometry analysis method was accurate in determining the parasitaemia down to 0.013% with the limit of detection at 0.007%. Transfused labelled blood supported normal rates of parasite invasion. Protease-treated red cells resulted in 35% decrease in the rate of parasite invasion within 30 minutes of introduction into the bloodstream of infected mice. The invasion assay presented here is a versatile method for the study of in vivo red cell invasion efficiency of Plasmodium parasites in mice, and allows direct comparison of invasion in red cells derived from two different populations. The method also serves as an accurate

  18. Defining the protein interaction network of human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    KAUST Repository

    Ramaprasad, Abhinay

    2012-02-01

    Malaria, caused by the protozoan parasite Plasmodium falciparum, affects around 225. million people yearly and a huge international effort is directed towards combating this grave threat to world health and economic development. Considerable advances have been made in malaria research triggered by the sequencing of its genome in 2002, followed by several high-throughput studies defining the malaria transcriptome and proteome. A protein-protein interaction (PPI) network seeks to trace the dynamic interactions between proteins, thereby elucidating their local and global functional relationships. Experimentally derived PPI network from high-throughput methods such as yeast two hybrid (Y2H) screens are inherently noisy, but combining these independent datasets by computational methods tends to give a greater accuracy and coverage. This review aims to discuss the computational approaches used till date to construct a malaria protein interaction network and to catalog the functional predictions and biological inferences made from analysis of the PPI network. © 2011 Elsevier Inc.

  19. Optimized Pan-species and speciation duplex real-time PCR assays for Plasmodium parasites detection in malaria vectors.

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    Maurice Marcel Sandeu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: An accurate method for detecting malaria parasites in the mosquito's vector remains an essential component in the vector control. The Enzyme linked immunosorbent assay specific for circumsporozoite protein (ELISA-CSP is the gold standard method for the detection of malaria parasites in the vector even if it presents some limitations. Here, we optimized multiplex real-time PCR assays to accurately detect minor populations in mixed infection with multiple Plasmodium species in the African malaria vectors Anopheles gambiae and Anopheles funestus. METHODS: Complementary TaqMan-based real-time PCR assays that detect Plasmodium species using specific primers and probes were first evaluated on artificial mixtures of different targets inserted in plasmid constructs. The assays were further validated in comparison with the ELISA-CSP on 200 field caught Anopheles gambiae and Anopheles funestus mosquitoes collected in two localities in southern Benin. RESULTS: The validation of the duplex real-time PCR assays on the plasmid mixtures demonstrated robust specificity and sensitivity for detecting distinct targets. Using a panel of mosquito specimen, the real-time PCR showed a relatively high sensitivity (88.6% and specificity (98%, compared to ELISA-CSP as the referent standard. The agreement between both methods was "excellent" (κ=0.8, P<0.05. The relative quantification of Plasmodium DNA between the two Anopheles species analyzed showed no significant difference (P=0, 2. All infected mosquito samples contained Plasmodium falciparum DNA and mixed infections with P. malariae and/or P. ovale were observed in 18.6% and 13.6% of An. gambiae and An. funestus respectively. Plasmodium vivax was found in none of the mosquito samples analyzed. CONCLUSION: This study presents an optimized method for detecting the four Plasmodium species in the African malaria vectors. The study highlights substantial discordance with traditional ELISA-CSP pointing out the

  20. A high parasite density environment induces transcriptional changes and cell death in Plasmodium falciparum blood stages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chou, Evelyn S; Abidi, Sabia Z; Teye, Marian; Leliwa-Sytek, Aleksandra; Rask, Thomas S; Cobbold, Simon A; Tonkin-Hill, Gerry Q; Subramaniam, Krishanthi S; Sexton, Anna E; Creek, Darren J; Daily, Johanna P; Duffy, Michael F; Day, Karen P

    2017-12-27

    Transient regulation of Plasmodium numbers below the density that induces fever has been observed in chronic malaria infections in humans. This species transcending control cannot be explained by immunity alone. Using an in vitro system we have observed density dependent regulation of malaria population size as a mechanism to possibly explain these in vivo observations. Specifically, Plasmodium falciparum blood stages from a high but not low-density environment exhibited unique phenotypic changes during the late trophozoite (LT) and schizont stages of the intraerythrocytic cycle. These included in order of appearance: failure of schizonts to mature and merozoites to replicate, apoptotic-like morphological changes including shrinking, loss of mitochondrial membrane potential, and blebbing with eventual release of aberrant parasites from infected erythrocytes. This unique death phenotype was triggered in a stage-specific manner by sensing of a high-density culture environment. Conditions of glucose starvation, nutrient depletion, and high lactate could not induce the phenotype. A high-density culture environment induced rapid global changes in the parasite transcriptome including differential expression of genes involved in cell remodeling, clonal antigenic variation, metabolism, and cell death pathways including an apoptosis-associated metacaspase gene. This transcriptional profile was also characterized by concomitant expression of asexual and sexual stage-specific genes. The data show strong evidence to support our hypothesis that density sensing exists in P. falciparum. They indicate that an apoptotic-like mechanism may play a role in P. falciparum density regulation, which, as in yeast, has features quite distinguishable from mammalian apoptosis. Gene expression data are available in the GEO databases under the accession number GSE91188. © 2017 Federation of European Biochemical Societies.

  1. Cloning, expression and functional characterization of heme detoxification protein (HDP) from the rodent malaria parasite Plasmodium vinckei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soni, Awakash; Goyal, Manish; Prakash, Kirtika; Bhardwaj, Jyoti; Siddiqui, Arif Jamal; Puri, Sunil K

    2015-07-15

    Malaria parasite resides within the host red blood cells, where it degrades vast amount of haemoglobin. During haemoglobin degradation, toxic free heme is liberated which subsequently gets converted into hemozoin. This process is facilitated by action of various proteins viz. heme detoxification protein (HDP), and histidine rich proteins II and III (HRP II & III). Out of these, HDP is the most potent in hemozoin formation and plays indispensible role for parasite survival. Despite this, the detailed study of HDP from rodent and simian parasite has not been performed till date. Here, we have cloned and sequenced hdp gene from different malaria parasites Plasmodium vinckei, Plasmodium yoelii, Plasmodium knowlesi, and Plasmodium cynomolgi. Furthermore, HDP from P. vinckei (PvHDP) was over-expressed and purified for detailed characterization. The PvHDP is cytosolic, expressed throughout the intra erythrocytic stages and its expression is higher in late trophozoite and schizont stages of parasite. The PvHDP interacts with free heme (KD=89 nM) and efficiently converts heme into hemozoin in a time and concentration dependent manner. Moreover, PvHDP showed activity in acidic pH and over a broad range of temperature. Histidine modification of PvHDP using DEPC showed reduction in heme binding and hemozoin formation, thus emphasizing the importance of histidine residues in heme binding and subsequent hemozoin production. Furthermore, applicability of PvHDP to screen anti-plasmodial agents (targeting heme to hemozoin conversion) was also determined using chloroquine, and mefloquine as reference antimalarials. Results showed that these drugs inhibit heme polymerization effectively in a concentration dependent manner. In conclusion, our study identified and biochemically characterized HDP from rodent malaria parasite P. vinckei and this will help to develop a high throughput assay to evaluate new antimalarials targeting hemozoin pathway. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All

  2. Expression of variant surface antigens by Plasmodium falciparum parasites in the peripheral blood of clinically immune pregnant women indicates ongoing placental infection

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ofori, Michael F; Staalsoe, Trine; Bam, Victoria

    2003-01-01

    Placenta-sequestered Plasmodium falciparum parasites that cause pregnancy-associated malaria (PAM) in otherwise clinically immune women express distinct variant surface antigens (VSA(PAM)) not expressed by parasites in nonpregnant individuals. We report here that parasites from the peripheral blo...

  3. Real-time imaging of the intracellular glutathione redox potential in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

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    Denis Kasozi

    Full Text Available In the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, the cellular redox potential influences signaling events, antioxidant defense, and mechanisms of drug action and resistance. Until now, the real-time determination of the redox potential in malaria parasites has been limited because conventional approaches disrupt sub-cellular integrity. Using a glutathione biosensor comprising human glutaredoxin-1 linked to a redox-sensitive green fluorescent protein (hGrx1-roGFP2, we systematically characterized basal values and drug-induced changes in the cytosolic glutathione-dependent redox potential (EGSH of drug-sensitive (3D7 and resistant (Dd2 P. falciparum parasites. Via confocal microscopy, we demonstrated that hGrx1-roGFP2 rapidly detects EGSH changes induced by oxidative and nitrosative stress. The cytosolic basal EGSH of 3D7 and Dd2 were estimated to be -314.2±3.1 mV and -313.9±3.4 mV, respectively, which is indicative of a highly reducing compartment. We furthermore monitored short-, medium-, and long-term changes in EGSH after incubation with various redox-active compounds and antimalarial drugs. Interestingly, the redox cyclers methylene blue and pyocyanin rapidly changed the fluorescence ratio of hGrx1-roGFP2 in the cytosol of P. falciparum, which can, however, partially be explained by a direct interaction with the probe. In contrast, quinoline and artemisinin-based antimalarial drugs showed strong effects on the parasites' EGSH after longer incubation times (24 h. As tested for various conditions, these effects were accompanied by a drop in total glutathione concentrations determined in parallel with alternative methods. Notably, the effects were generally more pronounced in the chloroquine-sensitive 3D7 strain than in the resistant Dd2 strain. Based on these results hGrx1-roGFP2 can be recommended as a reliable and specific biosensor for real-time spatiotemporal monitoring of the intracellular EGSH in P. falciparum. Applying this technique in

  4. On the diversity of malaria parasites in African apes and the origin of Plasmodium falciparum from Bonobos.

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    Sabrina Krief

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available The origin of Plasmodium falciparum, the etiological agent of the most dangerous forms of human malaria, remains controversial. Although investigations of homologous parasites in African Apes are crucial to resolve this issue, studies have been restricted to a chimpanzee parasite related to P. falciparum, P. reichenowi, for which a single isolate was available until very recently. Using PCR amplification, we detected Plasmodium parasites in blood samples from 18 of 91 individuals of the genus Pan, including six chimpanzees (three Pan troglodytes troglodytes, three Pan t. schweinfurthii and twelve bonobos (Pan paniscus. We obtained sequences of the parasites' mitochondrial genomes and/or from two nuclear genes from 14 samples. In addition to P. reichenowi, three other hitherto unknown lineages were found in the chimpanzees. One is related to P. vivax and two to P. falciparum that are likely to belong to distinct species. In the bonobos we found P. falciparum parasites whose mitochondrial genomes indicated that they were distinct from those present in humans, and another parasite lineage related to P. malariae. Phylogenetic analyses based on this diverse set of Plasmodium parasites in African Apes shed new light on the evolutionary history of P. falciparum. The data suggested that P. falciparum did not originate from P. reichenowi of chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes, but rather evolved in bonobos (Pan paniscus, from which it subsequently colonized humans by a host-switch. Finally, our data and that of others indicated that chimpanzees and bonobos maintain malaria parasites, to which humans are susceptible, a factor of some relevance to the renewed efforts to eradicate malaria.

  5. On the diversity of malaria parasites in African apes and the origin of Plasmodium falciparum from Bonobos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krief, Sabrina; Escalante, Ananias A; Pacheco, M Andreina; Mugisha, Lawrence; André, Claudine; Halbwax, Michel; Fischer, Anne; Krief, Jean-Michel; Kasenene, John M; Crandfield, Mike; Cornejo, Omar E; Chavatte, Jean-Marc; Lin, Clara; Letourneur, Franck; Grüner, Anne Charlotte; McCutchan, Thomas F; Rénia, Laurent; Snounou, Georges

    2010-02-12

    The origin of Plasmodium falciparum, the etiological agent of the most dangerous forms of human malaria, remains controversial. Although investigations of homologous parasites in African Apes are crucial to resolve this issue, studies have been restricted to a chimpanzee parasite related to P. falciparum, P. reichenowi, for which a single isolate was available until very recently. Using PCR amplification, we detected Plasmodium parasites in blood samples from 18 of 91 individuals of the genus Pan, including six chimpanzees (three Pan troglodytes troglodytes, three Pan t. schweinfurthii) and twelve bonobos (Pan paniscus). We obtained sequences of the parasites' mitochondrial genomes and/or from two nuclear genes from 14 samples. In addition to P. reichenowi, three other hitherto unknown lineages were found in the chimpanzees. One is related to P. vivax and two to P. falciparum that are likely to belong to distinct species. In the bonobos we found P. falciparum parasites whose mitochondrial genomes indicated that they were distinct from those present in humans, and another parasite lineage related to P. malariae. Phylogenetic analyses based on this diverse set of Plasmodium parasites in African Apes shed new light on the evolutionary history of P. falciparum. The data suggested that P. falciparum did not originate from P. reichenowi of chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), but rather evolved in bonobos (Pan paniscus), from which it subsequently colonized humans by a host-switch. Finally, our data and that of others indicated that chimpanzees and bonobos maintain malaria parasites, to which humans are susceptible, a factor of some relevance to the renewed efforts to eradicate malaria.

  6. Natural infection of Plasmodium brasilianum in humans: Man and monkey share quartan malaria parasites in the Venezuelan Amazon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lalremruata, Albert; Magris, Magda; Vivas-Martínez, Sarai; Koehler, Maike; Esen, Meral; Kempaiah, Prakasha; Jeyaraj, Sankarganesh; Perkins, Douglas Jay; Mordmüller, Benjamin; Metzger, Wolfram G

    2015-09-01

    The quartan malaria parasite Plasmodium malariae is the widest spread and best adapted human malaria parasite. The simian Plasmodium brasilianum causes quartan fever in New World monkeys and resembles P. malariae morphologically. Since the genetics of the two parasites are nearly identical, differing only in a range of mutations expected within a species, it has long been speculated that the two are the same. However, no naturally acquired infection with parasites termed as P. brasilianum has been found in humans until now. We investigated malaria cases from remote Yanomami indigenous communities of the Venezuelan Amazon and analyzed the genes coding for the circumsporozoite protein (CSP) and the small subunit of ribosomes (18S) by species-specific PCR and capillary based-DNA sequencing. Based on 18S rRNA gene sequencing, we identified 12 patients harboring malaria parasites which were 100% identical with P. brasilianum isolated from the monkey, Alouatta seniculus. Translated amino acid sequences of the CS protein gene showed identical immunodominant repeat units between quartan malaria parasites isolated from both humans and monkeys. This study reports, for the first time, naturally acquired infections in humans with parasites termed as P. brasilianum. We conclude that quartan malaria parasites are easily exchanged between humans and monkeys in Latin America. We hypothesize a lack of host specificity in mammalian hosts and consider quartan malaria to be a true anthropozoonosis. Since the name P. brasilianum suggests a malaria species distinct from P. malariae, we propose that P. brasilianum should have a nomenclatorial revision in case further research confirms our findings. The expansive reservoir of mammalian hosts discriminates quartan malaria from other Plasmodium spp. and requires particular research efforts.

  7. Ordered accumulation of mutations conferring resistance to sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine in the Plasmodium falciparum parasite.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mita, Toshihiro; Ohashi, Jun; Venkatesan, Meera; Marma, Aung Swi Prue; Nakamura, Masatoshi; Plowe, Christopher V; Tanabe, Kazuyuki

    2014-01-01

    Monitoring the prevalence of drug resistant Plasmodium falciparum is essential for effective malaria control. Resistance to pyrimethamine and sulfadoxine increases as mutations accumulate in the parasite genes encoding dihydrofolate reductase (dhfr) and dihydropteroate synthase (dhps), respectively. Although parasites are exposed to these antifolate drugs simultaneously, it remains virtually unknown whether dhfr and dhps mutations accumulate along interrelated paths. We investigated the order of step-wise accumulation in dhfr and dhps by cumulative analyses using binomial tests in 575 P. falciparum isolates obtained from 7 countries in Asia and Melanesia. An initial step in the accumulation of mutations preferentially occurred in dhfr (2 mutations), followed by 1 mutation in dhps. In a subsequent step, mutations were estimated separately for 5 dhfr/dhps-resistant lineages identified using 12 microsatellites flanking dhfr and dhps. Among these lineages, we found 3 major mutational paths, each of which follows a unique stepwise trajectory to produce the most highly resistant form with 4 mutations in dhfr and 3 in dhps. The ordered accumulation of mutations in dhfr and dhps elucidated here will assist in predicting the status and progression of antifolate resistance in malaria-endemic regions where antifolate drugs are used for intermittent preventive treatment.

  8. The Plasmodium PHIST and RESA-Like Protein Families of Human and Rodent Malaria Parasites.

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    Cristina K Moreira

    Full Text Available The phist gene family has members identified across the Plasmodium genus, defined by the presence of a domain of roughly 150 amino acids having conserved aromatic residues and an all alpha-helical structure. The family is highly amplified in P. falciparum, with 65 predicted genes in the genome of the 3D7 isolate. In contrast, in the rodent malaria parasite P. berghei 3 genes are identified, one of which is an apparent pseudogene. Transcripts of the P. berghei phist genes are predominant in schizonts, whereas in P. falciparum transcript profiles span different asexual blood stages and gametocytes. We pursued targeted disruption of P. berghei phist genes in order to characterize a simplistic model for the expanded phist gene repertoire in P. falciparum. Unsuccessful attempts to disrupt P. berghei PBANKA_114540 suggest that this phist gene is essential, while knockout of phist PBANKA_122900 shows an apparent normal progression and non-essential function throughout the life cycle. Epitope-tagging of P. falciparum and P. berghei phist genes confirmed protein export to the erythrocyte cytoplasm and localization with a punctate pattern. Three P. berghei PEXEL/HT-positive exported proteins exhibit at least partial co-localization, in support of a common vesicular compartment in the cytoplasm of erythrocytes infected with rodent malaria parasites.

  9. Tetraoxanes as inhibitors of apicomplexan parasites Plasmodium falciparum and Toxoplasma gondii and anti-cancer molecules

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Opsenica Dejan M.

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available New cyclohexylidene 1,2,4,5-tetraoxanes with polar guanidine and urea based groups were synthesized and evaluated for antimalarial activity against chloroquine resistant and susceptible Plasmodium falciparum strains. Derivatives showed moderate nM range antimalarial activities and low cytotoxicity. N-phenyl-urea derivative 24 exhibited best resistant indices (RIW2 = 0.44, RITM91C235 = 0.80, and was not toxic against human normal peripheral blood mononuclear cells (IC50 > 200 μM. Seven derivatives were tested in vitro against four human cancer cell lines and they demonstrated high selectivity toward leukemia K562 cells. One compound, derivative 21 with a primary amino-group, was the first tetraoxane tested in vivo against Toxoplasma gondii as another Apicomplexan parasite. Subcutaneous administration at a dose of 10 mg/kg/day for 8 days allowed survival of 20 % of infected mice, thus demonstrating the high potential of tetraoxanes for the treatment of Apicomplexan parasites. [Projekat Ministarstva nauke Republike Srbije, br. 172008 i br. 175011

  10. The protein-phosphatome of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

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    Doerig Christian

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Malaria, caused by the parasitic protist Plasmodium falciparum, represents a major public health problem in the developing world. The P. falciparum genome has been sequenced, which provides new opportunities for the identification of novel drug targets. We report an exhaustive analysis of the P. falciparum genomic database (PlasmoDB aimed at identifying and classifying all protein phosphatases (PP in this organism. Results Using a variety of bioinformatics tools, we identified 27 malarial putative PP sequences within the four major established PP families, plus 7 sequences that we predict to dephosphorylate "non-protein" substrates. We constructed phylogenetic trees to position these sequences relative to PPs from other organisms representing all major eukaryotic phyla except Cercozoans (for which no full genome sequence is available. Predominant observations were: (i P. falciparum possessed the smallest phosphatome of any of the organisms investigated in this study; (ii no malarial PP clustered with the tyrosine-specific subfamily of the PTP group (iii a cluster of 7 closely related members of the PPM/PP2C family is present, and (iv some P. falciparum protein phosphatases are present in clades lacking any human homologue. Conclusion The considerable phylogenetic distance between Apicomplexa and other Eukaryotes is reflected by profound divergences between the phosphatome of malaria parasites and those of representative organisms from all major eukaryotic phyla, which might be exploited in the context of efforts for the discovery of novel targets for antimalarial chemotherapy.

  11. Crystal structure of fructose-1,6-bisphosphate aldolase from the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, H; Certa, U; Döbeli, H; Jakob, P; Hol, W G

    1998-03-31

    The structure of the glycolytic enzyme class I fructose-1, 6-bisphosphate aldolase from the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum has been determined by X-ray crystallography. Homotetrameric P. falciparum aldolase (PfALDO) crystallizes in space group P3221 with one 80 kDa dimer per asymmetric unit. The final refined PfALDO model has an R-factor of 0.239 and an R-free of 0.329 with respect to data from 8 to 3.0 A resolution. PfALDO is potentially a target for antimalarial drug design as the intraerythrocytic merozoite lifestage of P. falciparum is completely dependent upon glycolysis for its ATP production. Thus, inhibitors directed against the glycolytic enzymes in P. falciparum may be effective in killing the parasite. The structure of PfALDO is compared with the previously determined structure of human aldolase in order to determine possible targets for the structure-based design of selective PfALDO ligands. The salient structural differences include a hydrophobic pocket on the surface of PfALDO, which results from some amino acid changes and a single residue deletion compared with human aldolase, and the overall quaternary structure of the PfALDO tetramer, which buries less surface area than human aldolase.

  12. Plasmodium chabaudi chabaudi malaria parasites can develop stable resistance to atovaquone with a mutation in the cytochrome b gene

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    Alves Ana C

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plasmodium falciparum, has developed resistance to many of the drugs in use. The recommended treatment policy is now to use drug combinations. The atovaquone-proguanil (AP drug combination, is one of the treatment and prophylaxis options. Atovaquone (ATQ exerts its action by inhibiting plasmodial mitochondria electron transport at the level of the cytochrome bc1 complex. Plasmodium falciparum in vitro resistance to ATQ has been associated with specific point mutations in the region spanning codons 271-284 of the cytochrome b gene. ATQ -resistant Plasmodium yoelii and Plasmodium berghei lines have been obtained and resistant lines have amino acid mutations in their CYT b protein sequences. Plasmodium chabaudi model for studying drug-responses and drug-resistance selection is a very useful rodent malaria model but no ATQ resistant parasites have been reported so far. The aim of this study was to determine the ATQ sensitivity of the P. chabaudi clones, to select a resistant parasite line and to perform genotypic characterization of the cytb gene of these clones. Methods To select for ATQ resistance, Plasmodium. chabaudi chabaudi clones were exposed to gradually increasing concentrations of ATQ during several consecutive passages in mice. Plasmodium chabaudi cytb gene was amplified and sequenced. Results ATQ resistance was selected from the clone AS-3CQ. In order to confirm whether an heritable genetic mutation underlies the response of AS-ATQ to ATQ, the stability of the drug resistance phenotype in this clone was evaluated by measuring drug responses after (i multiple blood passages in the absence of the drug, (ii freeze/thawing of parasites in liquid nitrogen and (iii transmission through a mosquito host, Anopheles stephensi. ATQ resistance phenotype of the drug-selected parasite clone kept unaltered. Therefore, ATQ resistance in clone AS-ATQ is genetically encoded. The Minimum Curative Dose of AS-ATQ showed a six

  13. Plasmodium Cysteine Repeat Modular Proteins 3 and 4 are essential for malaria parasite transmission from the mosquito to the host

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    Mota Maria M

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Plasmodium Cysteine Repeat Modular Proteins (PCRMP are a family of four conserved proteins of malaria parasites, that contain a number of motifs implicated in host-parasite interactions. Analysis of mutants of the rodent parasite Plasmodium berghei lacking expression of PCRMP1 or 2 showed that these proteins are essential for targeting of P. berghei sporozoites to the mosquito salivary gland and, hence, for transmission from the mosquito to the mouse. Methods In this work, the role of the remaining PCRMP family members, PCRMP3 and 4, has been investigated throughout the Plasmodium life cycle by generation and analysis of P. berghei gene deletion mutants, Δpcrmp3 and Δpcrmp4. The role of PCRMP members during the transmission and hepatic stages of the Plasmodium lifecycle has been evaluated by light- and electron microscopy and by analysis of liver stage development in HEPG2 cells in vitro and by infecting mice with mutant sporozoites. In addition, mice were immunized with live Δpcrmp3 and Δpcrmp4 sporozoites to evaluate their immunization potential as a genetically-attenuated parasite-based vaccine. Results Disruption of pcrmp3 and pcrmp4 in P. berghei revealed that they are also essential for transmission of the parasite through the mosquito vector, although acting in a distinct way to pbcrmp1 and 2. Mutants lacking expression of PCRMP3 or PCRMP4 show normal blood stage development and oocyst formation in the mosquito and develop into morphologically normal sporozoites, but these have a defect in egress from oocysts and do not enter the salivary glands. Sporozoites extracted from oocysts perform gliding motility and invade and infect hepatocytes but do not undergo further development and proliferation. Furthermore, the study shows that immunization with Δcrmp3 and Δcrmp4 sporozoites does not confer protective immunity upon subsequent challenge. Conclusions PCRMP3 and 4 play multiple roles during the Plasmodium life

  14. Optimized Pan-species and Speciation Duplex Real-time PCR Assays for Plasmodium Parasites Detection in Malaria Vectors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandeu, Maurice Marcel; Moussiliou, Azizath; Moiroux, Nicolas; Padonou, Gilles G.; Massougbodji, Achille; Corbel, Vincent; Tuikue Ndam, Nicaise

    2012-01-01

    Background An accurate method for detecting malaria parasites in the mosquito’s vector remains an essential component in the vector control. The Enzyme linked immunosorbent assay specific for circumsporozoite protein (ELISA-CSP) is the gold standard method for the detection of malaria parasites in the vector even if it presents some limitations. Here, we optimized multiplex real-time PCR assays to accurately detect minor populations in mixed infection with multiple Plasmodium species in the African malaria vectors Anopheles gambiae and Anopheles funestus. Methods Complementary TaqMan-based real-time PCR assays that detect Plasmodium species using specific primers and probes were first evaluated on artificial mixtures of different targets inserted in plasmid constructs. The assays were further validated in comparison with the ELISA-CSP on 200 field caught Anopheles gambiae and Anopheles funestus mosquitoes collected in two localities in southern Benin. Results The validation of the duplex real-time PCR assays on the plasmid mixtures demonstrated robust specificity and sensitivity for detecting distinct targets. Using a panel of mosquito specimen, the real-time PCR showed a relatively high sensitivity (88.6%) and specificity (98%), compared to ELISA-CSP as the referent standard. The agreement between both methods was “excellent” (κ = 0.8, PPlasmodium DNA between the two Anopheles species analyzed showed no significant difference (P = 0, 2). All infected mosquito samples contained Plasmodium falciparum DNA and mixed infections with P. malariae and/or P. ovale were observed in 18.6% and 13.6% of An. gambiae and An. funestus respectively. Plasmodium vivax was found in none of the mosquito samples analyzed. Conclusion This study presents an optimized method for detecting the four Plasmodium species in the African malaria vectors. The study highlights substantial discordance with traditional ELISA-CSP pointing out the utility of employing an accurate

  15. Effects of Aging on Parasite Biomass, Inflammation, Endothelial Activation, Microvascular Dysfunction and Disease Severity in Plasmodium knowlesi and Plasmodium falciparum Malaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barber, Bridget E; Grigg, Matthew J; William, Timothy; Piera, Kim A; Boyle, Michelle J; Yeo, Tsin W; Anstey, Nicholas M

    2017-06-15

    In populations pauci-immune to malaria, risk of severe malaria increases with age. This is particularly apparent in Plasmodium knowlesi malaria. However, pathophysiological mechanisms underlying knowlesi malaria, and of the age-related increase in risk of severe malaria in general, are poorly understood. In Malaysian patients aged ≥12 years with severe (n = 47) and nonsevere (n = 99) knowlesi malaria, severe (n = 21) and nonsevere (n = 109) falciparum malaria, and healthy controls (n = 50), we measured parasite biomass, systemic inflammation (interleukin 6 [IL-6]), endothelial activation (angiopoietin-2), and microvascular function, and evaluated the effects of age. Plasmodium knowlesi parasitemia correlated with age (Spearman's correlation coefficient [rs] = 0.36; P malaria, IL-6, angiopoietin-2, and microvascular dysfunction were increased in severe compared to nonsevere disease, and all correlated with age, independent of parasitemia. In falciparum malaria, angiopoietin-2 increased with age, independent of parasite biomass (histidine-rich protein 2 [HRP2]). Independent risk factors for severe malaria included parasitemia and angiopoietin-2 in knowlesi malaria, and HRP2, angiopoietin-2, and microvascular dysfunction in falciparum malaria. Parasite biomass, endothelial activation, and microvascular dysfunction are associated with severe disease in knowlesi malaria and likely contribute to pathogenesis. The association of each of these processes with aging may account for the greater severity of malaria observed in older adults in low-endemic regions.

  16. The Clp chaperones and proteases of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El Bakkouri, Majida; Pow, Andre; Mulichak, Anne; Cheung, Kevin L Y; Artz, Jennifer D; Amani, Mehrnaz; Fell, Stuart; de Koning-Ward, Tania F; Goodman, C Dean; McFadden, Geoffrey I; Ortega, Joaquin; Hui, Raymond; Houry, Walid A

    2010-12-03

    The Clp chaperones and proteases play an important role in protein homeostasis in the cell. They are highly conserved across prokaryotes and found also in the mitochondria of eukaryotes and the chloroplasts of plants. They function mainly in the disaggregation, unfolding and degradation of native as well as misfolded proteins. Here, we provide a comprehensive analysis of the Clp chaperones and proteases in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. The parasite contains four Clp ATPases, which we term PfClpB1, PfClpB2, PfClpC and PfClpM. One PfClpP, the proteolytic subunit, and one PfClpR, which is an inactive version of the protease, were also identified. Expression of all Clp chaperones and proteases was confirmed in blood-stage parasites. The proteins were localized to the apicoplast, a non-photosynthetic organelle that accommodates several important metabolic pathways in P. falciparum, with the exception of PfClpB2 (also known as Hsp101), which was found in the parasitophorous vacuole. Both PfClpP and PfClpR form mostly homoheptameric rings as observed by size-exclusion chromatography, analytical ultracentrifugation and electron microscopy. The X-ray structure of PfClpP showed the protein as a compacted tetradecamer similar to that observed for Streptococcus pneumoniae and Mycobacterium tuberculosis ClpPs. Our data suggest the presence of a ClpCRP complex in the apicoplast of P. falciparum. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. An adaptable two-color flow cytometric assay to quantitate the invasion of erythrocytes by Plasmodium falciparum parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theron, Michel; Hesketh, Richard L; Subramanian, Sathish; Rayner, Julian C

    2010-11-01

    Plasmodium falciparum genotyping has recently undergone a revolution, and genome-wide genotype datasets are now being collected for large numbers of parasite isolates. By contrast, phenotyping technologies have lagged behind, with few high throughput phenotyping platforms available. Invasion of human erythrocytes by Plasmodium falciparum is a phenotype of particular interest because of its central role in parasite development. Invasion is a variable phenotype influenced by natural genetic variation in both the parasite and host and is governed by multiple overlapping and in some instances redundant parasite-erythrocyte interactions. To facilitate the scale-up of erythrocyte invasion phenotyping, we have developed a novel platform based on two-color flow cytometry that distinguishes parasite invasion from parasite growth. Target cells that had one or more receptors removed using enzymatic treatment were prelabeled with intracellular dyes CFDA-SE or DDAO-SE, incubated with P. falciparum parasites, and parasites that had invaded either labeled or unlabeled cells were detected with fluorescent DNA-intercalating dyes Hoechst 33342 or SYBR Green I. Neither cell label interfered with erythrocyte invasion, and the combination of cell and parasite dyes recapitulated known invasion phenotypes for three standard laboratory strains. Three different dye combinations with minimal overlap have been validated, meaning the same assay can be adapted to instruments harboring several different combinations of laser lines. The assay is sensitive, operates in a 96-well format, and can be used to quantitate the impact of natural or experimental genetic variation on erythrocyte invasion efficiency. © 2010 International Society for Advancement of Cytometry.

  18. Humoral immune responses to a recombinant Plasmodium vivax tryptophan-rich antigen among Plasmodium vivax-infected patients and its localization in the parasite.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siddiqui, Asim A; Khan, Fozia; Sharma, Yagya D

    2015-02-01

    Our recent studies have focused on the identification and characterization of the tryptophan-rich proteins of the Plasmodium vivax parasite where their role in the elicitation of humoral and cellular responses and erythrocyte-binding activity was investigated. Here, we report the humoral responses of a 32.4-kDa P. vivax tryptophan-rich antigen (PvTRAg32.4) among the sera of P. vivax-infected patients. PvTRAg32.4 also contains an unusually high percentage of tryptophan residues (10.7 %) that are positionally conserved with its orthologues in Plasmodium yoelii (PypAg1 and PypAg2) and Plasmodium falciparum (PfTryThrA and PfMATRA). Thirty-four of the 40 (85.0 %) P. vivax isolates showed seropositivity to recombinant PvTRAg32.4 by ELISA. The mean ± SD values of optical density (OD) for P. vivax subjects and naïve individuals were 1.02 ± 0.36 and 0.26 ± 0.11, respectively. In the Western blot analysis, majority of the subjects studied (n = 44) showed reactivity to the recombinant, purified PvTRAg32.4. This antigen does not show binding to the erythrocytes, but the immunofluorescence data reveals that it is expressed in the erythrocytic stages of the parasite. Sequence analysis of the clinical isolates from various parts of the country shows that PvTRAg32.4 is highly conserved. Functional in-depth characterization of more such type of novel proteins in the parasite is warranted for the development of successful malaria intervention methods.

  19. [Construction of Plasmodium falciparum signal peptide peptidase-GFP mutant and its expression analysis in the malaria parasite].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xue-rong; Wu, Yin-juan; Shang, Mei; Li, Ye; Xu, Jin; Yu, Xin-bing; Athar, Chishti

    2014-08-01

    To construct recombinant plasmid pSPPcGT which contains signal peptide peptidase gene of Plasmodium falciparum (PJSPP) and GFP, and transfect into P. falciparum (3D7 strain) to obtain mutant parasites which can express PJSPP-GFP. Plasmodium falciparum(3D7 strain) genomic DNA was extracted from cultured malaria parasites. The C-terminal region of PJSPP, an 883 bp gene fragment was amplified by PCR, and then cloned into pPM2GT vector to get recombinant vector pSPPcGT. The recombinant vectors were identified by PCR, double restriction enzyme digestion and DNA sequencing. pSPPcGT vector was transfected into malaria parasites. The positive clones were selected by adding inhibitor of Plasmodium falciparum dihydrofolate reductase WR99210 to the culture medium. The pSPP-GFP-transfected parasites were fixed with methanol, stained with DAPI, and observed under immunofluorescence microscope. The PJSPP-GFP expression in P. falciparum was identified by SDS-PAGE and Western blotting. The C-terminal region of PJSPP was amplified from P.falciparum (3D7 strain) genomic DNA by PCR with the length of 883 bp. The constructed recombinant vectors were identified by PCR screening, double restriction enzyme digestion and DNA sequencing. The pSPPcGT vector was transfected into P. falciparum and the positive clones were selected by WR99210. GFP fluorescence was observed in transfected parasites by immunofluorescence microscopy, and mainly located in the cytoplasm. The PJSPP-GFP expression in malaria parasites was confirmed by Western blotting with a relative molecular mass of Mr 64,000. Recombinant vector PJSPP-GFP is constructed and transfected into P. falciparum to obtain P. falciparum mutant clone which can express PfSPP-GFP.

  20. Triazolopyrimidine-based dihydroorotate dehydrogenase inhibitors with potent and selective activity against the malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum

    OpenAIRE

    Phillips, Margaret A.; Gujjar, Ramesh; Malmquist, Nicholas A.; White, John; El Mazouni, Farah; Baldwin, Jeffrey; Rathod, Pradipsinh K.

    2008-01-01

    A Plasmodium falciparum dihydroorotate dehydrogenase (PfDHODH) inhibitor that is potent (KI = 15 nM) and species-selective (>5,000-fold over the human enzyme) was identified by high-throughput screening. The substituted triazolopyrimidine and its structural analogs were produced by an inexpensive three-step synthesis and the series showed good association between PfDHODH inhibition and parasite toxicity. This study has identified the first nanomolar PfDHODH inhibitor with potent antimalarial ...

  1. Immune characterization of Plasmodium falciparum parasites with a shared genetic signature in a region of decreasing transmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bei, Amy K; Diouf, Ababacar; Miura, Kazutoyo; Larremore, Daniel B; Ribacke, Ulf; Tullo, Gregory; Moss, Eli L; Neafsey, Daniel E; Daniels, Rachel F; Zeituni, Amir E; Nosamiefan, Iguosadolo; Volkman, Sarah K; Ahouidi, Ambroise D; Ndiaye, Daouda; Dieye, Tandakha; Mboup, Souleymane; Buckee, Caroline O; Long, Carole A; Wirth, Dyann F

    2015-01-01

    As the intensity of malaria transmission has declined, Plasmodium falciparum parasite populations have displayed decreased clonal diversity resulting from the emergence of many parasites with common genetic signatures (CGS). We have monitored such CGS parasite clusters from 2006 to 2013 in Thiès, Senegal, using the molecular barcode. The first, and one of the largest observed clusters of CGS parasites, was present in 24% of clinical isolates in 2008, declined to 3.4% of clinical isolates in 2009, and then disappeared. To begin to explore the relationship between the immune responses of the population and the emergence and decline of specific parasite genotypes, we have determined whether antibodies to CGS parasites correlate with their prevalence. We measured (i) antibodies capable of inhibiting parasite growth in culture and (ii) antibodies recognizing the surfaces of infected erythrocytes (RBCs). IgG obtained from volunteers in 2009 showed increased reactivity to the surfaces of CGS-parasitized erythrocytes over IgG from 2008. Since P. falciparum EMP-1 (PfEMP-1) is a major variant surface antigen, we used var Ups quantitative reverse transcription-PCR (qRT-PCR) and sequencing with degenerate DBL1α domain primers to characterize the var genes expressed by CGS parasites after short-term in vitro culture. CGS parasites show upregulation of UpsA var genes and 2-cysteine-containing PfEMP-1 molecules and express the same dominant var transcript. Our work indicates that the CGS parasites in this cluster express similar var genes, more than would be expected by chance in the population, and that there is year-to-year variation in immune recognition of surface antigens on CGS parasite-infected erythrocytes. This study lays the groundwork for detailed investigations of the mechanisms driving the expansion or contraction of specific parasite clones in the population. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  2. Natural infection of Plasmodium brasilianum in humans: Man and monkey share quartan malaria parasites in the Venezuelan Amazon

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Albert Lalremruata

    2015-09-01

    Interpretation: This study reports, for the first time, naturally acquired infections in humans with parasites termed as P. brasilianum. We conclude that quartan malaria parasites are easily exchanged between humans and monkeys in Latin America. We hypothesize a lack of host specificity in mammalian hosts and consider quartan malaria to be a true anthropozoonosis. Since the name P. brasilianum suggests a malaria species distinct from P. malariae, we propose that P. brasilianum should have a nomenclatorial revision in case further research confirms our findings. The expansive reservoir of mammalian hosts discriminates quartan malaria from other Plasmodium spp. and requires particular research efforts.

  3. Is primaquine useful and safe as true exo-erythrocytic merontocidal, hypnozoitocidal and gametocidal antimalarial drug?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco Javier López-Antuñano

    1999-10-01

    Full Text Available The main objective of this paper is to make available in a single document, a sequence of events that have been published on the biology of malaria parasites and their interaction with the human host, looking for arguments for effective and save treatment: what we know and what we would like to know about the effects of primaquine in order to justify its use in clinical and public health practice. The practicioner should be aware that the antimalarial activity, hemolytic and methemoglobinemic side effects, and detoxification of primaquine are all thought to depend on various biotransformation products of the drug. In spite of the universal use during over six decades, their site and mechanism of formation and degradation and their specific biologic effects remain very poorly understood in human beings. The mature gametocytes of P. falciparum are naturally resistant to chloroquine and other blood merontocides, but they are usually eliminated with a single dose of 1.315 mg/kg per os (p.o. of primaquine phosphate (equivalent to 0.75 mg-base. Rather than empirically, related with relapses frequency, dosage schedules should only be determined through consideration of the kinetics and dynamics of the drug and its effect on sporozoites, pre and exo-erythrocytic merontes, hypnozoites and gametocytes of P. vivax. Where medical care services are not available or not capable to detect glucose -6- phosphate dehydrogenese- (G-6-PD deficiencies and deleterious effects of the drug, we recommend not to use primaquine. Both, P. vivax primary clinical attack and P. vivax relapses, as and when they occur should be treated with a course of 10 mg/kg chloroquine-base p.o. Prevention of relapses is probably related to strain characteristics of P. vivax hypnozoites populations envolved. If well informed and qualified medical care workers decide to use primaquine in the absence of enzime defficiencies and are able to follow-up the clinical, toxicological and parasitic

  4. Cross-reactive anti-PfCLAG9 antibodies in the sera of asymptomatic parasite carriers of Plasmodium vivax

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, Joana D'Arc Neves; Zanchi, Fernando Berton; Rodrigues, Francisco Lurdevanhe da Silva; Honda, Eduardo Rezende; Katsuragawa, Tony Hiroschi; Pereira, Dhélio Batista; Taborda, Roger Lafontaine Mesquita; Tada, Mauro Shugiro; Ferreira, Ricardo de Godoi Mattos; Pereira-da-Silva, Luiz Hildebrando

    2013-01-01

    The PfCLAG9 has been extensively studied because their immunogenicity. Thereby, the gene product is important for therapeutics interventions and a potential vaccine candidate. Antibodies against synthetic peptides corresponding to selected sequences of the Plasmodium falciparum antigen PfCLAG9 were found in sera of falciparum malaria patients from Rondônia, in the Brazilian Amazon. Much higher antibody titres were found in semi-immune and immune asymptomatic parasite carriers than in subjects suffering clinical infections, corroborating original findings in Papua Guinea. However, sera of Plasmodium vivax patients from the same Amazon area, in particular from asymptomatic vivax parasite carriers, reacted strongly with the same peptides. Bioinformatic analyses revealed regions of similarity between P. falciparum Pfclag9 and the P. vivax ortholog Pvclag7. Indirect fluorescent microscopy analysis showed that antibodies against PfCLAG9 peptides elicited in BALB/c mice react with human red blood cells (RBCs) infected with both P. falciparum and P. vivax parasites. The patterns of reactivity on the surface of the parasitised RBCs are very similar. The present observations support previous findings that PfCLAG9 may be a target of protective immune responses and raises the possibility that the cross reactive antibodies to PvCLAG7 in mixed infections play a role in regulate the fate of Plasmodium mixed infections. PMID:23440122

  5. An essential role for the Plasmodium Nek-2 Nima-related protein kinase in the sexual development of malaria parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reininger, Luc; Tewari, Rita; Fennell, Clare; Holland, Zoe; Goldring, Dean; Ranford-Cartwright, Lisa; Billker, Oliver; Doerig, Christian

    2009-07-31

    The molecular control of cell division and development in malaria parasites is far from understood. We previously showed that a Plasmodium gametocyte-specific NIMA-related protein kinase, nek-4, is required for completion of meiosis in the ookinete, the motile form that develops from the zygote in the mosquito vector. Here, we show that another NIMA-related kinase, Pfnek-2, is also predominantly expressed in gametocytes, and that Pfnek-2 is an active enzyme displaying an in vitro substrate preference distinct from that of Pfnek-4. A functional nek-2 gene is required for transmission of both Plasmodium falciparum and the rodent malaria parasite Plasmodium berghei to the mosquito vector, which is explained by the observation that disruption of the nek-2 gene in P. berghei causes dysregulation of DNA replication during meiosis and blocks ookinete development. This has implications (i) in our understanding of sexual development of malaria parasites and (ii) in the context of control strategies aimed at interfering with malaria transmission.

  6. Plasmodium falciparum: characterization of toxin-associated proteins and identification of a hemoglobin containing parasite cytokine stimulator

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristensen, G; Jakobsen, P H

    1996-01-01

    Previous studies have indicated the inositol monophosphate (IMP) is a component of the malaria parasite toxin that induces cytokines such as tumour necrosis factor (TNF). To further characterize the toxin we have labeled Plasmodium falciparum in vitro cultures with [14C]inositol or [35S]-methioni......Previous studies have indicated the inositol monophosphate (IMP) is a component of the malaria parasite toxin that induces cytokines such as tumour necrosis factor (TNF). To further characterize the toxin we have labeled Plasmodium falciparum in vitro cultures with [14C]inositol or [35S......]-methionine and immunoprecipitated the labeled antigens with an antiserum against IMP which blocks malaria parasite-induced TNF production. We detected four proteins associated with IMP when the immunoprecipitates were separated by SDS-PAGE and analyzed by autoradiography. To evaluate the capacity of different P. falciparum......-molecular-mass antigen fraction contained hemoglobin, while no parasite-specific proteins were detectable when tested by immunoblotting. Hemoglobin may act as a carrier for cytokine-inducing malaria parasite toxins....

  7. Early gametocytes of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum specifically remodel the adhesive properties of infected erythrocyte surface

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tibúrcio, Marta; Silvestrini, Francesco; Bertuccini, Lucia

    2013-01-01

    not modify its surface with adhesive 'knob' structures and associated proteins. Reduced levels of the P. falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) adhesins are exposed on the red blood cell surface bythese parasites, and the expression of the var gene family, which encodes 50-60 variants of PfEMP1...... to ultrastructurally and biochemically analyse parasite-induced modifications on the red blood cell surface and to measure their functional consequences on adhesion to human endothelial cells. This work revealed that stage I gametocytes are able to deform the infected erythrocytes like asexual parasites, but do......In Plasmodium falciparum infections the parasite transmission stages, the gametocytes, mature in 10 days sequestered in internal organs. Recent studies suggest that cell mechanical properties rather than adhesive interactions play a role in sequestration during gametocyte maturation. It remains...

  8. Transformation of the rodent malaria parasite Plasmodium chabaudi and generation of a stable fluorescent line PcGFPCON

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reece Sarah E

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The rodent malaria parasite Plasmodium chabaudi has proven of great value in the analysis of fundamental aspects of host-parasite-vector interactions implicated in disease pathology and parasite evolutionary ecology. However, the lack of gene modification technologies for this model has precluded more direct functional studies. Methods The development of in vitro culture methods to yield P. chabaudi schizonts for transfection and conditions for genetic modification of this rodent malaria model are reported. Results Independent P. chabaudi gene-integrant lines that constitutively express high levels of green fluorescent protein throughout their life cycle have been generated. Conclusion Genetic modification of P. chabaudi is now possible. The production of genetically distinct reference lines offers substantial advances to our understanding of malaria parasite biology, especially interactions with the immune system during chronic infection.

  9. FACTORS IN PLASMA CONCERNED IN NATURAL RESISTANCE TO AN AVIAN MALARIA PARASITE (PLASMODIUM LOPHURAE).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trager, W; McGhee, R B

    1950-03-31

    The plasma of adult chickens, when injected into young chicks or chick embryos infected with Plasmodium lophurae, lessened the parasitemia. The substances responsible for this effect were inactivated or removed by the heating of adult chicken plasma for (1/2) hour at 65 degrees C., followed by centrifugation to remove the coagulated material; but they were not affected by heating for (1/2) hour at 56 degrees C. The active materials were present in the euglobulin fraction of hen plasma. In similar experiments with ducks, the plasma from each of a series of adult ducks was tested for its effect on the course of infection in young ducklings. The adult ducks were then inoculated with a large dose of parasites. There was a positive correlation between the effectiveness of a plasma in lessening the parasitemia of ducklings treated with it and the resistance on infection exhibited by the duck from which the plasma had been obtained. More than half of the adult female ducks with an active ovary which were tested, but only one of the males, had effective plasmas and also showed relative resistance to the infection.

  10. Rapid, low dose X-ray diffractive imaging of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jones, Michael W.M., E-mail: michael.jones@latrobe.edu.au [ARC Centre of Excellence for Coherent X-Ray Science, Department of Physics, La Trobe University, Victoria 3086 (Australia); Dearnley, Megan K. [ARC Centre of Excellence for Coherent X-Ray Science, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Bio21 Institute, The University of Melbourne, Victoria 3010 (Australia); Riessen, Grant A. van [ARC Centre of Excellence for Coherent X-Ray Science, Department of Physics, La Trobe University, Victoria 3086 (Australia); Abbey, Brian [ARC Centre of Excellence for Coherent X-Ray Science, Department of Physics, La Trobe University, Victoria 3086 (Australia); Melbourne Centre for Nanofabrication, Victoria 3168 (Australia); Putkunz, Corey T. [ARC Centre of Excellence for Coherent X-Ray Science, School of Physics, The University of Melbourne, Victoria 3010 (Australia); Junker, Mark D. [ARC Centre of Excellence for Coherent X-Ray Science, Department of Physics, La Trobe University, Victoria 3086 (Australia); Vine, David J. [Advanced Photon Source, Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, IL 60439 (United States); McNulty, Ian [Advanced Photon Source, Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, IL 60439 (United States); Centre for Nanoscale Materials, Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, Illinois 60439 (United States); Nugent, Keith A. [ARC Centre of Excellence for Coherent X-Ray Science, Department of Physics, La Trobe University, Victoria 3086 (Australia); Peele, Andrew G. [ARC Centre of Excellence for Coherent X-Ray Science, Department of Physics, La Trobe University, Victoria 3086 (Australia); Australian Synchrotron, 800 Blackburn Road, Clayton 3168 (Australia); Tilley, Leann [ARC Centre of Excellence for Coherent X-Ray Science, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Bio21 Institute, The University of Melbourne, Victoria 3010 (Australia)

    2014-08-01

    Phase-diverse X-ray coherent diffractive imaging (CDI) provides a route to high sensitivity and spatial resolution with moderate radiation dose. It also provides a robust solution to the well-known phase-problem, making on-line image reconstruction feasible. Here we apply phase-diverse CDI to a cellular sample, obtaining images of an erythrocyte infected by the sexual stage of the malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, with a radiation dose significantly lower than the lowest dose previously reported for cellular imaging using CDI. The high sensitivity and resolution allow key biological features to be identified within intact cells, providing complementary information to optical and electron microscopy. This high throughput method could be used for fast tomographic imaging, or to generate multiple replicates in two-dimensions of hydrated biological systems without freezing or fixing. This work demonstrates that phase-diverse CDI is a valuable complementary imaging method for the biological sciences and ready for immediate application. - Highlights: • Phase-diverse coherent X-ray diffraction microscopy provides high-resolution and high-contrast images of intact biological samples. • Rapid nanoscale resolution imaging is demonstrated at orders of magnitude lower dose than previously possible. • Phase-diverse coherent X-ray diffraction microscopy is a robust technique for rapid, quantitative, and correlative X-ray phase imaging.

  11. Do the mitochondria of malaria parasites behave like the phoenix after return in the mosquito? Regeneration of degenerated mitochondria is required for successful Plasmodium infection.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bongaerts, G.P.A.

    2005-01-01

    Mitochondria are energy generators in eukaryotic organisms like man and the pathogenic malaria parasites, the Plasmodium spp. From the moment a mosquito-mediated malaria infection occurs in man the parasite multiplies profusely, but eventually the oxygen supply becomes the limiting factor in this

  12. Antibodies against the Plasmodium falciparum glutamate-rich protein from naturally exposed individuals living in a Brazilian malaria-endemic area can inhibit in vitro parasite growth

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pratt-Riccio, Lilian Rose; Bianco, Cesare; Totino, Paulo Renato Rivas

    2011-01-01

    The glutamate-rich protein (GLURP) is an exoantigen expressed in all stages of the Plasmodium falciparum life cycle in humans. Anti-GLURP antibodies can inhibit parasite growth in the presence of monocytes via antibody-dependent cellular inhibition (ADCI), and a major parasite-inhibitory region h...

  13. α2-Macroglobulin Can Crosslink Multiple Plasmodium falciparum Erythrocyte Membrane Protein 1 (PfEMP1) Molecules and May Facilitate Adhesion of Parasitized Erythrocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stevenson, Liz; Laursen, Erik; Cowan, Graeme J

    2015-01-01

    Rosetting, the adhesion of Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes to uninfected erythrocytes, involves clonal variants of the parasite protein P. falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) and soluble serum factors. While rosetting is a well-known phenotypic marker of parasites assoc...

  14. Deletion of Plasmodium berghei-Specific CD4+ T Cells Adoptively Transferred into Recipient Mice after Challenge with Homologous Parasite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hirunpetcharat, Chakrit; Good, Michael F.

    1998-02-01

    The immune response to malaria parasites includes T cell responses that reduce parasites by effector T cell responses and by providing help for antibody responses. Some parasites are more sensitive to antibody and others are more sensitive to cell-mediated immunity. We demonstrate that cultured CD4+ T cells that produce interferon CD4+ and interleukin 2, but not interleukin 4, in response to stimulation with the rodent parasite Plasmodium berghei can reduce but not eliminate parasites in vivo after adoptive transfer. Although cells can persist in vivo for up to 9 months in uninfected mice, infection results in elimination of up to 99% of specific T cells in different tissues, as judged by tracking T cells labeled with the fluorescent dye 5-(and-6)-carboxyfluorescein diacetate succinimidyl ester. T cells specific for ovalbumin are unaffected. In vivo activation and division of transferred T cells per se are not responsible for deletion because T cells positive for 5-(and -6)-carboxyfluorescein diacetate succinimidyl ester divide up to six times within 7 days in uninfected mice and are not deleted. Understanding the factors responsible for parasite-mediated specific deletion of T cells would enhance our knowledge of parasite immunity.

  15. Initial characterization of the Pf-Int recombinase from the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mehdi Ghorbal

    Full Text Available Genetic variation is an essential means of evolution and adaptation in many organisms in response to environmental change. Certain DNA alterations can be carried out by site-specific recombinases (SSRs that fall into two families: the serine and the tyrosine recombinases. SSRs are seldom found in eukaryotes. A gene homologous to a tyrosine site-specific recombinase has been identified in the genome of Plasmodium falciparum. The sequence is highly conserved among five other members of Plasmodia.The predicted open reading frame encodes for a ∼57 kDa protein containing a C-terminal domain including the putative tyrosine recombinase conserved active site residues R-H-R-(H/W-Y. The N-terminus has the typical alpha-helical bundle and potentially a mixed alpha-beta domain resembling that of λ-Int. Pf-Int mRNA is expressed differentially during the P. falciparum erythrocytic life stages, peaking in the schizont stage. Recombinant Pf-Int and affinity chromatography of DNA from genomic or synthetic origin were used to identify potential DNA targets after sequencing or micro-array hybridization. Interestingly, the sequences captured also included highly variable subtelomeric genes such as var, rif, and stevor sequences. Electrophoretic mobility shift assays with DNA were carried out to verify Pf-Int/DNA binding. Finally, Pf-Int knock-out parasites were created in order to investigate the biological role of Pf-Int.Our data identify for the first time a malaria parasite gene with structural and functional features of recombinases. Pf-Int may bind to and alter DNA, either in a sequence specific or in a non-specific fashion, and may contribute to programmed or random DNA rearrangements. Pf-Int is the first molecular player identified with a potential role in genome plasticity in this pathogen. Finally, Pf-Int knock-out parasite is viable showing no detectable impact on blood stage development, which is compatible with such function.

  16. A chimeric Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein vaccine induces high titers of parasite growth inhibitory antibodies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alaro, James R; Partridge, Andrea; Miura, Kazutoyo; Diouf, Ababacar; Lopez, Ana M; Angov, Evelina; Long, Carole A; Burns, James M

    2013-10-01

    The C-terminal 19-kDa domain of Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 1 (PfMSP119) is an established target of protective antibodies. However, clinical trials of PfMSP142, a leading blood-stage vaccine candidate which contains the protective epitopes of PfMSP119, revealed suboptimal immunogenicity and efficacy. Based on proof-of-concept studies in the Plasmodium yoelii murine model, we produced a chimeric vaccine antigen containing recombinant PfMSP119 (rPfMSP119) fused to the N terminus of P. falciparum merozoite surface protein 8 that lacked its low-complexity Asn/Asp-rich domain, rPfMSP8 (ΔAsn/Asp). Immunization of mice with the chimeric rPfMSP1/8 vaccine elicited strong T cell responses to conserved epitopes associated with the rPfMSP8 (ΔAsn/Asp) fusion partner. While specific for PfMSP8, this T cell response was adequate to provide help for the production of high titers of antibodies to both PfMSP119 and rPfMSP8 (ΔAsn/Asp) components. This occurred with formulations adjuvanted with either Quil A or with Montanide ISA 720 plus CpG oligodeoxynucleotide (ODN) and was observed in both inbred and outbred strains of mice. PfMSP1/8-induced antibodies were highly reactive with two major alleles of PfMSP119 (FVO and 3D7). Of particular interest, immunization with PfMSP1/8 elicited higher titers of PfMSP119-specific antibodies than a combined formulation of rPfMSP142 and rPfMSP8 (ΔAsn/Asp). As a measure of functionality, PfMSP1/8-specific rabbit IgG was shown to potently inhibit the in vitro growth of blood-stage parasites of the FVO and 3D7 strains of P. falciparum. These data support the further testing and evaluation of this chimeric PfMSP1/8 antigen as a component of a multivalent vaccine for P. falciparum malaria.

  17. Tumour necrosis factor-dependent parasite-killing effects during paroxysms in non-immune Plasmodium vivax malaria patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karunaweera, N D; Carter, R; Grau, G E; Kwiatkowski, D; Del Giudice, G; Mendis, K N

    1992-01-01

    Plasmodium vivax malaria infections in non-immune individuals manifest as periodic clinical episodes of fever with chills and rigors known as paroxysms. We have demonstrated that in non-immune patients the period of paroxysm is associated with the transient presence of plasma factors which kill gametocytes, the intra-erythrocytic sexual stages of the malaria parasite which transmit the infection from humans to mosquito, rendering them non-infectious to mosquitoes. Gametocyte killing in paroxysm plasma is mediated by tumour necrosis factor (TNF) acting in conjunction with other essential serum factor(s). Plasma TNF levels were elevated during a paroxysm. In semi-immune individuals from a P. vivax-endemic area clinical symptoms of malaria are mild and the parasite killing factors are not induced during paroxysm. Serum TNF levels were correspondingly lower in endemic patients during a paroxysm. Human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) can be stimulated in vitro by extracts of P. vivax blood stage parasites to produce TNF and associated parasite killing factor(s), thus simulating in vitro the events that occur during a paroxysm, this being the release of parasite exo-antigens by rupturing schizonts and the subsequent induction of PBMC to produce TNF and other parasite-killing factors. We were able to show that convalescent serum from P. vivax semi-immune individuals block the induction of TNF and parasite-killing factors by malaria antigens in vitro, presumably through antibodies that neutralize parasite exo-antigens. Thus, individuals living in malaria-endemic areas appear to acquire clinical immunity to malaria by avoiding their induction during infection; we have shown that one such mechanism is the neutralization of parasite exo-antigens that induce the production of parasite killing factors. PMID:1351432

  18. The Plasmodium falciparum, Nima-related kinase Pfnek-4: a marker for asexual parasites committed to sexual differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reininger, Luc; Garcia, Miguel; Tomlins, Andrew; Müller, Sylke; Doerig, Christian

    2012-07-31

    Malaria parasites undergo, in the vertebrate host, a developmental switch from asexual replication to sexual differentiation leading to the formation of gametocytes, the only form able to survive in the mosquito vector. Regulation of the onset of the sexual phase remains largely unknown and represents an important gap in the understanding of the parasite's complex biology. The expression and function of the Nima-related kinase Pfnek-4 during the early sexual development of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum were investigated, using three types of transgenic Plasmodium falciparum 3D7 lines: (i) episomally expressing a Pfnek-4-GFP fusion protein under the control of its cognate pfnek-4 promoter; (ii) episomally expressing negative or positive selectable markers, yeast cytosine deaminase-uridyl phosphoribosyl transferase, or human dihydrofolate reductase, under the control of the pfnek-4 promoter; and (iii) lacking a functional pfnek-4 gene. Parasite transfectants were analysed by fluorescence microscopy and flow cytometry. In vitro growth rate and gametocyte formation were determined by Giemsa-stained blood smears. The Pfnek-4-GFP protein was found to be expressed in stage II to V gametocytes and, unexpectedly, in a subset of asexual-stage parasites undergoing schizogony. Culture conditions stimulating gametocyte formation resulted in significant increase of this schizont subpopulation. Moreover, sorted asexual parasites expressing the Pfnek-4-GFP protein displayed elevated gametocyte formation when returned to in vitro culture in presence of fresh red blood cells, when compared to GFP- parasites from the same initial population. Negative selection of asexual parasites expressing pfnek-4 showed a marginal reduction in growth rate, whereas positive selection caused a marked reduction in parasitaemia, but was not sufficient to completely abolish proliferation. Pfnek-4- clones are not affected in their asexual growth and produced normal numbers of stage V

  19. Long term persistence of clonal malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum lineages in the Colombian Pacific region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Echeverry Diego F

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Resistance to chloroquine and antifolate drugs has evolved independently in South America, suggesting that genotype - phenotype studies aimed at understanding the genetic basis of resistance to these and other drugs should be conducted in this continent. This research was conducted to better understand the population structure of Colombian Plasmodium falciparum in preparation for such studies. Results A set of 384 SNPs were genotyped in blood spot DNA samples from 447 P. falciparum infected subjects collected over a ten year period from four provinces of the Colombian Pacific coast to evaluate clonality, population structure and linkage disequilibrium (LD. Most infections (81% contained a single predominant clone. These clustered into 136 multilocus genotypes (MLGs, with 32% of MLGs recovered from multiple (2 – 28 independent subjects. We observed extremely low genotypic richness (R = 0.42 and long persistence of MLGs through time (median = 537 days, range = 1 – 2,997 days. There was a high probability (>5% of sampling parasites from the same MLG in different subjects within 28 days, suggesting caution is needed when using genotyping methods to assess treatment success in clinical drug trials. Panmixia was rejected as four well differentiated subpopulations (FST = 0.084 - 0.279 were identified. These occurred sympatrically but varied in frequency within the four provinces. Linkage disequilibrium (LD decayed more rapidly (r2 = 0.17 for markers Conclusions We conclude that Colombian populations have several advantages for association studies, because multiple clone infections are uncommon and LD decays over the scale of one or a few genes. However, the extensive population structure and low genotype richness will need to be accounted for when designing and analyzing association studies.

  20. Identification of New Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium Falciparum Dihydroorotate Dehydrogenase Inhibitors by Pharmacophore and Structure-Based Virtual Screening

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavadai, Elumalai; El Mazouni, Farah; Wittlin, Sergio; de Kock, Carmen; Phillips, Margaret A.; Chibale, Kelly

    2016-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum dihydroorotate dehydrogenase (PfDHODH), a key enzyme in the de novo pyrimidine biosynthesis pathway, which the Plasmodium falciparum relies on exclusively for survival, has emerged as a promising target for antimalarial drugs. In an effort to discover new and potent PfDHODH inhibitors, 3D-QSAR pharmacophore models were developed based on the structures of known PfDHODH inhibitors and the validated Hypo1 model was used as a 3D search query for virtual screening of the National Cancer Institute database. The virtual hit compounds were further filtered based on molecular docking and Molecular Mechanics/Generalized Born Surface Area binding energy calculations. The combination of the pharmacophore and structure-based virtual screening resulted in the identification of nine new compounds that showed >25% inhibition of PfDHODH at a concentration of 10 μM, three of which exhibited IC50 values in the range of 0.38–20 μM. The most active compound, NSC336047, displayed species-selectivity for PfDHODH over human DHODH and inhibited parasite growth with an IC50 of 26 μM. In addition to this, thirteen compounds inhibited parasite growth with IC50 values of ≤ 50 μM, four of which showed IC50 values in the range of 5–12 μM. These compounds could be further explored in the identification and development of more potent PfDHODH and parasite growth inhibitors. PMID:26915022

  1. Plasmodium falciparum parasites deploy RhopH2 into the host erythrocyte to obtain nutrients, grow and replicate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Counihan, Natalie A; Chisholm, Scott A; Bullen, Hayley E; Srivastava, Anubhav; Sanders, Paul R; Jonsdottir, Thorey K; Weiss, Greta E; Ghosh, Sreejoyee; Crabb, Brendan S; Creek, Darren J; Gilson, Paul R; de Koning-Ward, Tania F

    2017-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum parasites, the causative agents of malaria, modify their host erythrocyte to render them permeable to supplementary nutrient uptake from the plasma and for removal of toxic waste. Here we investigate the contribution of the rhoptry protein RhopH2, in the formation of new permeability pathways (NPPs) in Plasmodium-infected erythrocytes. We show RhopH2 interacts with RhopH1, RhopH3, the erythrocyte cytoskeleton and exported proteins involved in host cell remodeling. Knockdown of RhopH2 expression in cycle one leads to a depletion of essential vitamins and cofactors and decreased de novo synthesis of pyrimidines in cycle two. There is also a significant impact on parasite growth, replication and transition into cycle three. The uptake of solutes that use NPPs to enter erythrocytes is also reduced upon RhopH2 knockdown. These findings provide direct genetic support for the contribution of the RhopH complex in NPP activity and highlight the importance of NPPs to parasite survival. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.23217.001 PMID:28252383

  2. The Plasmodium falciparum, Nima-related kinase Pfnek-4: a marker for asexual parasites committed to sexual differentiation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reininger Luc

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Malaria parasites undergo, in the vertebrate host, a developmental switch from asexual replication to sexual differentiation leading to the formation of gametocytes, the only form able to survive in the mosquito vector. Regulation of the onset of the sexual phase remains largely unknown and represents an important gap in the understanding of the parasite’s complex biology. Methods The expression and function of the Nima-related kinase Pfnek-4 during the early sexual development of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum were investigated, using three types of transgenic Plasmodium falciparum 3D7 lines: (i episomally expressing a Pfnek-4-GFP fusion protein under the control of its cognate pfnek-4 promoter; (ii episomally expressing negative or positive selectable markers, yeast cytosine deaminase-uridyl phosphoribosyl transferase, or human dihydrofolate reductase, under the control of the pfnek-4 promoter; and (iii lacking a functional pfnek-4 gene. Parasite transfectants were analysed by fluorescence microscopy and flow cytometry. In vitro growth rate and gametocyte formation were determined by Giemsa-stained blood smears. Results The Pfnek-4-GFP protein was found to be expressed in stage II to V gametocytes and, unexpectedly, in a subset of asexual-stage parasites undergoing schizogony. Culture conditions stimulating gametocyte formation resulted in significant increase of this schizont subpopulation. Moreover, sorted asexual parasites expressing the Pfnek-4-GFP protein displayed elevated gametocyte formation when returned to in vitro culture in presence of fresh red blood cells, when compared to GFP- parasites from the same initial population. Negative selection of asexual parasites expressing pfnek-4 showed a marginal reduction in growth rate, whereas positive selection caused a marked reduction in parasitaemia, but was not sufficient to completely abolish proliferation. Pfnek-4- clones are not affected in their

  3. PfEMP1 – A Parasite Protein Family of Key Importance in Plasmodium falciparum Malaria Immunity and Pathogenesis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hviid, Lars; Jensen, Anja T R

    2015-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum causes the most severe form of malaria and is responsible for essentially all malaria-related deaths. The accumulation in various tissues of erythrocytes infected by mature P. falciparum parasites can lead to circulatory disturbances and inflammation, and is thought...... surface, and how the var genes encoding them are regulated. The role of PfEMP1 in the pathogenesis of malaria, PfEMP1-specific immune responses, and the prospect of PfEMP1-specific vaccination against malaria are also covered briefly....

  4. Triazolopyrimidine-based dihydroorotate dehydrogenase inhibitors with potent and selective activity against the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, Margaret A; Gujjar, Ramesh; Malmquist, Nicholas A; White, John; El Mazouni, Farah; Baldwin, Jeffrey; Rathod, Pradipsinh K

    2008-06-26

    A Plasmodium falciparum dihydroorotate dehydrogenase ( PfDHODH) inhibitor that is potent ( KI = 15 nM) and species-selective (>5000-fold over the human enzyme) was identified by high-throughput screening. The substituted triazolopyrimidine and its structural analogues were produced by an inexpensive three-step synthesis, and the series showed good association between PfDHODH inhibition and parasite toxicity. This study has identified the first nanomolar PfDHODH inhibitor with potent antimalarial activity in whole cells (EC50 = 79 nM).

  5. Plasmodium simium, a Plasmodium vivax-related malaria parasite: genetic variability of Duffy binding protein II and the Duffy antigen/receptor for chemokines.

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    Daniela Camargos Costa

    Full Text Available Plasmodium simium is a parasite from New World monkeys that is most closely related to the human malaria parasite Plasmodium vivax; it also naturally infects humans. The blood-stage infection of P. vivax depends on Duffy binding protein II (PvDBPII and its cognate receptor on erythrocytes, the Duffy antigen receptor for chemokines (hDARC, but there is no information on the P. simium erythrocytic invasion pathway. The genes encoding P. simium DBP (PsDBPII and simian DARC (sDARC were sequenced from Southern brown howler monkeys (Alouatta guariba clamitans naturally infected with P. simium because P. simium may also depend on the DBPII/DARC interaction. The sequences of DBP binding domains from P. vivax and P. simium were highly similar. However, the genetic variability of PsDBPII was lower than that of PvDBPII. Phylogenetic analyses demonstrated that these genes were strictly related and clustered in the same clade of the evolutionary tree. DARC from A. clamitans was also sequenced and contained three new non-synonymous substitutions. None of these substitutions were located in the N-terminal domain of DARC, which interacts directly with DBPII. The interaction between sDARC and PvDBPII was evaluated using a cytoadherence assay of COS7 cells expressing PvDBPII on their surfaces. Inhibitory binding assays in vitro demonstrated that antibodies from monkey sera blocked the interaction between COS-7 cells expressing PvDBPII and hDARC-positive erythrocytes. Taken together, phylogenetic analyses reinforced the hypothesis that the host switch from humans to monkeys may have occurred very recently in evolution, which sheds light on the evolutionary history of new world plasmodia. Further invasion studies would confirm whether P. simium depends on DBP/DARC to trigger internalization into red blood cells.

  6. Plasmodium simium, a Plasmodium vivax-related malaria parasite: genetic variability of Duffy binding protein II and the Duffy antigen/receptor for chemokines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camargos Costa, Daniela; Pereira de Assis, Gabriela Maíra; de Souza Silva, Flávia Alessandra; Araújo, Flávia Carolina; de Souza Junior, Júlio César; Braga Hirano, Zelinda Maria; Satiko Kano, Flora; Nóbrega de Sousa, Taís; Carvalho, Luzia Helena; Ferreira Alves de Brito, Cristiana

    2015-01-01

    Plasmodium simium is a parasite from New World monkeys that is most closely related to the human malaria parasite Plasmodium vivax; it also naturally infects humans. The blood-stage infection of P. vivax depends on Duffy binding protein II (PvDBPII) and its cognate receptor on erythrocytes, the Duffy antigen receptor for chemokines (hDARC), but there is no information on the P. simium erythrocytic invasion pathway. The genes encoding P. simium DBP (PsDBPII) and simian DARC (sDARC) were sequenced from Southern brown howler monkeys (Alouatta guariba clamitans) naturally infected with P. simium because P. simium may also depend on the DBPII/DARC interaction. The sequences of DBP binding domains from P. vivax and P. simium were highly similar. However, the genetic variability of PsDBPII was lower than that of PvDBPII. Phylogenetic analyses demonstrated that these genes were strictly related and clustered in the same clade of the evolutionary tree. DARC from A. clamitans was also sequenced and contained three new non-synonymous substitutions. None of these substitutions were located in the N-terminal domain of DARC, which interacts directly with DBPII. The interaction between sDARC and PvDBPII was evaluated using a cytoadherence assay of COS7 cells expressing PvDBPII on their surfaces. Inhibitory binding assays in vitro demonstrated that antibodies from monkey sera blocked the interaction between COS-7 cells expressing PvDBPII and hDARC-positive erythrocytes. Taken together, phylogenetic analyses reinforced the hypothesis that the host switch from humans to monkeys may have occurred very recently in evolution, which sheds light on the evolutionary history of new world plasmodia. Further invasion studies would confirm whether P. simium depends on DBP/DARC to trigger internalization into red blood cells.

  7. Recognition of Human Erythrocyte Receptors by the Tryptophan-Rich Antigens of Monkey Malaria Parasite Plasmodium knowlesi.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kriti Tyagi

    Full Text Available The monkey malaria parasite Plasmodium knowlesi also infect humans. There is a lack of information on the molecular mechanisms that take place between this simian parasite and its heterologous human host erythrocytes leading to this zoonotic disease. Therefore, we investigated here the binding ability of P. knowlesi tryptophan-rich antigens (PkTRAgs to the human erythrocytes and sharing of the erythrocyte receptors between them as well as with other commonly occurring human malaria parasites.Six PkTRAgs were cloned and expressed in E.coli as well as in mammalian CHO-K1 cell to determine their human erythrocyte binding activity by cell-ELISA, and in-vitro rosetting assay, respectively.Three of six PkTRAgs (PkTRAg38.3, PkTRAg40.1, and PkTRAg67.1 showed binding to human erythrocytes. Two of them (PkTRAg40.1 and PkTRAg38.3 showed cross-competition with each other as well as with the previously described P.vivax tryptophan-rich antigens (PvTRAgs for human erythrocyte receptors. However, the third protein (PkTRAg67.1 utilized the additional but different human erythrocyte receptor(s as it did not cross-compete for erythrocyte binding with either of these two PkTRAgs as well as with any of the PvTRAgs. These three PkTRAgs also inhibited the P.falciparum parasite growth in in-vitro culture, further indicating the sharing of human erythrocyte receptors by these parasite species and the biological significance of this receptor-ligand interaction between heterologous host and simian parasite.Recognition and sharing of human erythrocyte receptor(s by PkTRAgs with human parasite ligands could be part of the strategy adopted by the monkey malaria parasite to establish inside the heterologous human host.

  8. Recognition of Human Erythrocyte Receptors by the Tryptophan-Rich Antigens of Monkey Malaria Parasite Plasmodium knowlesi

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tyagi, Kriti; Gupta, Deepali; Saini, Ekta; Choudhary, Shilpa; Jamwal, Abhishek; Alam, Mohd. Shoeb; Zeeshan, Mohammad; Tyagi, Rupesh K.; Sharma, Yagya D.

    2015-01-01

    Background The monkey malaria parasite Plasmodium knowlesi also infect humans. There is a lack of information on the molecular mechanisms that take place between this simian parasite and its heterologous human host erythrocytes leading to this zoonotic disease. Therefore, we investigated here the binding ability of P. knowlesi tryptophan-rich antigens (PkTRAgs) to the human erythrocytes and sharing of the erythrocyte receptors between them as well as with other commonly occurring human malaria parasites. Methods Six PkTRAgs were cloned and expressed in E.coli as well as in mammalian CHO-K1 cell to determine their human erythrocyte binding activity by cell-ELISA, and in-vitro rosetting assay, respectively. Results Three of six PkTRAgs (PkTRAg38.3, PkTRAg40.1, and PkTRAg67.1) showed binding to human erythrocytes. Two of them (PkTRAg40.1 and PkTRAg38.3) showed cross-competition with each other as well as with the previously described P.vivax tryptophan-rich antigens (PvTRAgs) for human erythrocyte receptors. However, the third protein (PkTRAg67.1) utilized the additional but different human erythrocyte receptor(s) as it did not cross-compete for erythrocyte binding with either of these two PkTRAgs as well as with any of the PvTRAgs. These three PkTRAgs also inhibited the P.falciparum parasite growth in in-vitro culture, further indicating the sharing of human erythrocyte receptors by these parasite species and the biological significance of this receptor-ligand interaction between heterologous host and simian parasite. Conclusions Recognition and sharing of human erythrocyte receptor(s) by PkTRAgs with human parasite ligands could be part of the strategy adopted by the monkey malaria parasite to establish inside the heterologous human host. PMID:26393350

  9. Parasitological and new molecular-phylogenetic characterization of the malaria parasite Plasmodium tejerai in South American penguins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silveira, Patricia; Belo, Nayara O; Lacorte, Gustavo A; Kolesnikovas, Cristiane K M; Vanstreels, Ralph E T; Steindel, Mário; Catão-Dias, José Luiz; Valkiūnas, Gediminas; Braga, Erika M

    2013-04-01

    This study is the first report on mortality of Spheniscus magellanicus, penguin of South America, caused by Plasmodium tejerai, which was identified using morphological and molecular analyses. Blood stages (trophozoites, meronts and gametocytes) were reported and illustrated. The necropsy revealed marked splenomegaly and pulmonary edema, as well as moderate hepatomegaly and hydropericardium. The histopathology revealed the presence of tissue meronts in the macrophages and endothelial cells of multiple organs. The molecular analyses showed 5.6% of genetic divergence in cytochrome b gene between P. tejerai and Plasmodium relictum. Morphology of blood and tissue stages of P. tejerai is similar to P. relictum; the distinction between these two species requires experience in the identification of avian Plasmodium species. Molecular studies associated with reliably identified morphological species are useful for barcoding and comparisons with previous studies of wildlife malaria infections as well as for posterior phylogenetic and phylogeographic studies. S. magellanicus is a new host record of P. tejerai, which is the virulent parasite and worth more attention in avian conservation and veterinary medicine projects in South America. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Avian Plasmodium in Culex and Ochlerotatus Mosquitoes from Southern Spain: Effects of Season and Host-Feeding Source on Parasite Dynamics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martina Ferraguti

    Full Text Available Haemosporidians, a group of vector-borne parasites that include Plasmodium, infect vertebrates including birds. Although mosquitoes are crucial elements in the transmission of avian malaria parasites, little is known of their ecology as vectors. We examined the presence of Plasmodium and Haemoproteus lineages in five mosquito species belonging to the genera Culex and Ochlerotatus to test for the effect of vector species, season and host-feeding source on the transmission dynamics of these pathogens. We analyzed 166 blood-fed individually and 5,579 unfed mosquitoes (grouped in 197 pools from a locality in southern Spain. In all, 15 Plasmodium and two Haemoproteus lineages were identified on the basis of a fragment of 478 bp of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene. Infection prevalence of blood parasites in unfed mosquitoes varied between species (range: 0-3.2% and seasons. The feeding source was identified in 91 mosquitoes where 78% were identified as bird. We found that i several Plasmodium lineages are shared among different Culex species and one Plasmodium lineage is shared between Culex and Ochlerotatus genera; ii mosquitoes harboured Haemoproteus parasites; iii pools of unfed females of mostly ornithophilic Culex species had a higher Plasmodium prevalence than the only mammophylic Culex species studied. However, the mammophylic Ochlerotatus caspius had in pool samples the greatest Plasmodium prevalence. This relative high prevalence may be determined by inter-specific differences in vector survival, susceptibility to infection but also the possibility that this species feeds on birds more frequently than previously thought. Finally, iv infection rate of mosquitoes varies between seasons and reaches its maximum prevalence during autumn and minimum prevalence in spring.

  11. A novel PCR-based system for the detection of four species of human malaria parasites and Plasmodium knowlesi

    Science.gov (United States)

    Komaki-Yasuda, Kanako; Vincent, Jeanne Perpétue; Nakatsu, Masami; Kato, Yasuyuki; Ohmagari, Norio

    2018-01-01

    A microscopy-based diagnosis is the gold standard for the detection and identification of malaria parasites in a patient’s blood. However, the detection of cases involving a low number of parasites and the differentiation of species sometimes requires a skilled microscopist. Although PCR-based diagnostic methods are already known to be very powerful tools, the time required to apply such methods is still much longer in comparison to traditional microscopic observation. Thus, improvements to PCR systems are sought to facilitate the more rapid and accurate detection of human malaria parasites Plasmodium falciparum, P. vivax, P. ovale, and P. malariae, as well as P. knowlesi, which is a simian malaria parasite that is currently widely distributed in Southeast Asia. A nested PCR that targets the small subunit ribosomal RNA genes of malaria parasites was performed using a “fast PCR enzyme”. In the first PCR, universal primers for all parasite species were used. In the second PCR, inner-specific primers, which targeted sequences from P. falciparum, P. vivax, P. ovale, P. malariae, and P. knowlesi, were used. The PCR reaction time was reduced with the use of the “fast PCR enzyme”, with only 65 minutes required to perform the first and second PCRs. The specific primers only reacted with the sequences of their targeted parasite species and never cross-reacted with sequences from other species under the defined PCR conditions. The diagnoses of 36 clinical samples that were obtained using this new PCR system were highly consistent with the microscopic diagnoses. PMID:29370297

  12. Profiling the anti-protozoal activity of anti-cancer HDAC inhibitors against Plasmodium and Trypanosoma parasites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica A. Engel

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Histone deacetylase (HDAC enzymes work together with histone acetyltransferases (HATs to reversibly acetylate both histone and non-histone proteins. As a result, these enzymes are involved in regulating chromatin structure and gene expression as well as other important cellular processes. HDACs are validated drug targets for some types of cancer, with four HDAC inhibitors clinically approved. However, they are also showing promise as novel drug targets for other indications, including malaria and other parasitic diseases. In this study the in vitro activity of four anti-cancer HDAC inhibitors was examined against parasites that cause malaria and trypanosomiasis. Three of these inhibitors, suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid (SAHA; vorinostat®, romidepsin (Istodax® and belinostat (Beleodaq®, are clinically approved for the treatment of T-cell lymphoma, while the fourth, panobinostat, has recently been approved for combination therapy use in certain patients with multiple myeloma. All HDAC inhibitors were found to inhibit the growth of asexual-stage Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasites in the nanomolar range (IC50 10–200 nM, while only romidepsin was active at sub-μM concentrations against bloodstream form Trypanosoma brucei brucei parasites (IC50 35 nM. The compounds were found to have some selectivity for malaria parasites compared with mammalian cells, but were not selective for trypanosome parasites versus mammalian cells. All compounds caused hyperacetylation of histone and non-histone proteins in P. falciparum asexual stage parasites and inhibited deacetylase activity in P. falciparum nuclear extracts in addition to recombinant PfHDAC1 activity. P. falciparum histone hyperacetylation data indicate that HDAC inhibitors may differentially affect the acetylation profiles of histone H3 and H4.

  13. Baculovirus-vectored multistage Plasmodium vivax vaccine induces both protective and transmission-blocking immunities against transgenic rodent malaria parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mizutani, Masanori; Iyori, Mitsuhiro; Blagborough, Andrew M; Fukumoto, Shinya; Funatsu, Tomohiro; Sinden, Robert E; Yoshida, Shigeto

    2014-10-01

    A multistage malaria vaccine targeting the pre-erythrocytic and sexual stages of Plasmodium could effectively protect individuals against infection from mosquito bites and provide transmission-blocking (TB) activity against the sexual stages of the parasite, respectively. This strategy could help prevent malaria infections in individuals and, on a larger scale, prevent malaria transmission in communities of endemicity. Here, we describe the development of a multistage Plasmodium vivax vaccine which simultaneously expresses P. vivax circumsporozoite protein (PvCSP) and P25 (Pvs25) protein of this species as a fusion protein, thereby acting as a pre-erythrocytic vaccine and a TB vaccine, respectively. A new-concept vaccine platform based on the baculovirus dual-expression system (BDES) was evaluated. The BDES-Pvs25-PvCSP vaccine displayed correct folding of the Pvs25-PvCSP fusion protein on the viral envelope and was highly expressed upon transduction of mammalian cells in vitro. This vaccine induced high levels of antibodies to Pvs25 and PvCSP and elicited protective (43%) and TB (82%) efficacies against transgenic P. berghei parasites expressing the corresponding P. vivax antigens in mice. Our data indicate that our BDES, which functions as both a subunit and DNA vaccine, can offer a promising multistage vaccine capable of delivering a potent antimalarial pre-erythrocytic and TB response via a single immunization regimen. Copyright © 2014, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  14. Chemotherapy of Plasmodium vivax in Saimiri and Aotus models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossan, R N; Young, M D; Baerg, D C

    1975-03-01

    Three standard antimalarial compounds were tested against trophozoite or sporozoite induced infections of the Panamanian Achiote strain of Plasmodium vivax in two species of monkeys. In Saimiri sciureus (24 subjects) and Aotus trivirgatus (11 subjects), parasite clearance from the peripheral blood averaged 3 days after initiating chloroquine therapy (total dose of 25 mg base/kg body weight over 3 days or single dose of 10 mg base/kg. Trophozoite induced infections were cured in all of 10 Saimiri and all of 6 Aotus, as indicated by the absence of relapses. Relapses did occur in 3 of 11 tests with Saimiri and 3 of 5 tests with Aotus against sporozoite induced infections. Subpatent periods ranged from 38 to 111 days among intact and splenectomized hosts. This is the first chemotherapeutic evidence for the persistence of exoerythrocytic stages of P. vivax in New World monkeys. Pyrimethaminr (single dose of 1 mg/kg) cured trophozoite induced infections in all of five Saimiri hosts. Radical cure of sporozoite induced infections was accomplished in each of six trials with chloroquine (25 mg base/kg) plus primaquine (1 mg base/kg for 14 days). The primary attack or relapse was treated. These models warrant further investigation in chemotherapy.

  15. Spleen-dependent regulation of antigenic variation in malaria parasites: Plasmodium knowlesi SICAvar expression profiles in splenic and asplenic hosts.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stacey A Lapp

    Full Text Available Antigenic variation by malaria parasites was first described in Plasmodium knowlesi, which infects humans and macaque monkeys, and subsequently in P. falciparum, the most virulent human parasite. The schizont-infected cell agglutination (SICA variant proteins encoded by the SICAvar multigene family in P. knowlesi, and Erythrocyte Membrane Protein-1 (EMP-1 antigens encoded by the var multigene family in P. falciparum, are expressed at the surface of infected erythrocytes, are associated with virulence, and serve as determinants of naturally acquired immunity. A parental P. knowlesi clone, Pk1(A+, and a related progeny clone, Pk1(B+1+, derived by an in vivo induced variant antigen switch, were defined by the expression of distinct SICA variant protein doublets of 210/190 and 205/200 kDa, respectively. Passage of SICA[+] infected erythrocytes through splenectomized rhesus monkeys results in the SICA[-] phenotype, defined by the lack of surface expression and agglutination with variant specific antisera.We have investigated SICAvar RNA and protein expression in Pk1(A+, Pk1(B+1+, and SICA[-] parasites. The Pk1(A+ and Pk1(B+1+ parasites express different distinct SICAvar transcript and protein repertoires. By comparison, SICA[-] parasites are characterized by a vast reduction in SICAvar RNA expression, the lack of full-length SICAvar transcript signals on northern blots, and correspondingly, the absence of any SICA protein detected by mass spectrometry.SICA protein expression may be under transcriptional as well as post-transcriptional control, and we show for the first time that the spleen, an organ central to blood-stage immunity in malaria, exerts an influence on these processes. Furthermore, proteomics has enabled the first in-depth characterization of SICA[+] protein phenotypes and we show that the in vivo switch from Pk1(A+ to Pk1(B+1+ parasites resulted in a complete change in SICA profiles. These results emphasize the importance of studying

  16. Expression, characterization, and cellular localization of knowpains, papain-like cysteine proteases of the Plasmodium knowlesi malaria parasite.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rajesh Prasad

    Full Text Available Papain-like cysteine proteases of malaria parasites degrade haemoglobin in an acidic food vacuole to provide amino acids for intraerythrocytic parasites. These proteases are potential drug targets because their inhibitors block parasite development, and efforts are underway to develop chemotherapeutic inhibitors of these proteases as the treatments for malaria. Plasmodium knowlesi has recently been shown to be an important human pathogen in parts of Asia. We report expression and characterization of three P. knowlesi papain-like proteases, termed knowpains (KP2-4. Recombinant knowpains were produced using a bacterial expression system, and tested for various biochemical properties. Antibodies against recombinant knowpains were generated and used to determine their cellular localization in parasites. Inhibitory effects of the cysteine protease inhibitor E64 were assessed on P. knowlesi culture to validate drug target potential of knowpains. All three knowpains were present in the food vacuole, active in acidic pH, and capable of degrading haemoglobin at the food vacuolar pH (≈5.5, suggesting roles in haemoglobin degradation. The proteases showed absolute (KP2 and KP3 to moderate (KP4 preference for peptide substrates containing leucine at the P2 position; KP4 preferred arginine at the P2 position. While the three knowpains appear to have redundant roles in haemoglobin degradation, KP4 may also have a role in degradation of erythrocyte cytoskeleton during merozoite egress, as it displayed broad substrate specificity and was primarily localized at the parasite periphery. Importantly, E64 blocked erythrocytic development of P. knowlesi, with enlargement of food vacuoles, indicating inhibition of haemoglobin hydrolysis and supporting the potential for inhibition of knowpains as a strategy for the treatment of malaria. Functional expression and characterization of knowpains should enable simultaneous screening of available cysteine protease

  17. Transcriptional profiling of Plasmodium falciparum parasites from patients with severe malaria identifies distinct low vs. high parasitemic clusters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milner, Danny A; Pochet, Nathalie; Krupka, Malkie; Williams, Chris; Seydel, Karl; Taylor, Terrie E; Van de Peer, Yves; Regev, Aviv; Wirth, Dyann; Daily, Johanna P; Mesirov, Jill P

    2012-01-01

    In the past decade, estimates of malaria infections have dropped from 500 million to 225 million per year; likewise, mortality rates have dropped from 3 million to 791,000 per year. However, approximately 90% of these deaths continue to occur in sub-Saharan Africa, and 85% involve children less than 5 years of age. Malaria mortality in children generally results from one or more of the following clinical syndromes: severe anemia, acidosis, and cerebral malaria. Although much is known about the clinical and pathological manifestations of CM, insights into the biology of the malaria parasite, specifically transcription during this manifestation of severe infection, are lacking. We collected peripheral blood from children meeting the clinical case definition of cerebral malaria from a cohort in Malawi, examined the patients for the presence or absence of malaria retinopathy, and performed whole genome transcriptional profiling for Plasmodium falciparum using a custom designed Affymetrix array. We identified two distinct physiological states that showed highly significant association with the level of parasitemia. We compared both groups of Malawi expression profiles with our previously acquired ex vivo expression profiles of parasites derived from infected patients with mild disease; a large collection of in vitro Plasmodium falciparum life cycle gene expression profiles; and an extensively annotated compendium of expression data from Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The high parasitemia patient group demonstrated a unique biology with elevated expression of Hrd1, a member of endoplasmic reticulum-associated protein degradation system. The presence of a unique high parasitemia state may be indicative of the parasite biology of the clinically recognized hyperparasitemic severe disease syndrome.

  18. Dual fluorescent labelling of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum for the analysis of the ABC type transporter pfmdr2

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosental Benyamin

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The study of the Plasmodium falciparum heavy metal transporter gene pfmdr2 employed radioactive labelled heavy metal. As the use of radioactive isotopes shrank considerably during the last few years, resulting in the cessation of the production of some isotopes, amongst them Cadmium109 which was used for that purpose, a different approach had to be developed. Herein, a dual fluorescent labelling of heavy metals accumulation in the P. falciparum parasite is proposed as an alternative to the use of radioactive labelled heavy metals. Methods Plasmodium falciparum Cd resistant and sensitive strains at the trophozoite stage were used in this study. The cells were cultured at different CdCl2 concentrations and for different time periods followed by staining of the infected red blood cells with Fluo-3/AM for Cd detection and Hoechst 33342 for parasite DNA labelling. The fluorescent analysis was done by flow cytometry and confocal microscopy. Results The results show that the sensitive strain has a higher Fluo-3/AM fluorescence in a Cd concentration and time dependent manner, whereas in the resistant strain Fluo-3/AM fluorescence levels were negligible and increased only at high concentrations of Cd and at long incubation periods, but to a much lesser extent than the sensitive strain. No Cd uptake is observed in uninfected red blood cells populations originating from cultures infected with either sensitive or resistant strain. In addition, confocal microscopy overlay of Fluo-3/AM and Hoechst staining shows that the Cd metal accumulates in the parasite itself. Conclusions The dual fluorescent labelling is a valid method for detecting heavy metal accumulation in P. falciparum. Furthermore, in contrast to the use of radioactive labelled heavy metal, the fluorescent labelling enables us to differentiate between the different populations existing in a P. falciparum infected red blood cells cultures and thus actually study a phenomenon at

  19. Roles of the amino terminal region and repeat region of the Plasmodium berghei circumsporozoite protein in parasite infectivity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cassandra Aldrich

    Full Text Available The circumsporozoite protein (CSP plays a key role in malaria sporozoite infection of both mosquito salivary glands and the vertebrate host. The conserved Regions I and II have been well studied but little is known about the immunogenic central repeat region and the N-terminal region of the protein. Rodent malaria Plasmodium berghei parasites, in which the endogenous CS gene has been replaced with the avian Plasmodium gallinaceum CS (PgCS sequence, develop normally in the A. stephensi mosquito midgut but the sporozoites are not infectious. We therefore generated P. berghei transgenic parasites carrying the PgCS gene, in which the repeat region was replaced with the homologous region of P. berghei CS (PbCS. A further line, in which both the N-terminal region and repeat region were replaced with the homologous regions of PbCS, was also generated. Introduction of the PbCS repeat region alone, into the PgCS gene, did not rescue sporozoite species-specific infectivity. However, the introduction of both the PbCS repeat region and the N-terminal region into the PgCS gene completely rescued infectivity, in both the mosquito vector and the mammalian host. Immunofluorescence experiments and western blot analysis revealed correct localization and proteolytic processing of CSP in the chimeric parasites. The results demonstrate, in vivo, that the repeat region of P. berghei CSP, alone, is unable to mediate sporozoite infectivity in either the mosquito or the mammalian host, but suggest an important role for the N-terminal region in sporozoite host cell invasion.

  20. Transcriptional profiling of Plasmodium falciparum parasites from patients with severe malaria identifies distinct low vs. high parasitemic clusters.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danny A Milner

    Full Text Available In the past decade, estimates of malaria infections have dropped from 500 million to 225 million per year; likewise, mortality rates have dropped from 3 million to 791,000 per year. However, approximately 90% of these deaths continue to occur in sub-Saharan Africa, and 85% involve children less than 5 years of age. Malaria mortality in children generally results from one or more of the following clinical syndromes: severe anemia, acidosis, and cerebral malaria. Although much is known about the clinical and pathological manifestations of CM, insights into the biology of the malaria parasite, specifically transcription during this manifestation of severe infection, are lacking.We collected peripheral blood from children meeting the clinical case definition of cerebral malaria from a cohort in Malawi, examined the patients for the presence or absence of malaria retinopathy, and performed whole genome transcriptional profiling for Plasmodium falciparum using a custom designed Affymetrix array. We identified two distinct physiological states that showed highly significant association with the level of parasitemia. We compared both groups of Malawi expression profiles with our previously acquired ex vivo expression profiles of parasites derived from infected patients with mild disease; a large collection of in vitro Plasmodium falciparum life cycle gene expression profiles; and an extensively annotated compendium of expression data from Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The high parasitemia patient group demonstrated a unique biology with elevated expression of Hrd1, a member of endoplasmic reticulum-associated protein degradation system.The presence of a unique high parasitemia state may be indicative of the parasite biology of the clinically recognized hyperparasitemic severe disease syndrome.

  1. Molecular detection of the avian malaria parasite Plasmodium gallinaceum in Thailand

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Pattaradilokrat, Sittiporn; Tiyamanee, Wisawa; Simpalipan, Phumin; Kaewthamasorn, Morakot; Saiwichai, Tawee; Li, Jian; Harnyuttanakorn, Pongchai

    2015-01-01

    Avian malaria is one of the most common veterinary problems in Southeast Asia. The standard molecular method for detection of the avian malaria parasite involves the phenol-chloroform extraction of parasite genomic (g...

  2. IFN-gamma and IL-10 mediate parasite-specific immune responses of cord blood cells induced by pregnancy-associated Plasmodium falciparum malaria.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brustoski, K.; Moller, U.; Kramer, M.; Petelski, A.; Brenner, S.; Palmer, D.; Bongartz, M.; Kremsner, P.G.; Luty, A.J.F.; Krzych, U.

    2005-01-01

    Available evidence suggests that immune cells from neonates born to mothers with placental Plasmodium falciparum (Pf) infection are sensitized to parasite Ag in utero but have reduced ability to generate protective Th1 responses. In this study, we detected Pf Ag-specific IFN-gamma(+) T cells in cord

  3. Studies on the effects of sida acuta and vetiveria zizanioides against the malarial vector, anopheles stephensi and malarial parasite, plasmodium berghei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Methanolic extracts of Sida acuta and Vetiveria zizanioides leaves and root were studied for toxicity to Anopheles stephensi mosquitoes and to the malaria parasite Plasmodium berghei in mice. The extracts reduced parasitemia levels in mice by 17-69%, depending on extract concentration. Median le...

  4. The origin and diversification of the merozoite surface protein 3 (msp3) multi-gene family in Plasmodium vivax and related parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rice, Benjamin L; Acosta, Mónica M; Pacheco, M Andreína; Carlton, Jane M; Barnwell, John W; Escalante, Ananias A

    2014-09-01

    The genus Plasmodium is a diversified group of parasites with more than 200 known species that includes those causing malaria in humans. These parasites use numerous proteins in a complex process that allows them to invade the red blood cells of their vertebrate hosts. Many of those proteins are part of multi-gene families; one of which is the merozoite surface protein-3 (msp3) family. The msp3 multi-gene family is considered important in the two main human parasites, Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium falciparum, as its paralogs are simultaneously expressed in the blood stage (merozoite) and are immunogenic. There are large differences among Plasmodium species in the number of paralogs in this family. Such differences have been previously explained, in part, as adaptations that allow the different Plasmodium species to invade their hosts. To investigate this, we characterized the array containing msp3 genes among several Plasmodium species, including P. falciparum and P. vivax. We first found no evidence indicating that the msp3 family of P. falciparum was homologous to that of P. vivax. Subsequently, by focusing on the diverse clade of nonhuman primate parasites to which P. vivax is closely related, where homology was evident, we found no evidence indicating that the interspecies variation in the number of paralogs was an adaptation related to changes in host range or host switches. Overall, we hypothesize that the evolution of the msp3 family in P. vivax is consistent with a model of multi-allelic diversifying selection where the paralogs may have functionally redundant roles in terms of increasing antigenic diversity. Thus, we suggest that the expressed MSP3 proteins could serve as "decoys", via antigenic diversity, during the critical process of invading the host red blood cells. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. An epidemiological study to assess Plasmodium falciparum parasite prevalence and malaria control measures in Burkina Faso and Senegal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diallo, Aldiouma; Sié, Ali; Sirima, Sodiomon; Sylla, Khadime; Ndiaye, Mahmadou; Bountogo, Mamadou; Ouedraogo, Espérance; Tine, Roger; Ndiaye, Assane; Coulibaly, Boubacar; Ouedraogo, Alphonse; Faye, Babacar; Ba, El Hadji; Compaore, Guillaume; Tiono, Alfred; Sokhna, Cheikh; Yé, Maurice; Diarra, Amidou; Bahmanyar, Edith Roset; De Boer, Melanie; Pirçon, Jean-Yves; Usuf, Effua Abigail

    2017-02-06

    Malariometric information is needed to decide how to introduce malaria vaccines and evaluate their impact in sub-Saharan African countries. This cross-sectional study (NCT01954264) was conducted between October and November, 2013, corresponding to the high malaria transmission season, in four sites with Health and Demographic Surveillance Systems (DSS) [two sites with moderate-to-high malaria endemicity in Burkina Faso (Nouna and Saponé) and two sites with low malaria endemicity in Senegal (Keur Socé and Niakhar)]. Children (N = 2421) were randomly selected from the DSS lists of the study sites and were stratified into two age groups (6 months-4 years and 5-9 years). A blood sample was collected from each child to evaluate parasite prevalence of Plasmodium falciparum and other Plasmodium species and gametocyte density by microscopy, and rapid diagnosis test in the event of fever within 24 h. Case report forms were used to evaluate malaria control measures and other factors. Plasmodium falciparum was identified in 707 (29.2%) children, with a higher prevalence in Burkina Faso than Senegal (57.5 vs 0.9% of children). In Burkina Faso, prevalence was 57.7% in Nouna and 41.9% in Saponé in the 6 months-4 years age group, and 75.4% in Nouna and 70.1% in Saponé in the 5-9 years age group. Infections with other Plasmodium species were rare and only detected in Burkina Faso. While mosquito nets were used by 88.6-97.0 and 64.7-80.2% of children in Burkina Faso and Senegal, other malaria control measures evaluated at individual level were uncommon. In Burkina Faso, exploratory analyses suggested that use of malaria treatment or any other medication within 14 days, and use of insecticide spray within 7 days decreased the prevalence of malaria infection; older age, rural residence, natural floor, grass/palm roof, and unavailability of electricity in the house were factors associated with increased malaria occurrence. Plasmodium falciparum infection prevalence in children

  6. Clonal diversity of a lizard malaria parasite, Plasmodium mexicanum, in its vertebrate host, the western fence lizard: role of variation in transmission intensity over time and space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vardo, A M; Schall, J J

    2007-07-01

    Within the vertebrate host, infections of a malaria parasite (Plasmodium) could include a single genotype of cells (single-clone infections) or two to several genotypes (multiclone infections). Clonal diversity of infection plays an important role in the biology of the parasite, including its life history, virulence, and transmission. We determined the clonal diversity of Plasmodium mexicanum, a lizard malaria parasite at a study region in northern California, using variable microsatellite markers, the first such study for any malaria parasite of lizards or birds (the most common hosts for Plasmodium species). Multiclonal infections are common (50-88% of infections among samples), and measures of genetic diversity for the metapopulation (expected heterozygosity, number of alleles per locus, allele length variation, and effective population size) all indicated a substantial overall genetic diversity. Comparing years with high prevalence (1996-1998 = 25-32% lizards infected), and years with low prevalence (2001-2005 = 6-12%) found fewer alleles in samples taken from the low-prevalence years, but no reduction in overall diversity (H = 0.64-0.90 among loci). In most cases, rare alleles appeared to be lost as prevalence declined. For sites chronically experiencing low transmission intensity (prevalence approximately 1%), overall diversity was also high (H = 0.79-0.91), but there were fewer multiclonal infections. Theory predicts an apparent excess in expected heterozygosity follows a genetic bottleneck. Evidence for such a distortion in genetic diversity was observed after the drop in parasite prevalence under the infinite alleles mutation model but not for the stepwise mutation model. The results are similar to those reported for the human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, worldwide, and support the conclusion that malaria parasites maintain high genetic diversity in host populations despite the potential for loss in alleles during the transmission cycle or

  7. Horizontal gene transfer of epigenetic machinery and evolution of parasitism in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum and other apicomplexans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kishore, Sandeep P; Stiller, John W; Deitsch, Kirk W

    2013-02-11

    The acquisition of complex transcriptional regulatory abilities and epigenetic machinery facilitated the transition of the ancestor of apicomplexans from a free-living organism to an obligate parasite. The ability to control sophisticated gene expression patterns enabled these ancient organisms to evolve several differentiated forms, invade multiple hosts and evade host immunity. How these abilities were acquired remains an outstanding question in protistan biology. In this work, we study SET domain bearing genes that are implicated in mediating immune evasion, invasion and cytoadhesion pathways of modern apicomplexans, including malaria parasites. We provide the first conclusive evidence of a horizontal gene transfer of a Histone H4 Lysine 20 (H4K20) modifier, Set8, from an animal host to the ancestor of apicomplexans. Set8 is known to contribute to the coordinated expression of genes involved in immune evasion in modern apicomplexans. We also show the likely transfer of a H3K36 methyltransferase (Ashr3 from plants), possibly derived from algal endosymbionts. These transfers appear to date to the transition from free-living organisms to parasitism and coincide with the proposed horizontal acquisition of cytoadhesion domains, the O-glycosyltransferase that modifies these domains, and the primary family of transcription factors found in apicomplexan parasites. Notably, phylogenetic support for these conclusions is robust and the genes clearly are dissimilar to SET sequences found in the closely related parasite Perkinsus marinus, and in ciliates, the nearest free-living organisms with complete genome sequences available. Animal and plant sources of epigenetic machinery provide new insights into the evolution of parasitism in apicomplexans. Along with the horizontal transfer of cytoadhesive domains, O-linked glycosylation and key transcription factors, the acquisition of SET domain methyltransferases marks a key transitional event in the evolution to parasitism in

  8. Loss of pH control in Plasmodium falciparum parasites subjected to oxidative stress.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Donelly A van Schalkwyk

    Full Text Available The intraerythrocytic malaria parasite is susceptible to oxidative stress and this may play a role in the mechanism of action of some antimalarial agents. Here we show that exposure of the intraerythrocytic malaria parasite to the oxidising agent hydrogen peroxide results in a fall in the intracellular ATP level and inhibition of the parasite's V-type H(+-ATPase, causing a loss of pH control in both the parasite cytosol and the internal digestive vacuole. In contrast to the V-type H(+-ATPase, the parasite's digestive vacuole H(+-pyrophosphatase is insensitive to hydrogen peroxide-induced oxidative stress. This work provides insights into the effects of oxidative stress on the intraerythrocytic parasite, as well as providing an alternative possible explanation for a previous report that light-induced oxidative stress causes selective lysis of the parasite's digestive vacuole.

  9. Proteomic analysis of extracellular vesicles from a Plasmodium falciparum Kenyan clinical isolate defines a core parasite secretome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdi, Abdirahman; Yu, Lu; Goulding, David; Rono, Martin K; Bejon, Philip; Choudhary, Jyoti; Rayner, Julian

    2017-01-01

    Many pathogens secrete effector molecules to subvert host immune responses, to acquire nutrients, and/or to prepare host cells for invasion. One of the ways that effector molecules are secreted is through extracellular vesicles (EVs) such as exosomes. Recently, the malaria parasite P. falciparum has been shown to produce EVs that can mediate transfer of genetic material between parasites and induce sexual commitment. Characterizing the content of these vesicles may improve our understanding of P. falciparum pathogenesis and virulence. Previous studies of P. falciparum EVs have been limited to long-term adapted laboratory isolates. In this study, we isolated EVs from a Kenyan P. falciparum clinical isolate adapted to in vitro culture for a short period and characterized their protein content by mass spectrometry (data are available via ProteomeXchange, with identifier PXD006925). We show that P. falciparum extracellular vesicles ( PfEVs) are enriched in proteins found within the exomembrane compartments of infected erythrocytes such as Maurer's clefts (MCs), as well as the secretory endomembrane compartments in the apical end of the merozoites, suggesting that these proteins play a role in parasite-host interactions. Comparison of this novel clinically relevant dataset with previously published datasets helps to define a core secretome present in Plasmodium EVs. P. falciparum extracellular vesicles contain virulence-associated parasite proteins. Therefore, analysis of PfEVs contents from a range of clinical isolates, and their functional validation may improve our understanding of the virulence mechanisms of the parasite, and potentially identify targets for interventions or diagnostics.

  10. Drug resistance and genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum parasites from Suriname

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Peek, Ron; van Gool, Tom; Panchoe, Daynand; Greve, Sophie; Bus, Ellen; Resida, Lesley

    2005-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum in Suriname was studied for the presence of drug resistance and genetic variation in blood samples of 86 patients with symptomatic malaria. Drug resistance was predicted by determining point mutations in the chloroquine resistance marker of the P. falciparum chloroquine

  11. Multiple genetic origins of histidine-rich protein 2 gene deletion in Plasmodium falciparum parasites from Peru

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akinyi, Sheila; Hayden, Tonya; Gamboa, Dionicia; Torres, Katherine; Bendezu, Jorge; Abdallah, Joseph F.; Griffing, Sean M.; Quezada, Wilmer Marquiño; Arrospide, Nancy; De Oliveira, Alexandre Macedo; Lucas, Carmen; Magill, Alan J.; Bacon, David J.; Barnwell, John W.; Udhayakumar, Venkatachalam

    2013-01-01

    The majority of malaria rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) detect Plasmodium falciparum histidine-rich protein 2 (PfHRP2), encoded by the pfhrp2 gene. Recently, P. falciparum isolates from Peru were found to lack pfhrp2 leading to false-negative RDT results. We hypothesized that pfhrp2-deleted parasites in Peru derived from a single genetic event. We evaluated the parasite population structure and pfhrp2 haplotype of samples collected between 1998 and 2005 using seven neutral and seven chromosome 8 microsatellite markers, respectively. Five distinct pfhrp2 haplotypes, corresponding to five neutral microsatellite-based clonal lineages, were detected in 1998-2001; pfhrp2 deletions occurred within four haplotypes. In 2003-2005, outcrossing among the parasite lineages resulted in eight population clusters that inherited the five pfhrp2 haplotypes seen previously and a new haplotype; pfhrp2 deletions occurred within four of these haplotypes. These findings indicate that the genetic origin of pfhrp2 deletion in Peru was not a single event, but likely occurred multiple times. PMID:24077522

  12. Encapsulation of metalloporphyrins improves their capacity to block the viability of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alves, Eduardo; Iglesias, Bernardo A; Deda, Daiana K; Budu, Alexandre; Matias, Tiago A; Bueno, Vânia B; Maluf, Fernando V; Guido, Rafael V C; Oliva, Glaucius; Catalani, Luiz H; Araki, Koiti; Garcia, Celia R S

    2015-02-01

    Several synthetic metallated protoporphyrins (M-PPIX) were tested for their ability to block the cell cycle of the lethal human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. After encapsulating the porphyrin derivatives in micro- and nanocapsules of marine atelocollagen, their effects on cultures of red blood cells infected (RBC) with P. falciparum were verified. RBCs infected with synchronized P. falciparum incubated for 48 h showed a toxic effect over a micromolar range. Strikingly, the IC50 of encapsulated metalloporphyrins reached nanomolar concentrations, where Zn-PPIX showed the best antimalarial effect, with an IC50=330 nM. This value is an 80-fold increase in the antimalarial activity compared to the antimalarial effect of non-encapsulated Zn-PPIX. These findings reveal that the incubation of P. falciparum infected-RBCs with 20 μM Zn-PPIX reduced the size of hemozoin crystal by 34%, whereas a 28% reduction was noticed with chloroquine, confirming the importance of heme detoxification pathway in drug therapy. In this study, synthetic metalloporphyrins were tested as therapeutics that target Plasmodium falciparum. The IC50 of encapsulated metalloporphyrins was found to be in the nanomolar concentration range, with encapsulated Zn-PPIX showing an 80-fold increase in its antimalarial activity compared to the non-encapsulated form. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  13. Host-parasite interaction: multiple sites in the Plasmodium vivax tryptophan-rich antigen PvTRAg38 interact with the erythrocyte receptor band 3.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alam, Mohd S; Rathore, Sumit; Tyagi, Rupesh K; Sharma, Yagya D

    2016-01-01

    Tryptophan-rich antigens of malarial parasites interact with host molecules and play an important role in parasite survival. Merozoite expressed Plasmodium vivax tryptophan-rich antigen PvTRAg38 binds to human erythrocytes and facilitates parasite growth in a heterlologous Plasmodium falciparum culture system. Recently, we identified band 3 in human erythrocytes as one of its receptors, although the receptor-ligand binding mechanisms remain unknown. In the present study, using synthetic mutated peptides of PvTRAg38, we show that multiple amino acid residues of its 12 amino acid domain (KWVQWKNDKIRS) at position 197-208 interact with three different ectodomains of band 3 receptor on human erythrocytes. Our findings may help in the design of new therapeutic approaches for malaria. © 2016 Federation of European Biochemical Societies.

  14. Dual fluorescence labeling of surface-exposed and internal proteins in erythrocytes infected with the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bengtsson, Dominique C; Sowa, Kordai M P; Arnot, David E

    2008-01-01

    There is a need for improved methods for in situ localization of surface proteins on Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes to help understand how these antigens are trafficked to, and positioned within, the host cell membrane. This protocol for confocal immunofluorescence microscopy combines...... is discussed here in the context of malaria parasite-infected cells, it can also be modified to visualize the membrane and intracellular distribution of surface and internal proteins in other eukaryotic cells....... surface antigen labeling on live cells with subsequent fixation and permeabilization, which enables antibodies to penetrate the cell and label internal antigens. The key steps of the protocol are as follows: indirect labeling of the surface antigen using a fluorescently tagged secondary antibody; fixation...

  15. A Unique Virulence Gene Occupies a Principal Position in Immune Evasion by the Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Uchechi E Ukaegbu

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Mutually exclusive gene expression, whereby only one member of a multi-gene family is selected for activation, is used by the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum to escape the human immune system and perpetuate long-term, chronic infections. A family of genes called var encodes the chief antigenic and virulence determinant of P. falciparum malaria. var genes are transcribed in a mutually exclusive manner, with switching between active genes resulting in antigenic variation. While recent work has shed considerable light on the epigenetic basis for var gene activation and silencing, how switching is controlled remains a mystery. In particular, switching seems not to be random, but instead appears to be coordinated to result in timely activation of individual genes leading to sequential waves of antigenically distinct parasite populations. The molecular basis for this apparent coordination is unknown. Here we show that var2csa, an unusual and highly conserved var gene, occupies a unique position within the var gene switching hierarchy. Induction of switching through the destabilization of var specific chromatin using both genetic and chemical methods repeatedly led to the rapid and exclusive activation of var2csa. Additional experiments demonstrated that these represent "true" switching events and not simply de-silencing of the var2csa promoter, and that activation is limited to the unique locus on chromosome 12. Combined with translational repression of var2csa transcripts, frequent "default" switching to this locus and detection of var2csa untranslated transcripts in non-pregnant individuals, these data suggest that var2csa could play a central role in coordinating switching, fulfilling a prediction made by mathematical models derived from population switching patterns. These studies provide the first insights into the mechanisms by which var gene switching is coordinated as well as an example of how a pharmacological agent can disrupt

  16. Delayed parasite clearance after treatment with dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine in Plasmodium falciparum malaria patients in central Vietnam.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thriemer, Kamala; Hong, Nguyen Van; Rosanas-Urgell, Anna; Phuc, Bui Quang; Ha, Do Manh; Pockele, Evi; Guetens, Pieter; Van, Nguyen Van; Duong, Tran Thanh; Amambua-Ngwa, Alfred; D'Alessandro, Umberto; Erhart, Annette

    2014-12-01

    Reduced susceptibility of Plasmodium falciparum toward artemisinin derivatives has been reported from the Thai-Cambodian and Thai-Myanmar borders. Following increasing reports from central Vietnam of delayed parasite clearance after treatment with dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine (DHA-PPQ), the current first-line treatment, we carried out a study on the efficacy of this treatment. Between September 2012 and February 2013, we conducted a 42-day in vivo and in vitro efficacy study in Quang Nam Province. Treatment was directly observed, and blood samples were collected twice daily until parasite clearance. In addition, genotyping, quantitative PCR (qPCR), and in vitro sensitivity testing of isolates was performed. The primary endpoints were parasite clearance rate and time. The secondary endpoints included PCR-corrected and uncorrected cure rates, qPCR clearance profiles, in vitro sensitivity results (for chloroquine, dihydroartemisinin, and piperaquine), and genotyping for mutations in the Kelch 13 propeller domain. Out of 672 screened patients, 95 were recruited and 89 available for primary endpoint analyses. The median parasite clearance time (PCT) was 61.7 h (interquartile range [IQR], 47.6 to 83.2 h), and the median parasite clearance rate had a slope half-life of 6.2 h (IQR, 4.4 to 7.5 h). The PCR-corrected efficacy rates were estimated at 100% at day 28 and 97.7% (95% confidence interval, 91.2% to 99.4%) at day 42. At day 3, the P. falciparum prevalence by qPCR was 2.5 times higher than that by microscopy. The 50% inhibitory concentrations (IC50s) of isolates with delayed clearance times (≥ 72 h) were significantly higher than those with normal clearance times for all three drugs. Delayed parasite clearance (PCT, ≥ 72 h) was significantly higher among day 0 samples carrying the 543 mutant allele (47.8%) than those carrying the wild-type allele (1.8%; P = 0.048). In central Vietnam, the efficacy of DHA-PPQ is still satisfactory, but the parasite clearance time

  17. Population dynamics of sporogony for Plasmodium vivax parasites from western Thailand developing within three species of colonized Anopheles mosquitoes

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    Sattabongkot Jetsumon

    2006-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The population dynamics of Plasmodium sporogony within mosquitoes consists of an early phase where parasite abundance decreases during the transition from gametocyte to oocyst, an intermediate phase where parasite abundance remains static as oocysts, and a later phase where parasite abundance increases during the release of progeny sporozoites from oocysts. Sporogonic development is complete when sporozoites invade the mosquito salivary glands. The dynamics and efficiency of this developmental sequence were determined in laboratory strains of Anopheles dirus, Anopheles minimus and Anopheles sawadwongporni mosquitoes for Plasmodium vivax parasites circulating naturally in western Thailand. Methods Mosquitoes were fed blood from 20 symptomatic Thai adults via membrane feeders. Absolute densities were estimated for macrogametocytes, round stages (= female gametes/zygotes, ookinetes, oocysts, haemolymph sporozoites and salivary gland sporozoites. From these census data, five aspects of population dynamics were analysed; 1 changes in life-stage prevalence during early sporogony, 2 kinetics of life-stage formation, 3 efficiency of life-stage transitions, 4 density relationships between successive life-stages, and 5 parasite aggregation patterns. Results There was no difference among the three mosquito species tested in total losses incurred by P. vivax populations during early sporogony. Averaged across all infections, parasite populations incurred a 68-fold loss in abundance, with losses of ca. 19-fold, 2-fold and 2-fold at the first (= gametogenesis/fertilization, second (= round stage transformation, and third (= ookinete migration life-stage transitions, respectively. However, total losses varied widely among infections, ranging from 6-fold to over 2,000-fold loss. Losses during gametogenesis/fertilization accounted for most of this variability, indicating that gametocytes originating from some volunteers were more fertile than

  18. Plasmodium falciparum erythrocytic stage parasites require the putative autophagy protein PfAtg7 for normal growth.

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    Dawn M Walker

    Full Text Available Analysis of the Plasmodium falciparum genome reveals a limited number of putative autophagy genes, specifically the four genes involved in ATG8 lipidation, an essential step in formation of autophagosomes. In yeast, Atg8 lipidation requires the E1-type ligase Atg7, an E2-type ligase Atg3, and a cysteine protease Atg4. These four putative P. falciparum ATG (PfATG genes are transcribed during the parasite's erythrocytic stages. PfAtg7 has relatively low identity and similarity to yeast Atg7 (14.7% and 32.2%, respectively, due primarily to long insertions typical of P. falciparum. Excluding the insertions the identity and similarity are higher (38.0% and 70.8%, respectively. This and the fact that key residues are conserved, including the catalytic cysteine and ATP binding domain, we hypothesize that PfAtg7 is the activating enzyme of PfAtg8. To assess the role of PfAtg7 we have generated two transgenic parasite lines. In one, the PfATG7 locus was modified to introduce a C-terminal hemagglutinin tag. Western blotting reveals two distinct protein species, one migrating near the predicted 150 kDa and one at approximately 65 kDa. The second transgenic line introduces an inducible degradation domain into the PfATG7 locus, allowing us to rapidly attenuate PfAtg7 protein levels. Corresponding species are also observed in this parasite line at approximately 200 kDa and 100 kDa. Upon PfATG7 attenuation parasites exhibit a slow growth phenotype indicating the essentiality of this putative enzyme for normal growth.

  19. Page 1 PLASMODIUM NARAYANI N.S.P., PARASITE OF THE FISH ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Natural History Society and to him our best thanks are due. The parasite is very scanty, and has been found only in the blood and lung smears. The liver, kidney, spleen and bone ... malaria or more or less compact. Some red cells are parasitised by two schizonts. The parasite was not seen in living condition, but must be.

  20. A multiscale Cauchy-Born meshfree model for deformability of red blood cells parasitized by Plasmodium falciparum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, L. W.; Ademiloye, A. S.; Liew, K. M.

    In normal physiological and healthy conditions, red blood cells (RBCs) deform readily as they pass through the microcapillaries and the spleen, however, upon invasion by the malaria parasite, the host RBC membrane begins to lose their deformability. In spite of the progress in understanding malaria pathogenesis, the primary mechanism responsible for the loss of deformability remains unclear. In this paper, we examine the effects of Plasmodium falciparum infection and maturation on the deformability of parasitized or infected red blood cells (iRBCs) by means of a three-dimensional (3D) multiscale red blood cell (RBC) framework. This multiscale framework is developed based on the Cauchy-Born rule and the meshfree IMLS-Ritz method. The atomistic scale strain energy density function of the RBC membrane was computed using a selected representative cell based on the membrane spectrin network. The results obtained from our numerical simulations affirm that the presence of malaria infection significantly increases the rigidity of RBC membrane. It was observed that in the trophozoite and schizont infection stages, biconcave cell geometry leads to better prediction than nearly spherical geometry in comparison with experimental studies. Furthermore, we confirm that increase in temperature also results to increased stiffening of the cell membrane. Lastly, the observed decrease in the deformability of iRBC membrane may be primarily due to the structural remodeling and changes in the microstructure of the membrane rather than the change in cell shape.

  1. An adjustable gas-mixing device to increase feasibility of in vitro culture of Plasmodium falciparum parasites in the field.

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    Amy K Bei

    Full Text Available A challenge to conducting high-impact and reproducible studies of the mechanisms of P. falciparum drug resistance, invasion, virulence, and immunity is the lack of robust and sustainable in vitro culture in the field. While the technology exists and is routinely utilized in developed countries, various factors-from cost, to supply, to quality-make it hard to implement in malaria endemic countries. Here, we design and rigorously evaluate an adjustable gas-mixing device for the in vitro culture of P. falciparum parasites in the field to circumvent this challenge. The device accurately replicates the gas concentrations needed to culture laboratory isolates, short-term adapted field isolates, cryopreserved previously non-adapted isolates, as well as to adapt ex vivo isolates to in vitro culture in the field. We also show an advantage over existing alternatives both in cost and in supply. Furthermore, the adjustable nature of the device makes it an ideal tool for many applications in which varied gas concentrations could be critical to culture success. This adjustable gas-mixing device will dramatically improve the feasibility of in vitro culture of Plasmodium falciparum parasites in malaria endemic countries given its numerous advantages.

  2. An adjustable gas-mixing device to increase feasibility of in vitro culture of Plasmodium falciparum parasites in the field.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bei, Amy K; Patel, Saurabh D; Volkman, Sarah K; Ahouidi, Ambroise D; Ndiaye, Daouda; Mboup, Souleymane; Wirth, Dyann F

    2014-01-01

    A challenge to conducting high-impact and reproducible studies of the mechanisms of P. falciparum drug resistance, invasion, virulence, and immunity is the lack of robust and sustainable in vitro culture in the field. While the technology exists and is routinely utilized in developed countries, various factors-from cost, to supply, to quality-make it hard to implement in malaria endemic countries. Here, we design and rigorously evaluate an adjustable gas-mixing device for the in vitro culture of P. falciparum parasites in the field to circumvent this challenge. The device accurately replicates the gas concentrations needed to culture laboratory isolates, short-term adapted field isolates, cryopreserved previously non-adapted isolates, as well as to adapt ex vivo isolates to in vitro culture in the field. We also show an advantage over existing alternatives both in cost and in supply. Furthermore, the adjustable nature of the device makes it an ideal tool for many applications in which varied gas concentrations could be critical to culture success. This adjustable gas-mixing device will dramatically improve the feasibility of in vitro culture of Plasmodium falciparum parasites in malaria endemic countries given its numerous advantages.

  3. Population genetic study of Plasmodium falciparum parasites pertaining to dhps gene sequence in malaria endemic areas of Assam.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, J; Dutta, P; Khan, S A

    2015-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasite had developed resistance to almost all the currently used antimalarial drugs. The purpose of the study was to come across the genetic distances in P. falciparum dhps gene sequences circulating in Assam. A partial fragment of P. falciparum dhps gene containing major single nucleotide polymorphisms associated with sulphadoxine resistance were amplified and sequenced. Thereafter specific bioinformatics tools like BioEdit v7.0.9, ClustalW in Mega 5, DnaSP version v.5.10.01 etc were used for the analysis. A total of 100 P. falciparum positive cases in different malaria endemic areas of Assam were included for the study. Based upon the mutation analysis, a total of seven different P. falciparum dhps genotypes were observed with five variable sites. Maximum five haplotypes were found in the P. falciparum isolates from Jorhat district of Assam. Four polymorphic sites were observed in the P. falciparum dhps gene sequences in Karbi Anglong, NC Hills, Chirang and Jorhat whereas the isolates from other study areas had three polymorphic sites. A statistically significant positive value of Tajima's D were observed among the P. falciparum field isolates in Assam indicating that there is an excess of intermediate frequency alleles and can result from population bottlenecks, structure and/or balancing selection. Extensive gene flow took place among the P. falciparum population of Jorhat with Sivasagar, Chirang with Sivasagar and Chirang with Karbi Anglong. However, large genetic differentiation was observed among the P. falciparum isolates of NC Hills with Lakhimpur, Tinsukia, Dibrugarh and Golaghat and also the parasite population of Karbi Anglong with Lakhimpur and Tinsukia signifying little gene flow among the population. This finding has shown that mutant Pfdhps gene associated with sulphadoxine resistance is circulating in Assam. It is believed that, the parasite population may have undergone high level of breeding.

  4. Population genetic study of Plasmodium falciparum parasites pertaining to dhps gene sequence in malaria endemic areas of Assam

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J Sharma

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasite had developed resistance to almost all the currently used antimalarial drugs. The purpose of the study was to come across the genetic distances in P. falciparum dhps gene sequences circulating in Assam. A partial fragment of P. falciparum dhps gene containing major single nucleotide polymorphisms associated with sulphadoxine resistance were amplified and sequenced. Thereafter specific bioinformatics tools like BioEdit v7.0.9, ClustalW in Mega 5, DnaSP version v.5.10.01 etc were used for the analysis. A total of 100 P. falciparum positive cases in different malaria endemic areas of Assam were included for the study. Based upon the mutation analysis, a total of seven different P. falciparum dhps genotypes were observed with five variable sites. Maximum five haplotypes were found in the P. falciparum isolates from Jorhat district of Assam. Four polymorphic sites were observed in the P. falciparum dhps gene sequences in Karbi Anglong, NC Hills, Chirang and Jorhat whereas the isolates from other study areas had three polymorphic sites. A statistically significant positive value of Tajima′s D were observed among the P. falciparum field isolates in Assam indicating that there is an excess of intermediate frequency alleles and can result from population bottlenecks, structure and/or balancing selection. Extensive gene flow took place among the P. falciparum population of Jorhat with Sivasagar, Chirang with Sivasagar and Chirang with Karbi Anglong. However, large genetic differentiation was observed among the P. falciparum isolates of NC Hills with Lakhimpur, Tinsukia, Dibrugarh and Golaghat and also the parasite population of Karbi Anglong with Lakhimpur and Tinsukia signifying little gene flow among the population. This finding has shown that mutant Pfdhps gene associated with sulphadoxine resistance is circulating in Assam. It is believed that, the parasite population may have undergone high level of breeding.

  5. Genome-wide diversity and differentiation in New World populations of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium vivax.

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    Thais C de Oliveira

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The Americas were the last continent colonized by humans carrying malaria parasites. Plasmodium falciparum from the New World shows very little genetic diversity and greater linkage disequilibrium, compared with its African counterparts, and is clearly subdivided into local, highly divergent populations. However, limited available data have revealed extensive genetic diversity in American populations of another major human malaria parasite, P. vivax.We used an improved sample preparation strategy and next-generation sequencing to characterize 9 high-quality P. vivax genome sequences from northwestern Brazil. These new data were compared with publicly available sequences from recently sampled clinical P. vivax isolates from Brazil (BRA, total n = 11 sequences, Peru (PER, n = 23, Colombia (COL, n = 31, and Mexico (MEX, n = 19.We found that New World populations of P. vivax are as diverse (nucleotide diversity π between 5.2 × 10-4 and 6.2 × 10-4 as P. vivax populations from Southeast Asia, where malaria transmission is substantially more intense. They display several non-synonymous nucleotide substitutions (some of them previously undescribed in genes known or suspected to be involved in antimalarial drug resistance, such as dhfr, dhps, mdr1, mrp1, and mrp-2, but not in the chloroquine resistance transporter ortholog (crt-o gene. Moreover, P. vivax in the Americas is much less geographically substructured than local P. falciparum populations, with relatively little between-population genome-wide differentiation (pairwise FST values ranging between 0.025 and 0.092. Finally, P. vivax populations show a rapid decline in linkage disequilibrium with increasing distance between pairs of polymorphic sites, consistent with very frequent outcrossing. We hypothesize that the high diversity of present-day P. vivax lineages in the Americas originated from successive migratory waves and subsequent admixture between parasite lineages from geographically

  6. Influence of host factors and parasite biomass on the severity of imported Plasmodium falciparum malaria.

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    Nicolas Argy

    Full Text Available Imported malaria in France is characterized by various clinical manifestations observed in a heterogeneous population of patients such as travelers/expatriates and African migrants. In this population, host factors and parasite biomass associated with severe imported malaria are poorly known.From data collected by the Centre National de Référence du Paludisme, we identified epidemiological, demographic and biological features including parasite biomass and anti-plasmodial antibody levels (negative, positive and strongly positive serology associated with different disease severity groups (very severe, moderately severe, and uncomplicated malaria in 3 epidemiological groups (travelers/expatriates, first- and second-generation migrants.Age, ethnicity, absence of prior infection with P. falciparum, antibody levels, plasma PfHRP2 levels, total and circulating parasite biomass were related to severe malaria onset. Sequestered parasite biomass tended to be increased in very severe malaria, and was strongly correlated to the antibody level of the host.Prior exposure to P. falciparum is associated with high anti-plasmodial antibody levels which influence clinical presentation of imported malaria and its correlated circulating and sequestered parasite burden.

  7. Influence of host factors and parasite biomass on the severity of imported Plasmodium falciparum malaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Argy, Nicolas; Kendjo, Eric; Augé-Courtoi, Claire; Cojean, Sandrine; Clain, Jérôme; Houzé, Pascal; Thellier, Marc; Hubert, Veronique; Deloron, Philippe; Houzé, Sandrine

    2017-01-01

    Imported malaria in France is characterized by various clinical manifestations observed in a heterogeneous population of patients such as travelers/expatriates and African migrants. In this population, host factors and parasite biomass associated with severe imported malaria are poorly known. From data collected by the Centre National de Référence du Paludisme, we identified epidemiological, demographic and biological features including parasite biomass and anti-plasmodial antibody levels (negative, positive and strongly positive serology) associated with different disease severity groups (very severe, moderately severe, and uncomplicated malaria) in 3 epidemiological groups (travelers/expatriates, first- and second-generation migrants). Age, ethnicity, absence of prior infection with P. falciparum, antibody levels, plasma PfHRP2 levels, total and circulating parasite biomass were related to severe malaria onset. Sequestered parasite biomass tended to be increased in very severe malaria, and was strongly correlated to the antibody level of the host. Prior exposure to P. falciparum is associated with high anti-plasmodial antibody levels which influence clinical presentation of imported malaria and its correlated circulating and sequestered parasite burden.

  8. Polymorphism in dhfr/dhps genes, parasite density and ex vivo response to pyrimethamine in Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasites in Thies, Senegal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ndiaye, Daouda; Dieye, Baba; Ndiaye, Yaye D; Van Tyne, Daria; Daniels, Rachel; Bei, Amy K; Mbaye, Aminata; Valim, Clarissa; Lukens, Amanda; Mboup, Souleymane; Ndir, Omar; Wirth, Dyann F; Volkman, Sarah

    2013-12-01

    Resistance to sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP) in Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasites is associated with mutations in the dihydrofolate reductase (dhfr) and dihydropteroate synthase (dhps) genes, and these mutations have spread resistance worldwide. SP, used for several years in Senegal, has been recommended for intermittent preventive treatment for malaria in pregnancy (IPTp) and has been widely implemented since 2003 in this country. There is currently limited data on SP resistance from molecular marker genotyping, and no data on pyrimethamine ex vivo sensitivity in Senegal. Molecular markers of SP resistance and pyrimethamine ex vivo sensitivity were investigated in 416 parasite samples collected from the general population, from the Thies region between 2003 and 2011. The prevalence of the N51I/C59R/S108N triple mutation in dhfr increased from 40% in 2003 to 93% in 2011. Furthermore, the prevalence of the dhfr N51I/C59R/S108N and dhps A437G quadruple mutation increased, from 20% to 66% over the same time frame, then down to 44% by 2011. There was a significant increase in the prevalence of the dhfr triple mutation, as well as an association between dhfr genotypes and pyrimethamine response. Conversely, dhps mutations in codons 436 and 437 did not show consistent variation between 2003 and 2011. These findings suggest that regular screening for molecular markers of antifolate resistance and ex vivo drug response monitoring should be incorporated with ongoing in vivo efficacy monitoring in areas where IPTp-SP is implemented and where pyrimethamine and sulfa drugs are still widely administered in the general population.

  9. Polymorphism in dhfr/dhps genes, parasite density and ex vivo response to pyrimethamine in Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasites in Thies, Senegal☆

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ndiaye, Daouda; Dieye, Baba; Ndiaye, Yaye D.; Tyne, Daria Van; Daniels, Rachel; Bei, Amy K.; Mbaye, Aminata; Valim, Clarissa; Lukens, Amanda; Mboup, Souleymane; Ndir, Omar; Wirth, Dyann F.; Volkman, Sarah

    2013-01-01

    Resistance to sulfadoxine–pyrimethamine (SP) in Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasites is associated with mutations in the dihydrofolate reductase (dhfr) and dihydropteroate synthase (dhps) genes, and these mutations have spread resistance worldwide. SP, used for several years in Senegal, has been recommended for intermittent preventive treatment for malaria in pregnancy (IPTp) and has been widely implemented since 2003 in this country. There is currently limited data on SP resistance from molecular marker genotyping, and no data on pyrimethamine ex vivo sensitivity in Senegal. Molecular markers of SP resistance and pyrimethamine ex vivo sensitivity were investigated in 416 parasite samples collected from the general population, from the Thies region between 2003 and 2011. The prevalence of the N51I/C59R/S108N triple mutation in dhfr increased from 40% in 2003 to 93% in 2011. Furthermore, the prevalence of the dhfr N51I/C59R/S108N and dhps A437G quadruple mutation increased, from 20% to 66% over the same time frame, then down to 44% by 2011. There was a significant increase in the prevalence of the dhfr triple mutation, as well as an association between dhfr genotypes and pyrimethamine response. Conversely, dhps mutations in codons 436 and 437 did not show consistent variation between 2003 and 2011. These findings suggest that regular screening for molecular markers of antifolate resistance and ex vivo drug response monitoring should be incorporated with ongoing in vivo efficacy monitoring in areas where IPTp-SP is implemented and where pyrimethamine and sulfa drugs are still widely administered in the general population. PMID:24533303

  10. Crystal structure and solution characterization of the thioredoxin-2 from Plasmodium falciparum, a constituent of an essential parasitic protein export complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Mindy; Cascio, Duilio; Egea, Pascal F

    2015-01-02

    Survival of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum when it infects red blood cells depends upon its ability to export hundreds of its proteins beyond an encasing vacuole. Protein export is mediated by a parasite-derived protein complex, the Plasmodium translocon of exported proteins (PTEX), and requires unfolding of the different cargos prior to their translocation across the vacuolar membrane. Unfolding is performed by the AAA+protein unfoldase HSP101/ClpB2 and the thioredoxin-2 enzyme (TRX2). Protein trafficking is dramatically impaired in parasites with defective HSP101 or lacking TRX2. These two PTEX subunits drive export and are targets for the design of a novel class of antimalarials: protein export inhibitors. To rationalize inhibitor design, we solved the crystal structure of Pfal-TRX2 at 2.2-Å resolution. Within the asymmetric unit, the three different copies of this protein disulfide reductase sample its two redox catalytic states. Size exclusion chromatography and small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) analyses demonstrate that Pfal-TRX2 is monomeric in solution. A non-conserved N-terminal extension precedes the canonical thioredoxin-fold; although it is not observed in our structure, our solution analysis suggests it is flexible in contrast to Plasmodium thioredoxin-1. This represents a first step towards the reconstitution of the entire PTEX for mechanistic and structural studies. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Biliverdin targets enolase and eukaryotic initiation factor 2 (eIF2α) to reduce the growth of intraerythrocytic development of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alves, Eduardo; Maluf, Fernando V; Bueno, Vânia B; Guido, Rafael V C; Oliva, Glaucius; Singh, Maneesh; Scarpelli, Pedro; Costa, Fahyme; Sartorello, Robson; Catalani, Luiz H; Brady, Declan; Tewari, Rita; Garcia, Celia R S

    2016-02-26

    In mammals, haem degradation to biliverdin (BV) through the action of haem oxygenase (HO) is a critical step in haem metabolism. The malaria parasite converts haem into the chemically inert haemozoin to avoid toxicity. We discovered that the knock-out of HO in P. berghei is lethal; therefore, we investigated the function of biliverdin (BV) and haem in the parasite. Addition of external BV and haem to P. falciparum-infected red blood cell (RBC) cultures delays the progression of parasite development. The search for a BV molecular target within the parasites identified P. falciparum enolase (Pf enolase) as the strongest candidate. Isothermal titration calorimetry using recombinant full-length Plasmodium enolase suggested one binding site for BV. Kinetic assays revealed that BV is a non-competitive inhibitor. We employed molecular modelling studies to predict the new binding site as well as the binding mode of BV to P. falciparum enolase. Furthermore, addition of BV and haem targets the phosphorylation of Plasmodium falciparum eIF2α factor, an eukaryotic initiation factor phosphorylated by eIF2α kinases under stress conditions. We propose that BV targets enolase to reduce parasite glycolysis rates and changes the eIF2α phosphorylation pattern as a molecular mechanism for its action.

  12. Vaccination with a Plasmodium chabaudi adami multivalent DNA vaccine cross-protects A/J mice against challenge with P. c. adami DK and virulent Plasmodium chabaudi chabaudi AS parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scorza, T; Grubb, K; Cambos, M; Santamaria, C; Tshikudi Malu, D; Spithill, T W

    2008-06-01

    A current goal of malaria vaccine research is the development of vaccines that will cross-protect against multiple strains of malaria. In the present study, the breadth of cross-reactivity induced by a 30K multivalent DNA vaccine has been evaluated in susceptible A/J mice (H-2a) against infection with the Plasmodium chabaudi adami DK strain and a virulent parasite subspecies, Plasmodium chabaudi chabaudi AS. Immunized A/J mice were significantly protected against infection with both P. c. adami DK (31-40% reduction in cumulative parasitemia) and P. c. chabaudi AS parasites, where a 30-39% reduction in cumulative parasitemia as well as enhanced survival was observed. The 30K vaccine-induced specific IFN-gamma production by splenocytes in response to native antigens from both P. c. chabaudi AS and P. c. adami DK. Specific antibodies reacting with surface antigens expressed on P. c. adami DS and P. c. chabaudi AS infected red blood cells, and with opsonizing properties, were detected. These results suggest that multivalent vaccines encoding conserved antigens can feasibly induce immune cross-reactivity that span Plasmodium strains and subspecies and can protect hosts of distinct major histocompatibility complex haplotypes.

  13. SYBR Green Real-Time PCR-RFLP Assay Targeting the Plasmodium Cytochrome B Gene – A Highly Sensitive Molecular Tool for Malaria Parasite Detection and Species Determination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Weiping; Morris, Ulrika; Aydin-Schmidt, Berit; Msellem, Mwinyi I.; Shakely, Delér; Petzold, Max; Björkman, Anders; Mårtensson, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    A prerequisite for reliable detection of low-density Plasmodium infections in malaria pre-elimination settings is the availability of ultra-sensitive and high-throughput molecular tools. We developed a SYBR Green real-time PCR restriction fragment length polymorphism assay (cytb-qPCR) targeting the cytochrome b gene of the four major human Plasmodium species (P. falciparum, P. vivax, P. malariae, and P. ovale) for parasite detection and species determination with DNA extracted from dried blood spots collected on filter paper. The performance of cytb-qPCR was first compared against four reference PCR methods using serially diluted Plasmodium samples. The detection limit of the cytb-qPCR was 1 parasite/μl (p/μl) for P. falciparum and P. ovale, and 2 p/μl for P. vivax and P. malariae, while the reference PCRs had detection limits of 0.5–10 p/μl. The ability of the PCR methods to detect low-density Plasmodium infections was then assessed using 2977 filter paper samples collected during a cross-sectional survey in Zanzibar, a malaria pre-elimination setting in sub-Saharan Africa. Field samples were defined as ‘final positive’ if positive in at least two of the five PCR methods. Cytb-qPCR preformed equal to or better than the reference PCRs with a sensitivity of 100% (65/65; 95%CI 94.5–100%) and a specificity of 99.9% (2910/2912; 95%CI 99.7–100%) when compared against ‘final positive’ samples. The results indicate that the cytb-qPCR may represent an opportunity for improved molecular surveillance of low-density Plasmodium infections in malaria pre-elimination settings. PMID:25774805

  14. SYBR Green real-time PCR-RFLP assay targeting the plasmodium cytochrome B gene--a highly sensitive molecular tool for malaria parasite detection and species determination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Weiping; Morris, Ulrika; Aydin-Schmidt, Berit; Msellem, Mwinyi I; Shakely, Delér; Petzold, Max; Björkman, Anders; Mårtensson, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    A prerequisite for reliable detection of low-density Plasmodium infections in malaria pre-elimination settings is the availability of ultra-sensitive and high-throughput molecular tools. We developed a SYBR Green real-time PCR restriction fragment length polymorphism assay (cytb-qPCR) targeting the cytochrome b gene of the four major human Plasmodium species (P. falciparum, P. vivax, P. malariae, and P. ovale) for parasite detection and species determination with DNA extracted from dried blood spots collected on filter paper. The performance of cytb-qPCR was first compared against four reference PCR methods using serially diluted Plasmodium samples. The detection limit of the cytb-qPCR was 1 parasite/μl (p/μl) for P. falciparum and P. ovale, and 2 p/μl for P. vivax and P. malariae, while the reference PCRs had detection limits of 0.5-10 p/μl. The ability of the PCR methods to detect low-density Plasmodium infections was then assessed using 2977 filter paper samples collected during a cross-sectional survey in Zanzibar, a malaria pre-elimination setting in sub-Saharan Africa. Field samples were defined as 'final positive' if positive in at least two of the five PCR methods. Cytb-qPCR preformed equal to or better than the reference PCRs with a sensitivity of 100% (65/65; 95%CI 94.5-100%) and a specificity of 99.9% (2910/2912; 95%CI 99.7-100%) when compared against 'final positive' samples. The results indicate that the cytb-qPCR may represent an opportunity for improved molecular surveillance of low-density Plasmodium infections in malaria pre-elimination settings.

  15. Membrane and luminal proteins reach the apicoplast by different trafficking pathways in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaudhari, Rahul; Dey, Vishakha; Narayan, Aishwarya; Sharma, Shobhona; Patankar, Swati

    2017-01-01

    The secretory pathway in Plasmodium falciparum has evolved to transport proteins to the host cell membrane and to an endosymbiotic organelle, the apicoplast. The latter can occur via the ER or the ER-Golgi route. Here, we study these three routes using proteins Erythrocyte Membrane Protein-1 (PfEMP1), Acyl Carrier Protein (ACP) and glutathione peroxidase-like thioredoxin peroxidase (PfTPxGl) and inhibitors of vesicular transport. As expected, the G protein-dependent vesicular fusion inhibitor AlF4(-) and microtubule destabilizing drug vinblastine block the trafficking of PfEMP-1, a protein secreted to the host cell membrane. However, while both PfTPxGl and ACP are targeted to the apicoplast, only ACP trafficking remains unaffected by these treatments. This implies that G protein-dependent vesicles do not play a role in classical apicoplast protein targeting. Unlike the soluble protein ACP, we show that PfTPxGl is localized to the outermost membrane of the apicoplast. Thus, the parasite apicoplast acquires proteins via two different pathways: first, the vesicular trafficking pathway appears to handle not only secretory proteins, but an apicoplast membrane protein, PfTPxGl; second, trafficking of apicoplast luminal proteins appear to be independent of G protein-coupled vesicles.

  16. Evidence that the Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum Putative Rhoptry Protein 2 Localizes to the Golgi Apparatus throughout the Erythrocytic Cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hallée, Stéphanie; Richard, Dave

    2015-01-01

    Invasion of a red blood cell by Plasmodium falciparum merozoites is an essential step in the malaria lifecycle. Several of the proteins involved in this process are stored in the apical complex of the merozoite, a structure containing secretory organelles that are released at specific times during invasion. The molecular players involved in erythrocyte invasion thus represent potential key targets for both therapeutic and vaccine-based strategies to block parasite development. In our quest to identify and characterize new effectors of invasion, we investigated the P. falciparum homologue of a P. berghei protein putatively localized to the rhoptries, the Putative rhoptry protein 2 (PbPRP2). We show that in P. falciparum, the protein colocalizes extensively with the Golgi apparatus across the asexual erythrocytic cycle. Furthermore, imaging of merozoites caught at different times during invasion show that PfPRP2 is not secreted during the process instead staying associated with the Golgi apparatus. Our evidence therefore suggests that PfPRP2 is a Golgi protein and that it is likely not a direct effector in the process of merozoite invasion.

  17. Plasmodium falciparum induces Foxp3hi CD4 T cells independent of surface PfEMP1 expression via small soluble parasite components

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    Anja eScholzen

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Elevated levels of regulatory T cells following Plasmodium infection are a well-reported phenomenon that can influence both protective and pathological anti-parasite responses, and might additionally impact on vaccine responses in acutely malaria infected individuals. The mechanisms underlying their induction or expansion by the parasite, however, are incompletely understood. In a previous study, Plasmodium falciparum infected red blood cells (iRBCs were shown to induce effector-cytokine producing Foxp3int CD4+ T cells, as well as regulatory Foxp3hi CD4+ T cells in vitro. The aim of the present study was to determine the contribution of parasite components to the induction of Foxp3 expression in human CD4+ T cells. Using the surface PfEMP1-deficient parasite line 1G8, we demonstrate that induction of Foxp3hi and Foxp3int CD4+ T cells is independent of PfEMP1 expression on iRBCs. We further demonstrate that integrity of iRBCs is no requirement for the induction Foxp3 expression. Finally, transwell experiments showed that induction of Foxp3 expression, and specifically the generation of Foxp3hi as opposed to Foxp3int CD4 T cells, can be mediated by soluble parasite components smaller than 20nm and thus likely distinct from the malaria pigment hemozoin. These results suggest that the induction of Foxp3hi T cells by P. falciparum is largely independent of two key immune modulatory parasite components, and warrant future studies into the nature of the Foxp3hi inducing parasite components to potentially allow their exclusion from vaccine formulations.

  18. Host-seeking behaviors of mosquitoes experimentally infected with sympatric field isolates of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum: no evidence for host manipulation

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    Amélie eVantaux

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Previous studies have shown that Plasmodium parasites can manipulate mosquito feeding behaviours such as motivation and avidity to feed on vertebrate hosts, in ways that increase the probability of parasite transmission. These studies, however, have been mainly carried out on non-natural and/or laboratory based model systems and hence may not reflect what occurs in the field. We now need to move closer to the natural setting, if we are to fully capture the ecological and evolutionary consequences of these parasite-induced behavioral changes. As part of this effort, we conducted a series of experiments to investigate the long and short-range behavioural responses to human stimuli in the mosquito Anopheles coluzzii during different stages of infection with sympatric field isolates of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum in Burkina Faso. First, we used a dual-port olfactometer designed to take advantage of the whole body odor to gauge mosquito long-range host-seeking behaviors. Second, we used a locomotor activity monitor system to assess mosquito short-range behaviors. Compared to control uninfected mosquitoes, P. falciparum infection had no significant effect neither on long-range nor on short-range behaviors both at the immature and mature stages. This study, using a natural mosquito-malaria parasite association, indicates that manipulation of vector behavior may not be a general phenomenon. We speculate that the observed contrasting phenotypes with model systems might result from coevolution of the human parasite and its natural vector. Future experiments, using other sympatric malaria mosquito populations or species are required to test this hypothesis. In conclusion, our results highlight the importance of following up discoveries in laboratory model systems with studies on natural parasite–mosquito interactions to accurately predict the epidemiological, ecological and evolutionary consequences of parasite manipulation of vector

  19. PEST sequences in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum: a genomic study

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    Bell Angus

    2003-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Inhibitors of the protease calpain are known to have selectively toxic effects on Plasmodium falciparum. The enzyme has a natural inhibitor calpastatin and in eukaryotes is responsible for turnover of proteins containing short sequences enriched in certain amino acids (PEST sequences. The genome of P. falciparum was searched for this protease, its natural inhibitor and putative substrates. Methods The publicly available P. falciparum genome was found to have too many errors to permit reliable analysis. An earlier annotation of chromosome 2 was instead examined. PEST scores were determined for all annotated proteins. The published genome was searched for calpain and calpastatin homologs. Results Typical PEST sequences were found in 13% of the proteins on chromosome 2, including a surprising number of cell-surface proteins. The annotated calpain gene has a non-biological "intron" that appears to have been created to avoid an unrecognized frameshift. Only the catalytic domain has significant similarity with the vertebrate calpains. No calpastatin homologs were found in the published annotation. Conclusion A calpain gene is present in the genome and many putative substrates of this enzyme have been found. Calpastatin homologs may be found once the re-annotation is completed. Given the selective toxicity of calpain inhibitors, this enzyme may be worth exploring further as a potential drug target.

  20. Interrogating alkyl and arylalkylpolyamino (bis)urea and (bis)thiourea isosteres as potent antimalarial chemotypes against multiple lifecycle forms of Plasmodium falciparum parasites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verlinden, Bianca K.; de Beer, Marna; Pachaiyappan, Boobalan; Besaans, Ethan; Andayi, Warren A.; Reader, Janette; Niemand, Jandeli; van Biljon, Riette; Guy, Kiplin; Egan, Timothy; Woster, Patrick M.; Birkholtz, Lyn-Marie

    2015-01-01

    A new series of potent potent aryl/alkylated (bis)urea- and (bis)thiourea polyamine analogues were synthesized and evaluated in vitro for their antiplasmodial activity. Altering the carbon backbone and terminal substituents increased the potency of analogues in the compound library 3-fold, with the most active compounds, 15 and 16, showing half-maximal inhibitory concentrations (IC50 values) of 28 and 30 nM, respectively, against various Plasmodium falciparum parasite strains without any cross-resistance. In vitro evaluation of the cytotoxicity of these analogues revealed marked selectivity towards targeting malaria parasites compared to mammalian HepG2 cells (>5000-fold lower IC50 against the parasite). Preliminary biological evaluation of the polyamine analogue antiplasmodial phenotype revealed that (bis)urea compounds target parasite asexual proliferation, whereas (bis)thiourea compounds of the same series have the unique ability to block transmissible gametocyte forms of the parasite, indicating pluripharmacology against proliferative and non-proliferative forms of the parasite. In this manuscript, we describe these results and postulate a refined structure-activity relationship (SAR) model for antiplasmodial polyamine analogues. The terminally aryl/alkylated (bis)urea- and (bis)thiourea-polyamine analogues featuring a 3-5-3 or 3-6-3 carbon backbone represent a structurally novel and distinct class of potential antiplasmodials with activities in the low nanomolar range, and high selectivity against various lifecycle forms of P. falciparum parasites. PMID:25684422

  1. Plasmodium berghei Δp52&p36 parasites develop independent of a parasitophorous vacuole membrane in Huh-7 liver cells.

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    Ivo H J Ploemen

    Full Text Available The proteins P52 and P36 are expressed in the sporozoite stage of the murine malaria parasite Plasmodium berghei. Δp52&p36 sporozoites lacking expression of both proteins are severely compromised in their capability to develop into liver stage parasites and abort development soon after invasion; presumably due to the absence of a parasitophorous vacuole membrane (PVM. However, a small proportion of P. berghei Δp52&p36 parasites is capable to fully mature in hepatocytes causing breakthrough blood stage infections. We have studied the maturation of replicating Δp52&p36 parasites in cultured Huh-7 hepatocytes. Approximately 50% of Δp52&p36 parasites developed inside the nucleus of the hepatocyte but did not complete maturation and failed to produce merosomes. In contrast cytosolic Δp52&p36 parasites were able to fully mature and produced infectious merozoites. These Δp52&p36 parasites developed into mature schizonts in the absence of an apparent parasitophorous vacuole membrane as shown by immunofluorescence and electron microscopy. Merozoites derived from these maturing Δp52&p36 liver stages were infectious for C57BL/6 mice.

  2. Treatment of erythrocytes with the 2-cys peroxiredoxin inhibitor, Conoidin A, prevents the growth of Plasmodium falciparum and enhances parasite sensitivity to chloroquine.

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    Mariana Brizuela

    Full Text Available The human erythrocyte contains an abundance of the thiol-dependant peroxidase Peroxiredoxin-2 (Prx2, which protects the cell from the pro-oxidant environment it encounters during its 120 days of life in the blood stream. In malarial infections, the Plasmodium parasite invades red cells and imports Prx2 during intraerythrocytic development, presumably to supplement in its own degradation of peroxides generated during cell metabolism, especially hemoglobin (Hb digestion. Here we demonstrate that an irreversible Prx2 inhibitor, Conoidin A (2,3-bis(bromomethyl-1,4-dioxide-quinoxaline; BBMQ, has potent cytocidal activity against cultured P. falciparum. Parasite growth was also inhibited in red cells that were treated with BBMQ and then washed prior to parasite infection. These cells remained susceptible to merozoite invasion, but failed to support normal intraerythrocytic development. In addition the potency of chloroquine (CQ, an antimalarial drug that prevents the detoxification of Hb-derived heme, was significantly enhanced in the presence of BBMQ. CQ IC50 values decreased an order of magnitude when parasites were either co-incubated with BBMQ, or introduced into BBMQ-pretreated cells; these effects were equivalent for both drug-resistant and drug-sensitive parasite lines. Together these results indicate that treatment of red cells with BBMQ renders them incapable of supporting parasite growth and increases parasite sensitivity to CQ. We also propose that molecules such as BBMQ that target host cell proteins may constitute a novel host-directed therapeutic approach for treating malaria.

  3. Developmentally Regulated Ribosomal rDNA Genes in Plasmodium vivax: Biological Implications and Practical Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    1994-08-10

    eucaryotic ribosome synthesis. Biochem Cell Bioi 69: 5-22. Lewin , B., ed . (1980). In Gene Expression-2. Wiley, New York. pp.563-564. Li, J . , Wirtz, R...sporozoite invades the Hver cells and initiates an exoerythrocytic schizogony. Over a period of 5-15 days depending on the parasite species, the sporozoite...phase, erythrocytic schizogony, starts when the released merozoites enter the bloodstream and invade the red blood cells . The parasites proceed

  4. High-resolution three-dimensional imaging of red blood cells parasitized by Plasmodium falciparum and in situ hemozoin crystals using optical diffraction tomography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Kyoohyun; Yoon, HyeOk; Diez-Silva, Monica; Dao, Ming; Dasari, Ramachandra R.; Park, YongKeun

    2014-01-01

    We present high-resolution optical tomographic images of human red blood cells (RBC) parasitized by malaria-inducing Plasmodium falciparum (Pf)-RBCs. Three-dimensional (3-D) refractive index (RI) tomograms are reconstructed by recourse to a diffraction algorithm from multiple two-dimensional holograms with various angles of illumination. These 3-D RI tomograms of Pf-RBCs show cellular and subcellular structures of host RBCs and invaded parasites in fine detail. Full asexual intraerythrocytic stages of parasite maturation (ring to trophozoite to schizont stages) are then systematically investigated using optical diffraction tomography algorithms. These analyses provide quantitative information on the structural and chemical characteristics of individual host Pf-RBCs, parasitophorous vacuole, and cytoplasm. The in situ structural evolution and chemical characteristics of subcellular hemozoin crystals are also elucidated.

  5. The Clp Chaperones and Proteases of the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M El Bakkouri; A Pow; A Mulichak; K Cheung; J Artz; M Amani; S Fell; T de Koning-Ward; C Goodman; et al.

    2011-12-31

    The Clpchaperones and proteases play an important role in protein homeostasis in the cell. They are highly conserved across prokaryotes and found also in the mitochondria of eukaryotes and the chloroplasts of plants. They function mainly in the disaggregation, unfolding and degradation of native as well as misfolded proteins. Here, we provide a comprehensive analysis of the Clpchaperones and proteases in the humanmalariaparasitePlasmodiumfalciparum. The parasite contains four Clp ATPases, which we term PfClpB1, PfClpB2, PfClpC and PfClpM. One PfClpP, the proteolytic subunit, and one PfClpR, which is an inactive version of the protease, were also identified. Expression of all Clpchaperones and proteases was confirmed in blood-stage parasites. The proteins were localized to the apicoplast, a non-photosynthetic organelle that accommodates several important metabolic pathways in P. falciparum, with the exception of PfClpB2 (also known as Hsp101), which was found in the parasitophorous vacuole. Both PfClpP and PfClpR form mostly homoheptameric rings as observed by size-exclusion chromatography, analytical ultracentrifugation and electron microscopy. The X-ray structure of PfClpP showed the protein as a compacted tetradecamer similar to that observed for Streptococcus pneumoniae and Mycobacterium tuberculosis ClpPs. Our data suggest the presence of a ClpCRP complex in the apicoplast of P. falciparum.

  6. Lineage-specific positive selection at the merozoite surface protein 1 (msp1 locus of Plasmodium vivax and related simian malaria parasites

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    Kawai Satoru

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The 200 kDa merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP-1 of malaria parasites, a strong vaccine candidate, plays a key role during erythrocyte invasion and is a target of host protective immune response. Plasmodium vivax, the most widespread human malaria parasite, is closely related to parasites that infect Asian Old World monkeys, and has been considered to have become a parasite of man by host switch from a macaque malaria parasite. Several Asian monkey parasites have a range of natural hosts. The same parasite species shows different disease manifestations among host species. This suggests that host immune responses to P. vivax-related malaria parasites greatly differ among host species (albeit other factors. It is thus tempting to invoke that a major immune target parasite protein such as MSP-1 underwent unique evolution, depending on parasite species that exhibit difference in host range and host specificity. Results We performed comparative phylogenetic and population genetic analyses of the gene encoding MSP-1 (msp1 from P. vivax and nine P. vivax-related simian malaria parasites. The inferred phylogenetic tree of msp1 significantly differed from that of the mitochondrial genome, with a striking displacement of P. vivax from a position close to P. cynomolgi in the mitochondrial genome tree to an outlier of Asian monkey parasites. Importantly, positive selection was inferred for two ancestral branches, one leading to P. inui and P. hylobati and the other leading to P. vivax, P. fieldi and P. cynomolgi. This ancestral positive selection was estimated to have occurred three to six million years ago, coinciding with the period of radiation of Asian macaques. Comparisons of msp1 polymorphisms between P. vivax, P. inui and P. cynomolgi revealed that while some positively selected amino acid sites or regions are shared by these parasites, amino acid changes greatly differ, suggesting that diversifying selection is acting species

  7. Preferential transcription of conserved rif genes in two phenotypically distinct Plasmodium falciparum parasite lines

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Christian W; Magistrado, Pamela A; Nielsen, Morten A

    2009-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum variant surface antigens (VSA) are targets of protective immunity to malaria. Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) and repetitive interspersed family (RIFIN) proteins are encoded by the two variable multigene families, var and rif genes, respectively....... Whereas PfEMP1s are known to mediate cytoadhesion, the function of RIFINs is unknown. The sequence diversity and organisation of rif genes of the P. falciparum clones 3D7, HB3, DD2, and IT/FCR3 were investigated using a tree-building method which allowed sub-grouping of RIFINs into distinct groups. Two...... transcribed in the VAR2CSA-expressing parasite line. In addition, two rif genes were found transcribed at early and late intra-erythrocyte stages independently of var gene transcription. Rif genes are organised in groups and inter-genomic conserved gene families, suggesting that RIFIN sub-groups may have...

  8. Effects of age, hemoglobin type and parasite strain on IgG recognition of Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes in Malian children.

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    Amir E Zeituni

    Full Text Available Naturally-acquired antibody responses to antigens on the surface of Plasmodium falciparum-infected red blood cells (iRBCs have been implicated in antimalarial immunity. To profile the development of this immunity, we have been studying a cohort of Malian children living in an area with intense seasonal malaria transmission.We collected plasma from a sub-cohort of 176 Malian children aged 3-11 years, before (May and after (December the 2009 transmission season. To measure the effect of hemoglobin (Hb type on antibody responses, we enrolled age-matched HbAA, HbAS and HbAC children. To quantify antibody recognition of iRBCs, we designed a high-throughput flow cytometry assay to rapidly test numerous plasma samples against multiple parasite strains. We evaluated antibody reactivity of each plasma sample to 3 laboratory-adapted parasite lines (FCR3, D10, PC26 and 4 short-term-cultured parasite isolates (2 Malian and 2 Cambodian. 97% of children recognized ≥1 parasite strain and the proportion of IgG responders increased significantly during the transmission season for most parasite strains. Both strain-specific and strain-transcending IgG responses were detected, and varied by age, Hb type and parasite strain. In addition, the breadth of IgG responses to parasite strains increased with age in HbAA, but not in HbAS or HbAC, children.Our assay detects both strain-specific and strain-transcending IgG responses to iRBCs. The magnitude and breadth of these responses varied not only by age, but also by Hb type and parasite strain used. These findings indicate that studies of acquired humoral immunity should account for Hb type and test large numbers of diverse parasite strains.

  9. Asexual populations of the human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, use a two-step genomic strategy to acquire accurate, beneficial DNA amplifications.

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    Jennifer L Guler

    Full Text Available Malaria drug resistance contributes to up to a million annual deaths. Judicious deployment of new antimalarials and vaccines could benefit from an understanding of early molecular events that promote the evolution of parasites. Continuous in vitro challenge of Plasmodium falciparum parasites with a novel dihydroorotate dehydrogenase (DHODH inhibitor reproducibly selected for resistant parasites. Genome-wide analysis of independently-derived resistant clones revealed a two-step strategy to evolutionary success. Some haploid blood-stage parasites first survive antimalarial pressure through fortuitous DNA duplications that always included the DHODH gene. Independently-selected parasites had different sized amplification units but they were always flanked by distant A/T tracks. Higher level amplification and resistance was attained using a second, more efficient and more accurate, mechanism for head-to-tail expansion of the founder unit. This second homology-based process could faithfully tune DNA copy numbers in either direction, always retaining the unique DNA amplification sequence from the original A/T-mediated duplication for that parasite line. Pseudo-polyploidy at relevant genomic loci sets the stage for gaining additional mutations at the locus of interest. Overall, we reveal a population-based genomic strategy for mutagenesis that operates in human stages of P. falciparum to efficiently yield resistance-causing genetic changes at the correct locus in a successful parasite. Importantly, these founding events arise with precision; no other new amplifications are seen in the resistant haploid blood stage parasite. This minimizes the need for meiotic genetic cleansing that can only occur in sexual stage development of the parasite in mosquitoes.

  10. Asexual populations of the human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, use a two-step genomic strategy to acquire accurate, beneficial DNA amplifications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guler, Jennifer L; Freeman, Daniel L; Ahyong, Vida; Patrapuvich, Rapatbhorn; White, John; Gujjar, Ramesh; Phillips, Margaret A; DeRisi, Joseph; Rathod, Pradipsinh K

    2013-01-01

    Malaria drug resistance contributes to up to a million annual deaths. Judicious deployment of new antimalarials and vaccines could benefit from an understanding of early molecular events that promote the evolution of parasites. Continuous in vitro challenge of Plasmodium falciparum parasites with a novel dihydroorotate dehydrogenase (DHODH) inhibitor reproducibly selected for resistant parasites. Genome-wide analysis of independently-derived resistant clones revealed a two-step strategy to evolutionary success. Some haploid blood-stage parasites first survive antimalarial pressure through fortuitous DNA duplications that always included the DHODH gene. Independently-selected parasites had different sized amplification units but they were always flanked by distant A/T tracks. Higher level amplification and resistance was attained using a second, more efficient and more accurate, mechanism for head-to-tail expansion of the founder unit. This second homology-based process could faithfully tune DNA copy numbers in either direction, always retaining the unique DNA amplification sequence from the original A/T-mediated duplication for that parasite line. Pseudo-polyploidy at relevant genomic loci sets the stage for gaining additional mutations at the locus of interest. Overall, we reveal a population-based genomic strategy for mutagenesis that operates in human stages of P. falciparum to efficiently yield resistance-causing genetic changes at the correct locus in a successful parasite. Importantly, these founding events arise with precision; no other new amplifications are seen in the resistant haploid blood stage parasite. This minimizes the need for meiotic genetic cleansing that can only occur in sexual stage development of the parasite in mosquitoes.

  11. PI4 Kinase Is a Prophylactic but Not Radical Curative Target in Plasmodium vivax-Type Malaria Parasites

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zeeman, A.M.; Lakshminarayana, S.B.; Werff, N. van der; Klooster, E.J.; Wel, A. van der; Kondreddi, R.R.; Bodenreider, C.; Simon, O.; Sauerwein, R.; Yeung, B.K.; Diagana, T.T.; Kocken, C.H.

    2016-01-01

    Two Plasmodium PI4 kinase (PI4K) inhibitors, KDU691 and LMV599, were selected for in vivo testing as causal prophylactic and radical-cure agents for Plasmodium cynomolgi sporozoite-infected rhesus macaques, based on their in vitro activity against liver stages. Animals were infected with P.

  12. Global and local genetic diversity at two microsatellite loci in Plasmodium vivax parasites from Asia, Africa and South America

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schousboe, Mette L; Ranjitkar, Samir; Rajakaruna, Rupika S

    2014-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Even though Plasmodium vivax has the widest worldwide distribution of the human malaria species and imposes a serious impact on global public health, the investigation of genetic diversity in this species has been limited in comparison to Plasmodium falciparum. Markers of genetic...

  13. Prevalence of G6PD deficiency and Plasmodium falciparum parasites in asymptomatic school children living in southern Ghana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amoah, Linda Eva; Opong, Akua; Ayanful-Torgby, Ruth; Abankwa, Joana; Acquah, Festus K

    2016-07-26

    Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency is an X-linked genetic disorder that results in impaired enzyme activity. Although G6PD deficiency is globally distributed it is more prevalent in malaria-endemic countries. Several mutations have been identified in the G6PD gene, which alter enzyme activity. The G6PD genotype predominantly found in sub-Saharan Africa is the G6PDB (G6PD376A) with (G6PD376G) and G6PDA- (G6PD376G/202A, G6PD376G/542T, G6PD376G/680T and G6PD376G/968C) occurring at lower frequencies. The aim of this study was to identify the prevalence of G6PD deficiency and asymptomatic Plasmodium falciparum carriage in children living in southern Ghana and determine whether G6PD deficiency influences asymptomatic carriage of P. falciparum parasites. Blood samples were obtained once a month from 170 healthy Ghanaian school children aged between 5 and 12 years from Basic schools in two communities Obom and Abura with similar rainfall patterns and malaria peak seasons. G6PD enzyme activity was assessed using the qualitative G6PD RDT kit (AccessBIO). G6PD genotyping and asymptomatic parasite carriage was determined by PCR followed by restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) of DNA extracted from dried blood spots. The only sub-Saharan G6PD A- allele detected was the A376G/G202A found in 12.4 % (21/170), of the children and distributed as 4.1 % (7/170) A-, 1.8 % (3/170) A-/A- homozygous deficient males and females and 6.5 % (11/170) A/A- and B/A- heterozygous deficient females. Phenotypically, 10.6 % (15/142) of the children were G6PD deficient. The asymptomatic carriage of P. falciparum by PCR was 50, 29.4, 38.2 and 38.8 % over the months of February through May 2015, respectively, and 28.8, 22.4, 25.9 and 5.9 % by microscopy during the same periods. G6PD deficiency was significantly associated with a lowered risk of PCR-estimated asymptomatic P. falciparum carriage in children during the off peak malaria season in Southern Ghana.

  14. A case report of Plasmodium vivax , Plasmodium falciparum and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    India being a tropical country, parasitic infections especially with Plasmodium species are very common in this region. The present case report is that of Plasmodium vivax, Plasmodium falciparum and dengue co‑infection in a 6 months pregnant lady who was timely diagnosed and appropriately treated followed by a ...

  15. Positive selection of Plasmodium falciparum parasites with multiple var2csa-type PfEMP1 genes during the course of infection in pregnant women.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sander, Adam F; Salanti, Ali; Lavstsen, Thomas; Nielsen, Morten A; Theander, Thor G; Leke, Rose G F; Lo, Yeung Y; Bobbili, Naveen; Arnot, David E; Taylor, Diane W

    2011-06-01

    Placental malaria infections are caused by Plasmodium falciparum-infected red blood cells sequestering in the placenta by binding to chondroitin sulfate A, mediated by VAR2CSA, a variant of the PfEMP1 family of adhesion antigens. Recent studies have shown that many P. falciparum genomes have multiple genes coding for different VAR2CSA proteins, and parasites with >1 var2csa gene appear to be more common in pregnant women with placental malaria than in nonpregnant individuals. We present evidence that, in pregnant women, parasites containing multiple var2csa-type genes possess a selective advantage over parasites with a single var2csa gene. Accumulation of parasites with multiple copies of the var2csa gene during the course of pregnancy was also correlated with the development of antibodies involved in blocking VAR2CSA adhesion. The data suggest that multiplicity of var2csa-type genes enables P. falciparum parasites to persist for a longer period of time during placental infections, probably because of their greater capacity for antigenic variation and evasion of variant-specific immune responses.

  16. Melatonin-Induced Temporal Up-Regulation of Gene Expression Related to Ubiquitin/Proteasome System (UPS in the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernanda C. Koyama

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available There is an increasing understanding that melatonin and the ubiquitin/ proteasome system (UPS interact to regulate multiple cellular functions. Post-translational modifications such as ubiquitination are important modulators of signaling processes, cell cycle and many other cellular functions. Previously, we reported a melatonin-induced upregulation of gene expression related to ubiquitin/proteasome system (UPS in Plasmodium falciparum, the human malaria parasite, and that P. falciparum protein kinase 7 influences this process. This implies a role of melatonin, an indolamine, in modulating intraerythrocytic development of the parasite. In this report we demonstrate by qPCR analysis, that melatonin induces gene upregulation in nine out of fourteen genes of the UPS, consisting of the same set of genes previously reported, between 4 to 5 h after melatonin treatment. We demonstrate that melatonin causes a temporally controlled gene expression of UPS members.

  17. Melatonin-induced temporal up-regulation of gene expression related to ubiquitin/proteasome system (UPS) in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koyama, Fernanda C; Azevedo, Mauro F; Budu, Alexandre; Chakrabarti, Debopam; Garcia, Célia R S

    2014-12-03

    There is an increasing understanding that melatonin and the ubiquitin/ proteasome system (UPS) interact to regulate multiple cellular functions. Post-translational modifications such as ubiquitination are important modulators of signaling processes, cell cycle and many other cellular functions. Previously, we reported a melatonin-induced upregulation of gene expression related to ubiquitin/proteasome system (UPS) in Plasmodium falciparum, the human malaria parasite, and that P. falciparum protein kinase 7 influences this process. This implies a role of melatonin, an indolamine, in modulating intraerythrocytic development of the parasite. In this report we demonstrate by qPCR analysis, that melatonin induces gene upregulation in nine out of fourteen genes of the UPS, consisting of the same set of genes previously reported, between 4 to 5 h after melatonin treatment. We demonstrate that melatonin causes a temporally controlled gene expression of UPS members.

  18. Plasmodium falciparum in vitro continuous culture conditions: A comparison of parasite susceptibility and tolerance to anti-malarial drugs throughout the asexual intra-erythrocytic life cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duffy, Sandra; Avery, Vicky M

    2017-12-01

    The continuous culture of Plasmodium falciparum is often seen as a means to an end, that end being to probe the biology of the parasite in question, and ultimately for many in the malaria drug discovery arena, to identify means of killing the parasite in order to treat malaria. In vitro continuous culture of Plasmodium falciparum is a fundamental requirement when undertaking malaria research where the primary objectives utilise viable parasites of a desired lifecycle stage. This investigation, and resulting data, compared the impact culturing Plasmodium falciparum long term (4 months) in different environmental conditions had on experimental outcomes and thus conclusions. The example presented here focused specifically on the effect culture conditions had on the in vitro tolerance of Plasmodium falciparum to standard anti-malarial drugs, including artemisinin and lumefantrine. Historical data from an independent experiment for 3D7-ALB (5% O 2 ) was also compared with that obtained from this study. We concluded that parasites cultured for several months in media supplemented with a serum substitute such as Albumax II ® or within hyperoxic conditions (21% O 2 ), demonstrate highly variable responses to artemisinin and lumefantrine but not all anti-malarial drugs, when compared to those cultured in human serum in combination with Albumax II ® under normoxic conditions (5% O 2 ) for the parasite. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  19. Prevalence of mutations in the antifolates resistance-associated genes (dhfr and dhps) in Plasmodium vivax parasites from Eastern and Central Sudan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pirahmadi, Sekineh; Talha, Badawi Abdelbagi; Nour, Bakri Y M; Zakeri, Sedigheh

    2014-08-01

    Plasmodium vivax is the most geographically widespread species, and its burden has been increasingly documented in Eastern and Central Sudan. P. vivax becomes the crucial challenge during elimination programs; thus an effective treatment is necessary to prevent the development and the spread of resistant parasites. Therefore, the main objective of the present study was to provide data on the prevalence of molecular markers in two genes (pvdhfr and pvdhps) associated with SP resistance after nine years of AS+SP deployment among P. vivax parasites from Eastern and Central Sudan using PCR-RFLP. During 2012-2013, a number of 66 blood spots were obtained on filter paper. The samples were collected before treatment from febrile patients who were microscopically positive for P. vivax, from three states in Eastern and Central Sudan (Gezira, Gedarif, and Kassala). Mutations were detected in three codons of pvdhfr (I13L, S58R, and S117N) and none in pvdhps. The majority of P. vivax parasites had double mutations (58R/117N, 58%) in dhfr gene, while all parasites were wild type in dhps gene. In addition, limited distinct haplotypes (n=4) were detected. In conclusion, the prevalence of mutations associated with SP resistance is low in Eastern and Central Sudan. Such information is necessary for guiding malaria control measures in the frame of Roll Back Malaria strategies for the elimination of malaria in the world. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Prospects and Pitfalls of Pregnancy-Associated Malaria Vaccination Based on the Natural Immune Response to Plasmodium falciparum VAR2CSA-Expressing Parasites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth G. Kane

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Pregnancy-associated malaria, a manifestation of severe malaria, is the cause of up to 200,000 infant deaths a year, through the effects of placental insufficiency leading to growth restriction and preterm delivery. Development of a vaccine is one strategy for control. Plasmodium falciparum-infected red blood cells accumulate in the placenta through specific binding of pregnancy-associated parasite variants that express the VAR2CSA antigen to chondroitin sulphate A on the surface of syncytiotrophoblast cells. Parasite accumulation, accompanied by an inflammatory infiltrate, disrupts the cytokine balance of pregnancy with the potential to cause placental damage and compromise foetal growth. Multigravid women develop immunity towards VAR2CSA-expressing parasites in a gravidity-dependent manner which prevents unfavourable pregnancy outcomes. Although current vaccine design, targeting VAR2CSA antigens, has succeeded in inducing antibodies artificially, this candidate may not provide protection during the first trimester and may only protect those women living in areas endemic for malaria. It is concluded that while insufficient information about placental-parasite interactions is presently available to produce an effective vaccine, incremental progress is being made towards achieving this goal.

  1. Imidazopyridazine inhibitors of Plasmodium falciparum calcium dependent protein kinase 1 also target cGMP-dependent protein kinase and heat shock protein 90 to kill the parasite at different stages of intracellular development.

    OpenAIRE

    Green, JL; Moon, RW; Whalley, D; Bowyer, PW; Wallace, C.; Rochani, A; Nageshan, RK; Howell, SA; Grainger, M.; Jones, HM; Ansell, KH; Chapman, TM; Taylor, DL; Osborne, SA; Baker, DA

    2015-01-01

    : Imidazopyridazine compounds are potent, ATP-competitive inhibitors of calcium-dependent protein kinase 1 (CDPK1) and of Plasmodium falciparum parasite growth in vitro. Here, we show that these compounds can be divided into two classes depending on the nature of the aromatic linker between the core and the R2 substituent group. Class 1 compounds have a pyrimidine linker and inhibit parasite growth at late schizogony, whereas class 2 compounds have a nonpyrimidine linker and inhibit growth in...

  2. Transcript and protein expression profile of PF11_0394, a Plasmodium falciparum protein expressed in salivary gland sporozoites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Schlarman Maggie S

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plasmodium falciparum malaria is a significant problem around the world today, thus there is still a need for new control methods to be developed. Because the sporozoite displays dual infectivity for both the mosquito salivary glands and vertebrate host tissue, it is a good target for vaccine development. Methods The P. falciparum gene, PF11_0394, was chosen as a candidate for study due to its potential role in the invasion of host tissues. This gene, which was selected using a data mining approach from PlasmoDB, is expressed both at the transcriptional and protein levels in sporozoites and likely encodes a putative surface protein. Using reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR and green fluorescent protein (GFP-trafficking studies, a transcript and protein expression profile of PF11_0394 was determined. Results The PF11_0394 protein has orthologs in other Plasmodium species and Apicomplexans, but none outside of the group Apicomplexa. PF11_0394 transcript was found to be present during both the sporozoite and erythrocytic stages of the parasite life cycle, but no transcript was detected during axenic exoerythrocytic stages. Despite the presence of transcript throughout several life cycle stages, the PF11_0394 protein was only detected in salivary gland sporozoites. Conclusions PF11_0394 appears to be a protein uniquely detected in salivary gland sporozoites. Even though a specific function of PF11_0394 has not been determined in P. falciparum biology, it could be another candidate for a new vaccine.

  3. Kinetics of B Cell responses to Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 in Ghanaian women naturally exposed to malaria parasites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ampomah, Paulina; Stevenson, Liz; Ofori, Michael F

    2014-01-01

    confirmed earlier reports of high atypical memory B cell frequencies among residents of P. falciparum-endemic areas, and indicated an additional effect of pregnancy. Our study provides new knowledge regarding immunity to P. falciparum malaria and underpins efforts to develop PfEMP1-based vaccines against......Naturally acquired protective immunity to Plasmodium falciparum malaria takes years to develop. It relies mainly on Abs, particularly IgG specific for Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) proteins on the infected erythrocyte surface. It is only partially understood why...

  4. Parasites

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    2010-05-06

    In this podcast, a listener wants to know what to do if he thinks he has a parasite or parasitic disease.  Created: 5/6/2010 by National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID).   Date Released: 5/6/2010.

  5. Temporal trends of sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP) drug-resistance molecular markers in Plasmodium falciparum parasites from pregnant women in western Kenya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iriemenam, Nnaemeka C; Shah, Monica; Gatei, Wangeci; van Eijk, Anna M; Ayisi, John; Kariuki, Simon; Vanden Eng, Jodi; Owino, Simon O; Lal, Ashima A; Omosun, Yusuf O; Otieno, Kephas; Desai, Meghna; ter Kuile, Feiko O; Nahlen, Bernard; Moore, Julie; Hamel, Mary J; Ouma, Peter; Slutsker, Laurence; Shi, Ya Ping

    2012-07-04

    Resistance to sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP) in Plasmodium falciparum parasites is associated with mutations in the dihydrofolate reductase (dhfr) and dihydropteroate synthase (dhps) genes and has spread worldwide. SP remains the recommended drug for intermittent preventive treatment for malaria in pregnancy (IPTp) and information on population prevalence of the SP resistance molecular markers in pregnant women is limited. Temporal trends of SP resistance molecular markers were investigated in 489 parasite samples collected from pregnant women at delivery from three different observational studies between 1996 and 2009 in Kenya, where SP was adopted for both IPTp and case treatment policies in 1998. Using real-time polymerase chain reaction, pyrosequencing and direct sequencing, 10 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of SP resistance molecular markers were assayed. The prevalence of quintuple mutant (dhfr N51I/C59R/S108N and dhps A437G/K540E combined genotype) increased from 7% in the first study (1996-2000) to 88% in the third study (2008-2009). When further stratified by sample collection year and adoption of IPTp policy, the prevalence of the quintuple mutant increased from 2.4% in 1998 to 44.4% three years after IPTp policy adoption, seemingly in parallel with the increase in percentage of SP use in pregnancy. However, in the 1996-2000 study, more mutations in the combined dhfr/dhps genotype were associated with SP use during pregnancy only in univariable analysis and no associations were detected in the 2002-2008 and 2008-2009 studies. In addition, in the 2008-2009 study, 5.3% of the parasite samples carried the dhps triple mutant (A437G/K540E/A581G). There were no differences in the prevalence of SP mutant genotypes between the parasite samples from HIV + and HIV- women over time and between paired peripheral and placental samples. There was a significant increase in dhfr/dhps quintuple mutant and the emergence of new genotype containing dhps 581 in the

  6. African Great Apes Are Natural Hosts of Multiple Related Malaria Species, including Plasmodium falciparum

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Franck Prugnolle; Patrick Durand; Cécile Neel; Benjamin Ollomo; Francisco J. Ayala; Céline Arnathau; Lucie Etienne; Eitel Mpoudi-Ngole; Dieudonné Nkoghe; Eric Leroy; Eric Delaporte; Martine Peeters; François Renaud

    2010-01-01

    .... Recently, Plasmodium gaboni, another closely related chimpanzee parasite, was discovered, suggesting that the diversity of Plasmodium circulating in great apes in Africa might have been underestimated...

  7. Host-parasite interaction: selective Pv-fam-a family proteins of Plasmodium vivax bind to a restricted number of human erythrocyte receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeeshan, Mohammad; Tyagi, Rupesh Kumar; Tyagi, Kriti; Alam, Mohd Shoeb; Sharma, Yagya Dutta

    2015-04-01

    Plasmodium vivax synthesizes the largest number of 36 tryptophan-rich proteins belonging to the Pv-fam-a family. These parasite proteins need to be characterized for their biological function because tryptophan-rich proteins from other Plasmodium species have been proposed as vaccine candidates. Recombinant P. vivax tryptophan-rich antigens (PvTRAgs) were used to determine their erythrocyte-binding activity by a cell-based enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, flow cytometry, and a rosetting assay. Only 4 (PvTRAg26.3, PvTRAg34, PvTRAg36, and PvTRAg36.6) of 21 PvTRAgs bind to host erythrocytes. The cross-competition data indicated that PvTRAg36 and PvTRAg34 share their erythrocyte receptors with previously described proteins PvTRAg38 and PvTRAg33.5, respectively. On the other hand, PvTRAg26.3 and PvTRAg36.6 cross-compete with each other and not with any other PvTRAg, indicating that these 2 proteins bind to the same but yet another set of erythrocyte receptor(s). Together, 10 of 36 PvTRAgs possess erythrocyte-binding activity in which each protein recognizes >1 erythrocyte receptor. Further, each erythrocyte receptor is shared by >1 PvTRAg. This redundancy may be useful for the parasite to invade red blood cells and cause disease pathogenesis, and it can be exploited to develop therapeutics against P. vivax malaria. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Infectious Diseases Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  8. Parasites

    OpenAIRE

    Mehlum, Halvor; Moene, Karl O.; Torvik, Ragnar

    2003-01-01

    Unproductive enterprises that feed on productive businesses, are rampant in developing countries. These parasitic enterprises take divergent forms, some headed by violent bandits and brutal mafia bosses, others by organized middlemen or smart political insiders. All of them seem to have the profit motive in common. A consequence of parasitic enterprises is that societies may be locked into a self enforcing configuration of beliefs and practices that result in persistent poverty. In some insta...

  9. Bionomics of Anopheles latens in Kapit, Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo in relation to the transmission of zoonotic simian malaria parasite Plasmodium knowlesi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Cheong H; Vythilingam, Indra; Matusop, Asmad; Chan, Seng T; Singh, Balbir

    2008-03-31

    A large focus of human infections with Plasmodium knowlesi, a simian parasite naturally found in long-tailed and pig-tailed macaques was discovered in the Kapit Division of Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo. A study was initiated to identify the vectors of malaria, to elucidate where transmission is taking place and to understand the bionomics of the vectors in Kapit. Three different ecological sites in the forest, farm and longhouse in the Kapit district were selected for the study. Mosquitoes were collected by human landing collection at all sites and at the forest also by monkey-baited-traps situated on three different levels. All mosquitoes were identified and salivary glands and midguts of anopheline mosquitoes were dissected to determine the presence of malaria parasites. Over an 11-month period, a total of 2,504 Anopheles mosquitoes comprising 12 species were caught; 1,035 at the farm, 774 at the forest and 425 at the longhouse. Anopheles latens (62.3%) and Anopheles watsonii (30.6%) were the predominant species caught in the forested ecotypes, while in the farm Anopheles donaldi (49.9%) and An. latens (35.6%) predominated. In the long house, An. latens (29.6%) and An. donaldi (22.8%) were the major Anopheline species. However, An. latens was the only mosquito positive for sporozoites and it was found to be attracted to both human and monkey hosts. In monkey-baited net traps, it preferred to bite monkeys at the canopy level than at ground level. An. latens was found biting early as 18.00 hours. Anopheles latens is the main vector for P. knowlesi malaria parasites in the Kapit District of Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo. The study underscores the relationship between ecology, abundance and bionomics of anopheline fauna. The simio-anthropophagic and acrodendrophilic behaviour of An. latens makes it an efficient vector for the transmission of P. knowlesi parasites to both human and monkey hosts.

  10. In vitro Plasmodium falciparum drug sensitivity assay: inhibition of parasite growth by incorporation of stomatocytogenic amphiphiles into the erythrocyte membrane

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ziegler, Hanne L; Staerk, Dan; Christensen, Jette

    2002-01-01

    and the membrane curvature changes caused by lupeol was observed. Preincubation of erythrocytes with lupeol, followed by extensive washing, made the cells unsuitable for parasite growth, suggesting that the compound incorporates into erythrocyte membrane irreversibly. On the other hand, lupeol-treated parasite...... culture continued to grow well in untreated erythrocytes. Thus, the antiplasmodial activity of lupeol appears to be indirect, being due to stomatocytic transformation of the host cell membrane and not to toxic effects via action on a drug target within the parasite. A number of amphiphiles that cause...... stomatocyte formation, but not those causing echinocyte formation, were shown to inhibit growth of the parasites, apparently via a mechanism similar to that of lupeol. Since antiplasmodial agents that inhibit parasite growth through erythrocyte membrane modifications must be regarded as unsuitable as leads...

  11. Combining parasite lactate dehydrogenase-based and histidine-rich protein 2-based rapid tests to improve specificity for diagnosis of malaria Due to Plasmodium knowlesi and other Plasmodium species in Sabah, Malaysia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grigg, Matthew J; William, Timothy; Barber, Bridget E; Parameswaran, Uma; Bird, Elspeth; Piera, Kim; Aziz, Ammar; Dhanaraj, Prabakaran; Yeo, Tsin W; Anstey, Nicholas M

    2014-06-01

    Plasmodium knowlesi causes severe and fatal malaria in Malaysia. Microscopic misdiagnosis is common and may delay appropriate treatment. P. knowlesi can cross-react with "species-specific" parasite lactate dehydrogenase (pLDH) monoclonal antibodies used in rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) to detect P. falciparum and P. vivax. At one tertiary-care hospital and two district hospitals in Sabah, we prospectively evaluated two combination RDTs for malaria diagnosis by using both a pan-Plasmodium-pLDH (pan-pLDH)/P. falciparum-specific-pLDH (Pf-pLDH) RDT (OptiMAL-IT) and a non-P. falciparum VOM-pLDH/Pf-HRP2 RDT (CareStart). Differential cross-reactivity among these combinations was hypothesized to differentiate P. knowlesi from other Plasmodium monoinfections. Among 323 patients with PCR-confirmed P. knowlesi (n = 193), P. falciparum (n = 93), and P. vivax (n = 37) monoinfections, the VOM-pLDH individual component had the highest sensitivity for nonsevere (35%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 27 to 43%) and severe (92%; CI, 81 to 100%) P. knowlesi malaria. CareStart demonstrated a P. knowlesi sensitivity of 42% (CI, 34 to 49%) and specificity of 74% (CI, 65 to 82%), a P. vivax sensitivity of 83% (CI, 66 to 93%) and specificity of 71% (CI, 65 to 76%), and a P. falciparum sensitivity of 97% (CI, 90 to 99%) and specificity of 99% (CI, 97 to 100%). OptiMAL-IT demonstrated a P. knowlesi sensitivity of 32% (CI, 25 to 39%) and specificity of 21% (CI, 15 to 29%), a P. vivax sensitivity of 60% (CI, 42 to 75%) and specificity of 97% (CI, 94 to 99%), and a P. falciparum sensitivity of 82% (CI, 72 to 89%) and specificity of 39% (CI, 33 to 46%). The combination of CareStart plus OptiMAL-IT for P. knowlesi using predefined criteria gave a sensitivity of 25% (CI, 19 to 32%) and specificity of 97% (CI, 92 to 99%). Combining two RDT combinations was highly specific for P. knowlesi malaria diagnosis; however, sensitivity was poor. The specificity of pLDH RDTs was decreased for P. vivax and P

  12. Analysis of hematologic and serum chemistry values of Spheniscus magellanicus with molecular detection of avian malarial parasites (Plasmodium spp.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabrina D.E. Campos

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Magellanic penguins (Spheniscus magellanicus routinely migrate from their breeding colonies to Southern Brazil often contracting diseases during this migration, notably avian malaria, which has been already reported in Brazil and throughout the world. Detection of Plasmodium spp. in blood smears is the routine diagnostic method of avian malaria, however it has a low sensitivity rate when compared to molecular methods. Considering the negative impact of avian malaria on penguins, the aim of this study was to detect the presence of Plasmodium spp. in Magellanic penguins using Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR and by verifying clinical, hematological, and biochemical alterations in blood samples as well as to verify the likely prognosis in response to infection. Blood samples were obtained from 75 penguins to determine packed cell volume (PCV, red blood cell (RBC and white blood cell (WBC counts, mean corpuscular volume (MCV, uric acid, total protein, albumin, globulin and aspartate aminotransferase (AST activity levels. Whole blood samples were used for PCR assays. Plasmodium spp. was detected in 32.0% of the specimens using PCR and in 29.3% using microscopic analyses. Anorexia, diarrhea and neurological disorders were more frequent in penguins with malaria and a significant weight difference between infected and non-infected penguins was detected. PCV and MCV rates showed no significant difference. RBC and WBC counts were lower in animals with avian malaria and leukopenia was present in some penguins. Basophil and lymphocyte counts were lower in infected penguins along with high monocyte counts. There was no significant difference in AST activities between infected and non-infected animals. There was a significant increase in uric acid values, however a decrease in albumin values was observed in infected penguins. Based on this study, we concluded that Plasmodium spp. occurs in Magellanic penguins of rehabilitation centers in Southeastern Brazil

  13. Identification and characterization of the merozoite surface protein 1 (msp1) gene in a host-generalist avian malaria parasite, Plasmodium relictum (lineages SGS1 and GRW4) with the use of blood transcriptome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hellgren, Olof; Kutzer, Megan; Bensch, Staffan; Valkiūnas, Gediminas; Palinauskas, Vaidas

    2013-10-30

    The merozoite surface protein 1 (msp1) is one of the most studied vaccine candidate genes in mammalian Plasmodium spp. to have been used for investigations of epidemiology, population structures, and immunity to infections. However methodological difficulties have impeded the use of nuclear markers such as msp1 in Plasmodium parasites causing avian malaria. Data from an infection transcriptome of the host generalist avian malaria parasite Plasmodium relictum was used to identify and characterize the msp1 gene from two different isolates (mtDNA lineages SGS1 and GRW4). The aim was to investigate whether the msp1 gene in avian malaria species shares the properties of the msp1 gene in Plasmodium falciparum in terms of block variability, conserved anchor points and repeat motifs, and further to investigate the degree to which the gene might be informative in avian malaria parasites for population and epidemiological studies. Reads from 454 sequencing of birds infected with avian malaria was used to develop Sanger sequencing protocols for the msp1 gene of P. relictum. Genetic variability between variable and conserved blocks of the gene was compared within and between avian malaria parasite species, including P. falciparum. Genetic variability of the msp1 gene in P. relictum was compared with six other nuclear genes and the mtDNA gene cytochrome b. The msp1 gene of P. relictum shares the same general pattern of variable and conserved blocks as found in P. falciparum, although the variable blocks exhibited less variability than P. falciparum. The variation across the gene blocks in P. falciparum spanned from being as conserved as within species variation in P. relictum to being as variable as between the two avian malaria species (P. relictum and Plasmodium gallinaceum) in the variable blocks. In P. relictum the highly conserved p19 region of the peptide was identified, which included two epidermal growth factor-like domains and a fully conserved GPI anchor point. This

  14. A secretory multifunctional serine protease, DegP of Plasmodium falciparum, plays an important role in thermo-oxidative stress, parasite growth and development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Shweta; Jadli, Mohit; Singh, Anu; Arora, Kavita; Malhotra, Pawan

    2014-03-01

    Plasmodium falciparum heat shock proteins and proteases are known for their indispensable roles in parasite virulence and survival in the host cell. They neutralize various host-derived stress responses that are deleterious for parasite growth and invasion. We report identification and functional characterization of the first DegP from an apicomplexan (P. falciparum). To determine the molecular identity and functions of the parasite-encoded DegP, we complemented the Escherichia coli degP null mutant with a putative PfdegP gene, and the results showed that PfDegP complements the growth defect of the temperature sensitive DegP-deficient mutant and imparts resistance to non-permissive temperatures and oxidative stress. Molecular interaction studies showed that PfDegP exists as a complex with parasite-encoded heat shock protein 70, iron superoxide dismutase and enolase. DegP expression is significantly induced in parasite culture upon heat shock/oxidative stress. Our data suggest that the PfDegP protein may play a role in the growth and development of P. falciparum through its ability to confer protection against thermal/oxidative stress. Antibody against DegP showed anti-plasmodial activity against blood-stage parasites in vitro, suggesting that PfDegP and its associated complex may be a potential focus for new anti-malarial therapies. ●PfDegP physically interacts with PfHsp70 and PfEno by anti-bait co-immunoprecipitation (View interaction) ●PfDegP physically interacts with PfEno, PfSod, PfOat, PfHsp70, PfLDH and PfGpi by anti-bait co-immunoprecipitation (View interaction) ●PfHsp-70 and PfDegP co-localize by fluorescence microscopy (View interaction) ●PfDegP physically interacts with PfOat, PfHsp70, PfEno, PfSod, PfGpi and PfLDH by surface plasmon resonance (View interaction) ●PfEno and PfDegP co-localize by fluorescence microscopy (View interaction) ●PfDegP and PfHsp70 co-localize by co-sedimentation through density gradient (View interaction). © 2014

  15. Novel metalloantimalarials: Transmission blocking effects of water soluble Cu(I), Ag(I) and Au(I) phosphane complexes on the murine malaria parasite Plasmodium berghei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tapanelli, Sofia; Habluetzel, Annette; Pellei, Maura; Marchiò, Luciano; Tombesi, Alessia; Capparè, Ambra; Santini, Carlo

    2017-01-01

    The water soluble phosphane complexes [M(L)4]PF6 (M=Cu(I), Ag(I)) and [Au(L)4]Cl (L=thp (tris(hydroxymethyl)phosphane) or PTA (1,3,5-triaza-7-phosphaadamantane)) showed notable in vitro activity against Plasmodium early sporogonic stages, the sexual forms of the malaria parasite that are responsible for infection of the mosquito vector. Effects varied according to both, the type of metal and phosphane ligands. [Ag(thp)4]PF6 was the best performing complex exhibiting a half inhibitory concentration (IC50) value in the low micromolar range (0.3-15.6μM). The silver complex [Ag(thp)4]PF6 was characterized by X-ray crystallography revealing that the structure comprises the cationic complex [Ag(thp)4]+, the PF6- anion, and a water molecule of crystallization. Our results revealed that Cu(I), Ag(I) and Au(I) phosphanes complexes elicited similar activity profiles showing potential for the development of antimalarial, transmission blocking compounds. Molecules targeting the sexual parasite stages in the human and/or mosquito host are urgently needed to complement current artemisinin based treatments and next generation antimalarials in a vision not only to cure the disease but to interrupt its transmission. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  16. Feasibility of flow cytometry for measurements of Plasmodium falciparum parasite burden in studies in areas of malaria endemicity by use of bidimensional assessment of YOYO-1 and autofluorescence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campo, Joseph J; Aponte, John J; Nhabomba, Augusto J; Sacarlal, Jahit; Angulo-Barturen, Iñigo; Jiménez-Díaz, María Belén; Alonso, Pedro L; Dobaño, Carlota

    2011-03-01

    The detection and quantification of Plasmodium falciparum in studies of malaria endemicity primarily relies upon microscopy. High-throughput quantitative methods with less subjectivity and greater reliability are needed for investigational studies. The staining of parasitized erythrocytes with YOYO-1 for flow cytometry bears great potential as a tool for assessing malaria parasite burden. Capillary blood was collected from children presenting to the pediatric ward of the Manhiça District Hospital in Mozambique for parasitemia assessment by thick and thin blood films, flow cytometry (YOYO-1(530/585)), and quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR). Whole blood was fixed and stained with YOYO-1 for acquisition on a cytometer to assess the frequency of infected erythrocyte events. qRT-PCR was used as the gold standard for the detection of P. falciparum. The YOYO-1(530/585) method was as sensitive and specific as conventional microscopy (area under the receiver operating characteristic, 0.9 for both methods). The interrater mean difference for YOYO-1(530/585) was near zero. Parasite density using flow cytometry and complete blood counts returned density estimates with a mean difference 2.2 times greater than results by microscopy (confidence interval, 1.46 to 3.60) but with limits of agreement between 10 times lower and 50 times higher than those of microscopy. The YOYO-1(530/585) staining pattern was established exactly as demonstrated in animal models, but the assay was limited by the lack of appropriate negative-control samples for establishing background levels and the definition of positives in areas in which malaria is endemic. YOYO-1(530/585) is a high-throughput tool with great potential if the limitations of negative controls and heterogeneous levels of background signal can be overcome.

  17. Feasibility of Flow Cytometry for Measurements of Plasmodium falciparum Parasite Burden in Studies in Areas of Malaria Endemicity by Use of Bidimensional Assessment of YOYO-1 and Autofluorescence▿

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campo, Joseph J.; Aponte, John J.; Nhabomba, Augusto J.; Sacarlal, Jahit; Angulo-Barturen, Iñigo; Jiménez-Díaz, María Belén; Alonso, Pedro L.; Dobaño, Carlota

    2011-01-01

    The detection and quantification of Plasmodium falciparum in studies of malaria endemicity primarily relies upon microscopy. High-throughput quantitative methods with less subjectivity and greater reliability are needed for investigational studies. The staining of parasitized erythrocytes with YOYO-1 for flow cytometry bears great potential as a tool for assessing malaria parasite burden. Capillary blood was collected from children presenting to the pediatric ward of the Manhiça District Hospital in Mozambique for parasitemia assessment by thick and thin blood films, flow cytometry (YOYO-1530/585), and quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR). Whole blood was fixed and stained with YOYO-1 for acquisition on a cytometer to assess the frequency of infected erythrocyte events. qRT-PCR was used as the gold standard for the detection of P. falciparum. The YOYO-1530/585 method was as sensitive and specific as conventional microscopy (area under the receiver operating characteristic, 0.9 for both methods). The interrater mean difference for YOYO-1530/585 was near zero. Parasite density using flow cytometry and complete blood counts returned density estimates with a mean difference 2.2 times greater than results by microscopy (confidence interval, 1.46 to 3.60) but with limits of agreement between 10 times lower and 50 times higher than those of microscopy. The YOYO-1530/585 staining pattern was established exactly as demonstrated in animal models, but the assay was limited by the lack of appropriate negative-control samples for establishing background levels and the definition of positives in areas in which malaria is endemic. YOYO-1530/585 is a high-throughput tool with great potential if the limitations of negative controls and heterogeneous levels of background signal can be overcome. PMID:21227985

  18. Temporal trends of sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP drug-resistance molecular markers in Plasmodium falciparum parasites from pregnant women in western Kenya

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iriemenam Nnaemeka C

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Resistance to sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP in Plasmodium falciparum parasites is associated with mutations in the dihydrofolate reductase (dhfr and dihydropteroate synthase (dhps genes and has spread worldwide. SP remains the recommended drug for intermittent preventive treatment for malaria in pregnancy (IPTp and information on population prevalence of the SP resistance molecular markers in pregnant women is limited. Methods Temporal trends of SP resistance molecular markers were investigated in 489 parasite samples collected from pregnant women at delivery from three different observational studies between 1996 and 2009 in Kenya, where SP was adopted for both IPTp and case treatment policies in 1998. Using real-time polymerase chain reaction, pyrosequencing and direct sequencing, 10 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs of SP resistance molecular markers were assayed. Results The prevalence of quintuple mutant (dhfr N51I/C59R/S108N and dhps A437G/K540E combined genotype increased from 7 % in the first study (1996–2000 to 88 % in the third study (2008–2009. When further stratified by sample collection year and adoption of IPTp policy, the prevalence of the quintuple mutant increased from 2.4 % in 1998 to 44.4 % three years after IPTp policy adoption, seemingly in parallel with the increase in percentage of SP use in pregnancy. However, in the 1996–2000 study, more mutations in the combined dhfr/dhps genotype were associated with SP use during pregnancy only in univariable analysis and no associations were detected in the 2002–2008 and 2008–2009 studies. In addition, in the 2008–2009 study, 5.3 % of the parasite samples carried the dhps triple mutant (A437G/K540E/A581G. There were no differences in the prevalence of SP mutant genotypes between the parasite samples from HIV + and HIV- women over time and between paired peripheral and placental samples. Conclusions There was a significant increase in

  19. Bionomics of Anopheles latens in Kapit, Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo in relation to the transmission of zoonotic simian malaria parasite Plasmodium knowlesi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matusop Asmad

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A large focus of human infections with Plasmodium knowlesi, a simian parasite naturally found in long-tailed and pig-tailed macaques was discovered in the Kapit Division of Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo. A study was initiated to identify the vectors of malaria, to elucidate where transmission is taking place and to understand the bionomics of the vectors in Kapit. Methods Three different ecological sites in the forest, farm and longhouse in the Kapit district were selected for the study. Mosquitoes were collected by human landing collection at all sites and at the forest also by monkey-baited-traps situated on three different levels. All mosquitoes were identified and salivary glands and midguts of anopheline mosquitoes were dissected to determine the presence of malaria parasites. Results and Discussions Over an 11-month period, a total of 2,504 Anopheles mosquitoes comprising 12 species were caught; 1,035 at the farm, 774 at the forest and 425 at the longhouse. Anopheles latens (62.3% and Anopheles watsonii (30.6% were the predominant species caught in the forested ecotypes, while in the farm Anopheles donaldi (49.9% and An. latens (35.6% predominated. In the long house, An. latens (29.6% and An. donaldi (22.8% were the major Anopheline species. However, An. latens was the only mosquito positive for sporozoites and it was found to be attracted to both human and monkey hosts. In monkey-baited net traps, it preferred to bite monkeys at the canopy level than at ground level. An. latens was found biting early as 18.00 hours. Conclusion Anopheles latens is the main vector for P. knowlesi malaria parasites in the Kapit District of Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo. The study underscores the relationship between ecology, abundance and bionomics of anopheline fauna. The simio-anthropophagic and acrodendrophilic behaviour of An. latens makes it an efficient vector for the transmission of P. knowlesi parasites to both human and monkey hosts.

  20. Pfnek-1, a NIMA-related kinase from the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum Biochemical properties and possible involvement in MAPK regulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorin, D; Le Roch, K; Sallicandro, P; Alano, P; Parzy, D; Poullet, P; Meijer, L; Doerig, C

    2001-05-01

    We have cloned Pfnek-1, a gene encoding a novel protein kinase from the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. This enzyme displays maximal homology to the never-in-mitosis/Aspergillus (NIMA)/NIMA-like kinase (Nek) family of protein kinases, whose members are involved in eukaryotic cell division processes. Similar to other P. falciparum protein kinases and many enzymes of the NIMA/Nek family, Pfnek-1 possesses a large C-terminal extension in addition to the catalytic domain. Bacterially expressed recombinant Pfnek-1 protein is able to autophosphorylate and phosphorylate a panel of protein substrates with a specificity that is similar to that displayed by other members of the NIMA/Nek family. However, the FXXT motif usually found in NIMA/Nek protein kinases is substituted in Pfnek-1 by a SMAHS motif, which is reminiscent of a MAP/ERK kinase (MEK) activation site. Mutational analysis indicates that only one of the serine residues in this motif is essential for Pfnek-1 kinase activity in vitro. We show (a) that recombinant Pfnek-1 is able to specifically phosphorylate Pfmap-2, an atypical P. falciparum MAPK homologue, in vitro, and (b) that coincubation of Pfnek-1 and Pfmap-2 results in a synergistic increase in exogenous substrate labelling. This suggests that Pfnek-1 may be involved in the modulation of MAPK pathway output in malaria parasites. Finally, we demonstrate that recombinant Pfnek-1 can be used in inhibition assays to monitor the effect of kinase inhibitors, which opens the way to the screening of chemical libraries aimed at identifying potential new antimalarials.

  1. Atovaquone tolerance in Plasmodium falciparum parasites selected for high-level resistance to a dihydroorotate dehydrogenase inhibitor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guler, Jennifer L; White, John; Phillips, Margaret A; Rathod, Pradipsinh K

    2015-01-01

    Atovaquone is a component of Malarone, a widely prescribed antimalarial combination, that targets malaria respiration. Here we show that parasites with high-level resistance to an inhibitor of dihydroorotate dehydrogenase demonstrate unexpected atovaquone tolerance. Fortunately, the tolerance is diminished with proguanil, the second partner in Malarone. It is important to understand such "genetic cross talk" between respiration and pyrimidine biosynthesis since many antimalarial drug development programs target these two seemingly independent pathways. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  2. Atovaquone Tolerance in Plasmodium falciparum Parasites Selected for High-Level Resistance to a Dihydroorotate Dehydrogenase Inhibitor

    OpenAIRE

    Guler, Jennifer L.; White, John; Phillips, Margaret A.; Rathod, Pradipsinh K.

    2014-01-01

    Atovaquone is a component of Malarone, a widely prescribed antimalarial combination, that targets malaria respiration. Here we show that parasites with high-level resistance to an inhibitor of dihydroorotate dehydrogenase demonstrate unexpected atovaquone tolerance. Fortunately, the tolerance is diminished with proguanil, the second partner in Malarone. It is important to understand such “genetic cross talk” between respiration and pyrimidine biosynthesis since many antimalarial drug developm...

  3. Quantitative chromatin proteomics reveals a dynamic histone post-translational modification landscape that defines asexual and sexual Plasmodium falciparum parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coetzee, Nanika; Sidoli, Simone; van Biljon, Riëtte; Painter, Heather; Llinás, Manuel; Garcia, Benjamin A; Birkholtz, Lyn-Marie

    2017-04-04

    Gene expression in Plasmodia integrates post-transcriptional regulation with epigenetic marking of active genomic regions through histone post-translational modifications (PTMs). To generate insights into the importance of histone PTMs to the entire asexual and sexual developmental cycles of the parasite, we used complementary and comparative quantitative chromatin proteomics to identify and functionally characterise histone PTMs in 8 distinct life cycle stages of P. falciparum parasites. ~500 individual histone PTMs were identified of which 106 could be stringently validated. 46 individual histone PTMs and 30 co-existing PTMs were fully quantified with high confidence. Importantly, 15 of these histone PTMs are novel for Plasmodia (e.g. H3K122ac, H3K27me3, H3K56me3). The comparative nature of the data revealed a highly dynamic histone PTM landscape during life cycle development, with a set of histone PTMs (H3K4ac, H3K9me1 and H3K36me2) displaying a unique and conserved abundance profile exclusively during gametocytogenesis (P < 0.001). Euchromatic histone PTMs are abundant during schizogony and late gametocytes; heterochromatic PTMs mark early gametocytes. Collectively, this data provides the most accurate, complete and comparative chromatin proteomic analyses of the entire life cycle development of malaria parasites. A substantial association between histone PTMs and stage-specific transition provides insights into the intricacies characterising Plasmodial developmental biology.

  4. Geographical origin of Plasmodium vivax in the Republic of Korea: haplotype network analysis based on the parasite's mitochondrial genome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iwagami Moritoshi

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Republic of Korea (South Korea is one of the countries where vivax malaria had been successfully eradicated by the late 1970s. However, re-emergence of vivax malaria in South Korea was reported in 1993. Several epidemiological studies and some genetic studies using antigenic molecules of Plasmodium vivax in the country have been reported, but the evolutionary history of P. vivax has not been fully understood. In this study, the origin of the South Korean P. vivax population was estimated by molecular phylogeographic analysis. Methods A haplotype network analysis based on P. vivax mitochondrial (mt DNA sequences was conducted on 11 P. vivax isolates from South Korea and another 282 P. vivax isolates collected worldwide. Results The network analysis of P. vivax mtDNA sequences showed that the coexistence of two different groups (A and B in South Korea. Groups A and B were identical or close to two different populations in southern China. Conclusions Although the direct introduction of the two P. vivax populations in South Korea were thought to have been from North Korea, the results of this analysis suggest the genealogical origin to be the two different populations in southern China.

  5. A Distinct Peripheral Blood Monocyte Phenotype Is Associated with Parasite Inhibitory Activity in Acute Uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum Malaria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chimma, Pattamawan; Roussilhon, Christian; Sratongno, Panudda; Ruangveerayuth, Ronnatrai; Pattanapanyasat, Kovit; Pérignon, Jean-Louis; Roberts, David J.; Druilhe, Pierre

    2009-01-01

    Monocyte (MO) subpopulations display distinct phenotypes and functions which can drastically change during inflammatory states. We hypothesized that discrete MO subpopulations are induced during malaria infection and associated with anti-parasitic activity. We characterized the phenotype of blood MO from healthy malaria-exposed individuals and that of patients with acute uncomplicated malaria by flow cytometry. In addition, MO defense function was evaluated by an in vitro antibody dependent cellular inhibition (ADCI) assay. At the time of admission, the percentages and absolute numbers of CD16+ MO, and CCR2+CX3CR1+ MO, were high in a majority of patients. Remarkably, expression of CCR2 and CX3CR1 on the CD14high (hi) MO subset defined two subgroups of patients that also differed significantly in their functional ability to limit the parasite growth, through the ADCI mechanism. In the group of patients with the highest percentages and absolute numbers of CD14hiCCR2+CX3CR1+ MO and the highest mean levels of ADCI activity, blood parasitemias were lower (0.14±0.34%) than in the second group (1.30±3.34%; p = 0.0053). Data showed that, during a malaria attack, some patients' MO can exert a strong ADCI activity. These results bring new insight into the complex relationships between the phenotype and the functional activity of blood MO from patients and healthy malaria-exposed individuals and suggest discrete MO subpopulations are induced during malaria infection and are associated with anti-parasitic activity. PMID:19851453

  6. Changes in var gene mRNA levels during erythrocytic development in two phenotypically distinct Plasmodium falciparum parasites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dahlbäck, Madeleine; Lavstsen, Thomas; Salanti, Ali

    2007-01-01

    points along the 48 hours intra-erythrocytic cycle for extraction of RNA and for analysis of expression of variant surface antigens by flow cytometry. Total RNA from each parasite sample was extracted and cDNA synthesized. Quantitative real-time PCR was performed using gene-specific primers for all var...... genes. Samples for flow cytometry were labelled with rabbit IgG targeting DBL5epsilon of VAR2CSA and serum IgG from malaria-exposed men and pregnant women. RESULTS: var transcripts were detected at all time points of the intra-erythrocytic cycle by quantitative real-time PCR, although transcription......BACKGROUND: The var multigene family encodes PfEMP1, which are expressed on the surface of infected erythrocytes and bind to various host endothelial receptors. Antigenic variation of PfEMP1 plays a key role in malaria pathogenesis, a process partially controlled at the level of var gene...

  7. Genome content analysis yields new insights into the relationship between the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum and its anopheline vectors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oppenheim, Sara J; Rosenfeld, Jeffrey A; DeSalle, Rob

    2017-02-27

    The persistent and growing gap between the availability of sequenced genomes and the ability to assign functions to sequenced genes led us to explore ways to maximize the information content of automated annotation for studies of anopheline mosquitos. Specifically, we use genome content analysis of a large number of previously sequenced anopheline mosquitos to follow the loss and gain of protein families over the evolutionary history of this group. The importance of this endeavor lies in the potential for comparative genomic studies between Anopheles and closely related non-vector species to reveal ancestral genome content dynamics involved in vector competence. In addition, comparisons within Anopheles could identify genome content changes responsible for variation in the vectorial capacity of this family of important parasite vectors. The competence and capacity of P. falciparum vectors do not appear to be phylogenetically constrained within the Anophelinae. Instead, using ancestral reconstruction methods, we suggest that a previously unexamined component of vector biology, anopheline nucleotide metabolism, may contribute to the unique status of anophelines as P. falciparum vectors. While the fitness effects of nucleotide co-option by P. falciparum parasites on their anopheline hosts are not yet known, our results suggest that anopheline genome content may be responding to selection pressure from P. falciparum. Whether this response is defensive, in an attempt to redress improper nucleotide balance resulting from P. falciparum infection, or perhaps symbiotic, resulting from an as-yet-unknown mutualism between anophelines and P. falciparum, is an open question that deserves further study. Clearly, there is a wealth of functional information to be gained from detailed manual genome annotation, yet the rapid increase in the number of available sequences means that most researchers will not have the time or resources to manually annotate all the sequence data they

  8. Malaria and blood transfusion: major issues of blood safety in malaria-endemic countries and strategies for mitigating the risk of Plasmodium parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdullah, Saleh; Karunamoorthi, Kaliyaperumal

    2016-01-01

    Malaria inflicts humankind over centuries, and it remains as a major threat to both clinical medicine and public health worldwide. Though hemotherapy is a life-sustaining modality, it continues to be a possible source of disease transmission. Hence, hemovigilance is a matter of grave concern in the malaria-prone third-world countries. In order to pursue an effective research on hemovigilance, a comprehensive search has been conducted by using the premier academic-scientific databases, WHO documents, and English-language search engines. One hundred two appropriate articles were chosen for data extraction, with a particular reference to emerging pathogens transmitted through blood transfusion, specifically malaria. Blood donation screening is done through microscopic examination and immunological assays to improve the safety of blood products by detection major blood-borne pathogens, viz., HIV, HBV, HCV, syphilis, and malarial parasites. Transfusion therapy significantly dwindles the preventable morbidity and mortality attributed to various illnesses and diseases, particularly AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria. Examination of thick and thin blood smears are performed to detect positivity and to identify the Plasmodium species, respectively. However, all of these existing diagnostic tools have their own limitations in terms of sensitivity, specificity, cost-effectiveness, and lack of resources and skilled personnel. Globally, despite the mandate need of screening blood and its components according to the blood-establishment protocols, it is seldom practiced in the low-income/poverty-stricken settings. In addition, each and every single phase of transfusion chain carries sizable inherent risks from donors to recipients. Interestingly, opportunities also lie ahead to enhance the safety of blood-supply chain and patients. It can be achieved through sustainable blood-management strategies like (1) appropriate usage of precise diagnostic tools/techniques, (2) promoting

  9. Taxonomy Icon Data: malaria parasite P. falciparum [Taxonomy Icon

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available malaria parasite P. falciparum Plasmodium falciparum Plasmodium_falciparum_L.png Plasmodium_falciparum..._NL.png Plasmodium_falciparum_S.png Plasmodium_falciparum_NS.png http://biosciencedbc.jp/...taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Plasmodium+falciparum&t=L http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Plasmodium+falciparum...&t=NL http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Plasmodium+falciparum...&t=S http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Plasmodium+falciparum&t=NS http://togodb.biosciencedbc.jp/togodb/view/taxonomy_icon_comment_en?species_id=218 ...

  10. A large proportion of asymptomatic Plasmodium infections with low and sub-microscopic parasite densities in the low transmission setting of Temotu Province, Solomon Islands: challenges for malaria diagnostics in an elimination setting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Harris Ivor

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Many countries are scaling up malaria interventions towards elimination. This transition changes demands on malaria diagnostics from diagnosing ill patients to detecting parasites in all carriers including asymptomatic infections and infections with low parasite densities. Detection methods suitable to local malaria epidemiology must be selected prior to transitioning a malaria control programme to elimination. A baseline malaria survey conducted in Temotu Province, Solomon Islands in late 2008, as the first step in a provincial malaria elimination programme, provided malaria epidemiology data and an opportunity to assess how well different diagnostic methods performed in this setting. Methods During the survey, 9,491 blood samples were collected and examined by microscopy for Plasmodium species and density, with a subset also examined by polymerase chain reaction (PCR and rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs. The performances of these diagnostic methods were compared. Results A total of 256 samples were positive by microscopy, giving a point prevalence of 2.7%. The species distribution was 17.5% Plasmodium falciparum and 82.4% Plasmodium vivax. In this low transmission setting, only 17.8% of the P. falciparum and 2.9% of P. vivax infected subjects were febrile (≥38°C at the time of the survey. A significant proportion of infections detected by microscopy, 40% and 65.6% for P. falciparum and P. vivax respectively, had parasite density below 100/μL. There was an age correlation for the proportion of parasite density below 100/μL for P. vivax infections, but not for P. falciparum infections. PCR detected substantially more infections than microscopy (point prevalence of 8.71%, indicating a large number of subjects had sub-microscopic parasitemia. The concordance between PCR and microscopy in detecting single species was greater for P. vivax (135/162 compared to P. falciparum (36/118. The malaria RDT detected the 12 microscopy and

  11. Plasma antibodies from malaria-exposed pregnant women recognize variant surface antigens on Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes in a parity-dependent manner and block parasite adhesion to chondroitin sulfate A

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ricke, C H; Staalsoe, T; Koram, K

    2000-01-01

    In areas of intense Plasmodium falciparum transmission, clinical immunity is acquired during childhood, and adults enjoy substantial protection against malaria. An exception to this rule is pregnant women, in whom malaria is both more prevalent and severe than in nonpregnant women. Pregnancy...... an area of hyperendemic P. falciparum transmission generally possessed low levels of Abs specifically recognizing surface Ags expressed by a CSA-adhering parasite isolate, while unselected isolates were well recognized. In marked contrast, most third-trimester pregnant women from that area had very high...

  12. Malaria parasites: the great escape

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laurent Rénia

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Parasites of the genus Plasmodium have a complex life cycle. They alternate between their final mosquito host and their intermediate hosts. The parasite can be either extra- or intracellular, depending on the stage of development. By modifying their shape, motility, and metabolic requirements, the parasite adapts to the different environments in their different hosts. The parasite has evolved to escape the multiple immune mechanisms in the host that try to block parasite development at the different stages of their development. In this article, we describe the mechanisms reported thus far that allow the Plasmodium parasite to evade innate and adaptive immune responses.

  13. A novel genetic technique in Plasmodium berghei allows liver stage analysis of genes required for mosquito stage development and demonstrates that de novo heme synthesis is essential for liver stage development in the malaria parasite.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Upeksha L Rathnapala

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The combination of drug resistance, lack of an effective vaccine, and ongoing conflict and poverty means that malaria remains a major global health crisis. Understanding metabolic pathways at all parasite life stages is important in prioritising and targeting novel anti-parasitic compounds. The unusual heme synthesis pathway of the rodent malaria parasite, Plasmodium berghei, requires eight enzymes distributed across the mitochondrion, apicoplast and cytoplasm. Deletion of the ferrochelatase (FC gene, the final enzyme in the pathway, confirms that heme synthesis is not essential in the red blood cell stages of the life cycle but is required to complete oocyst development in mosquitoes. The lethality of FC deletions in the mosquito stage makes it difficult to study the impact of these mutations in the subsequent liver stage. To overcome this, we combined locus-specific fluorophore expression with a genetic complementation approach to generate viable, heterozygous oocysts able to produce a mix of FC expressing and FC deficient sporozoites. These sporozoites show normal motility and can invade liver cells, where FC deficient parasites can be distinguished by fluorescence and phenotyped. Parasites lacking FC exhibit a severe growth defect within liver cells, with development failure detectable in the early to mid stages of liver development in vitro. FC deficient parasites could not complete liver stage development in vitro nor infect naïve mice, confirming liver stage arrest. These results validate the heme pathway as a potential target for prophylactic drugs targeting liver stage parasites. In addition, we demonstrate that our simple genetic approach can extend the phenotyping window beyond the insect stages, opening considerable scope for straightforward reverse genetic analysis of genes that are dispensable in blood stages but essential for completing mosquito development.

  14. Cryo scanning electron microscopy of Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hempel, Casper

    2017-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum invades erythrocytes as an essential part of their life cycle. While living inside erythrocytes, the parasite remodels the cell's intracellular organization as well as its outer surface. Late trophozoite-stage parasites and schizonts introduce numerous small protrusions...

  15. Anti-folate drug resistance in Africa: meta-analysis of reported dihydrofolate reductase (dhfr) and dihydropteroate synthase (dhps) mutant genotype frequencies in African Plasmodium falciparum parasite populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sridaran, Sankar; McClintock, Shannon K; Syphard, Luke M; Herman, Karen M; Barnwell, John W; Udhayakumar, Venkatachalam

    2010-08-30

    Mutations in the dihydrofolate reductase (dhfr) and dihydropteroate synthase (dhps) genes of Plasmodium falciparum are associated with resistance to anti-folate drugs, most notably sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP). Molecular studies document the prevalence of these mutations in parasite populations across the African continent. However, there is no systematic review examining the collective epidemiological significance of these studies. This meta-analysis attempts to: 1) summarize genotype frequency data that are critical for molecular surveillance of anti-folate resistance and 2) identify the specific challenges facing the development of future molecular databases. This review consists of 220 studies published prior to 2009 that report the frequency of select dhfr and dhps mutations in 31 African countries. Maps were created to summarize the location and prevalence of the highly resistant dhfr triple mutant (N51I, C59R, S108N) genotype and dhps double mutant (A437G and K540E) genotype in Africa. A hierarchical mixed effects logistic regression was used to examine the influence of various factors on reported mutant genotype frequency. These factors include: year and location of study, age and clinical status of sampled population, and reporting conventions for mixed genotype data. A database consisting of dhfr and dhps mutant genotype frequencies from all African studies that met selection criteria was created for this analysis. The map illustrates particularly high prevalence of both the dhfr triple and dhps double mutant genotypes along the Kenya-Tanzania border and Malawi. The regression model shows a statistically significant increase in the prevalence of both the dhfr triple and dhps double mutant genotypes in Africa. Increasing prevalence of the dhfr triple mutant and dhps double mutant genotypes in Africa are consistent with the loss of efficacy of SP for treatment of clinical malaria in most parts of this continent. Continued assessment of the effectiveness

  16. Anti-folate drug resistance in Africa: meta-analysis of reported dihydrofolate reductase (dhfr and dihydropteroate synthase (dhps mutant genotype frequencies in African Plasmodium falciparum parasite populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sridaran Sankar

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Mutations in the dihydrofolate reductase (dhfr and dihydropteroate synthase (dhps genes of Plasmodium falciparum are associated with resistance to anti-folate drugs, most notably sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP. Molecular studies document the prevalence of these mutations in parasite populations across the African continent. However, there is no systematic review examining the collective epidemiological significance of these studies. This meta-analysis attempts to: 1 summarize genotype frequency data that are critical for molecular surveillance of anti-folate resistance and 2 identify the specific challenges facing the development of future molecular databases. Methods This review consists of 220 studies published prior to 2009 that report the frequency of select dhfr and dhps mutations in 31 African countries. Maps were created to summarize the location and prevalence of the highly resistant dhfr triple mutant (N51I, C59R, S108N genotype and dhps double mutant (A437G and K540E genotype in Africa. A hierarchical mixed effects logistic regression was used to examine the influence of various factors on reported mutant genotype frequency. These factors include: year and location of study, age and clinical status of sampled population, and reporting conventions for mixed genotype data. Results A database consisting of dhfr and dhps mutant genotype frequencies from all African studies that met selection criteria was created for this analysis. The map illustrates particularly high prevalence of both the dhfr triple and dhps double mutant genotypes along the Kenya-Tanzania border and Malawi. The regression model shows a statistically significant increase in the prevalence of both the dhfr triple and dhps double mutant genotypes in Africa. Conclusion Increasing prevalence of the dhfr triple mutant and dhps double mutant genotypes in Africa are consistent with the loss of efficacy of SP for treatment of clinical malaria in most parts

  17. An interplay between 2 signaling pathways: Melatonin-cAMP and IP{sub 3}–Ca{sup 2+} signaling pathways control intraerythrocytic development of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Furuyama, Wakako [National Research Center for Protozoan Diseases, Obihiro University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine, Obihiro, Hokkaido 080-8555 (Japan); Enomoto, Masahiro [Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto, M5G1L7 Toronto, Ontario (Canada); Mossaad, Ehab [National Research Center for Protozoan Diseases, Obihiro University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine, Obihiro, Hokkaido 080-8555 (Japan); Kawai, Satoru [Laboratory of Tropical Medicine and Parasitology, Dokkyo Medical University, Mibu, Tochigi 321-0293 (Japan); Mikoshiba, Katsuhiko [Laboratory for Developmental Neurobiology, RIKEN Brain Science Institute, Wako, Saitama 351-0198 (Japan); Kawazu, Shin-ichiro, E-mail: skawazu@obihiro.ac.jp [National Research Center for Protozoan Diseases, Obihiro University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine, Obihiro, Hokkaido 080-8555 (Japan)

    2014-03-28

    Highlights: • A melatonin receptor antagonist blocked Ca{sup 2+} oscillation in P. falciparum and inhibited parasite growth. • P. falciparum development is controlled by Ca{sup 2+}- and cAMP-signaling pathways. • The cAMP-signaling pathway at ring form and late trophozoite stages governs parasite growth of P. falciparum. - Abstract: Plasmodium falciparum spends most of its asexual life cycle within human erythrocytes, where proliferation and maturation occur. Development into the mature forms of P. falciparum causes severe symptoms due to its distinctive sequestration capability. However, the physiological roles and the molecular mechanisms of signaling pathways that govern development are poorly understood. Our previous study showed that P. falciparum exhibits stage-specific spontaneous Calcium (Ca{sup 2+}) oscillations in ring and early trophozoites, and the latter was essential for parasite development. In this study, we show that luzindole (LZ), a selective melatonin receptor antagonist, inhibits parasite growth. Analyses of development and morphology of LZ-treated P. falciparum revealed that LZ severely disrupted intraerythrocytic maturation, resulting in parasite death. When LZ was added at ring stage, the parasite could not undergo further development, whereas LZ added at the trophozoite stage inhibited development from early into late schizonts. Live-cell Ca{sup 2+} imaging showed that LZ treatment completely abolished Ca{sup 2+} oscillation in the ring forms while having little effect on early trophozoites. Further, the melatonin-induced cAMP increase observed at ring and late trophozoite stage was attenuated by LZ treatment. These suggest that a complex interplay between IP{sub 3}–Ca{sup 2+} and cAMP signaling pathways is involved in intraerythrocytic development of P. falciparum.

  18. Residual Plasmodium falciparum Parasitemia in Kenyan Children After Artemisinin-Combination Therapy Is Associated With Increased Transmission to Mosquitoes and Parasite Recurrence

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beshir, Khalid B.; Sutherland, Colin J.; Sawa, Patrick; Drakeley, Chris J.; Okell, Lucy; Mweresa, Collins K.; Omar, Sabah A.; Shekalaghe, Seif A.; Kaur, Harparkash; Ndaro, Arnold; Chilongola, Jaffu; Schallig, Henk D. F. H.; Sauerwein, Robert W.; Hallett, Rachel L.; Bousema, Teun

    2013-01-01

    Background. Parasite clearance time after artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT) may be increasing in Asian and African settings. The association between parasite clearance following ACT and transmissibility is currently unknown. Methods. We determined parasite clearance dynamics by duplex

  19. Mosquitoes as potential bridge vectors of malaria parasites from non-human primates to humans

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verhulst, N.O.; Smallegange, R.C.; Takken, W.

    2012-01-01

    Malaria is caused by Plasmodium parasites which are transmitted by mosquitoes. Until recently, human malaria was considered to be caused by human-specific Plasmodium species. Studies on Plasmodium parasites in non-human primates (NHPs), however, have identified parasite species in gorillas and

  20. Probing the role of parasite-specific, distant structural regions on communication and catalysis in the bifunctional thymidylate synthase-dihydrofolate reductase from Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dasgupta, Tina; Anderson, Karen S

    2008-02-05

    Plasmodium falciparum thymidylate synthase-dihydrofolate reductase (TS-DHFR) is an essential enzyme in nucleotide biosynthesis and a validated molecular drug target in malaria. Because P. falciparum TS and DHFR are highly homologous to their human counterparts, existing active-site antifolate drugs can have dose-limiting toxicities. In humans, TS and DHFR are two separate proteins. In P. falciparum, however, TS-DHFR is bifunctional, with both TS and DHFR active sites on a single polypeptide chain of the enzyme. Consequently, P. falciparum TS-DHFR contains unique distant or nonactive regions that might modulate catalysis: (1) an N-terminal tail and (2) a linker region tethering DHFR to TS, and encoding a crossover helix that forms critical electrostatic interactions with the DHFR active site. The role of these nonactive sites in the bifunctional P. falciparum TS-DHFR is unknown. We report the first in-depth, pre-steady-state kinetic characterization of the full-length, wild-type (WT) P. falciparum TS-DHFR enzyme and probe the role of distant, nonactive regions through mutational analysis. We show that the overall rate-limiting step in the WT P. falciparum TS-DHFR enzyme is TS catalysis. We further show that if TS is in an activated (liganded) conformation, the DHFR rate is 2-fold activated, from 60 s-1 to 130 s-1 in the WT enzyme. The TS rate is also reciprocally activated by approximately 1.5-fold if DHFR is in an activated, ligand-bound conformation. Mutations to the linker region affect neither catalytic rate nor domain-domain communication. Deletion of the N-terminal tail, although in a location remote from the active site, decreases the DHFR single rate and the bifunctional TS-DHFR rate by a factor of 2. The 2-fold activation of the DHFR rate by TS ligands remains intact, although even the activated N-terminal mutant has just half the DHFR activity of the WT enzyme. However, the reciprocal communication between TS active site and DHFR ligands is impaired in N

  1. Antibody responses to Rhoptry-Associated Protein-1 (RAP-1) of Plasmodium falciparum parasites in humans from areas of different malaria endemicity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jakobsen, P H; Kurtzhals, J A; Riley, E M

    1997-01-01

    Plasma IgM and IgG antibody reactivities against the recombinant Plasmodium falciparum protein, Rhoptry Associated Protein-1 (rRAP-1) were measured by ELISA in individuals from Sudan, Indonesia, Kenya and The Gambia living in areas of different malaria endemicity. IgG and IgM reactivities to rRAP...

  2. No effect of human serum and erythrocytes enriched in n-3 fatty acids by oral intake on Plasmodium falciparum bloodstage parasites in vitro

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Abu-Zeid, Y.A.; Hansen, Harald S.; Jakobsen, P.H.

    1993-01-01

    To examine the effect of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFA) on the erythrocytic growth of Plasmodium falciparum, serum and erythrocytes were separated from blood of a healthy donor before and after he had taken fish oil capsules for 8 days. Such intake supplied an amount of eicosapentaeno...

  3. Induction of adhesion-inhibitory antibodies against placental Plasmodium falciparum parasites by using single domains of VAR2CSA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Morten A; Pinto, Vera V; Resende, Mafalda

    2009-01-01

    In areas of endemicity pregnancy-associated malaria is an important cause of maternal anemia, stillbirth, and delivery of low-birth-weight children. The syndrome is precipitated by the accumulation of Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes in the placenta, mediated through an interaction...

  4. Stereoselective preparation of pyridoxal 1,2,3,4-tetrahydro-β-carboline derivatives and the influence of their absolute and relative configuration on the proliferation of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brokamp, Renate; Bergmann, Bärbel; Müller, Ingrid B; Bienz, Stefan

    2014-03-15

    We have selectively synthesized by Pictet-Spengler condensation of tryptophan and pyridoxal the four stereoisomers of a pyridoxal β-carboline derivative that was designed to inhibit the proliferation of Plasmodium falciparum. Biological investigation of the four compounds revealed that they all inhibit the growth of P. falciparum. With an IC50 value of 8 ± 1 μM, the highest inhibitory effect on the proliferation of the parasite was found for the 1,3-trans-substituted tetrahydro-β-carboline that was obtained from d-tryptophan. Lower activity was found for its enantiomer, while the two diastereomeric cis-products were markedly less effective. Apparently a distinct spacial orientation of the carboxyl group of the substituted tetrahydropyridine unit of the compounds is needed for high activity, while the absolute configuration of the molecules is of lesser importance. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Positive selection of Plasmodium falciparum parasites with multiple var2csa-type PfEMP1 genes during the course of infection in pregnant women

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sander, Adam F; Salanti, Ali; Lavstsen, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    multiple genes coding for different VAR2CSA proteins, and parasites with >1 var2csa gene appear to be more common in pregnant women with placental malaria than in nonpregnant individuals. We present evidence that, in pregnant women, parasites containing multiple var2csa-type genes possess a selective...... advantage over parasites with a single var2csa gene. Accumulation of parasites with multiple copies of the var2csa gene during the course of pregnancy was also correlated with the development of antibodies involved in blocking VAR2CSA adhesion. The data suggest that multiplicity of var2csa-type genes...

  6. Prevalence of Plasmodium falciparum malaria among patients ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study reports malaria infection caused by the parasite Plasmodium falciparum in University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (UITH), Ilorin, Kwara State, Nigeria. This study provides information on the infectivity rate of this parasite in dry season and the variation of laboratory diagnosed cases of malaria to clinically diagnosed ...

  7. [In vitro cultivation of Plasmodium falciparum. Applications and limits.- Methodology].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Druilhe, P; Gentilini, M

    1982-01-01

    Five years after Trager and Jensen fixed the requirements for a continuous culture of exo-erythrocytic stages in a semisynthetic medium, major advances have been realized. However all practical applications of this method have not yet been investigated. Its main interest is to offer the observation of the intraerythrocytic asexual multiplication and the beginning of the sexual cycle in monitored conditions, beyond the organism regulating processes, and with endless possibility to modify these conditions according to the necessities of the experiment. Compared with the previous use of expensive monkeys, this culture allows a study of P. falciparum in its natural host, cell, the human erythrocyte. It has been already applied for several investigations: - ultrastructure, metabolism, ADN and ARN sequencies of the parasite itself; - the relations between host and parasite (invasion of the erythrocyte by the merozoïte); - constitutional factors of resistance to malaria (hemoglobin S, C, E, deficiency in G6PD, elliptocytosis); - nutritional factors and immunologic defenses (antibodies, cytotoxic cells, ADCC...); - production of plasmodial antigens at the various erythrocytic stages; - chemotherapy (resistance to antimalarial drugs, screening of new drugs and study of their mode of action). The main disadvantages of Trager's and Jensen's method are for one part it concerns the sole erythrocytic stages and for the other part the parasite growth requires components of human origin (serum and erythrocytes). Human serum is hardly adapted to a standardization and appears as the main cause of variations observed in the in vitro proliferation of the parasite. Erythrocytes have a short survival and their metabolism is difficult to separate from that of the parasite. The minor disadvantages of the culture are: - a relative lack of reproductibility which raises difficulties for interpretation of inhibition tests either by antibodies or by antimalarial drugs; - a low output; - a

  8. Transmission blocking activity of a standardized neem (Azadirachta indica seed extract on the rodent malaria parasite Plasmodium berghei in its vector Anopheles stephensi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Esposito Fulvio

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The wide use of gametocytocidal artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT lead to a reduction of Plasmodium falciparum transmission in several African endemic settings. An increased impact on malaria burden may be achieved through the development of improved transmission-blocking formulations, including molecules complementing the gametocytocidal effects of artemisinin derivatives and/or acting on Plasmodium stages developing in the vector. Azadirachtin, a limonoid (tetranortriterpenoid abundant in neem (Azadirachta indica, Meliaceae seeds, is a promising candidate, inhibiting Plasmodium exflagellation in vitro at low concentrations. This work aimed at assessing the transmission-blocking potential of NeemAzal®, an azadirachtin-enriched extract of neem seeds, using the rodent malaria in vivo model Plasmodium berghei/Anopheles stephensi. Methods Anopheles stephensi females were offered a blood-meal on P. berghei infected, gametocytaemic BALB/c mice, treated intraperitoneally with NeemAzal, one hour before feeding. The transmission-blocking activity of the product was evaluated by assessing oocyst prevalence, oocyst density and capacity to infect healthy mice. To characterize the anti-plasmodial effects of NeemAzal® on early midgut stages, i.e. zygotes and ookinetes, Giemsa-stained mosquito midgut smears were examined. Results NeemAzal® completely blocked P. berghei development in the vector, at an azadirachtin dose of 50 mg/kg mouse body weight. The totally 138 examined, treated mosquitoes (three experimental replications did not reveal any oocyst and none of the healthy mice exposed to their bites developed parasitaemia. The examination of midgut content smears revealed a reduced number of zygotes and post-zygotic forms and the absence of mature ookinetes in treated mosquitoes. Post-zygotic forms showed several morphological alterations, compatible with the hypothesis of an azadirachtin interference with the functionality

  9. Genome-scale comparison of expanded gene families in Plasmodium ovale wallikeri and Plasmodium ovale curtisi with Plasmodium malariae and with other Plasmodium species

    KAUST Repository

    Ansari, Hifzur Rahman

    2016-07-05

    Malaria in humans is caused by six species of Plasmodium parasites, of which the nuclear genome sequences for the two Plasmodium ovale spp., P. ovale curtisi and P. ovale wallikeri, and Plasmodium malariae have not yet been analyzed. Here we present an analysis of the nuclear genome sequences of these three parasites, and describe gene family expansions therein. Plasmodium ovale curtisi and P. ovale wallikeri are genetically distinct but morphologically indistinguishable and have sympatric ranges through the tropics of Africa, Asia and Oceania. Both P. ovale spp. show expansion of the surfin variant gene family, and an amplification of the Plasmodium interspersed repeat (pir) superfamily which results in an approximately 30% increase in genome size. For comparison, we have also analyzed the draft nuclear genome of P. malariae, a malaria parasite causing mild malaria symptoms with a quartan life cycle, long-term chronic infections, and wide geographic distribution. Plasmodium malariae shows only a moderate level of expansion of pir genes, and unique expansions of a highly diverged transmembrane protein family with over 550 members and the gamete P25/27 gene family. The observed diversity in the P. ovale wallikeri and P. ovale curtisi surface antigens, combined with their phylogenetic separation, supports consideration that the two parasites be given species status.

  10. The Robust and Modulated Biomarker Network Elicited by the Plasmodium vivax Infection Is Mainly Mediated by the IL-6/IL-10 Axis and Is Associated with the Parasite Load

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guimarães da Costa, Allyson; do Valle Antonelli, Lis Ribeiro; Augusto Carvalho Costa, Pedro; Paulo Diniz Pimentel, João; Garcia, Nadja Pinto; Monteiro Tarragô, Andréa; Socorro Lopes dos Santos, Maria do Perpétuo; Nogueira, Paulo Afonso; Hekcmann, Maria Izabel Ovellar; Sadahiro, Aya; Teixeira-Carvalho, Andréa; Martins-Filho, Olindo Assis; Malheiro, Adriana

    2014-01-01

    Background. Recent studies have shown that the inflammatory process, including the biomarker production, and the intense activation of innate immune responses are greater in the malaria caused by Plasmodium vivax than other species. Here, we examined the levels of serum biomarkers and their interaction during acute malaria. Material and Methods. Blood samples were collected from P. vivax-infected patients at admission and from healthy donors. Levels of serum biomarkers were measured by Cytometric Bead Assay or ELISA. Results. P. vivax infection triggered the production of both inflammatory and regulatory biomarkers. Levels of IL-6, CXCL-8, IFN-γ, IL-5, and IL-10 were higher in P. vivax-infected patients than in healthy donors. On the other hand, malaria patients produced lower levels of TNF-α, IL-12p70, and IL-2 than healthy individuals. While the levels of IL-10 and IL-6 were found independent on the number of malaria episodes, higher levels of these cytokines were seen in patients with higher parasite load. Conclusion. A mixed pattern of proinflammatory and regulatory biomarkers is produced in P. vivax malaria. Analysis of biomarker network suggests that IL-10 and IL-6 are a robust axis in malaria patients and that this interaction seems to be associated with the parasite load. PMID:24741587

  11. Plasmodium falciparum dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine failures in Cambodia are associated with mutant K13 parasites presenting high survival rates in novel piperaquine in vitro assays: retrospective and prospective investigations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duru, Valentine; Khim, Nimol; Leang, Rithea; Kim, Saorin; Domergue, Anais; Kloeung, Nimol; Ke, Sopheakvatey; Chy, Sophy; Eam, Rotha; Khean, Chanra; Loch, Kaknika; Ken, Malen; Lek, Dysoley; Beghain, Johann; Ariey, Frédéric; Guerin, Philippe J; Huy, Rekol; Mercereau-Puijalon, Odile; Witkowski, Benoit; Menard, Didier

    2015-12-22

    The declining efficacy of dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine against Plasmodium falciparum in Cambodia, along with increasing numbers of recrudescent cases, suggests resistance to both artemisinin and piperaquine. Available in vitro piperaquine susceptibility assays do not correlate with treatment outcome. A novel assay using a pharmacologically relevant piperaquine dose/time exposure was designed and its relevance explored in retrospective and prospective studies. The piperaquine survival assay (PSA) exposed parasites to 200 nM piperaquine for 48 hours and monitored survival 24 hours later. The retrospective study tested 32 culture-adapted, C580Y-K13 mutant parasites collected at enrolment from patients treated with a 3-day course of dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine and having presented or not with a recrudescence at day 42 (registered ACTRN12615000793516). The prospective study assessed ex vivo PSA survival rate alongside K13 polymorphism of isolates collected from patients enrolled in an open-label study with dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine for uncomplicated P. falciparum malaria in Cambodia (registered ACTRN12615000696594). All parasites from recrudescent cases had in vitro or ex vivo PSA survival rates ≥10%, a relevant cut-off value for piperaquine-resistance. Ex vivo PSA survival rates were higher for recrudescent than non-recrudescent cases (39.2% vs. 0.17%, P <1 × 10(-7)). Artemisinin-resistant K13 mutants with ex vivo PSA survival rates ≥10% were associated with 32-fold higher risk of recrudescence (95% CI, 4.5-224; P = 0.0005). PSA adequately captures the piperaquine resistance/recrudescence phenotype, a mainstay to identify molecular marker(s) and evaluate efficacy of alternative drugs. Combined ex vivo PSA and K13 genotyping provides a convenient monitor for both artemisinin and piperaquine resistance where dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine is used.

  12. Treatment of Plasmodium chabaudi Parasites with Curcumin in Combination with Antimalarial Drugs: Drug Interactions and Implications on the Ubiquitin/Proteasome System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zoraima Neto

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Antimalarial drug resistance remains a major obstacle in malaria control. Evidence from Southeast Asia shows that resistance to artemisinin combination therapy (ACT is inevitable. Ethnopharmacological studies have confirmed the efficacy of curcumin against Plasmodium spp. Drug interaction assays between curcumin/piperine/chloroquine and curcumin/piperine/artemisinin combinations and the potential of drug treatment to interfere with the ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS were analyzed. In vivo efficacy of curcumin was studied in BALB/c mice infected with Plasmodium chabaudi clones resistant to chloroquine and artemisinin, and drug interactions were analyzed by isobolograms. Subtherapeutic doses of curcumin, chloroquine, and artemisinin were administered to mice, and mRNA was collected following treatment for RT-PCR analysis of genes encoding deubiquitylating enzymes (DUBs. Curcumin was found be nontoxic in BALB/c mice. The combination of curcumin/chloroquine/piperine reduced parasitemia to 37% seven days after treatment versus the control group’s 65%, and an additive interaction was revealed. Curcumin/piperine/artemisinin combination did not show a favorable drug interaction in this murine model of malaria. Treatment of mice with subtherapeutic doses of the drugs resulted in a transient increase in genes encoding DUBs indicating UPS interference. If curcumin is to join the arsenal of available antimalarial drugs, future studies exploring suitable drug partners would be of interest.

  13. Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 1 - Glycosylation and localization to low-density, detergent-resistant membranes in the parasitized erythrocyte

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hoessli, D.C.; Poincelet, M.; Gupta, Ramneek

    2003-01-01

    . Subcellular fractionation of parasitized erythrocytes in the late trophozoite/schizont stage reveals that GPI-anchored C-terminal fragments of MSP-1 are recovered in Triton X-100 resistant, low-density membrane fractions. Our results suggest that O -GlcNAc-modified MSP-1 N-terminal fragments tend to localize...... within the parasitophorous vacuolar membrane while GPI-anchored MSP-1 C-terminal fragments associate with low-density, Triton X-100 resistant membrane domains (rafts), redistribute in the parasitized erythrocyte and are eventually shed as membrane vesicles that also contain the endogenous, GPI-linked CD...

  14. The host specificity of ape malaria parasites can be broken in confined environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ngoubangoye, Barthélémy; Boundenga, Larson; Arnathau, Céline; Mombo, Illich Manfred; Durand, Patrick; Tsoumbou, Thierry-Audrey; Otoro, Bertony Vacky; Sana, Rick; Okouga, Alain-Prince; Moukodoum, Nancy; Willaume, Eric; Herbert, Anaïs; Fouchet, David; Rougeron, Virginie; Bâ, Cheikh Tidiane; Ollomo, Benjamin; Paupy, Christophe; Leroy, Eric M; Renaud, François; Pontier, Dominique; Prugnolle, Franck

    2016-10-01

    Recent studies have revealed a large diversity of Plasmodium spp. among African great apes. Some of these species are related to Plasmodium falciparum, the most virulent agent of human malaria (subgenus Laverania), and others to Plasmodium ovale, Plasmodium malariae and Plasmodium vivax (subgenus Plasmodium), three other human malaria agents. Laverania parasites exhibit strict host specificity in their natural environment. Plasmodium reichenowi, Plasmodium billcollinsi, Plasmodium billbrayi and Plasmodium gaboni infect only chimpanzees, while Plasmodium praefalciparum, Plasmodium blacklocki and Plasmodium adleri are restricted to gorillas and Plasmodium falciparum is pandemic in humans. This host specificity may be due to genetic and/or environmental factors. Infrastructures hosting captive primates, such as sanctuaries and health centres, usually concentrate different primate species, thus favouring pathogen exchanges. Using molecular tools, we analysed blood samples from captive non-human primates living in Gabon to evaluate the risk of Plasmodium spp. transfers between host species. We also included blood samples from workers taking care of primates to assess whether primate-human parasite transfers occurred. We detected four transfers of Plasmodium from gorillas towards chimpanzees, one from chimpanzees to gorillas, three from humans towards chimpanzees and one from humans to mandrills. No simian Plasmodium was found in the blood samples from humans working with primates. These findings demonstrate that the genetic barrier that determines the apparent host specificity of Laverania is not completely impermeable and that parasite exchanges between gorillas and chimpanzees are possible in confined environments. Copyright © 2016 Australian Society for Parasitology. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Using Click Chemistry to Identify Potential Drug Targets in Plasmodium

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-06-01

    Plasmodium. 67 68 3 Introduction 69 70 Malaria infection begins with the infection by Plasmodium ‘sporozoites’ of the liver. After 71 asexual...the Plasmodium mammalian cycle. Identifying parasite proteins that are required for liver infection can lead to novel drugs against malaria . For the...sporozoite infection and whose inhibition could be exploited to prevent the first step of a malaria infection. Thus, we have identified two potential

  16. Placental sequestration of Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasites is mediated by the interaction between VAR2CSA and chondroitin sulfate A on syndecan-1

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ayres Pereira, Marina; Mandel Clausen, Thomas; Pehrson, Caroline

    2016-01-01

    During placental malaria, Plasmodium falciparum infected erythrocytes sequester in the placenta, causing health problems for both the mother and fetus. The specific adherence is mediated by the VAR2CSA protein, which binds to placental chondroitin sulfate (CS) on chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans...... for VAR2CSA mediated placental adherence. We further show that the commonly used placental choriocarcinoma cell line, BeWo, express a different set of proteoglycans than those present on placental syncytiotrophoblast and may not be the most biologically relevant model to study placental malaria. Syncytial...... fusion of the BeWo cells, triggered by forskolin treatment, caused an increased expression of placental CS-modified syndecan-1. In line with this, we show that rVAR2 binding to placental CS impairs syndecan-1-related Src signaling in forskolin treated BeWo cells, but not in untreated cells....

  17. Loading of erythrocyte membrane with pentacyclic triterpenes inhibits Plasmodium falciparum invasion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ziegler, Hanne L; Staalsø, Trine; Jaroszewski, Jerzy W

    2006-01-01

    Lupeol and betulinic acid inhibit the proliferation of Plasmodium falciparum parasites by inhibition of the invasion of merozoites into erythrocytes. This conclusion is based on experiments employing parasite cultures synchronized by magnetic cell sorting (MACS). Identical inhibitory effects were...

  18. In-depth validation of acridine orange staining for flow cytometric parasite and reticulocyte enumeration in an experimental model using Plasmodium berghei

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hein-Kristensen, L; Wiese, L; Kurtzhals, J A L

    2009-01-01

    Flow cytometry is potentially an effective method for counting malaria parasites, but inconsistent results have hampered its routine use in rodent models. A published two-channel method using acridine orange offers clear discrimination between the infected and uninfected erythrocytes. However...

  19. Manual blood exchange transfusion does not significantly contribute to parasite clearance in artesunate-treated individuals with imported severe Plasmodium falciparum malaria

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    A.R. Kreeftmeijer-Vegter (Annemarie); M.M. de Melo (Mariana ); P.J. de Vries (Peter); R. Koelewijn (Rob); J.J. van Hellemond (Jaap); P.J.J. van Genderen (Perry)

    2013-01-01

    textabstractBackground: Exchange transfusion (ET) has remained a controversial adjunct therapy for the treatment of severe malaria. In order to assess the relative contribution of ET to parasite clearance in severe malaria, all patients receiving ET as an adjunct treatment to parenteral quinine or

  20. Evidence of tRNA cleavage in apicomplexan parasites: half-tRNAs as new potential regulatory molecules of Toxoplasma gondii and Plasmodium berghei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Several lines of evidence demonstrated that organisms ranging from bacteria to higher animals possess a regulated endonucleolytic cleavage pathway producing half-tRNA fragments. In the present study, we investigated the occurrence of this phenomenon in two distantly related apicomplexan parasites, T...

  1. Vaccine Containing the Three Allelic Variants of the Plasmodium vivax Circumsporozoite Antigen Induces Protection in Mice after Challenge with a Transgenic Rodent Malaria Parasite

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alba Marina Gimenez

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Plasmodium vivax is the most common species that cause malaria outside of the African continent. The development of an efficacious vaccine would contribute greatly to control malaria. Recently, using bacterial and adenoviral recombinant proteins based on the P. vivax circumsporozoite protein (CSP, we demonstrated the possibility of eliciting strong antibody-mediated immune responses to each of the three allelic forms of P. vivax CSP (PvCSP. In the present study, recombinant proteins representing the PvCSP alleles (VK210, VK247, and P. vivax-like, as well as a hybrid polypeptide, named PvCSP-All epitopes, were generated. This hybrid containing the conserved C-terminal of the PvCSP and the three variant repeat domains in tandem were successfully produced in the yeast Pichia pastoris. After purification and biochemical characterization, they were used for the experimental immunization of C57BL/6 mice in a vaccine formulation containing the adjuvant Poly(I:C. Immunization with a recombinant protein expressing all three different allelic forms in fusion elicited high IgG antibody titers reacting with all three different allelic variants of PvCSP. The antibodies targeted both the C-terminal and repeat domains of PvCSP and recognized the native protein on the surface of P. vivax sporozoites. More importantly, mice that received the vaccine formulation were protected after challenge with chimeric Plasmodium berghei sporozoites expressing CSP repeats of P. vivax sporozoites (Pb/PvVK210. Our results suggest that it is possible to elicit protective immunity against one of the most common PvCSP alleles using soluble recombinant proteins expressed by P. pastoris. These recombinant proteins are promising candidates for clinical trials aiming to develop a multiallele vaccine against P. vivax malaria.

  2. Population genomics diversity of Plasmodium falciparum in malaria ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Abstract. Background: Plasmodium falciparum, the most dangerous malaria parasite species to humans remains an important public health concern in Okelele, a rural community in Ilorin, Kwara State, Nigeria. There is however little information about the genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum in Nigeria. Objective: To ...

  3. Population genomics diversity of Plasmodium falciparum in malaria ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Background: Plasmodium falciparum, the most dangerous malaria parasite species to humans remains an important public health concern in Okelele, a rural community in Ilorin, Kwara State, Nigeria. There is however little information about the genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum in Nigeria. Objective: To determine ...

  4. Diagnosis of an imported Plasmodium ovale wallikeri infection in Malaysia

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Liew, Jonathan Wee Kent; Mahmud, Rohela; Tan, Lian Huat; Lau, Yee Ling

    2016-01-01

    Plasmodium ovale is rare and not exactly known to be autochthonous in Malaysia. There are two distinct forms of the parasite, namely P. ovale curtisi (classic form) and P. ovale wallikeri (variant form...

  5. Sensitivity of Haemoproteus columbae , Avian Parasite to ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The birds Columbidae livia (Pigeons) were screened for malaria parasite by microbiological technique using Giemsa Staining Technique. The slides we examined for the presence of plasmodium parasite (Parasitaemia Value). Results indicated the presence of malaria parasites namely Haemoproteus columbae in three ...

  6. B-cell responses to pregnancy-restricted and -unrestricted Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 antigens in Ghanaian women naturally exposed to malaria parasites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ampomah, Paulina; Stevenson, Liz; Ofori, Michael F

    2014-01-01

    -linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and memory B-cell frequencies by enzyme-linked immunosorbent spot (ELISPOT) assay in a cohort of P. falciparum-exposed nonpregnant Ghanaian women. The antigens used were a VAR2CSA-type PfEMP1 (IT4VAR04) with expression restricted to parasites infecting the placenta, as well as two...... immunity probably reflect the clonal antigenic variation and allelic polymorphism of PfEMP1. However, it is likely that other immune-evasive mechanisms are also involved, such as interference with formation and maintenance of immunological memory. We measured PfEMP1-specific antibody levels by enzyme...... commonly recognized PfEMP1 proteins (HB3VAR06 and IT4VAR60) implicated in rosetting and not pregnancy restricted. This enabled, for the first time, a direct comparison in the same individuals of immune responses specific for a clinically important parasite antigen expressed only during well-defined periods...

  7. Deaths due to Plasmodium knowlesi malaria in Sabah, Malaysia: association with reporting as Plasmodium malariae and delayed parenteral artesunate

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Rajahram, Giri S; Barber, Bridget E; William, Timothy; Menon, Jayaram; Anstey, Nicholas M; Yeo, Tsin W

    2012-01-01

    The simian parasite Plasmodium knowlesi is recognized as a common cause of severe and fatal human malaria in Sabah, Malaysia, but is morphologically indistinguishable from and still commonly reported...

  8. Polymorphisms in Plasmodium falciparum chloroquine resistance transporter and multidrug resistance 1 genes: parasite risk factors that affect treatment outcomes for P. falciparum malaria after artemether-lumefantrine and artesunate-amodiaquine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venkatesan, Meera; Gadalla, Nahla B; Stepniewska, Kasia; Dahal, Prabin; Nsanzabana, Christian; Moriera, Clarissa; Price, Ric N; Mårtensson, Andreas; Rosenthal, Philip J; Dorsey, Grant; Sutherland, Colin J; Guérin, Philippe; Davis, Timothy M E; Ménard, Didier; Adam, Ishag; Ademowo, George; Arze, Cesar; Baliraine, Frederick N; Berens-Riha, Nicole; Björkman, Anders; Borrmann, Steffen; Checchi, Francesco; Desai, Meghna; Dhorda, Mehul; Djimdé, Abdoulaye A; El-Sayed, Badria B; Eshetu, Teferi; Eyase, Frederick; Falade, Catherine; Faucher, Jean-François; Fröberg, Gabrielle; Grivoyannis, Anastasia; Hamour, Sally; Houzé, Sandrine; Johnson, Jacob; Kamugisha, Erasmus; Kariuki, Simon; Kiechel, Jean-René; Kironde, Fred; Kofoed, Poul-Erik; LeBras, Jacques; Malmberg, Maja; Mwai, Leah; Ngasala, Billy; Nosten, Francois; Nsobya, Samuel L; Nzila, Alexis; Oguike, Mary; Otienoburu, Sabina Dahlström; Ogutu, Bernhards; Ouédraogo, Jean-Bosco; Piola, Patrice; Rombo, Lars; Schramm, Birgit; Somé, A Fabrice; Thwing, Julie; Ursing, Johan; Wong, Rina P M; Zeynudin, Ahmed; Zongo, Issaka; Plowe, Christopher V; Sibley, Carol Hopkins

    2014-10-01

    Adequate clinical and parasitologic cure by artemisinin combination therapies relies on the artemisinin component and the partner drug. Polymorphisms in the Plasmodium falciparum chloroquine resistance transporter (pfcrt) and P. falciparum multidrug resistance 1 (pfmdr1) genes are associated with decreased sensitivity to amodiaquine and lumefantrine, but effects of these polymorphisms on therapeutic responses to artesunate-amodiaquine (ASAQ) and artemether-lumefantrine (AL) have not been clearly defined. Individual patient data from 31 clinical trials were harmonized and pooled by using standardized methods from the WorldWide Antimalarial Resistance Network. Data for more than 7,000 patients were analyzed to assess relationships between parasite polymorphisms in pfcrt and pfmdr1 and clinically relevant outcomes after treatment with AL or ASAQ. Presence of the pfmdr1 gene N86 (adjusted hazards ratio = 4.74, 95% confidence interval = 2.29 - 9.78, P AL. AL and ASAQ exerted opposing selective effects on single-nucleotide polymorphisms in pfcrt and pfmdr1. Monitoring selection and responding to emerging signs of drug resistance are critical tools for preserving efficacy of artemisinin combination therapies; determination of the prevalence of at least pfcrt K76T and pfmdr1 N86Y should now be routine. © The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

  9. Characterization and application of multiple genetic markers for Plasmodium malariae

    OpenAIRE

    BRUCE, M. C.; Macheso, A.; Galinski, M.R.; Barnwell, J W

    2006-01-01

    Plasmodium malariae, a protozoan parasite that causes malaria in humans, has a global distribution in tropical and subtropical regions and is commonly found in sympatry with other Plasmodium species of humans. Little is known about the genetics or population structure of P. malariae. In the present study, we describe polymorphic genetic markers for P. malariae and present the first molecular epidemiological data for this parasite. Six microsatellite or minisatellite markers were validated usi...

  10. Potent, Plasmodium-Selective Farnesyltransferase Inhibitors That Arrest the Growth of Malaria Parasites: Structure—Activity Relationships of Ethylenediamine-Analogue Scaffolds and Homology Model Validation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fletcher, Steven; Cummings, Christopher G.; Rivas, Kasey; Katt, William P.; Hornéy, Carrie; Buckner, Frederick S.; Chakrabarti, Debopam; Sebti, Saïd M.; Gelb, Michael H.; Van Voorhis, Wesley C.; Hamilton, Andrew D.

    2011-01-01

    New chemotherapeutics are urgently needed to combat malaria. We previously reported on a novel series of antimalarial, ethylenediamine-based inhibitors of protein farnesyltransferase (PFT). In the current study, we designed and synthesized a series of second generation inhibitors, wherein the core ethylenediamine scaffold was varied in order to examine both the homology model of Plasmodium falciparum PFT (PfPFT) and our predicted inhibitor binding mode. We identified several PfPFT inhibitors (PfPFTIs) that are selective for PfPFT versus the mammalian isoform of the enzyme (up to 136-fold selectivity), that inhibit the malarial enzyme with IC50 values down to 1 nM, and that block the growth of P. falciparum in infected whole cells (erythrocytes) with ED50 values down to 55 nM. The structure–activity data for these second generation, ethylenediamine-inspired PFT inhibitors were rationalized by consideration of the X-ray crystal structure of mammalian PFT and the homology model of the malarial enzyme. PMID:18686940

  11. Potent, Plasmodium-selective farnesyltransferase inhibitors that arrest the growth of malaria parasites: structure-activity relationships of ethylenediamine-analogue scaffolds and homology model validation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fletcher, Steven; Cummings, Christopher G; Rivas, Kasey; Katt, William P; Hornéy, Carrie; Buckner, Frederick S; Chakrabarti, Debopam; Sebti, Saïd M; Gelb, Michael H; Van Voorhis, Wesley C; Hamilton, Andrew D

    2008-09-11

    New chemotherapeutics are urgently needed to combat malaria. We previously reported on a novel series of antimalarial, ethylenediamine-based inhibitors of protein farnesyltransferase (PFT). In the current study, we designed and synthesized a series of second generation inhibitors, wherein the core ethylenediamine scaffold was varied in order to examine both the homology model of Plasmodium falciparum PFT (PfPFT) and our predicted inhibitor binding mode. We identified several PfPFT inhibitors (PfPFTIs) that are selective for PfPFT versus the mammalian isoform of the enzyme (up to 136-fold selectivity), that inhibit the malarial enzyme with IC50 values down to 1 nM, and that block the growth of P. falciparum in infected whole cells (erythrocytes) with ED50 values down to 55 nM. The structure-activity data for these second generation, ethylenediamine-inspired PFT inhibitors were rationalized by consideration of the X-ray crystal structure of mammalian PFT and the homology model of the malarial enzyme.

  12. No effect of human serum and erythrocytes enriched in n-3 fatty acids by oral intake on Plasmodium falciparum blood stage parasites in vitro

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Abu-Zeid, Y A; Hansen, H S; Jakobsen, P H

    1993-01-01

    acid (EPA, 20:5n-3) of 3.5 g/d and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA, 22:6n-3) of 2.5 g/d and 24 mg/d of total tocopherol. Post-intake fish oil serum (post-s) and erythrocytes (post-e) were tested in vitro for inhibitory activity against blood stages of P. falciparum compared with pre-intake serum (pre-s......) and pre-intake erythrocyte (pre-e). Also the effect of EPA and arachidonic acid (AA, 20:4n-6) on the erythrocytic growth of P. falciparum was tested using in vitro assays. The results show that both post-s and post-e had no antimalarial activity on P. falciparum. No differential antimalarial effect......To examine the effect of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFA) on the erythrocytic growth of Plasmodium falciparum, serum and erythrocytes were separated from blood of a healthy donor before and after he had taken fish oil capsules for 8 days. Such intake supplied an amount of eicosapentaenoic...

  13. Filarial worms reduce Plasmodium infectivity in mosquitoes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew T Aliota

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Co-occurrence of malaria and filarial worm parasites has been reported, but little is known about the interaction between filarial worm and malaria parasites with the same Anopheles vector. Herein, we present data evaluating the interaction between Wuchereria bancrofti and Anopheles punctulatus in Papua New Guinea (PNG. Our field studies in PNG demonstrated that An. punctulatus utilizes the melanization immune response as a natural mechanism of filarial worm resistance against invading W. bancrofti microfilariae. We then conducted laboratory studies utilizing the mosquitoes Armigeres subalbatus and Aedes aegypti and the parasites Brugia malayi, Brugia pahangi, Dirofilaria immitis, and Plasmodium gallinaceum to evaluate the hypothesis that immune activation and/or development by filarial worms negatively impact Plasmodium development in co-infected mosquitoes. Ar. subalbatus used in this study are natural vectors of P. gallinaceum and B. pahangi and they are naturally refractory to B. malayi (melanization-based refractoriness.Mosquitoes were dissected and Plasmodium development was analyzed six days after blood feeding on either P. gallinaceum alone or after taking a bloodmeal containing both P. gallinaceum and B. malayi or a bloodmeal containing both P. gallinaceum and B. pahangi. There was a significant reduction in the prevalence and mean intensity of Plasmodium infections in two species of mosquito that had dual infections as compared to those mosquitoes that were infected with Plasmodium alone, and was independent of whether the mosquito had a melanization immune response to the filarial worm or not. However, there was no reduction in Plasmodium development when filarial worms were present in the bloodmeal (D. immitis but midgut penetration was absent, suggesting that factors associated with penetration of the midgut by filarial worms likely are responsible for the observed reduction in malaria parasite infections.These results could have an

  14. Discordant patterns of genetic variation at two chloroquine resistance loci in worldwide populations of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mehlotra, Rajeev K; Mattera, Gabriel; Bockarie, Moses J

    2008-01-01

    . However, both Pfcrt and Pfmdr1 MS haplotypes showed similar levels of low diversity in South American parasite populations. Median-joining network analyses showed that the Pfcrt MS haplotypes correlated well with geography and CQR Pfcrt alleles, whereas there was no distinct Pfmdr1 MS haplotype...... different mechanisms. Since Pfmdr1 mutations may be associated with resistance to artemisinin combination therapies that are replacing CQ, particularly in Africa, it is important to determine if, and how, the genetic characteristics of this locus change over time....

  15. Full-length recombinant Plasmodium falciparum VAR2CSA binds specifically to CSPG and induces potent parasite adhesion blocking antibodies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Khunrae, Pongsak; Dahlbäck, Madeleine; Nielsen, Morten A

    2010-01-01

    in the pathogenesis of severe P. falciparum infection. In pregnant women the parasites express a single and unique member of the PfEMP1 family named VAR2CSA, which is associated with the ability of the infected erythrocytes to adhere specifically to chondroitin sulphate A (CSA) in the placenta. Several DBL domains...... yields from insect cells. Using surface plasmon resonance we demonstrate that VAR2CSA alone binds with nano-molar affinity to placental chondroitin sulphate proteoglycan (CSPG-h) and with significantly weaker affinity to other glycosaminoglycans, showing a similar specificity to that observed...

  16. AUTOPHAGY IN PLASMODIUM, A MULTIFUNCTIONAL PATHWAY?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adelaide U.P. Hain

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Autophagy is a catabolic process that normally utilizes the lysosome. The far-reaching implications of this system in disease are being increasingly understood. Studying autophagy is complicated by its role in cell survival and programmed cell death and the involvement of the canonical marker of autophagy, Atg8/LC3, in numerous non-autophagic roles. The malaria parasite, Plasmodium, has conserved certain aspects of the autophagic machinery but for what purpose has long remained a mystery. Major advances have recently been gained and suggest a role for Atg8 in apicoplast maintenance, degradation of heme inside the food vacuole, and possibly trafficking of proteins or organelles outside the parasite membrane. Autophagy may also participate in programmed cell death under drug treatment or as a selective tool to limit parasite load. We review the current findings and discuss discrepancies in the field of autophagy in the Plasmodium parasite.

  17. HIV nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole inhibit plasmodium liver stages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hobbs, Charlotte V; Voza, Tatiana; De La Vega, Patricia; Vanvliet, Jillian; Conteh, Solomon; Penzak, Scott R; Fay, Michael P; Anders, Nicole; Ilmet, Tiina; Li, Yonghua; Borkowsky, William; Krzych, Urszula; Duffy, Patrick E; Sinnis, Photini

    2012-12-01

    Although nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs) are usually part of first-line treatment regimens for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), their activity on Plasmodium liver stages remains unexplored. Additionally, trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (TMP-SMX), used for opportunistic infection prophylaxis in HIV-exposed infants and HIV-infected patients, reduces clinical episodes of malaria; however, TMP-SMX effect on Plasmodium liver stages requires further study. We characterized NNRTI and TMP-SMX effects on Plasmodium liver stages in vivo using Plasmodium yoelii. On the basis of these results, we conducted in vitro studies assessing TMP-SMX effects on the rodent parasites P. yoelii and Plasmodium berghei and on the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Our data showed NNRTI treatment modestly reduced P. yoelii liver stage parasite burden and minimally extended prepatent period. TMP-SMX administration significantly reduced liver stage parasite burden, preventing development of patent parasitemia in vivo. TMP-SMX inhibited development of rodent and P. falciparum liver stage parasites in vitro. NNRTIs modestly affect liver stage Plasmodium parasites, whereas TMP-SMX prevents patent parasitemia. Because drugs that inhibit liver stages target parasites when they are present in lower numbers, these results may have implications for eradication efforts. Understanding HIV drug effects on Plasmodium liver stages will aid in optimizing treatment regimens for HIV-exposed and HIV-infected infected patients in malaria-endemic areas.

  18. Deoxyhypusine hydroxylase from Plasmodium vivax, the neglected human malaria parasite: molecular cloning, expression and specific inhibition by the 5-LOX inhibitor zileuton.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Veronika Anyigoh Atemnkeng

    Full Text Available Primaquine, an 8-aminoquinoline, is the only drug which cures the dormant hypnozoites of persistent liver stages from P. vivax. Increasing resistance needs the discovery of alternative pathways as drug targets to develop novel drug entities. Deoxyhypusine hydroxylase (DOHH completes hypusine biosynthesis in eukaryotic initiation factor (eIF-5A which is the only cellular protein known to contain the unusual amino acid hypusine. Modified EIF-5A is important for proliferation of the malaria parasite. Here, we present the first successful cloning and expression of DOHH from P. vivax causing tertiary malaria. The nucleic acid sequence of 1041 bp encodes an open reading frame of 346 amino acids. Histidine tagged expression of P. vivax DOHH detected a protein of 39.01 kDa in E. coli. The DOHH protein from P. vivax shares significant amino acid identity to the simian orthologues from P. knowlesi and P. yoelii strain H. In contrast to P. falciparum only four E-Z-type HEAT-like repeats are present in P. vivax DOHH with different homology to phycocyanin lyase subunits from cyanobacteria and in proteins participating in energy metabolism of Archaea and Halobacteria. However, phycocyanin lyase activity is absent in P. vivax DOHH. The dohh gene is present as a single copy gene and transcribed throughout the whole erythrocytic cycle. Specific inhibition of recombinant P. vivax DOHH is possible by complexing the ferrous iron with zileuton, an inhibitor of mammalian 5-lipoxygenase (5-LOX. Ferrous iron in the active site of 5-LOX is coordinated by three conserved histidines and the carboxylate of isoleucine(673. Zileuton inhibited the P. vivax DOHH protein with an IC50 of 12,5 nmol determined by a relative quantification by GC/MS. By contrast, the human orthologue is only less affected with an IC50 of 90 nmol suggesting a selective iron-complexing strategy for the parasitic enzyme.

  19. Plasmodium infection in a Leadbeater's possum (Gymnobelideus leadbeateri).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheelings, T F; McLaren, P J; Tatarczuch, L; Slocombe, R F

    2016-08-01

    A wild-caught, adult female Leadbeater's possum (Gymnobelideus leadbeateri) died while in captivity after suffering from chronic ill-thrift that progressed to acute respiratory distress. On histopathological examination of tissues, the cause of death was determined to be severe acute pneumonia with pulmonary oedema associated with an intracellular protozoan parasite present within erythrocytes. Transmission electron microscopy was performed on lung tissues and organisms consistent for Plasmodium sp. were identified within numerous erythrocytes. Molecular characterisation of the parasite from DNA extracted from tissue blocks of fixed lung determined the organism to belong to the genus Plasmodium (100% similarity to Plasmodium species when a BLAST analysis was performed); however, speciation of the organism was not possible. This is the first report of Plasmodium sp. infection and subsequent disease in a native Australian mammal. The lifecycle of this parasite remains unknown. It is also unknown what effects haemoparasitism may have on the population dynamics of this endangered possum species. © 2016 Australian Veterinary Association.

  20. Infectivity of Plasmodium falciparum gametocytes in patients ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The difficulty of identifying gametocyte carriers from the community is often limited due to financial and human resources constraints. The available alternative ... Plasmodium falciparum was the predominant parasite species and P. malariae being the only minor species, accounting for 0.9% of malaria cases. Clinical malaria ...

  1. Plasmodium falciparum malaria, southern Algeria, 2007.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boubidi, Said C; Gassen, Ibrahim; Khechache, Yacine; Lamali, Karima; Tchicha, Boualem; Brengues, Cecile; Menegon, Michela; Severini, Carlo; Fontenille, Didier; Harrat, Zoubir

    2010-02-01

    An outbreak of Plasmodium falciparum malaria occurred in Tinzaouatine in southern Algeria in 2007. The likely vector, Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes, had not been detected in Algeria. Genes for resistance to chloroquine were detected in the parasite. The outbreak shows the potential for an increase in malaria vectors in Algeria.

  2. Plasmodium falciparum Malaria, Southern Algeria, 2007

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gassen, Ibrahim; Khechache, Yacine; Lamali, Karima; Tchicha, Boualem; Brengues, Cécile; Menegon, Michela; Severini, Carlo; Fontenille, Didier; Harrat, Zoubir

    2010-01-01

    An outbreak of Plasmodium falciparum malaria occurred in Tinzaouatine in southern Algeria in 2007. The likely vector, Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes, had not been detected in Algeria. Genes for resistance to chloroquine were detected in the parasite. The outbreak shows the potential for an increase in malaria vectors in Algeria. PMID:20113565

  3. Plasmodium falciparum Malaria, Southern Algeria, 2007

    OpenAIRE

    Boubidi, Sa?d C; Gassen, Ibrahim; Khechache, Yacine; Lamali, Karima; Tchicha, Boualem; Brengues, C?cile; Menegon, Michela; Severini, Carlo; Fontenille, Didier; Harrat, Zoubir

    2010-01-01

    An outbreak of Plasmodium falciparum malaria occurred in Tinzaouatine in southern Algeria in 2007. The likely vector, Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes, had not been detected in Algeria. Genes for resistance to chloroquine were detected in the parasite. The outbreak shows the potential for an increase in malaria vectors in Algeria.

  4. Plasmodium falciparum malaria and antimalarial interventions in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Plasmodium falciparum malaria is one of the most important parasitic diseases affecting sub-Saharan Africa, despite the availability of interventions. It exerts tremendous socio-economic and medical burden on the continent, particularly in under five children and pregnant women. In this review, we have attempted to ...

  5. Plasmodium sporozoite motility: an update.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montagna, Georgina N; Matuschewski, Kai; Buscaglia, Carlos A

    2012-01-01

    Plasmodium, the causative agent of malaria, employs its own actin/myosin-based motor for forward locomotion, penetration of molecular and cellular barriers, and invasion of target cells. The sporozoite is unique amongst the extracellular Plasmodium developmental forms in that it has to cross considerable distances and different tissues inside the mosquito and vertebrate hosts to ultimately reach a parenchymal liver cell, the proper target cell where to transform and replicate. Throughout this dangerous journey, the parasite alternates between being passively transported by the body fluids and using its own active cellular motility to seamlessly glide through extracellular matrix and cell barriers. But irrespective of the chosen path, the sporozoite is compelled to keep on moving at a fairly fast pace to escape destruction by host defense mechanisms. Here, we highlight and discuss recent findings collected in Plasmodium sporozoites and related parasites that shed new light on the biological significance of apicomplexan motility and on the structure and regulation of the underlying motor machinery.

  6. Implication of the mosquito midgut microbiota in the defense against malaria parasites

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Dong, Yuemei; Manfredini, Fabio; Dimopoulos, George

    2009-01-01

    .... We have undertaken a comprehensive functional genomic approach to elucidate the molecular interplay between the bacterial co-infection and the development of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium...

  7. Physicochemical Aspects of the Plasmodium chabaudi-Infected Erythrocyte

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayakawa, Eri H.; Kobayashi, Seiki; Matsuoka, Hiroyuki

    2015-01-01

    Membrane electrochemical potential is a feature of the molecular profile of the cell membrane and the two-dimensional arrangement of its charge-bearing molecules. Plasmodium species, the causative agents of malaria, are intracellular parasites that remodel host erythrocytes by expressing their own proteins on erythrocyte membranes. Although various aspects of the modifications made to the host erythrocyte membrane have been extensively studied in some human Plasmodium species (such as Plasmodium falciparum), details of the structural and molecular biological modifications made to host erythrocytes by nonhuman Plasmodium parasites have not been studied. We employed zeta potential analysis of erythrocytes parasitized by P. chabaudi, a nonhuman Plasmodium parasite. From these measurements, we found that the surface potential shift was more negative for P. chabaudi-infected erythrocytes than for P. falciparum-infected erythrocytes. However, electron microscopic analysis of the surface of P. chabaudi-infected erythrocytes did not reveal any modifications as compared with nonparasitized erythrocytes. These results suggest that differences in the membrane modifications found herein represent unique attributes related to the pathogenesis profiles of the two different malaria parasite species in different host animals and that these features have been acquired through parasite adaptations acquired over long evolutionary time periods. PMID:26557685

  8. Fine-scale genetic characterization of Plasmodium falciparum ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    J. Genet. 87, 59–64]. Introduction. Malaria, one of the deadliest, infectious diseases is caused by protozoan parasites of Plasmodium species, affecting about. 300 million individuals around the globe, mainly tropical re- gions of the world causing about one million deaths annually. The parasites have two complex life cycles: ...

  9. Plasmodium vivax Malaria in Cambodia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siv, Sovannaroth; Roca-Feltrer, Arantxa; Vinjamuri, Seshu Babu; Bouth, Denis Mey; Lek, Dysoley; Rashid, Mohammad Abdur; By, Ngau Peng; Popovici, Jean; Huy, Rekol; Menard, Didier

    2016-01-01

    The Cambodian National Strategic Plan for Elimination of Malaria aims to move step by step toward elimination of malaria across Cambodia with an initial focus on Plasmodium falciparum malaria before achieving elimination of all forms of malaria, including Plasmodium vivax in 2025. The emergence of artemisinin-resistant P. falciparum in western Cambodia over the last decade has drawn global attention to support the ultimate goal of P. falciparum elimination, whereas the control of P. vivax lags much behind, making the 2025 target gradually less achievable unless greater attention is given to P. vivax elimination in the country. The following review presents in detail the past and current situation regarding P. vivax malaria, activities of the National Malaria Control Program, and interventional measures applied. Constraints and obstacles that can jeopardize our efforts to eliminate this parasite species are discussed. PMID:27708187

  10. Optimal strategy for controlling the spread of Plasmodium Knowlesi malaria: Treatment and culling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdullahi, Mohammed Baba; Hasan, Yahya Abu; Abdullah, Farah Aini

    2015-05-01

    Plasmodium Knowlesi malaria is a parasitic mosquito-borne disease caused by a eukaryotic protist of genus Plasmodium Knowlesi transmitted by mosquito, Anopheles leucosphyrus to human and macaques. We developed and analyzed a deterministic Mathematical model for the transmission of Plasmodium Knowlesi malaria in human and macaques. The optimal control theory is applied to investigate optimal strategies for controlling the spread of Plasmodium Knowlesi malaria using treatment and culling as control strategies. The conditions for optimal control of the Plasmodium Knowlesi malaria are derived using Pontryagin's Maximum Principle. Finally, numerical simulations suggested that the combination of the control strategies is the best way to control the disease in any community.

  11. Plasmodium-induced inflammation by uric acid.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jamie M Orengo

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available Infection of erythrocytes with the Plasmodium parasite causes the pathologies associated with malaria, which result in at least one million deaths annually. The rupture of infected erythrocytes triggers an inflammatory response, which is induced by parasite-derived factors that still are not fully characterized. Induced secretion of inflammatory cytokines by these factors is considered a major cause of malaria pathogenesis. In particular, the inflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor (TNF is thought to mediate most of the life-threatening pathologies of the disease. Here we describe the molecular characterization of a novel pathway that results in the secretion of TNF by host cells. We found that erythrocytes infected by Plasmodium accumulate high concentrations of hypoxanthine and xanthine. Degradation of Plasmodium-derived hypoxanthine/xanthine results in the formation of uric acid, which triggers the secretion of TNF. Since uric acid is considered a "danger signal" released by dying cells to alert the immune system, Plasmodium appears to have co-evolved to exploit this warning system. Identifying the mechanisms used by the parasite to induce the host inflammatory response is essential to develop urgently needed therapies against this disease.

  12. A Bioinformatics Approach for Homology Modeling and Binding Site Identification of Triosephosphate Isomerase from Plasmodium falciparum 3D7

    OpenAIRE

    Ullah, M; Hira, J; Ghosh, T.; Ishaque, N.; Absar, N

    2012-01-01

    Malaria is a major public health concern, and malarial parasites have developed resistance against the commonly available drugs. So now a days it is a major concern to find out a new target for drug therapy. Plasmodium falciparum 3D7, one of the strains of plasmodium species also lacks in a functional tricarboxylic acid cycle and solely dependent on glycolysis for its energy supply like other plasmodium species. Although enzymes of malarial parasite have been considered as potential antimalar...

  13. Primate malarias: Diversity, distribution and insights for zoonotic Plasmodium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faust, Christina; Dobson, Andrew P

    2015-12-01

    Protozoans within the genus Plasmodium are well-known as the causative agents of malaria in humans. Numerous Plasmodium species parasites also infect a wide range of non-human primate hosts in tropical and sub-tropical regions worldwide. Studying this diversity can provide critical insight into our understanding of human malarias, as several human malaria species are a result of host switches from non-human primates. Current spillover of a monkey malaria, Plasmodium knowlesi, in Southeast Asia highlights the permeability of species barriers in Plasmodium. Also recently, surveys of apes in Africa uncovered a previously undescribed diversity of Plasmodium in chimpanzees and gorillas. Therefore, we carried out a meta-analysis to quantify the global distribution, host range, and diversity of known non-human primate malaria species. We used published records of Plasmodium parasites found in non-human primates to estimate the total diversity of non-human primate malarias globally. We estimate that at least three undescribed primate malaria species exist in sampled primates, and many more likely exist in unstudied species. The diversity of malaria parasites is especially uncertain in regions of low sampling such as Madagascar, and taxonomic groups such as African Old World Monkeys and gibbons. Presence-absence data of malaria across primates enables us to highlight the close association of forested regions and non-human primate malarias. This distribution potentially reflects a long coevolution of primates, forest-adapted mosquitoes, and malaria parasites. The diversity and distribution of primate malaria are an essential prerequisite to understanding the mechanisms and circumstances that allow Plasmodium to jump species barriers, both in the evolution of malaria parasites and current cases of spillover into humans.

  14. Primate malarias: Diversity, distribution and insights for zoonotic Plasmodium

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christina Faust

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Protozoans within the genus Plasmodium are well-known as the causative agents of malaria in humans. Numerous Plasmodium species parasites also infect a wide range of non-human primate hosts in tropical and sub-tropical regions worldwide. Studying this diversity can provide critical insight into our understanding of human malarias, as several human malaria species are a result of host switches from non-human primates. Current spillover of a monkey malaria, Plasmodium knowlesi, in Southeast Asia highlights the permeability of species barriers in Plasmodium. Also recently, surveys of apes in Africa uncovered a previously undescribed diversity of Plasmodium in chimpanzees and gorillas. Therefore, we carried out a meta-analysis to quantify the global distribution, host range, and diversity of known non-human primate malaria species. We used published records of Plasmodium parasites found in non-human primates to estimate the total diversity of non-human primate malarias globally. We estimate that at least three undescribed primate malaria species exist in sampled primates, and many more likely exist in unstudied species. The diversity of malaria parasites is especially uncertain in regions of low sampling such as Madagascar, and taxonomic groups such as African Old World Monkeys and gibbons. Presence–absence data of malaria across primates enables us to highlight the close association of forested regions and non-human primate malarias. This distribution potentially reflects a long coevolution of primates, forest-adapted mosquitoes, and malaria parasites. The diversity and distribution of primate malaria are an essential prerequisite to understanding the mechanisms and circumstances that allow Plasmodium to jump species barriers, both in the evolution of malaria parasites and current cases of spillover into humans.

  15. Diagnosis of an imported Plasmodium ovale wallikeri infection in Malaysia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liew, Jonathan Wee Kent; Mahmud, Rohela; Tan, Lian Huat; Lau, Yee Ling

    2016-01-06

    Plasmodium ovale is rare and not exactly known to be autochthonous in Malaysia. There are two distinct forms of the parasite, namely P. ovale curtisi (classic form) and P. ovale wallikeri (variant form). Here, the first sequence confirmed case of an imported P. ovale wallikeri infection in Malaysia is presented. Microscopy found Plasmodium parasites with morphology similar to P. ovale or Plasmodium vivax in the blood films. Further confirmation using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) targeting the small-subunit rRNA gene of the parasite was unsuccessful. Genus-specific PCR was then performed and the product was sequenced and analysed. Sequence analyses confirmed the aetiological agent as P. ovale wallikeri. New species-specific primers (rOVA1v and rOVA2v) were employed and P. ovale wallikeri was finally confirmed. The findings highlight the need to look out for imported malaria infections in Malaysia and the importance of a constantly updated and validated diagnostic technique.

  16. Imaging Plasmodium Immunobiology in Liver, Brain, and Lung

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frevert, Ute; Nacer, Adéla; Cabrera, Mynthia; Movila, Alexandru; Leberl, Maike

    2013-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum malaria is responsible for the deaths of over half a million African children annually. Until a decade ago, dynamic analysis of the malaria parasite was limited to in vitro systems with the typical limitations associated with 2D monocultures or entirely artificial surfaces. Due to extremely low parasite densities, the liver was considered a black box in terms of Plasmodium sporozoite invasion, liver stage development, and merozoite release into the blood. Further, nothing was known about the behavior of blood stage parasites in organs such as brain where clinical signs manifest and the ensuing immune response of the host that may ultimately result in a fatal outcome. The advent of fluorescent parasites, advances in imaging technology, and availability of an ever-increasing number of cellular and molecular probes have helped illuminate many steps along the pathogenetic cascade of this deadly tropical parasite. PMID:24076429

  17. Imaging Plasmodium immunobiology in the liver, brain, and lung.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frevert, Ute; Nacer, Adéla; Cabrera, Mynthia; Movila, Alexandru; Leberl, Maike

    2014-02-01

    Plasmodium falciparum malaria is responsible for the deaths of over half a million African children annually. Until a decade ago, dynamic analysis of the malaria parasite was limited to in vitro systems with the typical limitations associated with 2D monocultures or entirely artificial surfaces. Due to extremely low parasite densities, the liver was considered a black box in terms of Plasmodium sporozoite invasion, liver stage development, and merozoite release into the blood. Further, nothing was known about the behavior of blood stage parasites in organs such as the brain where clinical signs manifest and the ensuing immune response of the host that may ultimately result in a fatal outcome. The advent of fluorescent parasites, advances in imaging technology, and availability of an ever-increasing number of cellular and molecular probes have helped illuminate many steps along the pathogenetic cascade of this deadly tropical parasite. © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Host-parasite interactions that guide red blood cell invasion by malaria parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Aditya S; Egan, Elizabeth S; Duraisingh, Manoj T

    2015-05-01

    Malaria is caused by the infection and proliferation of parasites from the genus Plasmodium in red blood cells (RBCs). A free Plasmodium parasite, or merozoite, released from an infected RBC must invade another RBC host cell to sustain a blood-stage infection. Here, we review recent advances on RBC invasion by Plasmodium merozoites, focusing on specific molecular interactions between host and parasite. Recent work highlights the central role of host-parasite interactions at virtually every stage of RBC invasion by merozoites. Biophysical experiments have for the first time measured the strength of merozoite-RBC attachment during invasion. For P. falciparum, there have been many key insights regarding the invasion ligand PfRh5 in particular, including its influence on host species tropism, a co-crystal structure with its RBC receptor basigin, and its suitability as a vaccine target. For P. vivax, researchers identified the origin and emergence of the parasite from Africa, demonstrating a natural link to the Duffy-negative RBC variant in African populations. For the simian parasite P. knowlesi, zoonotic invasion into human cells is linked to RBC age, which has implications for parasitemia during an infection and thus malaria. New studies of the molecular and cellular mechanisms governing RBC invasion by Plasmodium parasites have shed light on various aspects of parasite biology and host cell tropism, and indicate opportunities for malaria control.

  19. The prevalence of HBV, HCV and malaria parasites among

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    and statistical significance. Test procedure quality .... hospital blood banks were positive for malaria parasites. Both Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax were detected. All malaria positive blood donors claimed that they had a history ... and mechanics accounted for higher prevalence (28%) followed by students ...

  20. Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte invasion: combining function with immune evasion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gavin J Wright

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available All the symptoms and pathology of malaria are caused by the intraerythrocytic stages of the Plasmodium parasite life cycle. Because Plasmodium parasites cannot replicate outside a host cell, their ability to recognize and invade erythrocytes is an essential step for both parasite survival and malaria pathogenesis. This makes invasion a conceptually attractive vaccine target, especially because it is one of the few stages when the parasite is directly exposed to the host humoral immune system. This apparent vulnerability, however, has been countered by the parasite, which has evolved sophisticated molecular mechanisms to evade the host immune response so that parasites asymptomatically replicate within immune individuals. These mechanisms include the expansion of parasite invasion ligands, resulting in multiple and apparently redundant invasion "pathways", highly polymorphic parasite surface proteins that are immunologically distinct, and parasite proteins which are poorly immunogenic. These formidable defences have so far thwarted attempts to develop an effective blood-stage vaccine, leading many to question whether there really is an exploitable chink in the parasite's immune evasion defences. Here, we review recent advances in the molecular understanding of the P. falciparum erythrocyte invasion field, discuss some of the challenges that have so far prevented the development of blood-stage vaccines, and conclude that the parasite invasion ligand RH5 represents an essential pinch point that might be vulnerable to vaccination.

  1. Surveillance of artemether-lumefantrine associated Plasmodium falciparum multidrug resistance protein-1 gene polymorphisms in Tanzania

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kavishe, Reginald A; Paulo, Petro; Kaaya, Robert D

    2014-01-01

    ) is the recommended first-line drug in treatment of uncomplicated malaria. This study surveyed the distribution of the Plasmodium falciparum multidrug resistance protein-1 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with increased parasite tolerance to ALu, in Tanzania. METHODS: A total of 687 Plasmodium...

  2. Plasmodium Oocysts: Overlooked Targets of Mosquito Immunity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Ryan C; Barillas-Mury, Carolina

    2016-12-01

    Although the ability of mosquitoes to limit Plasmodium infection is well documented, many questions remain as to how malaria parasites are recognized and killed by the mosquito host. Recent evidence suggests that anti-Plasmodium immunity is multimodal, with different immune mechanisms regulating ookinete and oocyst survival. However, most experiments determine the number of mature oocysts, without considering that different immune mechanisms may target different developmental stages of the parasite. Complement-like proteins have emerged as important determinants of early immunity targeting the ookinete stage, yet the mechanisms by which the mosquito late-phase immune response limits oocyst survival are less understood. Here, we describe the known components of the mosquito immune system that limit oocyst development, and provide insight into their possible mechanisms of action. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Plasmodium falciparum population dynamics in a cohort of pregnant women in Senegal

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Guitard, Juliette; Andersen, Pernille; Ermont, Caroline

    2010-01-01

    Background: Pregnant women acquire protective antibodies that cross-react with geographically diverse placental Plasmodium falciparum isolates, suggesting that surface molecules expressed on infected erythrocytes by pregnancy-associated malaria (PAM) parasites have conserved epitopes and, that de...

  4. Extremely low Plasmodium prevalence in wild plovers and coursers from Cape Verde and Madagascar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez-de la Puente, Josué; Eberhart-Phillips, Luke J; Cristina Carmona-Isunza, M; Zefania, Sama; Navarro, María José; Kruger, Oliver; Hoffman, Joseph Ivan; Székely, Tamás; Figuerola, Jordi

    2017-06-08

    Relatively little is known about the prevalence of blood parasites in shorebirds, especially those breeding in the tropics. The prevalence of blood parasites of the genera Plasmodium, Haemoproteus and Leucocytozoon was assessed in blood samples from Kentish plovers and cream-coloured coursers in Cape Verde, and samples of Kittlitz's plovers, Madagascar plovers and white-fronted plovers in Madagascar. Only two of these samples were positive for Plasmodium: a Kittlitz's plover was infected by a generalist lineage of Plasmodium that has already been reported in Europe and Africa, while in a white-fronted plover direct sequencing revealed a previously un-described Plasmodium lineage. Potential explanations for the low prevalence of blood parasites include the scarcity of vectors in habitats used by these bird species and their resistance to parasitic infections.

  5. Global Analysis of Transcript and Protein Levels Across the Plasmodium falciparum Life Cycle

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    LeRoch, Karine G; Johnson, Jeffrey R; Florens, Laurence; Zhou, Yingyao; Santrosyan, Audrey; Grainger, Munira; Yan, S. F; Williamson, Kim C; Holder, Anthony A; Carucci, Daniel J; Yates , III, John R

    2004-01-01

    To investigate the role of post-transcriptional controls in the regulation of protein expression for the malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, we have compared mRNA transcript and protein abundance...

  6. Vital and dispensable roles of Plasmodium multidrug resistance transporters during blood- and mosquito-stage development

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Rijpma, S.R; Velden, M. van der; Annoura, T; Matz, J.M; Kenthirapalan, S; Kooij, T.W; Matuschewski, K; Gemert, G.J.A. van; Vegte-Bolmer, M.G. van de; Siebelink-Stoter, R; Graumans, W; Ramesar, J; Klop, O; Russel, F.G; Sauerwein, R.W; Janse, C.J; Franke-Fayard, B.M; Koenderink, J.B

    2016-01-01

    ...) transporters, which export a wide range of compounds including pharmaceuticals. In this study, we used reverse genetics to study the role of all seven Plasmodium MDR proteins during the life cycle of malaria parasites. Four P. berghei genes...

  7. Plasmodium simium/Plasmodium vivax infections in southern brown howler monkeys from the Atlantic Forest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela Camargos Costa

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Blood infection by the simian parasite, Plasmodium simium, was identified in captive (n = 45, 4.4% and in wild Alouatta clamitans monkeys (n = 20, 35% from the Atlantic Forest of southern Brazil. A single malaria infection was symptomatic and the monkey presented clinical and haematological alterations. A high frequency of Plasmodium vivax-specific antibodies was detected among these monkeys, with 87% of the monkeys testing positive against P. vivax antigens. These findings highlight the possibility of malaria as a zoonosis in the remaining Atlantic Forest and its impact on the epidemiology of the disease.

  8. Laser-induced inactivation of Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    LeBlanc, Danielle; Story, Robert; Gross, Eitan

    2012-08-08

    Haemozoin crystals, produced by Plasmodium during its intra-erythrocytic asexual reproduction cycle, can generate UV light via the laser-induced, non-linear optical process of third harmonic generation (THG). In the current study the feasibility of using haemozoin, constitutively stored in the parasite's food vacuole, to kill the parasite by irradiation with a near IR laser was evaluated. Cultured Plasmodium parasites at different stages of development were irradiated with a pulsed NIR laser and the viability of parasites at each stage was evaluated from their corresponding growth curves using the continuous culture method. Additional testing for germicidal effects of haemozoin and NIR laser was performed by adding synthetic haemozoin crystals to Escherichia coli in suspension. Cell suspensions were then irradiated with the laser and small aliquots taken and spread on agar plates containing selective agents to determine cell viability (CFU). Parasites in the late-trophozoites form as well as trophozoites in early-stage of DNA synthesis were found to be the most sensitive to the treatment with -4-log reduction in viability after six passes through the laser beam; followed by parasites in ring phase (-2-log reduction). A -1-log reduction in E. coli viability was obtained following a 60 min irradiation regimen of the bacteria in the presence of 1 μM synthetic haemozoin and a -2-log reduction in the presence of 10 μM haemozoin. Minimal (≤ 15%) cell kill was observed in the presence of 10 μM haemin. Laser-induced third-harmonic generation by haemozoin can be used to inactivate Plasmodium. This result may have clinical implications for treating severe malaria symptoms by irradiating the patient's blood through the skin or through dialysis tubing with a NIR laser.

  9. [Failure to radical cure in Plasmodium vivax malaria].

    Science.gov (United States)

    García, Julián; Seijo, Agustín; Benchetrit, Andrés; Couto, Esteban; Echazarreta, Sofía; Lloveras, Susana; Orduna, Tomás

    2016-08-01

    Relapsing Plasmodium vivax malaria is due to activation of dormant intrahepatic parasitic forms known as hypnozoits. Primaquine is the only available drug effective against hypnozoits and, alongside a schizonticidal drug, constitutes the radical treatment of malaria. Failure of radical treatment is frequently attributed to inadequate dosing, poor adherence, or reinfection. However, several cases of radical treatment failure without these factors have been reported, inferring that metabolic properties of the host or tolerance mechanisms of the parasite may be implied. A case of malaria due to Plasmodium vivax acquired in the Amazonic region, treated outside endemic area, with multiple relapses despite adequate radical treatment is described.

  10. Plasmodium berghei Calcium Dependent Protein Kinase 1 Is Not Required for Host Cell Invasion

    OpenAIRE

    Sylvia Jebiwott; Kavitha Govindaswamy; Amos Mbugua; Purnima Bhanot

    2013-01-01

    Plasmodium Calcium Dependent Protein Kinase (CDPK1) is required for the development of sexual stages in the mosquito. In addition, it is proposed to play an essential role in the parasite's invasive stages possibly through the regulation of the actinomyosin motor and micronemal secretion. We demonstrate that Plasmodium berghei CDPK1 is dispensable in the parasite's erythrocytic and pre-erythrocytic stages. We successfully disrupted P. berghei CDPK1 (PbCDPK1) by homologous recombination. The r...

  11. Plasmodium vivax Transmission in Africa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosalind E Howes

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Malaria in sub-Saharan Africa has historically been almost exclusively attributed to Plasmodium falciparum (Pf. Current diagnostic and surveillance systems in much of sub-Saharan Africa are not designed to identify or report non-Pf human malaria infections accurately, resulting in a dearth of routine epidemiological data about their significance. The high prevalence of Duffy negativity provided a rationale for excluding the possibility of Plasmodium vivax (Pv transmission. However, review of varied evidence sources including traveller infections, community prevalence surveys, local clinical case reports, entomological and serological studies contradicts this viewpoint. Here, these data reports are weighted in a unified framework to reflect the strength of evidence of indigenous Pv transmission in terms of diagnostic specificity, size of individual reports and corroboration between evidence sources. Direct evidence was reported from 21 of the 47 malaria-endemic countries studied, while 42 countries were attributed with infections of visiting travellers. Overall, moderate to conclusive evidence of transmission was available from 18 countries, distributed across all parts of the continent. Approximately 86.6 million Duffy positive hosts were at risk of infection in Africa in 2015. Analysis of the mechanisms sustaining Pv transmission across this continent of low frequency of susceptible hosts found that reports of Pv prevalence were consistent with transmission being potentially limited to Duffy positive populations. Finally, reports of apparent Duffy-independent transmission are discussed. While Pv is evidently not a major malaria parasite across most of sub-Saharan Africa, the evidence presented here highlights its widespread low-level endemicity. An increased awareness of Pv as a potential malaria parasite, coupled with policy shifts towards species-specific diagnostics and reporting, will allow a robust assessment of the public health

  12. Plasmodium vivax Transmission in Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howes, Rosalind E; Reiner, Robert C; Battle, Katherine E; Longbottom, Joshua; Mappin, Bonnie; Ordanovich, Dariya; Tatem, Andrew J; Drakeley, Chris; Gething, Peter W; Zimmerman, Peter A; Smith, David L; Hay, Simon I

    2015-11-01

    Malaria in sub-Saharan Africa has historically been almost exclusively attributed to Plasmodium falciparum (Pf). Current diagnostic and surveillance systems in much of sub-Saharan Africa are not designed to identify or report non-Pf human malaria infections accurately, resulting in a dearth of routine epidemiological data about their significance. The high prevalence of Duffy negativity provided a rationale for excluding the possibility of Plasmodium vivax (Pv) transmission. However, review of varied evidence sources including traveller infections, community prevalence surveys, local clinical case reports, entomological and serological studies contradicts this viewpoint. Here, these data reports are weighted in a unified framework to reflect the strength of evidence of indigenous Pv transmission in terms of diagnostic specificity, size of individual reports and corroboration between evidence sources. Direct evidence was reported from 21 of the 47 malaria-endemic countries studied, while 42 countries were attributed with infections of visiting travellers. Overall, moderate to conclusive evidence of transmission was available from 18 countries, distributed across all parts of the continent. Approximately 86.6 million Duffy positive hosts were at risk of infection in Africa in 2015. Analysis of the mechanisms sustaining Pv transmission across this continent of low frequency of susceptible hosts found that reports of Pv prevalence were consistent with transmission being potentially limited to Duffy positive populations. Finally, reports of apparent Duffy-independent transmission are discussed. While Pv is evidently not a major malaria parasite across most of sub-Saharan Africa, the evidence presented here highlights its widespread low-level endemicity. An increased awareness of Pv as a potential malaria parasite, coupled with policy shifts towards species-specific diagnostics and reporting, will allow a robust assessment of the public health significance of Pv, as well

  13. Plasmodium species differentiation by non-expert on-line volunteers for remote malaria field diagnosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz-Ruiz, Alejandra; Postigo, María; Gil-Casanova, Sara; Cuadrado, Daniel; Bautista, José M; Rubio, José Miguel; Luengo-Oroz, Miguel; Linares, María

    2018-01-30

    Routine field diagnosis of malaria is a considerable challenge in rural and low resources endemic areas mainly due to lack of personnel, training and sample processing capacity. In addition, differential diagnosis of Plasmodium species has a high level of misdiagnosis. Real time remote microscopical diagnosis through on-line crowdsourcing platforms could be converted into an agile network to support diagnosis-based treatment and malaria control in low resources areas. This study explores whether accurate Plasmodium species identification-a critical step during the diagnosis protocol in order to choose the appropriate medication-is possible through the information provided by non-trained on-line volunteers. 88 volunteers have performed a series of questionnaires over 110 images to differentiate species (Plasmodium falciparum, Plasmodium ovale, Plasmodium vivax, Plasmodium malariae, Plasmodium knowlesi) and parasite staging from thin blood smear images digitalized with a smartphone camera adapted to the ocular of a conventional light microscope. Visual cues evaluated in the surveys include texture and colour, parasite shape and red blood size. On-line volunteers are able to discriminate Plasmodium species (P. falciparum, P. malariae, P. vivax, P. ovale, P. knowlesi) and stages in thin-blood smears according to visual cues observed on digitalized images of parasitized red blood cells. Friendly textual descriptions of the visual cues and specialized malaria terminology is key for volunteers learning and efficiency. On-line volunteers with short-training are able to differentiate malaria parasite species and parasite stages from digitalized thin smears based on simple visual cues (shape, size, texture and colour). While the accuracy of a single on-line expert is far from perfect, a single parasite classification obtained by combining the opinions of multiple on-line volunteers over the same smear, could improve accuracy and reliability of Plasmodium species

  14. Molecular identification of the chitinase genes in Plasmodium relictum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Longoria, Luz; Hellgren, Olof; Bensch, Staffan

    2014-06-18

    Malaria parasites need to synthesize chitinase in order to go through the peritrophic membrane, which is created around the mosquito midgut, to complete its life cycle. In mammalian malaria species, the chitinase gene comprises either a large or a short copy. In the avian malaria parasites Plasmodium gallinaceum both copies are present, suggesting that a gene duplication in the ancestor to these extant species preceded the loss of either the long or the short copy in Plasmodium parasites of mammals. Plasmodium gallinaceum is not the most widespread and harmful parasite of birds. This study is the first to search for and identify the chitinase gene in one of the most prevalent avian malaria parasites, Plasmodium relictum. Both copies of P. gallinaceum chitinase were used as reference sequences for primer design. Different sequences of Plasmodium spp. were used to build the phylogenetic tree of chitinase gene. The gene encoding for chitinase was identified in isolates of two mitochondrial lineages of P. relictum (SGS1 and GRW4). The chitinase found in these two lineages consists both of the long (PrCHT1) and the short (PrCHT2) copy. The genetic differences found in the long copy of the chitinase gene between SGS1 and GRW4 were higher than the difference observed for the cytochrome b gene. The identification of both copies in P. relictum sheds light on the phylogenetic relationship of the chitinase gene in the genus Plasmodium. Due to its high variability, the chitinase gene could be used to study the genetic population structure in isolates from different host species and geographic regions.

  15. Laser-induced inactivation of Plasmodium falciparum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    LeBlanc Danielle

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Haemozoin crystals, produced by Plasmodium during its intra-erythrocytic asexual reproduction cycle, can generate UV light via the laser-induced, non-linear optical process of third harmonic generation (THG. In the current study the feasibility of using haemozoin, constitutively stored in the parasite’s food vacuole, to kill the parasite by irradiation with a near IR laser was evaluated. Methods Cultured Plasmodium parasites at different stages of development were irradiated with a pulsed NIR laser and the viability of parasites at each stage was evaluated from their corresponding growth curves using the continuous culture method. Additional testing for germicidal effects of haemozoin and NIR laser was performed by adding synthetic haemozoin crystals to Escherichia coli in suspension. Cell suspensions were then irradiated with the laser and small aliquots taken and spread on agar plates containing selective agents to determine cell viability (CFU. Results Parasites in the late-trophozoites form as well as trophozoites in early-stage of DNA synthesis were found to be the most sensitive to the treatment with ~4-log reduction in viability after six passes through the laser beam; followed by parasites in ring phase (~2-log reduction. A ~1-log reduction in E. coli viability was obtained following a 60 min irradiation regimen of the bacteria in the presence of 1 μM synthetic haemozoin and a ~2-log reduction in the presence of 10 μM haemozoin. Minimal (≤15% cell kill was observed in the presence of 10 μM haemin. Conclusions Laser-induced third-harmonic generation by haemozoin can be used to inactivate Plasmodium. This result may have clinical implications for treating severe malaria symptoms by irradiating the patient’s blood through the skin or through dialysis tubing with a NIR laser.

  16. Characterization of the Small Exported Plasmodium falciparum Membrane Protein SEMP1

    OpenAIRE

    Olivier Dietz; Sebastian Rusch; Françoise Brand; Esther Mundwiler-Pachlatko; Annette Gaida; Till Voss; Hans-Peter Beck

    2014-01-01

    Survival and virulence of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum during the blood stage of infection critically depend on extensive host cell refurbishments mediated through export of numerous parasite proteins into the host cell. The parasite-derived membranous structures called Maurer's clefts (MC) play an important role in protein trafficking from the parasite to the red blood cell membrane. However, their specific function has yet to be determined. We identified and characterize...

  17. No evidence for ape Plasmodium infections in humans in Gabon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Délicat-Loembet, Lucresse; Rougeron, Virginie; Ollomo, Benjamin; Arnathau, Céline; Roche, Benjamin; Elguero, Eric; Moukodoum, Nancy Diamella; Okougha, Alain-Prince; Mve Ondo, Bertrand; Boundenga, Larson; Houzé, Sandrine; Galan, Maxime; Nkoghé, Dieudonné; Leroy, Eric M; Durand, Patrick; Paupy, Christophe; Renaud, François; Prugnolle, Franck

    2015-01-01

    African great apes are naturally infected by a multitude of Plasmodium species most of them recently discovered, among which several are closely related to human malaria agents. However, it is still unknown whether these animals can serve as source of infections for humans living in their vicinity. To evaluate this possibility, we analysed the nature of Plasmodium infections from a bank of 4281 human blood samples collected in 210 villages of Gabon, Central Africa. Among them, 2255 were detected positive to Plasmodium using molecular methods (Plasmodium Cytochrome b amplification). A high throughput sequencing technology (454 GS-FLX Titanium technology, Roche) was then used to identify the Plasmodium species present within each positive sample. Overall, we identified with confidence only three species infecting humans in Gabon: P. falciparum, P. malariae and P. ovale. None of the species known to infect non-human primates in Central Africa was found. Our study shows that ape Plasmodium parasites of the subgenus Laverania do not constitute a frequent source of infection for humans. It also suggests that some strong host genetic barriers must exist to prevent the cross species transmission of ape Plasmodium in a context of ever increasing contacts between humans and wildlife.

  18. New insights into clonality and panmixia in Plasmodium and toxoplasma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tibayrenc, Michel; Ayala, Francisco J

    2014-01-01

    Until the 1990s, Plasmodium and Toxoplasma were widely considered to be potentially panmictic species, because they both undergo a meiotic sexual cycle in their definitive hosts. We have proposed that both parasites are able of clonal (nonrecombining) propagation, at least in some cycles. Toxoplasma was soon shown to be a paradigmatic case of clonal population structure in North American and in European cycles. But the proposal provoked an outcry in the case of Plasmodium and still appears as doubtful to many scientists. However, the existence of Plasmodium nonrecombining lines has been fully confirmed, although the origin of these lines is debatable. We discuss the current state of knowledge concerning the population structure of both parasites in the light of the recent developments of pathogen clonal evolution proposed by us and of new hypotheses presented here. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd All rights reserved.

  19. Reviews Evaluating the Anti-Plasmodium, Anti-Pyretic and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Reviews Evaluating the Anti-Plasmodium, Anti-Pyretic and Analgesic Efficacy of Some Locally Used Anti-Malaria Herbs. ... Discovery and Innovation ... herbs, (A. indica, C. citratus, V. amygdalina, C. papaya and O. gratissimum), for efficacy against malaria parasites in the human blood stream and some major malaria ...

  20. Differential effects of quinoline antimalarials on endocytosis in Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Lindi; Egan, Timothy J; Joiner, Keith A; Hoppe, Heinrich C

    2008-05-01

    The effects of quinoline antimalarials on endocytosis by Plasmodium falciparum was investigated by measuring parasite hemoglobin levels, peroxidase uptake, and transport vesicle content. Mefloquine, quinine, and halofantrine inhibited endocytosis, and chloroquine inhibited vesicle trafficking, while amodiaquine shared both effects. Protease inhibitors moderated hemoglobin perturbations, suggesting a common role for heme binding.

  1. Crystal structure of truncated aspartate transcarbamoylase from Plasmodium falciparum

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lunev, Sergey; Bosch, Soraya S.; Batista, Fernando de Assis; Wrenger, Carsten; Groves, Matthew R.

    The de novo pyrimidine-biosynthesis pathway of Plasmodium falciparum is a promising target for antimalarial drug discovery. The parasite requires a supply of purines and pyrimidines for growth and proliferation and is unable to take up pyrimidines from the host. Direct (or indirect) inhibition of de

  2. Apicoplast and Mitochondrion in Gametocytogenesis of Plasmodium falciparum▿ †

    OpenAIRE

    Okamoto, Noriko; Spurck, Timothy P.; Goodman, Christopher D.; McFadden, Geoffrey I.

    2008-01-01

    Live cell imaging of human malaria parasites Plasmodium falciparum during gametocytogenesis revealed that the apicoplast does not grow, whereas the mitochondrion undergoes remarkable morphological development. A close connection of the two organelles is consistently maintained. The apicoplast and mitochondrion are not components of the male gametes, suggesting maternal inheritance.

  3. Carriage of sub-microscopic sexual and asexual Plasmodium ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Carriage of sub-microscopic sexual and asexual Plasmodium falciparum stages in the dry season at Navrongo, Ghana. ... infections and therefore the need for active case detection surveillance to eliminate "asymptomatic reservoir" parasites and consequently break the transmission of the disease in Ghana. Funding: Bill ...

  4. Dhfr and dhps mutations in Plasmodium falciparum isolates in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP), the current first line antimalarial drug in Tanzania, is compromised by evolution and spread of mutations in the parasite's dhfr and dhps genes. In the present study we established the baseline frequencies of Plasmodium falciparum dihydrofolate reductase (pfdhfr) and dihydropteroate ...

  5. Cytokine profiles and antibody responses to Plasmodium falciparum ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Administrator

    †Mathematical Statistics, Stockholm University, SE-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden. Abstract. Background: The ability of the host immune system to efficiently clear Plasmodium falciparum parasites during a malaria infection depends on the type of immune response mounted by the host. Study design: In a cross-sectional study, ...

  6. Optimization of a protocol for extraction of Plasmodium falciparum ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study was carried out to determine the efficiency of two reagents, RNAlater and RNAwiz, for their ability to stabilize Plasmodium falciparum RNA in infected whole blood and saponin lysed parasite pellets for use in DNA microarrays. Eight infected blood samples were stored in each of the reagents, and RNA extracted at ...

  7. Occurrence of different Plasmodium species in malaria patients in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    An investigation into the species of Plasmodium parasites in malaria endemic area of Owerri was carried out between January and March 2005. Five hundred blood samples from two public and one private health institutions were examined using the conventional microscopic examination of Giemsa and Leishman stained ...

  8. A rodent malarial model of Plasmodium berghei for the development ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study investigated the development of pyrimethamine (pyr) and sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine (S/P) resistance in Plasmodium berghei, a rodent parasite in mice using a serial technique (3.50 – 10mg/kg pyrimethamine) and a single treatment course approach with 125/6.25mg/kg S/P. The stability of resistance ...

  9. Studies On the Incidence of Asymptomatic Plasmodium Infection ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The incidence of asymptomatic Plasmodium falciparum infection among orphans between age groups, gender and blood groups was investigated. Standard microscopic methods were used to screen for malaria parasites in the blood specimens obtained from eighty-five (85) subjects in three orphanages in Kaduna and ...

  10. Seasonal variations in antibody response to a Plasmodium ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    An Enzyme Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA), employing a recombinant peptide capture antigen (R32tet32) was used to detect antibodies against the circumsporozoite protein (CSP) of the malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum in 169 serum samples from 16 subjects from two villages, Afefu (FA) and Tobalogbo (TB) ...

  11. Modeling Metabolism and Stage-Specific Growth of Plasmodium falciparum HB3 during the Intraerythrocytic Development Cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    metabolism and stage-specific growth of Plasmodium falciparum HB3 during the intraerythrocytic developmental cycle† Xin Fang, Jaques Reifman* and Anders...Wallqvist The human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum goes through a complex life cycle, including a roughly 48-hour-long intraerythrocytic...disease warrant basic research into the different mechanisms used by Plasmodium falciparum, the most virulent causative agent of malaria, to survive and

  12. Protozoan Parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Custodio, Haidee

    2016-02-01

    • Stool antigen detection for Cryptosporidium sp, Giardia lamblia and Entamoeba histolytica are now commercially available, have better sensitivity and specificity than the traditional stool microscopy, and are less dependent on personnel skill. Tests employing newer techniques with faster turnaround time are also available for diagnosing trichomoniasis.• Nitazoxanide, the only U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved medication for therapy of cryptosporidiosis, is effective among immunocompetent patients. However, on the basis of strong evidence from multiple clinical trials, nitazoxanide is considered ineffective among immunocompromised patients. (14) • Giardiasis can be asymptomatic or have a chronic course leading to malabsorption and failure to thrive. It can be treated with metronidazole, tinidazole, or nitazoxanide. On the basis of growing observational studies, postinfectious and extraintestinal manifestations of giardiasis occur, but the mechanisms are unclear. Given the high prevalence of giardiasis, public health implications need to be defined. (16) • Eradicating E histolytica from the gastrointestinal tract requires only intraluminal agent therapy. Therapy for invasive illnesses requires use of imidazole followed by intraluminal agents to eliminate persistent intraluminal parasites. • Malaria is considered the most lethal parasitic infection, with Plasmodium falciparum as the predominant cause of mortality. P vivax and P ovale can be dormant in the liver, and primaquine is necessary to resolve infection by P vivax and P ovale. • Among immunocompetent patients, infection with Toxoplasma gondii may be asymptomatic, involve localized lymphadenopathy, or cause ocular infection. In immunocompromised patients, reactivation or severe infection is not uncommon. On the basis of limited observational studies (there are no well-controlled randomized trials), therapy is recommended for acute infection during pregnancy to prevent transmission to the

  13. Carotenoid-based bill colour is an integrative signal of multiple parasite infection in blackbird

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biard, Clotilde; Saulnier, Nicolas; Gaillard, Maria; Moreau, Jérôme

    2010-11-01

    In the study of parasite-mediated sexual selection, there has been controversial evidence for the prediction that brighter males should have fewer parasites. Most of these studies have focused on one parasite species. Our aim was to investigate the expression of carotenoid-based coloured signals in relation to patterns of multiple parasite infections, to determine whether colour reflects parasite load of all parasite species, or whether different relationships might be found when looking at each parasite species independently. We investigated the relationship between bill colour, body mass and plasma carotenoids and parasite load (feather chewing lice, blood parasite Plasmodium sp., intestinal parasites cestodes and coccidia) in the blackbird ( Turdus merula). Bill colour on its own appeared to be a poor predictor of parasite load when investigating its relationships with individual parasite species. Variation in parasite intensities at the community level was summarised using principal component analysis to derive synthetic indexes of relative parasite species abundance and absolute parasite load. The relative abundance of parasite species was strongly related to bill colour, plasma carotenoid levels and body mass: birds with relatively more cestodes and chewing lice and relatively less Plasmodium and coccidia had a more colourful bill, circulated more carotenoids and were heavier. These results suggest that bill colour more accurately reflects the relative intensities of parasite infection, rather than one-by-one relationships with parasites or absolute parasite burden. Investigating patterns of multiple parasite infection would thus improve our understanding of the information conveyed by coloured signals on parasite load.

  14. Identification of Protein Markers in Patients Infected with Plasmodium knowlesi, Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alan Kang-Wai Mu

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Malaria is caused by parasitic protozoans of the genus Plasmodium and is one of the most prevalent infectious diseases in tropical and subtropical regions. For this reason, effective and practical diagnostic methods are urgently needed to control the spread of malaria. The aim of the current study was to identify a panel of new malarial markers, which could be used to diagnose patients infected with various Plasmodium species, including P. knowlesi, P. vivax and P. falciparum. Sera from malaria-infected patients were pooled and compared to control sera obtained from healthy individuals using the isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ technique. Mass spectrometry was used to identify serum proteins and quantify their relative abundance. We found that the levels of several proteins were increased in pooled serum from infected patients, including cell adhesion molecule-4 and C-reactive protein. In contrast, the serum concentration of haptoglobin was reduced in malaria-infected individuals, which we verified by western blot assay. Therefore, these proteins might represent infectious markers of malaria, which could be used to develop novel diagnostic tools for detecting P. knowlesi, P. vivax and P. falciparum. However, these potential malarial markers will need to be validated in a larger population of infected individuals.

  15. Leishmania donovani infection drives the priming of human monocyte-derived dendritic cells during Plasmodium falciparum co-infections

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van den Bogaart, E.; de Bes, H. M.; Balraadjsing, P. P. S.; Mens, P. F.; Adams, E. R.; Grobusch, M. P.; van Die, I.; Schallig, H. D. F. H.

    2015-01-01

    Functional impairment of dendritic cells (DCs) is part of a survival strategy evolved by Leishmania and Plasmodium parasites to evade host immune responses. Here, the effects of co-exposing human monocyte-derived DCs to Leishmania donovani promastigotes and Plasmodium falciparum-infected

  16. Malaria parasite evasion of classical complement pathway attack

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Mads Delbo; Ditlev, Sisse; Olmos, Rafael Bayarri

    2017-01-01

    Background: The most severe form of malaria is caused by the intraerythrocytic protozoan parasite Plasmodium falciparum. The parasite exports multiple proteins to the erythrocyte membrane, including members of the protein family P. falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP-1). Expression...

  17. Plasmodium falciparum ookinetes require mosquito midgut chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans for cell invasion.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dinglasan, R.R.; Alaganan, A.; Ghosh, A.K.; Saito, A.; Kuppevelt, A.H.M.S.M. van; Jacobs-Lorena, M.

    2007-01-01

    Malaria transmission entails development of the Plasmodium parasite in its insect vector, the Anopheles mosquito. Parasite invasion of the mosquito midgut is the critical first step and involves adhesion to host epithelial cell ligands. Partial evidence suggests that midgut oligosaccharides are

  18. How malaria modulates memory: activation and dysregulation of B cells in Plasmodium infection

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Scholzen, A.; Sauerwein, R.W.

    2013-01-01

    Humoral immune responses play a major role in naturally acquired immunity to malaria, but are slow to develop and ineffectively maintained. Although this may be partially due to the complex nature of Plasmodium parasites and the high degree of antigenic variation, there is evidence that the parasite

  19. Host erythrocyte polymorphisms and exposure to Plasmodium falciparum in Papua New Guinea.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fowkes, F.J.; Michon, P.; Pilling, L.; Ripley, R.M.; Tavul, L.; Imrie, H.J.; Woods, C.M.; Mgone, C.S.; Luty, A.J.F.; Day, K.P.

    2008-01-01

    BACKGROUND: The protection afforded by human erythrocyte polymorphisms against the malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, has been proposed to be due to reduced ability of the parasite to invade or develop in erythrocytes. If this were the case, variable levels of parasitaemia and rates of

  20. Plasmodium falciparum Serine/Threonine Phosphoprotein Phosphatases (PPP): From Housekeeper to 'Holy Grail'

    Science.gov (United States)

    Availability of complete genome sequence for Plasmodium falciparum has been useful in drawing a comprehensive metabolic map of the parasite. Distinct and unique metabolic characteristics of the parasite may be exploited as potential targets for new antimalarial drug discovery research. Reversible ph...

  1. Cytoadhesion of Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes to chondroitin-4-sulfate is cooperative and shear enhanced

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rieger, Harden; Yoshikawa, Hiroshi Y; Quadt, Katharina

    2015-01-01

    Infections with the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum during pregnancy can lead to severe complications for both mother and child, resulting from the cytoadhesion of parasitized erythrocytes in the intervillous space of the placenta. Cytoadherence is conferred by the specific interaction...

  2. Expression of Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 in experimentally infected humans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lavstsen, Thomas; Magistrado, Pamela; Hermsen, Cornelus C

    2005-01-01

    -encoded Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) family, which is expressed on the surface of infected erythrocytes where it mediates binding to endothelial receptors. Thus, severe malaria may be caused by parasites expressing PfEMP1 variants that afford parasites optimal sequestration...

  3. Detection and identification of human Plasmodium species with real-time quantitative nucleic acid sequence-based amplification

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mens, Petra F.; Schoone, Gerard J.; Kager, Piet A.; Schallig, Henk D. F. H.

    2006-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Decisions concerning malaria treatment depend on species identification causing disease. Microscopy is most frequently used, but at low parasitaemia ( <20 parasites/mul) the technique becomes less sensitive and time consuming. Rapid diagnostic tests based on Plasmodium antigen detection

  4. Identification, Cloning, Expression, and Characterization of the Gene for Plasmodium knowlesi Surface Protein Containing an Altered Thrombospondin Repeat Domain

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Mahajan, Babita; Jani, Dewal; Chattopadhyay, Rana; Nagarkatti, Rana; Zheng, Hong; Majam, Victoria; Weiss, Walter; Kumar, Sanjai; Rathore, Dharmendar

    2005-01-01

    .... Aided by the availability of the partially completed genome sequence of the simian malaria parasite Plasmodium knowlesi, we have identified a 786-bp DNA sequence that encodes a 262-amino-acid-long...

  5. Plasmodium falciparum STEVOR proteins impact erythrocyte mechanical properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanyal, Sohini; Egée, Stéphane; Bouyer, Guillaume; Perrot, Sylvie; Safeukui, Innocent; Bischoff, Emmanuel; Buffet, Pierre; Deitsch, Kirk W.; Mercereau-Puijalon, Odile; David, Peter H.

    2012-01-01

    Infection of erythrocytes with the human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, results in dramatic changes to the host cell structure and morphology. The predicted functional localization of the STEVOR proteins at the erythrocyte surface suggests that they may be involved in parasite-induced modifications of the erythrocyte membrane during parasite development. To address the biologic function of STEVOR proteins, we subjected a panel of stevor transgenic parasites and wild-type clonal lines exhibiting different expression levels for stevor genes to functional assays exploring parasite-induced modifications of the erythrocyte membrane. Using this approach, we show that stevor expression impacts deformability of the erythrocyte membrane. This process may facilitate parasite sequestration in deep tissue vasculature. PMID:22106347

  6. Placental histopathological changes associated with Plasmodium vivax infection during pregnancy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo M Souza

    Full Text Available Histological evidence of Plasmodium in the placenta is indicative of placental malaria, a condition associated with severe outcomes for mother and child. Histological lesions found in placentas from Plasmodium-exposed women include syncytial knotting, syncytial rupture, thickening of the placental barrier, necrosis of villous tissue and intervillositis. These histological changes have been associated with P. falciparum infections, but little is known about the contribution of P. vivax to such changes. We conducted a cross-sectional study with pregnant women at delivery and assigned them to three groups according to their Plasmodium exposure during pregnancy: no Plasmodium exposure (n = 41, P. vivax exposure (n = 59 or P. falciparum exposure (n = 19. We evaluated their placentas for signs of Plasmodium and placental lesions using ten histological parameters: syncytial knotting, syncytial rupture, placental barrier thickness, villi necrosis, intervillous space area, intervillous leucocytes, intervillous mononucleates, intervillous polymorphonucleates, parasitized erythrocytes and hemozoin. Placentas from P. vivax-exposed women showed little evidence of Plasmodium or hemozoin but still exhibited more lesions than placentas from women not exposed to Plasmodium, especially when infections occurred twice or more during pregnancy. In the Brazilian state of Acre, where diagnosis and primary treatment are readily available and placental lesions occur in the absence of detected placental parasites, relying on the presence of Plasmodium in the placenta to evaluate Plasmodium-induced placental pathology is not feasible. Multivariate logistic analysis revealed that syncytial knotting (odds ratio [OR], 4.21, P = 0.045, placental barrier thickness (OR, 25.59, P = 0.021 and mononuclear cells (OR, 4.02, P = 0.046 were increased in placentas from P. vivax-exposed women when compared to women not exposed to Plasmodium during pregnancy. A

  7. Immune escape strategies of malaria parasites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pollyanna Stephanie Gomes

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Malaria is one of the most life-threatening infectious diseases worldwide. Immunity to malaria is slow and short-lived despite the repeated parasite exposure in endemic areas. Malaria parasites have evolved refined machinery to evade the immune system based on a range of genetic changes that include allelic variation, biomolecular exposure of proteins and intracellular replication. All of these features increase the probability of survival in both mosquitoes and the vertebrate host. Plasmodium species escape from the first immunological trap in its invertebrate vector host, the Anopheles mosquitoes. The parasites have to pass through various immunological barriers within the mosquito such as anti-microbial molecules and the mosquito microbiota in order to achieve successful transmission to the vertebrate host. Within these hosts, Plasmodium species employ various immune evasion strategies during different life cycle stages. Parasite persistence against the vertebrate immune response depends on the balance among virulence factors, pathology, metabolic cost of the host immune response, and the parasites ability to evade the immune response. In this review we discuss the strategies that Plasmodium parasites use to avoid the vertebrate host immune system and how they promote successful infection and transmission.

  8. Immune Escape Strategies of Malaria Parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomes, Pollyanna S; Bhardwaj, Jyoti; Rivera-Correa, Juan; Freire-De-Lima, Celio G; Morrot, Alexandre

    2016-01-01

    Malaria is one of the most life-threatening infectious diseases worldwide. Immunity to malaria is slow and short-lived despite the repeated parasite exposure in endemic areas. Malaria parasites have evolved refined machinery to evade the immune system based on a range of genetic changes that include allelic variation, biomolecular exposure of proteins, and intracellular replication. All of these features increase the probability of survival in both mosquitoes and the vertebrate host. Plasmodium species escape from the first immunological trap in its invertebrate vector host, the Anopheles mosquitoes. The parasites have to pass through various immunological barriers within the mosquito such as anti-microbial molecules and the mosquito microbiota in order to achieve successful transmission to the vertebrate host. Within these hosts, Plasmodium species employ various immune evasion strategies during different life cycle stages. Parasite persistence against the vertebrate immune response depends on the balance among virulence factors, pathology, metabolic cost of the host immune response, and the parasites ability to evade the immune response. In this review we discuss the strategies that Plasmodium parasites use to avoid the vertebrate host immune system and how they promote successful infection and transmission.

  9. Engineered anopheles immunity to Plasmodium infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuemei Dong

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available A causative agent of human malaria, Plasmodium falciparum, is transmitted by Anopheles mosquitoes. The malaria parasite is under intensive attack from the mosquito's innate immune system during its sporogonic development. We have used genetic engineering to create immune-enhanced Anopheles stephensi mosquitoes through blood meal-inducible expression of a transgene encoding the IMD pathway-controlled NF-kB Rel2 transcription factor in the midgut and fat-body tissue. Transgenic mosquitoes showed greater resistance to Plasmodium and microbial infection as a result of timely concerted tissue-specific immune attacks involving multiple effectors. The relatively weak impact of this genetic modification on mosquito fitness under laboratory conditions encourages further investigation of this approach for malaria control.

  10. The persistence and oscillations of submicroscopic Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax infections over time in Vietnam: an open cohort study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Thuy-Nhien; von Seidlein, Lorenz; Nguyen, Tuong-Vy; Truong, Phuc-Nhi; Hung, Son Do; Pham, Huong-Thu; Nguyen, Tam-Uyen; Le, Thanh Dong; Dao, Van Hue; Mukaka, Mavuto; Day, Nicholas Pj; White, Nicholas J; Dondorp, Arjen M; Thwaites, Guy E; Hien, Tran Tinh

    2018-02-01

    A substantial proportion of Plasmodium species infections are asymptomatic with densities too low to be detectable with standard diagnostic techniques. The importance of such asymptomatic plasmodium infections in malaria transmission is probably related to their duration and density. To explore the duration of asymptomatic plasmodium infections and changes in parasite densities over time, a cohort of participants who were infected with Plasmodium parasites was observed over a 2-year follow-up period. In this open cohort study, inhabitants of four villages in Vietnam were invited to participate in baseline and subsequent 3-monthly surveys up to 24 months, which included the collection of venous blood samples. Samples were batch-screened using ultra-sensitive (u)PCR (lower limit of detection of 22 parasites per mL). Participants found to be infected by uPCR during any of these surveys were invited to join a prospective cohort and provide monthly blood samples. We estimated the persistence of Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax infections and changes in parasite densities over a study period of 24 months. Between Dec 1, 2013, and Jan 8, 2016, 356 villagers participated in between one and 22 surveys. These study participants underwent 4248 uPCR evaluations (11·9 tests per participant). 1874 (32%) of 4248 uPCR tests indicated a plasmodium infection; 679 (36%) of 1874 tests were P falciparum monoinfections, 507 (27%) were P vivax monoinfections, 463 (25%) were co-infections with P falciparum and P vivax, and 225 (12%) were indeterminate species of Plasmodium. The median duration of P falciparum infection was 2 months (IQR 1-3); after accounting for censoring, participants had a 20% chance of having parasitaemia for 4 months or longer. The median duration of P vivax infection was 6 months (3-9), and participants had a 59% chance of having parasitaemia for 4 months or longer. The parasite densities of persistent infections oscillated; following ultralow

  11. Anti-Plasmodium activity of ceramide analogs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gatt Shimon

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Sphingolipids are key molecules regulating many essential functions in eukaryotic cells and ceramide plays a central role in sphingolipid metabolism. A sphingolipid metabolism occurs in the intraerythrocytic stages of Plasmodium falciparum and is associated with essential biological processes. It constitutes an attractive and potential target for the development of new antimalarial drugs. Methods The anti-Plasmodium activity of a series of ceramide analogs containing different linkages (amide, methylene or thiourea linkages between the fatty acid part of ceramide and the sphingoid core was investigated in culture and compared to the sphingolipid analog PPMP (d,1-threo-1-phenyl-2-palmitoylamino-3-morpholino-1-propanol. This analog is known to inhibit the parasite sphingomyelin synthase activity and block parasite development by preventing the formation of the tubovesicular network that extends from the parasitophorous vacuole to the red cell membrane and delivers essential extracellular nutrients to the parasite. Results Analogs containing methylene linkage showed a considerably higher anti-Plasmodium activity (IC50 in the low nanomolar range than PPMP and their counterparts with a natural amide linkage (IC50 in the micromolar range. The methylene analogs blocked irreversibly P. falciparum development leading to parasite eradication in contrast to PPMP whose effect is cytostatic. A high sensitivity of action towards the parasite was observed when compared to their effect on the human MRC-5 cell growth. The toxicity towards parasites did not correlate with the inhibition by methylene analogs of the parasite sphingomyelin synthase activity and the tubovesicular network formation, indicating that this enzyme is not their primary target. Conclusions It has been shown that ceramide analogs were potent inhibitors of P. falciparum growth in culture. Interestingly, the nature of the linkage between the fatty acid part and the

  12. The origin of malarial parasites in orangutans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M Andreína Pacheco

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Recent findings of Plasmodium in African apes have changed our perspectives on the evolution of malarial parasites in hominids. However, phylogenetic analyses of primate malarias are still missing information from Southeast Asian apes. In this study, we report molecular data for a malaria parasite lineage found in orangutans. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We screened twenty-four blood samples from Pongo pygmaeus (Kalimantan, Indonesia for Plasmodium parasites by PCR. For all the malaria positive orangutan samples, parasite mitochondrial genomes (mtDNA and two antigens: merozoite surface protein 1 42 kDa (MSP-1(42 and circumsporozoite protein gene (CSP were amplified, cloned, and sequenced. Fifteen orangutans tested positive and yielded 5 distinct mitochondrial haplotypes not previously found. The haplotypes detected exhibited low genetic divergence among them, indicating that they belong to one species. We report phylogenetic analyses using mitochondrial genomes, MSP-1(42 and CSP. We found that the orangutan malaria parasite lineage was part of a monophyletic group that includes all the known non-human primate malaria parasites found in Southeast Asia; specifically, it shares a recent common ancestor with P. inui (a macaque parasite and P. hylobati (a gibbon parasite suggesting that this lineage originated as a result of a host switch. The genetic diversity of MSP-1(42 in orangutans seems to be under negative selection. This result is similar to previous findings in non-human primate malarias closely related to P. vivax. As has been previously observed in the other Plasmodium species found in non-human primates, the CSP shows high polymorphism in the number of repeats. However, it has clearly distinctive motifs from those previously found in other malarial parasites. CONCLUSION: The evidence available from Asian apes indicates that these parasites originated independently from those found in Africa, likely as the result of host

  13. The Origin of Malarial Parasites in Orangutans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pacheco, M. Andreína; Reid, Michael J. C.; Schillaci, Michael A.; Lowenberger, Carl A.; Galdikas, Biruté M. F.; Jones-Engel, Lisa; Escalante, Ananias A.

    2012-01-01

    Background Recent findings of Plasmodium in African apes have changed our perspectives on the evolution of malarial parasites in hominids. However, phylogenetic analyses of primate malarias are still missing information from Southeast Asian apes. In this study, we report molecular data for a malaria parasite lineage found in orangutans. Methodology/Principal Findings We screened twenty-four blood samples from Pongo pygmaeus (Kalimantan, Indonesia) for Plasmodium parasites by PCR. For all the malaria positive orangutan samples, parasite mitochondrial genomes (mtDNA) and two antigens: merozoite surface protein 1 42 kDa (MSP-142) and circumsporozoite protein gene (CSP) were amplified, cloned, and sequenced. Fifteen orangutans tested positive and yielded 5 distinct mitochondrial haplotypes not previously found. The haplotypes detected exhibited low genetic divergence among them, indicating that they belong to one species. We report phylogenetic analyses using mitochondrial genomes, MSP-142 and CSP. We found that the orangutan malaria parasite lineage was part of a monophyletic group that includes all the known non-human primate malaria parasites found in Southeast Asia; specifically, it shares a recent common ancestor with P. inui (a macaque parasite) and P. hylobati (a gibbon parasite) suggesting that this lineage originated as a result of a host switch. The genetic diversity of MSP-142 in orangutans seems to be under negative selection. This result is similar to previous findings in non-human primate malarias closely related to P. vivax. As has been previously observed in the other Plasmodium species found in non-human primates, the CSP shows high polymorphism in the number of repeats. However, it has clearly distinctive motifs from those previously found in other malarial parasites. Conclusion The evidence available from Asian apes indicates that these parasites originated independently from those found in Africa, likely as the result of host switches from other non

  14. Diagnostic challenges and case management of the first imported case of Plasmodium knowlesi in Sri Lanka.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dewanee Ranaweera, A; Danansuriya, Manjula N; Pahalagedera, Kusumawathie; de A W Gunasekera, W M Kumudunayana T; Dharmawardena, Priyani; Mak, Keng Wai; Wong, Pei-Sze Jeslyn; Li, Mei-Zhi Irene; Tan, Cheong Huat; Hapuarachchi, Hapuarachchige C; Herath, Hema D B; Fernando, Deepika

    2017-03-21

    Sri Lanka has achieved 'malaria-free' status and is now in the phase of prevention of re-introduction of malaria. Imported malaria remains a challenge to resurgence of the disease. The diagnostic challenges encountered and the rapid response initiated to manage a Plasmodium infection, which was later confirmed as Plasmodium knowlesi, the first reported case from Sri Lanka, is discussed. An army officer who returned from Malaysia in October 2016 was found to be positive for Plasmodium both by microscopy and rapid diagnostic test (RDT) by the Anti Malaria Campaign Sri Lanka (AMC) during his third visit to a health care provider. Microscopy findings were suspicious of P. knowlesi infection as the smears showed parasite stages similar to both Plasmodium malariae and Plasmodium falciparum. Nested PCR at AMC confirmed Plasmodium genus, but not the species. In the absence of species confirmation, the patient was treated as a case of P. falciparum. The presence of P. knowlesi was later confirmed by a semi-nested PCR assay performed at the Environmental Health Institute, National Environmental Agency in Singapore. The parasite strain was also characterized by sequencing the circumsporozoite gene. Extensive case investigation including parasitological and entomological surveillance was carried out. Plasmodium knowlesi should be suspected in patients returning from countries in the South Asian region where the parasite is prevalent and when blood smear results are inconclusive.

  15. Role and Regulation of Glutathione Metabolism in Plasmodium falciparum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sylke Müller

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Malaria in humans is caused by one of five species of obligate intracellular protozoan parasites of the genus Plasmodium. P. falciparum causes the most severe disease and is responsible for 600,000 deaths annually, primarily in Sub-Saharan Africa. It has long been suggested that during their development, malaria parasites are exposed to environmental and metabolic stresses. One strategy to drug discovery was to increase these stresses by interfering with the parasites’ antioxidant and redox systems, which may be a valuable approach to disease intervention. Plasmodium possesses two redox systems—the thioredoxin and the glutathione system—with overlapping but also distinct functions. Glutathione is the most abundant low molecular weight redox active thiol in the parasites existing primarily in its reduced form representing an excellent thiol redox buffer. This allows for an efficient maintenance of the intracellular reducing environment of the parasite cytoplasm and its organelles. This review will highlight the mechanisms that are responsible for sustaining an adequate concentration of glutathione and maintaining its redox state in Plasmodium. It will provide a summary of the functions of the tripeptide and will discuss the potential of glutathione metabolism for drug discovery against human malaria parasites.

  16. Parasitic lung infections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vijayan, Vannan Kandi

    2009-05-01

    Global climate change and population explosion leading to changes in natural ecosystem and travel across the continents have resulted in an increase in the transmission of parasites to human beings. This review focuses on recent advancements in parasitic lung infections. Invasive parasitic diseases including lung infections are increasingly being reported in patients with immunodeficiency syndromes. A recombinant kinesin-related antigen of Leishmania donovani has been validated with ELISA using urine samples for the diagnosis of visceral leishmaniasis. Pyruvate kinase deficiency has been shown to provide protection against Plasmodium falciparum infection. Intravenous artesunate is an alternative drug for the treatment of severe malaria. The best way to protect from malaria is the use of long-lasting insecticide-treated bednets. Biennial treatment with praziquantel has been found to be cost-effective treatment for control of infection with Schistosoma haematobium. Pulmonary paragonimiasis can be diagnosed by fine needle aspiration biopsy of pulmonary nodules. Strongyloides stercoralis hyperinfection can mimic accelerated idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. Migratory nodular shadows with halos are important chest computed tomographic findings in human toxocariasis. Patients with immunodeficiency syndromes (HIV infection, organ transplantation and immunosuppressive drugs, including corticosteroids) should be evaluated for early detection of parasitic lung infections.

  17. Exploring Anopheles gut bacteria for Plasmodium blocking activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahia, Ana C; Dong, Yuemei; Blumberg, Benjamin J; Mlambo, Godfree; Tripathi, Abhai; BenMarzouk-Hidalgo, Omar J; Chandra, Ramesh; Dimopoulos, George

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Malaria parasite transmission requires the successful development of Plasmodium gametocytes into flagellated microgametes upon mosquito blood ingestion, and the subsequent fertilization of microgametes and macrogametes for the development of motile zygotes, called ookinetes, which invade and transverse the Anopheles vector mosquito midgut at around 18-36 h after blood ingestion. Within the mosquito midgut, the malaria parasite has to withstand the mosquito's innate immune response and the detrimental effect of its commensal bacterial flora. We have assessed the midgut colonization capacity of 5 gut bacterial isolates from field-derived, and 2 from laboratory colony, mosquitoes and their effect on Plasmodium development in vivo and in vitro, along with their impact on mosquito survival. Some bacterial isolates activated the mosquito's immune system, affected the mosquito's life span, and were capable of blocking Plasmodium development. We have also shown that the ability of these bacteria to inhibit the parasites is likely to involve different mechanisms and factors. A Serratia marcescens isolate was particularly efficient in colonizing the mosquitoes’ gut, compromising mosquito survival, and inhibiting both sexual- and asexual-stage Plasmodium through secreted factors, thereby rendering it a potential candidate for the development of a malaria transmission intervention strategy. PMID:24428613

  18. Genomics and epigenetics of sexual commitment in Plasmodium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bechtsi, D P; Waters, A P

    2017-06-01

    Malaria is the disease caused by the apicomplexan parasites belonging to the genus Plasmodium. Expanding our arsenal to include transmission-blocking agents in our fight against malaria is becoming increasingly important. Such an implementation requires detailed understanding of the biology of the Plasmodium life cycle stages that are transmissible. Plasmodium gametocytes are the only parasite stage that can be transmitted to the mosquito vector and are the product of sexual development in a small percentage of parasites that continually proliferate in host blood. The critical decision made by asexual erythrocytic stages to cease further proliferation and differentiate into gametocytes, as well as the first steps they take into maturity, have long remained unknown. Recent studies have contributed to a breakthrough in our understanding of this branch point in development. In this review, we will discuss the findings that have allowed us to make this major leap forward in our knowledge of sexual commitment in Plasmodium. We will further propose a model for the mechanism triggering the switch to sexual development, constructed around the proteins currently known to regulate this process. Further insight into sexual commitment and gametocyte development will help identify targets for the development of transmission-blocking malaria therapies. Copyright © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  19. Plasmodium cellular effector mechanisms and the hepatic microenvironment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frevert, Ute; Krzych, Urszula

    2015-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum malaria remains one of the most serious health problems globally. Immunization with attenuated parasites elicits multiple cellular effector mechanisms capable of eliminating Plasmodium liver stages. However, malaria liver stage (LS) immunity is complex and the mechanisms effector T cells use to locate the few infected hepatocytes in the large liver in order to kill the intracellular LS parasites remain a mystery to date. Here, we review our current knowledge on the behavior of CD8 effector T cells in the hepatic microvasculature, in malaria and other hepatic infections. Taking into account the unique immunological and lymphogenic properties of the liver, we discuss whether classical granule-mediated cytotoxicity might eliminate infected hepatocytes via direct cell contact or whether cytokines might operate without cell–cell contact and kill Plasmodium LSs at a distance. A thorough understanding of the cellular effector mechanisms that lead to parasite death hence sterile protection is a prerequisite for the development of a successful malaria vaccine to protect the 40% of the world’s population currently at risk of Plasmodium infection. PMID:26074888

  20. Structural Differences Explain Diverse Functions of Plasmodium Actins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vahokoski, Juha; Martinez, Silvia Muñico; Ignatev, Alexander; Lepper, Simone; Frischknecht, Friedrich; Sidén-Kiamos, Inga; Sachse, Carsten; Kursula, Inari

    2014-01-01

    Actins are highly conserved proteins and key players in central processes in all eukaryotic cells. The two actins of the malaria parasite are among the most divergent eukaryotic actins and also differ from each other more than isoforms in any other species. Microfilaments have not been directly observed in Plasmodium and are presumed to be short and highly dynamic. We show that actin I cannot complement actin II in male gametogenesis, suggesting critical structural differences. Cryo-EM reveals that Plasmodium actin I has a unique filament structure, whereas actin II filaments resemble canonical F-actin. Both Plasmodium actins hydrolyze ATP more efficiently than α-actin, and unlike any other actin, both parasite actins rapidly form short oligomers induced by ADP. Crystal structures of both isoforms pinpoint several structural changes in the monomers causing the unique polymerization properties. Inserting the canonical D-loop to Plasmodium actin I leads to the formation of long filaments in vitro. In vivo, this chimera restores gametogenesis in parasites lacking actin II, suggesting that stable filaments are required for exflagellation. Together, these data underline the divergence of eukaryotic actins and demonstrate how structural differences in the monomers translate into filaments with different properties, implying that even eukaryotic actins have faced different evolutionary pressures and followed different paths for developing their polymerization properties. PMID:24743229

  1. Expression, Purification and Characterization of GMZ2'.10C, a Complex Disulphide-Bonded Fusion Protein Vaccine Candidate against the Asexual and Sexual Life-Stages of the Malaria-Causing Plasmodium falciparum Parasite

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mistarz, Ulrik H; Singh, Susheel K; Nguyen, Tam T T N

    2017-01-01

    PURPOSE: Production and characterization of a chimeric fusion protein (GMZ2'.10C) which combines epitopes of key malaria parasite antigens: glutamate-rich protein (GLURP), merozoite surface protein 3 (MSP3), and the highly disulphide bonded Pfs48/45 (10C). GMZ2'.10C is a potential candidate...... for a multi-stage malaria vaccine that targets both transmission and asexual life-cycle stages of the parasite. METHODS: GMZ2'.10C was produced in Lactococcus lactis and purified using either an immunoaffinity purification (IP) or a conventional purification (CP) method. Protein purity and stability...

  2. Licochalcone A, a new antimalarial agent, inhibits in vitro growth of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum and protects mice from P. yoelii infection

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chen, M; Theander, T G; Christensen, S B

    1994-01-01

    A was similar to that of the chloroquine-susceptible strain. To examine the activity of licochalcone A on the different asexual blood stages of the parasite, licochalcone A was added to highly synchronized cultures containing rings, trophozoites, and schizonts. The growth of the parasites at all stages...... was inhibited by licochalcone A. The in vivo activity of licochalcone A was tested in a mouse model of infection with P. yoelii. Licochalcone A administered either intraperitoneally or orally for 3 to 6 days protected the mice from the otherwise lethal P. yoelii infection. These results demonstrate...... that licochalcone A exhibits potent antimalarial activity and might be developed into a new antimalarial drug....

  3. Prevalence of Malaria Plasmodium in Abeokuta, Nigeria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Okonko, I. O.

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available This study reports the prevalence of malaria caused by plasmodium between genders in Abeokuta, the capital city of Ogun State located in the forest zone of southwestern Nigeria between January 2002 and December 2004. Blood film examination for malaria parasites in 708 patients; 366 males and 342 females. Microscopic examination of thick films techniques was employed for this study. Of the 708 (100% patients examined, 577 (81.5% were Plasmodium-positive. A high malaria parasite prevalence rate of 81.5% was noted in this study. Female subjects were more infected (42.4% than males (41.9% however, there was no significant difference in the sex of the subjects studied (p=0.05. A high malaria parasite prevalence rate of 86.9% was noted in samples collected in year 2003 than in other years studied. There was significant difference in the years under study (p=0.05. This study shows that a good percentage of people were infested by malaria Plasmodium. This could be attributed to lack of adequate accommodation and poor sanitary conditions in the area under study. Although several efforts have been made to effectively control the high incidence of malaria in Nigeria, these have been largely unsuccessful due to a number of reasons such as irrigated urban agriculture which can be the malaria vector’s breeding ground in the city, stagnant gutters and swamps in our environment where mosquitoes breed in millions, and lack of political will and commitment of the government in its disease management program, low awareness of the magnitude of malaria problem, poor health practices by individuals and communities and resistance to drugs. Therefore, future interventions in Nigeria should be directed toward controlling malaria in the context of a moderate transmission setting; thus, large-scale distribution of insecticide-treated nets or widespread use of indoor residual spraying may be less cost-effective than enhanced surveillance with effective case management or

  4. Plasmodium rhoptries: how things went pear-shaped.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kats, Lev M; Black, Casilda G; Proellocks, Nicholas I; Coppel, Ross L

    2006-06-01

    Plasmodium parasites have three sets of specialised secretory organelles at the apical end of their invasive forms--rhoptries, micronemes and dense granules. The contents of these organelles are responsible for or contribute to host cell invasion and modification, and at least four apical proteins are leading vaccine candidates. Given the unusual nature of Plasmodium invasion, it is not surprising that unique proteins are involved in this process. Nowhere is this more evident than in rhoptries. We have collated data from several recent studies to compile a rhoptry proteome. Discussion is focussed here on rhoptry content and function.

  5. Plasmodium knowlesi in humans, macaques and mosquitoes in peninsular Malaysia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    NorParina Ismail

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Since a large focus of human infection with Plasmodium knowlesi, a simian malaria parasite naturally found in long-tailed and pig tailed macaques, was reported in Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo, it was pertinent to study the situation in peninsular Malaysia. A study was thus initiated to screen human cases of Plasmodium malariae using molecular techniques, to determine the presence of P. knowlesi in non- human primates and to elucidate its vectors. Methods Nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR was used to identify all Plasmodium species present in the human blood samples sent to the Parasitology laboratory of Institute for Medical Research. At the same time, non-human primates were also screened for malaria parasites and nested PCR was carried out to determine the presence of P. knowlesi. Mosquitoes were collected from Pahang by human landing collection and monkey-baited-traps situated on three different levels. All mosquitoes were identified and salivary glands and midguts of anopheline mosquitoes were dissected to determine the presence of malaria parasites and nested PCR was carried out on positive glands. Sequencing of the csp genes were carried on P. knowlesi samples from humans, monkeys and mosquitoes, positive by PCR. Results and Discussion Plasmodium knowlesi was detected in 77 (69.37% of the 111 human samples, 10 (6.90% of the 145 monkey blood and in 2 (1.7% Anopheles cracens. Sequence of the csp gene clustered with other P. knowlesi isolates. Conclusion Human infection with Plasmodium knowlesi is occurring in most states of peninsular Malaysia. An. cracens is the main vector. Economic exploitation of the forest is perhaps bringing monkeys, mosquitoes and humans into increased contact. A single bite from a mosquito infected with P. knowlesi is sufficient to introduce the parasite to humans. Thus, this zoonotic transmission has to be considered in the future planning of malaria control.

  6. Expression, Purification and Characterization of GMZ2'.10C, a Complex Disulphide-Bonded Fusion Protein Vaccine Candidate against the Asexual and Sexual Life-Stages of the Malaria-Causing Plasmodium falciparum Parasite

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mistarz, U.H.; Singh, S.K; Nguyen, T.; Roeffen, W.; Lissau, C.; Madsen, S.M.; Vrang, A.; Tiendrebeogo, R.W.; Kana, I.H.; Sauerwein, R.W.; Theisen, M.; Rand, K.D.

    2017-01-01

    PURPOSE: Production and characterization of a chimeric fusion protein (GMZ2'.10C) which combines epitopes of key malaria parasite antigens: glutamate-rich protein (GLURP), merozoite surface protein 3 (MSP3), and the highly disulphide bonded Pfs48/45 (10C). GMZ2'.10C is a potential candidate for a

  7. Blood parasites of penguins: a critical review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanstreels, Ralph Eric Thijl; Braga, Érika Martins; Catão-Dias, José Luiz

    2016-07-01

    Blood parasites are considered some of the most significant pathogens for the conservation of penguins, due to the considerable morbidity and mortality they have been shown to produce in captive and wild populations of these birds. Parasites known to occur in the blood of penguins include haemosporidian protozoans (Plasmodium, Leucocytozoon, Haemoproteus), piroplamid protozoans (Babesia), kinetoplastid protozoans (Trypanosoma), spirochete bacteria (Borrelia) and nematode microfilariae. This review provides a critical and comprehensive assessment of the current knowledge on these parasites, providing an overview of their biology, host and geographic distribution, epidemiology, pathology and implications for public health and conservation.

  8. Molecular detection of Plasmodium in free-ranging birds and captive flamingos (Phoenicopterus chilensis) in Chicago.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thurber, Mary Irene; Gamble, Kathryn C; Krebs, Bethany; Goldberg, Tony L

    2014-12-01

    Frozen blood samples from 13 species of free-ranging birds (n = 65) and captive Chilean flamingos (Phoenicopterus chilensis) (n = 46) housed outdoors in the Chicago area were screened for Plasmodium. With the use of a modified polymerase chain reaction, 20/65 (30.8%) of free-ranging birds and 26/46 (56.5%) of flamingos were classified as positive for this parasite genus. DNA sequencing of the parasite cytochrome b gene in positive samples demonstrated that eight species of free-ranging birds were infected with five different Plasmodium spp. cytochrome b lineages, and all positive Chilean flamingos were infected with Plasmodium spp. cytochrome b lineages most closely related to organisms in the Novyella subgenus. These results show that Chilean flamingos may harbor subclinical malaria infections more frequently than previously estimated, and that they may have increased susceptibility to some Plasmodium species.

  9. In vitro alterations do not reflect a requirement for host cell cycle progression during Plasmodium liver stage infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanson, Kirsten K; March, Sandra; Ng, Shengyong; Bhatia, Sangeeta N; Mota, Maria M

    2015-01-01

    Prior to invading nonreplicative erythrocytes, Plasmodium parasites undergo their first obligate step in the mammalian host inside hepatocytes, where each sporozoite replicates to generate thousands of merozoites. While normally quiescent, hepatocytes retain proliferative capacity and can readily reenter the cell cycle in response to diverse stimuli. Many intracellular pathogens, including protozoan parasites, manipulate the cell cycle progression of their host cells for their own benefit, but it is not known whether the hepatocyte cell cycle plays a role during Plasmodium liver stage infection. Here, we show that Plasmodium parasites can be observed in mitotic hepatoma cells throughout liver stage development, where they initially reduce the likelihood of mitosis and ultimately lead to significant acquisition of a binucleate phenotype. However, hepatoma cells pharmacologically arrested in S phase still support robust and complete Plasmodium liver stage development, which thus does not require cell cycle progression in the infected cell in vitro. Furthermore, murine hepatocytes remain quiescent throughout in vivo infection with either Plasmodium berghei or Plasmodium yoelii, as do Plasmodium falciparum-infected primary human hepatocytes, demonstrating that the rapid and prodigious growth of liver stage parasites is accomplished independent of host hepatocyte cell cycle progression during natural infection. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  10. Can a single "powerless" mitochondrion in the malaria parasite contribute to parasite programmed cell death in the asexual stages?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ch'ng, Jun-Hong; Yeo, Su-Ping; Shyong-Wei Tan, Kevin

    2013-05-01

    The protozoan pathogens responsible for malaria are from the Plasmodium genus, with Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax accounting for almost all clinical infections. With recent estimates of mortality exceeding 800,000 annually, malaria continues to take a terrible toll on lives and the early promises of medicine to eradicate the disease have yet to approach realization, in part due to the spread of drug resistant parasites. Recent reports of artemisinin-resistance have prompted renewed efforts to identify novel therapeutic options, and one such pathway being considered for antimalarial exploit is the parasite's programmed cell death (PCD) pathway. In this mini-review, we will discuss the roles of the plasmodium mitochondria in cell death and as a target of antimalarial compounds, taking into account recent data suggesting that PCD pathways involving the mitochondria may be attractive antimalarial targets. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. and Mitochondria Research Society. All rights reserved.

  11. Phenomics, Genomics and Genetics in Plasmodium vinckei

    KAUST Repository

    Ramaprasad, Abhinay

    2017-11-01

    Rodent malaria parasites (RMPs) serve as tractable models for experimental genetics, and as valuable tools to study malaria parasite biology and host-parasitevector interactions. Plasmodium vinckei, one of four RMPs adapted to laboratory mice, is the most geographically widespread species and displays considerable phenotypic and genotypic diversity amongst its subspecies and strains. The phenotypes and genotypes of P. vinckei isolates have been relatively less characterized compared to other RMPs, hampering its use as an experimental model for malaria. Here, we have studied the phenotypes and sequenced the genomes and transcriptomes of ten P. vinckei isolates including representatives of all five subspecies, all of which were collected from wild thicket rats (Thamnomys rutilans) in sub-Saharan Central Africa between the late 1940s and mid 1960s. We have generated a comprehensive resource for P. vinckei comprising of five high-quality reference genomes, growth profiles and genotypes of P. vinckei isolates, and expression profiles of genes across the intra-erythrocytic developmental stages of the parasite. We observe significant phenotypic and genotypic diversity among P. vinckei isolates, making them particularly suitable for classical genetics and genomics-driven studies on malaria parasite biology. As part of a proof of concept study, we have shown that experimental genetic crosses can be performed between P. vinckei parasites to potentially identify genotype-phenotype relationships. We have also shown that they are amenable to genetic manipulation in the laboratory.

  12. Parasite prevalence corresponds to host life history in a diverse assemblage of afrotropical birds and haemosporidian parasites.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Holly L Lutz

    Full Text Available Avian host life history traits have been hypothesized to predict rates of infection by haemosporidian parasites. Using molecular techniques, we tested this hypothesis for parasites from three haemosporidian genera (Plasmodium, Haemoproteus, and Leucocytozoon collected from a diverse sampling of birds in northern Malawi. We found that host life history traits were significantly associated with parasitism rates by all three parasite genera. Nest type and nest location predicted infection probability for all three parasite genera, whereas flocking behavior is an important predictor of Plasmodium and Haemoproteus infection and habitat is an important predictor of Leucocytozoon infection. Parasite prevalence was 79.1% across all individuals sampled, higher than that reported for comparable studies from any other region of the world. Parasite diversity was also exceptionally high, with 248 parasite cytochrome b lineages identified from 152 host species. A large proportion of Plasmodium, Haemoproteus, and Leucocytozoon parasite DNA sequences identified in this study represent new, previously undocumented lineages (n = 201; 81% of total identified based on BLAST queries against the avian malaria database, MalAvi.

  13. Seroepidemiology of Plasmodium species infections in Zimbabwean population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amanfo, Seth A; Mduluza, Takafira; Midzi, Nicholas; Cavanagh, David R; Mutapi, Francisca

    2016-05-10

    Individuals living in malaria-endemic regions may be exposed to more than one Plasmodium species; there is paucity of data on the distribution of the different species of Plasmodium in affected populations, in part due to the diagnostic method of microscopy, which cannot easily differentiate between the species. Sero-epidemiological data can overcome some of the shortcomings of microscopy. The specificity of IgG antibodies to recombinant merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP-119) derived from four human Plasmodium species (Plasmodium falciparum, Plasmodium vivax, Plasmodium malariae, Plasmodium ovale) was investigated using competition enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Subsequently, these antigens were used to determine the exposure prevalence to the different Plasmodium species in serum samples of participants. One-hundred individuals, aged five-18 years, from each of the three Plasmodium meso-endemic Zimbabwean villages (Burma Valley, Mutoko, Chiredzi) were recruited in the study. The study demonstrated that the host serum reactivity to MSP-119 antigens was species-specific and that no cross-reactivity occurred. The overall prevalence of antibody response to MSP-119 antigens was 61 % in Burma Valley, 31 % in Mutoko and 32 % in Chiredzi. Single species IgG responses to MSP-119 were most frequent against P. falciparum, followed by P. malariae and P. ovale, with responses to P. vivax being the least prevalent. Interestingly, 78-87 and 50 % of sera with IgG responses to P. malariae and P. ovale MSP-119, respectively, also had IgG specific response for P. falciparum MSP-119 antigens, indicating that exposure to these species is a common occurrence in these populations. Single species IgG responses to the non-falciparum species were at a very low frequency, ranging between 0 and 13 % for P. malariae. There is evidence of a higher exposure to the non-falciparum parasite species than previously reported in Zimbabwe. The recombinant MSP-119 antigens could be used as

  14. Rheopathologic Consequence of Plasmodium vivax Rosette Formation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rou Zhang

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Malaria parasites dramatically alter the rheological properties of infected red blood cells. In the case of Plasmodium vivax, the parasite rapidly decreases the shear elastic modulus of the invaded RBC, enabling it to avoid splenic clearance. This study highlights correlation between rosette formation and altered membrane deformability of P. vivax-infected erythrocytes, where the rosette-forming infected erythrocytes are significantly more rigid than their non-rosetting counterparts. The adhesion of normocytes to the PvIRBC is strong (mean binding force of 440pN resulting in stable rosette formation even under high physiological shear flow stress. Rosetting may contribute to the sequestration of PvIRBC schizonts in the host microvasculature or spleen.

  15. The paroxysm of Plasmodium vivax malaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karunaweera, Nadira D; Wijesekera, Subadra K; Wanasekera, Deepani; Mendis, Kamini N; Carter, Richard

    2003-04-01

    The paroxysms of Plasmodium vivax malaria are antiparasite responses that, although distressing to the human host, almost never impart serious acute pathology. Using plasma and blood cells from P. vivax patients, the cellular and noncellular mediators of these events have been studied ex vivo. The host response during a P. vivax paroxysm was found to involve T cells, monocytes and neutrophils, and the activity, among others, of the pyrogenic cytokines tumor necrosis factor alpha and interleukin 2 in addition to granulocyte macrophage-colony stimulating factor. However, interferon gamma activity, associated with serious acute pathogenesis in other studies on malaria, was absent. Induction of the cytokines active during a P. vivax paroxysm depends upon the presence of parasite products, which are released into the plasma before the paroxysm. Chemical identification of these natural parasite products will be important for our understanding of pathogenesis and protection in malaria.

  16. Molecular Detection of Plasmodium malariae/Plasmodium brasilianum in Non-Human Primates in Captivity in Costa Rica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuentes-Ramírez, Alicia; Jiménez-Soto, Mauricio; Castro, Ruth; Romero-Zuñiga, Juan José; Dolz, Gaby

    2017-01-01

    One hundred and fifty-two blood samples of non-human primates of thirteen rescue centers in Costa Rica were analyzed to determine the presence of species of Plasmodium using thick blood smears, semi-nested multiplex polymerase chain reaction (SnM-PCR) for species differentiation, cloning and sequencing for confirmation. Using thick blood smears, two samples were determined to contain the Plasmodium malariae parasite, with SnM-PCR, a total of five (3.3%) samples were positive to P. malariae, cloning and sequencing confirmed both smear samples as P. malariae. One sample amplified a larger and conserved region of 18S rDNA for the genus Plasmodium and sequencing confirmed the results obtained microscopically and through SnM-PCR tests. Sequencing and construction of a phylogenetic tree of this sample revealed that the P. malariae/P. brasilianum parasite (GenBank KU999995) found in a howler monkey (Alouatta palliata) is identical to that recently reported in humans in Costa Rica. The SnM-PCR detected P. malariae/P. brasilianum parasite in different non-human primate species in captivity and in various regions of the southern Atlantic and Pacific coast of Costa Rica. The similarity of the sequences of parasites found in humans and a monkey suggests that monkeys may be acting as reservoirs of P.malariae/P. brasilianum, for which reason it is important, to include them in control and eradication programs.

  17. A new method for estimating species age supports the coexistence of malaria parasites and their Mammalian hosts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, Joana C; Egan, Amy; Arze, Cesar; Spouge, John L; Harris, David G

    2015-05-01

    Species in the genus Plasmodium cause malaria in humans and infect a variety of mammals and other vertebrates. Currently, estimated ages for several mammalian Plasmodium parasites differ by as much as one order of magnitude, an inaccuracy that frustrates reliable estimation of evolutionary rates of disease-related traits. We developed a novel statistical approach to dating the relative age of evolutionary lineages, based on Total Least Squares regression. We validated this lineage dating approach by applying it to the genus Drosophila. Using data from the Drosophila 12 Genomes project, our approach accurately reconstructs the age of well-established Drosophila clades, including the speciation event that led to the subgenera Drosophila and Sophophora, and age of the melanogaster species subgroup. We applied this approach to hundreds of loci from seven mammalian Plasmodium species. We demonstrate the existence of a molecular clock specific to individual Plasmodium proteins, and estimate the relative age of mammalian-infecting Plasmodium. These analyses indicate that: 1) the split between the human parasite Plasmodium vivax and P. knowlesi, from Old World monkeys, occurred 6.1 times earlier than that between P. falciparum and P. reichenowi, parasites of humans and chimpanzees, respectively; and 2) mammalian Plasmodium parasites originated 22 times earlier than the split between P. falciparum and P. reichenowi. Calibrating the absolute divergence times for Plasmodium with eukaryotic substitution rates, we show that the split between P. falciparum and P. reichenowi occurred 3.0-5.5 Ma, and that mammalian Plasmodium parasites originated over 64 Ma. Our results indicate that mammalian-infecting Plasmodium evolved contemporaneously with their hosts, with little evidence for parasite host-switching on an evolutionary scale, and provide a solid timeframe within which to place the evolution of new Plasmodium species. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on

  18. Parasites: Water

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Tropical Diseases Laboratory Diagnostic Assistance [DPDx] Parasites Home Water Language: English Español (Spanish) Recommend on Facebook Tweet Share Compartir Parasites can live in natural water sources. When outdoors, treat your water before drinking ...

  19. Comparison of PCR and microscopy for the detection of asymptomatic malaria in a Plasmodium falciparum/vivax endemic area in Thailand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miller Robert

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Objective The main objective of this study was to compare the performance of nested PCR with expert microscopy as a means of detecting Plasmodium parasites during active malaria surveillance in western Thailand. Methods The study was performed from May 2000 to April 2002 in the village of Kong Mong Tha, located in western Thailand. Plasmodium vivax (PV and Plasmodium falciparum (PF are the predominant parasite species in this village, followed by Plasmodium malariae (PM and Plasmodium ovale (PO. Each month, fingerprick blood samples were taken from each participating individual and used to prepare thick and thin blood films and for PCR analysis. Results PCR was sensitive (96% and specific (98% for malaria at parasite densities ≥ 500/μl; however, only 18% (47/269 of P. falciparum- and 5% (20/390 of P. vivax-positive films had parasite densities this high. Performance of PCR decreased markedly at parasite densities P. falciparum and 24% for P. vivax at densities Conclusion Although PCR performance appeared poor when compared to microscopy, data indicated that the discrepancy between the two methods resulted from poor performance of microscopy at low parasite densities rather than poor performance of PCR. These data are not unusual when the diagnostic method being evaluated is more sensitive than the reference method. PCR appears to be a useful method for detecting Plasmodium parasites during active malaria surveillance in Thailand.

  20. PLASMODIUM KNOWLESI: DISTRIBUSI, GAMBARAN MIKROSKOPIS, GEJALA PENDERITA DAN VEKTOR POTENSIAL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lasbudi Pertama Ambarita

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACTMalaria in humans is caused by an infection of genus Plasmodium, especially P. falciparum, P. vivax.P.mulariae and P. ovate. Types of Plasmodium in animals that can inject humans is P. knowlesi. Animalswhich are found parasites in their body are long tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis and pig-tailedmacaques (Macaca nemestrina. .There have been many cases with positive malaria knowlesi as ithappened in Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Philippines, Myanmar, China, Vietnam and Indonesia. Studyof P. knowlesi aims to give an overview of the • case distribution, microscopic. features, patient characteristic, potential vector, as well as potential spread of malaria knowlesi in Indonesia. The methodused in this study is study literature from various sources. The microscopic features of the parasite inpatient blood films is pretty similar to P. falciparum and P. malariae in certain stadium. Therefore more awareness are needed regarding the spread of this parasite, especially in border areas of malaria endemiccountries and newly arrived immigrants in endemic areas of P. knowlesi.Keywords: Plasmodium knowlesi, malaria, parasite, vector ABSTRAKMalaria pada manusia selama ini disebabkan oleh infeksi genusPlasmodiumkhususnyaP. falciparum, P.vivax, P. malariaedanP. ovate. JenisPlasmodiumpada hewan yang dapat menginfeksi manusia adalahP.knowlesi.Hewan yang banyak ditemukan parasit ini dalam tubuhnya adalah kera ekor panjang(Macacajascicularisdan kera ekor babi(Macaca nemestrina.Sudah banyak kasus penderita malaria yang positif parasit ini seperti yang terjadi di Malaysia, Singapura, Thailand, Filipina, Myanmar, Cina, Vietnam danIndonesia. Kajian tentangP. knowlesiini bertujuan untuk memberikan gambaran tentang penyebarankasus, gambaran mikroskopis, karakteristik penderita, vektor potensial serta potensi penyebaran malaria knowlesidi Indonesia. Metode yang digunakan dalam kajian ini adalah studi kepustakaan (literatur dariberbagai sumber. Secara

  1. In silico identification of genetically attenuated vaccine candidate genes for Plasmodium liver stage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Hirdesh; Frischknecht, Friedrich; Mair, Gunnar R; Gomes, James

    2015-12-01

    Genetically attenuated parasites (GAPs) that lack genes essential for the liver stage of the malaria parasite, and therefore cause developmental arrest, have been developed as live vaccines in rodent malaria models and recently been tested in humans. The genes targeted for deletion were often identified by trial and error. Here we present a systematic gene - protein and transcript - expression analyses of several Plasmodium species with the aim to identify candidate genes for the generation of novel GAPs. With a lack of liver stage expression data for human malaria parasites, we used data available for liver stage development of Plasmodium yoelii, a rodent malaria model, to identify proteins expressed in the liver stage but absent from blood stage parasites. An orthology-based search was then employed to identify orthologous proteins in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum resulting in a total of 310 genes expressed in the liver stage but lacking evidence of protein expression in blood stage parasites. Among these 310 possible GAP candidates, we further studied Plasmodium liver stage proteins by phyletic distribution and functional domain analyses and shortlisted twenty GAP-candidates; these are: fabB/F, fabI, arp, 3 genes encoding subunits of the PDH complex, dnaJ, urm1, rS5, ancp, mcp, arh, gk, lisp2, valS, palm, and four conserved Plasmodium proteins of unknown function. Parasites lacking one or several of these genes might yield new attenuated malaria parasites for experimental vaccination studies. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Parasitic Pneumonia and Lung Involvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Attapon Cheepsattayakorn

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Parasitic infestations demonstrated a decline in the past decade as a result of better hygiene practices and improved socioeconomic conditions. Nevertheless, global immigration, increased numbers of the immunocompromised people, international traveling, global warming, and rapid urbanization of the cities have increased the susceptibility of the world population to parasitic diseases. A number of new human parasites, such as Plasmodium knowlesi, in addition to many potential parasites, have urged the interest of scientific community. A broad spectrum of protozoal parasites frequently affects the respiratory system, particularly the lungs. The diagnosis of parasitic diseases of airway is challenging due to their wide varieties of clinical and roentgenographic presentations. So detailed interrogations of travel history to endemic areas are critical for clinicians or pulmonologists to manage this entity. The migrating adult worms can cause mechanical airway obstruction, while the larvae can cause airway inflammation. This paper provides a comprehensive review of both protozoal and helminthic infestations that affect the airway system, particularly the lungs, including clinical and roentgenographic presentations, diagnostic tests, and therapeutic approaches.

  3. Human Infections and Detection of Plasmodium knowlesi

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daneshvar, Cyrus

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Plasmodium knowlesi is a malaria parasite that is found in nature in long-tailed and pig-tailed macaques. Naturally acquired human infections were thought to be extremely rare until a large focus of human infections was reported in 2004 in Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo. Human infections have since been described throughout Southeast Asia, and P. knowlesi is now recognized as the fifth species of Plasmodium causing malaria in humans. The molecular, entomological, and epidemiological data indicate that human infections with P. knowlesi are not newly emergent and that knowlesi malaria is primarily a zoonosis. Human infections were undiagnosed until molecular detection methods that could distinguish P. knowlesi from the morphologically similar human malaria parasite P. malariae became available. P. knowlesi infections cause a spectrum of disease and are potentially fatal, but if detected early enough, infections in humans are readily treatable. In this review on knowlesi malaria, we describe the early studies on P. knowlesi and focus on the epidemiology, diagnosis, clinical aspects, and treatment of knowlesi malaria. We also discuss the gaps in our knowledge and the challenges that lie ahead in studying the epidemiology and pathogenesis of knowlesi malaria and in the prevention and control of this zoonotic infection. PMID:23554413

  4. Plasmodium P-Type Cyclin CYC3 Modulates Endomitotic Growth during Oocyst Development in Mosquitoes

    KAUST Repository

    Roques, Magali

    2015-11-13

    Cell-cycle progression and cell division in eukaryotes are governed in part by the cyclin family and their regulation of cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs). Cyclins are very well characterised in model systems such as yeast and human cells, but surprisingly little is known about their number and role in Plasmodium, the unicellular protozoan parasite that causes malaria. Malaria parasite cell division and proliferation differs from that of many eukaryotes. During its life cycle it undergoes two types of mitosis: endomitosis in asexual stages and an extremely rapid mitotic process during male gametogenesis. Both schizogony (producing merozoites) in host liver and red blood cells, and sporogony (producing sporozoites) in the mosquito vector, are endomitotic with repeated nuclear replication, without chromosome condensation, before cell division. The role of specific cyclins during Plasmodium cell proliferation was unknown. We show here that the Plasmodium genome contains only three cyclin genes, representing an unusual repertoire of cyclin classes. Expression and reverse genetic analyses of the single Plant (P)-type cyclin, CYC3, in the rodent malaria parasite, Plasmodium berghei, revealed a cytoplasmic and nuclear location of the GFP-tagged protein throughout the lifecycle. Deletion of cyc3 resulted in defects in size, number and growth of oocysts, with abnormalities in budding and sporozoite formation. Furthermore, global transcript analysis of the cyc3-deleted and wild type parasites at gametocyte and ookinete stages identified differentially expressed genes required for signalling, invasion and oocyst development. Collectively these data suggest that cyc3 modulates oocyst endomitotic development in Plasmodium berghei.

  5. Plasmodium prevalence across avian host species is positively associated with exposure to mosquito vectors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medeiros, Matthew C I; Ricklefs, Robert E; Brawn, Jeffrey D; Hamer, Gabriel L

    2015-11-01

    The prevalence of vector-borne parasites varies greatly across host species, and this heterogeneity has been used to relate infectious disease susceptibility to host species traits. However, a few empirical studies have directly associated vector-borne parasite prevalence with exposure to vectors across hosts. Here, we use DNA sequencing of blood meals to estimate utilization of different avian host species by Culex mosquitoes, and relate utilization by these malaria vectors to avian Plasmodium prevalence. We found that avian host species that are highly utilized as hosts by avian malaria vectors are significantly more likely to have Plasmodium infections. However, the effect was not consistent among individual Plasmodium taxa. Exposure to vector bites may therefore influence the relative number of all avian Plasmodium infections among host species, while other processes, such as parasite competition and host-parasite coevolution, delimit the host distributions of individual Plasmodium species. We demonstrate that links between avian malaria susceptibility and host traits can be conditioned by patterns of exposure to vectors. Linking vector utilization rates to host traits may be a key area of future research to understand mechanisms that produce variation in the prevalence of vector-borne pathogens among host species.

  6. Detection of Plasmodium in faeces of the New World primate Alouatta clamitans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Assis, Gabriela Maíra Pereira de; Alvarenga, Denise Anete Madureira de; Costa, Daniela Camargos; Souza, Júlio César de; Hirano, Zelinda Maria Braga; Kano, Flora Satiko; Sousa, Taís Nóbrega de; Brito, Cristiana Ferreira Alves de

    2016-09-01

    Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax have evolved with host switches between non-human primates (NHPs) and humans. Studies on the infection dynamics of Plasmodium species in NHPs will improve our understanding of the evolution of these parasites; however, such studies are hampered by the difficulty of handling animals in the field. The aim of this study was to detect genomic DNA of Plasmodium species from the faeces of New World monkeys. Faecal samples from 23 Alouatta clamitans from the Centre for Biological Research of Indaial (Santa Catarina, Brazil) were collected. Extracted DNA from faecal samples was used for molecular diagnosis of malaria by nested polymerase chain reaction. One natural infection with Plasmodium simium was identified by amplification of DNA extracted from the faeces of A. clamitans. Extracted DNA from a captive NHP was also used for parasite genotyping. The detection limit of the technique was evaluated in vitro using an artificial mixture of cultured P. falciparum in NHP faeces and determined to be 6.5 parasites/µL. Faecal samples of New World primates can be used to detect malaria infections in field surveys and also to monitor the genetic variability of parasites and dynamics of infection.

  7. Inhibition of Plasmodium Hepatic Infection by Antiretroviral Compounds

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    Marta Machado

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Recent WHO guidelines on control of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV call for the widespread use of antiretroviral (AR therapy (ART for people living with HIV. Given the considerable overlap between infections by HIV and Plasmodium, the causative agent of malaria, it is important to understand the impact of AR compounds and ART regimens on infections by malaria parasites. We undertook a systematic approach to identify AR drugs and ART drug combinations with inhibitory activity against the obligatory hepatic stage of Plasmodium infection. Our in vitro screen of a wide array of AR drugs identified the non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors efavirenz and etravirine (ETV, and the protease inhibitor nelfinavir, as compounds that significantly impair the development of the rodent malaria parasite P. berghei in an hepatoma cell line. Furthermore, we show that WHO-recommended ART drug combinations currently employed in the field strongly inhibit Plasmodium liver infection in mice, an effect that may be significantly enhanced by the inclusion of ETV in the treatment. Our observations are the first report of ETV as an anti-Plasmodial drug, paving the way for further evaluation and potential use of ETV-containing ARTs in regions of geographical overlap between HIV and Plasmodium infections.

  8. Targeting kinases in Plasmodium and Schistosoma: Same goals, different challenges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doerig, Christian; Grevelding, Christoph G

    2015-10-01

    With respect to parasite-induced infectious diseases of worldwide importance, members of the genera Plasmodium and Schistosoma are top pathogens. Nearly half a billion people suffer from malaria caused by Plasmodium spp. and schistosomiasis (bilharzia) induced by Schistosoma spp. Resistance against essentially all drugs used for malaria treatment has been reported. For schistosomiasis justified fear of upcoming resistance is discussed against the background of only one widely used drug for treatment. Research of the recent decade has demonstrated that essential steps of the biology of these and other parasites are controlled by kinases, which represent attractive targets for new-generation antiparasitic compounds. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Inhibitors of Protein Kinases. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Chondroitin sulphate A (CSA)-binding of single recombinant Duffy-binding-like domains is not restricted to Plasmodium falciparum Erythrocyte Membrane Protein 1 expressed by CSA-binding parasites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Resende, Mafalda; Ditlev, Sisse B; Nielsen, Morten A

    2009-01-01

    and offspring morbidity, such as severe maternal anaemia and low birth-weight, and is characterised by selective accumulation of parasite-infected erythrocytes (IE) in the placenta. A P. falciparum protein named VAR2CSA, which belongs to the large P. falciparum Erythrocyte Membrane Protein 1 (PfEMP1) family......, enables the IE to bind chondroitin sulphate A (CSA) in the placenta. Knock-out studies have demonstrated the exclusive capacity of VAR2CSA to mediate IE binding to CSA, and it has been shown that four of the six Duffy-binding-like (DBL) domains of VAR2CSA have the ability to bind CSA in vitro...

  10. Plasmodium falciparum: VAR2CSA expressed during pregnancy-associated malaria is partially resistant to proteolytic cleavage by trypsin

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Morten A; Resende, Mafalda; Alifrangis, Michael

    2007-01-01

    In areas of high Plasmodium falciparum transmission, immunity to malaria is acquired during childhood, so that adults in general are clinically immune. One exception is that first-time pregnant women are susceptible to pregnancy-associated malaria caused by accumulation of parasites in the placenta...... mediates the adhesive and antigenic phenotypes shown by parasites causing placental malaria....

  11. Plasmodium falciparum var genes expressed in children with severe malaria encode CIDRα1 domains

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jespersen, Jakob S.; Wang, Christian W.; Mkumbaye, Sixbert I.

    2016-01-01

    Most severe Plasmodium falciparum infections are experienced by young children. Severe symptoms are precipitated by vascular sequestration of parasites expressing a particular subset of the polymorphic P. falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) adhesion molecules. Parasites binding hum...

  12. Correctly folded Pfs48/45 protein of Plasmodium falciparum elicits malaria transmission-blocking immunity in mice.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Outchkourov, N.S.; Roeffen, W.; Kaan, A.; Jansen, Josephine; Luty, A.; Schuiffel, D.; Gemert, G.J.A. van; Vegte-Bolmer, M van de; Sauerwein, R.W.; Stunnenberg, H.G.

    2008-01-01

    Malaria kills >1 million people each year, in particular in sub-Saharan Africa. Although asexual forms are directly responsible for disease and death, sexual stages account for the transmission of Plasmodium parasites from human to the mosquito vector and therefore the spread of the parasite in the

  13. Identification of a major rif transcript common to gametocytes and sporozoites of Plasmodium falciparum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Christian W; Mwakalinga, Steven B; Sutherland, Colin J

    2010-01-01

    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: The Plasmodium falciparum parasite is transmitted in its sexual gametocyte stage from man to mosquito and as asexual sporozoites from mosquito to man. Developing gametocytes sequester preferentially in the bone marrow, but mature stage gametocytes are released...

  14. Wolbachia increases susceptibility to Plasmodium infection in a natural system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zélé, F.; Nicot, A.; Berthomieu, A.; Weill, M.; Duron, O.; Rivero, A.

    2014-01-01

    Current views about the impact of Wolbachia on Plasmodium infections are almost entirely based on data regarding artificially transfected mosquitoes. This work has shown that Wolbachia reduces the intensity of Plasmodium infections in mosquitoes, raising the exciting possibility of using Wolbachia to control or limit the spread of malaria. Whether natural Wolbachia infections have the same parasite-inhibiting properties is not yet clear. Wolbachia–mosquito combinations with a long evolutionary history are, however, key for understanding what may happen with Wolbachia-transfected mosquitoes after several generations of coevolution. We investigate this issue using an entirely natural mosquito–Wolbachia–Plasmodium combination. In contrast to most previous studies, which have been centred on the quantification of the midgut stages of Plasmodium, we obtain a measurement of parasitaemia that relates directly to transmission by following infections to the salivary gland stages. We show that Wolbachia increases the susceptibility of Culex pipiens mosquitoes to Plasmodium relictum, significantly increasing the prevalence of salivary gland stage infections. This effect is independent of the density of Wolbachia in the mosquito. These results suggest that naturally Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes may, in fact, be better vectors of malaria than Wolbachia-free ones. PMID:24500167

  15. Morphologic and molecular study of hemoparasites in wild corvids and evidence of sequence identity with Plasmodium DNA detected in captive black-footed penguins (Spheniscus demersus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leclerc, Antoine; Chavatte, Jean-Marc; Landau, Irène; Snounou, Georges; Petit, Thierry

    2014-09-01

    A morphologic and molecular epidemiologic investigation was conducted on a captive African black-footed penguin (Spheniscus demersus) colony with a history of Plasmodium infections at La Palmyre Zoo (France). Each penguin received 12.5 mg of pyrimethamine twice a week as a prophylaxis every year from April to November. Although Plasmodium parasites were not detected in blood smears and tissues collected from the penguins, various blood parasites were recorded in blood smears from wild Eurasian magpies (Pica pica) and carrion crows (Corvus corone) sampled at the same time in the study area. These parasites consisted of several Plasmodium spp. (P. lenoblei, P. dorsti, P bioccai, P. relictum, P. dherteae, P. beaucournui, P. maior, P. tranieri, and P. snounoui), Parahaemoproteus spp., Trypanosoma spp., and Leucocytozoon spp. On the other hand, nested polymerase chain reaction enabled detection of Plasmodium DNA in 28/44 (64%) penguins, 15/25 (60%) magpies, and 4/9 (44%) crows. Sequencing and phylogenetic analyses indicated that the parasite DNA amplified from the penguins, magpies, and crows were similar. Magpies and crows could therefore act as a reservoir for penguin Plasmodium infections, which may be more prevalent than previously thought. Morphologic characterization of the Plasmodium spp. detected in the penguins, as well as further biological and epidemiologic studies, are needed to fully understand the transmission of Plasmodium parasites to captive penguins.

  16. Genome-wide discovery and verification of novel structured RNAs in Plasmodium falciparum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mourier, Tobias; Carret, Celine; Kyes, Sue

    2008-01-01

    We undertook a genome-wide search for novel noncoding RNAs (ncRNA) in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. We used the RNAz program to predict structures in the noncoding regions of the P. falciparum 3D7 genome that were conserved with at least one of seven other Plasmodium spp. genome...... chimp malaria parasite P. reichenowi. The high confirmation rate within a single parasite life cycle stage suggests that many more of the predictions may be expressed in other stages of the organism's life cycle....

  17. Poly(I:C) adjuvant strongly enhances parasite-inhibitory antibodies and Th1 response against Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein-1 (42-kDa fragment) in BALB/c mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mehrizi, Akram Abouie; Rezvani, Niloufar; Zakeri, Sedigheh; Gholami, Atefeh; Babaeekhou, Laleh

    Malaria vaccine development has been confronted with various challenges such as poor immunogenicity of malaria vaccine candidate antigens, which is considered as the main challenge. However, this problem can be managed using appropriate formulations of antigens and adjuvants. Poly(I:C) is a potent Th1 inducer and a human compatible adjuvant capable of stimulating both B- and T-cell immunity. Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 142 (PfMSP-142) is a promising vaccine candidate for blood stage of malaria that has faced several difficulties in clinical trials, mainly due to improper adjuvants. Therefore, in the current study, poly(I:C), as a potent Th1 inducer adjuvant, was evaluated to improve the immunogenicity of recombinant PfMSP-142, when compared to CFA/IFA, as reference adjuvant. Poly(I:C) produced high level and titers of anti-PfMSP-142 IgG antibodies in which was comparable to CFA/IFA adjuvant. In addition, PfMSP-142 formulated with poly(I:C) elicited a higher ratio of IFN-γ/IL-4 (23.9) and IgG2a/IgG1 (3.77) with more persistent, higher avidity, and titer of IgG2a relative to CFA/IFA, indicating a potent Th1 immune response. Poly(I:C) could also help to induce anti-PfMSP-142 antibodies with higher growth-inhibitory activity than CFA/IFA. Altogether, the results of the current study demonstrated that poly(I:C) is a potent adjuvant that can be appropriate for being used in PfMSP-142-based vaccine formulations.

  18. Occurrence of Plasmodium in Anatidae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herman, C.M.; Kocan, R.M.

    1970-01-01

    Until a little over a decade ago reports of Plasrnodium in geese, ducks, and swans were the result of examination of single blood smears from wild birds. One would gather from the earlier studies that Anatidae are infrequently infected. During the past decade we have conducted studies on prevalence of Plasmodium by an isodiagnosis technique, inoculating blood from wild birds into captive young geese, ducks, and other species of birds and determining the status of infection in the donors by examination of repetitive blood smears from the recipients. Examination by this technique of a series of adult Canada geese from the Seney National Wildlife Refuge in northern Michigan uncovered a prevalence of 60% during five successive years. Domestic geese were the primary recipients but we found that several other species of geese, ducks, and gulls were also susceptible. Similar studies on Canada geese from other areas (Maryland, New Jersey, New York, and southern Michigan) uncovered infection rates from zero to 27%. Following isolation of Plasmodlum in a single canvasback duck (Aythya valisineria) in southern Michigan by inoculation into a domestic duck, a series of 88 canvasbacks from Chesapeake Bay in Maryland this winter uncovered an infection rate of 27%. The most common parasite observed in both the geese and was as P. circumflexum.

  19. Resisting infection by Plasmodium berghei increases the sensitivity of the malaria vector Anopheles gambiae to DDT.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saddler, Adam; Burda, Paul-Christian; Koella, Jacob C

    2015-03-28

    The evolution of insecticide resistance threatens current malaria control methods, which rely heavily on chemical insecticides. The magnitude of the threat will be determined by the phenotypic expression of resistance in those mosquitoes that can transmit malaria. These differ from the majority of the mosquito population in two main ways; they carry sporozoites (the infectious stage of the Plasmodium parasite) and they are relatively old, as they need to survive the development period of the malaria parasite. This study examines the effects of infection by Plasmodium berghei and of mosquito age on the sensitivity to DDT in a DDT-resistant strain of Anopheles gambiae. DDT-resistant Anopheles gambiae (ZANU) mosquitoes received a blood meal from either a mouse infected with Plasmodium berghei or an uninfected mouse. 10 and 19 days post blood meal the mosquitoes were exposed to 2%, 1% or 0% DDT using WHO test kits. 24 hrs after exposure, mortality and Plasmodium infection status of the mosquitoes were recorded. Sensitivity to DDT increased with the mosquitoes' age and was higher in mosquitoes that had fed on Plasmodium-infected mice than in those that had not been exposed to the parasite. The latter effect was mainly due to the high sensitivity of mosquitoes that had fed on an infected mouse but were not themselves infected, while the sensitivity to DDT was only slightly higher in mosquitoes infected by Plasmodium than in those that had fed on an uninfected mouse. The observed pattern indicates a cost of parasite-resistance. It suggests that, in addition to the detrimental effect of insecticide-resistance on control, the continued use of insecticides in a population of insecticide-resistant mosquitoes could select mosquitoes to be more susceptible to Plasmodium infection, thus further decreasing the efficacy of the control.

  20. of Plasmodium cynomolgi

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    SERVER

    2007-11-19

    Nov 19, 2007 ... structure. Key words: Protein model, AMA-1, apical membrane antigen-1, Plasmodium cynomolgi. ... sional (3D) structure of a protein are of great assistance ... parent/template. The model was generated using SWISS-MODEL v 3.7. an automated protein modeling server available at www.expasy.org.

  1. Plasmodium falciparum malaria

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Therapeutic efficacy of sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine for. Plasmodium falciparum malaria. A study 5 years after implementation of combination therapy in Mpumalanga,. South Africa. Aaron Mabuza, John Govere, Kobus .... Parasitological success was defined as conversion from a positive smear at recruitment to a negative ...

  2. Inference of the oxidative stress network in Anopheles stephensi upon Plasmodium infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jatin Shrinet

    Full Text Available Ookinete invasion of Anopheles midgut is a critical step for malaria transmission; the parasite numbers drop drastically and practically reach a minimum during the parasite's whole life cycle. At this stage, the parasite as well as the vector undergoes immense oxidative stress. Thereafter, the vector undergoes oxidative stress at different time points as the parasite invades its tissues during the parasite development. The present study was undertaken to reconstruct the network of differentially expressed genes involved in oxidative stress in Anopheles stephensi during Plasmodium development and maturation in the midgut. Using high throughput next generation sequencing methods, we generated the transcriptome of the An. stephensi midgut during Plasmodium vinckei petteri oocyst invasion of the midgut epithelium. Further, we utilized large datasets available on public domain on Anopheles during Plasmodium ookinete invasion and Drosophila datasets and arrived upon clusters of genes that may play a role in oxidative stress. Finally, we used support vector machines for the functional prediction of the un-annotated genes of An. stephensi. Integrating the results from all the different data analyses, we identified a total of 516 genes that were involved in oxidative stress in An. stephensi during Plasmodium development. The significantly regulated genes were further extracted from this gene cluster and used to infer an oxidative stress network of An. stephensi. Using system biology approaches, we have been able to ascertain the role of several putative genes in An. stephensi with respect to oxidative stress. Further experimental validations of these genes are underway.

  3. Characterization of Plasmodium vivax Early Transcribed Membrane Protein 11.2 and Exported Protein 1.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yang Cheng

    Full Text Available In Plasmodium, the membrane of intracellular parasites is initially formed during invasion as an invagination of the red blood cell surface, which forms a barrier between the parasite and infected red blood cells in asexual blood stage parasites. The membrane proteins of intracellular parasites of Plasmodium species have been identified such as early-transcribed membrane proteins (ETRAMPs and exported proteins (EXPs. However, there is little or no information regarding the intracellular parasite membrane in Plasmodium vivax. In the present study, recombinant PvETRAMP11.2 (PVX_003565 and PvEXP1 (PVX_091700 were expressed and evaluated antigenicity tests using sera from P. vivax-infected patients. A large proportion of infected individuals presented with IgG antibody responses against PvETRAMP11.2 (76.8% and PvEXP1 (69.6%. Both of the recombinant proteins elicited high antibody titers capable of recognizing parasites of vivax malaria patients. PvETRAMP11.2 partially co-localized with PvEXP1 on the intracellular membranes of immature schizont. Moreover, they were also detected at the apical organelles of newly formed merozoites of mature schizont. We first proposed that these proteins might be synthesized in the preceding schizont stage, localized on the parasite membranes and apical organelles of infected erythrocytes, and induced high IgG antibody responses in patients.

  4. Recent advances in understanding apicomplexan parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seeber, Frank; Steinfelder, Svenja

    2016-01-01

    Intracellular single-celled parasites belonging to the large phylum Apicomplexa are amongst the most prevalent and morbidity-causing pathogens worldwide. In this review, we highlight a few of the many recent advances in the field that helped to clarify some important aspects of their fascinating biology and interaction with their hosts. Plasmodium falciparum causes malaria, and thus the recent emergence of resistance against the currently used drug combinations based on artemisinin has been of major interest for the scientific community. It resulted in great advances in understanding the resistance mechanisms that can hopefully be translated into altered future drug regimens. Apicomplexa are also experts in host cell manipulation and immune evasion. Toxoplasma gondii and Theileria sp., besides Plasmodium sp., are species that secrete effector molecules into the host cell to reach this aim. The underlying molecular mechanisms for how these proteins are trafficked to the host cytosol ( T. gondii and Plasmodium) and how a secreted protein can immortalize the host cell ( Theileria sp.) have been illuminated recently. Moreover, how such secreted proteins affect the host innate immune responses against T. gondii and the liver stages of Plasmodium has also been unraveled at the genetic and molecular level, leading to unexpected insights. Methodological advances in metabolomics and molecular biology have been instrumental to solving some fundamental puzzles of mitochondrial carbon metabolism in Apicomplexa. Also, for the first time, the generation of stably transfected Cryptosporidium parasites was achieved, which opens up a wide variety of experimental possibilities for this understudied, important apicomplexan pathogen.

  5. Malaria-induced acquisition of antibodies to Plasmodium falciparum variant surface antigens

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ofori, Michael F; Dodoo, Daniel; Staalsoe, Trine

    2002-01-01

    In areas of intense Plasmodium falciparum transmission, protective immunity is acquired during childhood in parallel with acquisition of agglutinating antibodies to parasite-encoded variant surface antigens (VSA) expressed on parasitized red blood cells. In a semi-immune child in such an area......, clinical disease is caused mainly by parasites expressing VSA not recognized by preexisting VSA-specific antibodies in that child. Such malaria episodes are known to cause an increase in agglutinating antibodies specifically recognizing VSA expressed by the parasite isolate causing the illness, whereas...

  6. Multigenomic Delineation of Plasmodium Species of the Laverania Subgenus Infecting Wild-Living Chimpanzees and Gorillas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Weimin; Sundararaman, Sesh A; Loy, Dorothy E; Learn, Gerald H; Li, Yingying; Plenderleith, Lindsey J; Ndjango, Jean-Bosco N; Speede, Sheri; Atencia, Rebeca; Cox, Debby; Shaw, George M; Ayouba, Ahidjo; Peeters, Martine; Rayner, Julian C; Hahn, Beatrice H; Sharp, Paul M

    2016-07-02

    Plasmodium falciparum, the major cause of malaria morbidity and mortality worldwide, is only distantly related to other human malaria parasites and has thus been placed in a separate subgenus, termed Laverania Parasites morphologically similar to P. falciparum have been identified in African apes, but only one other Laverania species, Plasmodium reichenowi from chimpanzees, has been formally described. Although recent studies have pointed to the existence of additional Laverania species, their precise number and host associations remain uncertain, primarily because of limited sampling and a paucity of parasite sequences other than from mitochondrial DNA. To address this, we used limiting dilution polymerase chain reaction to amplify additional parasite sequences from a large number of chimpanzee and gorilla blood and fecal samples collected at two sanctuaries and 30 field sites across equatorial Africa. Phylogenetic analyses of more than 2,000 new sequences derived from the mitochondrial, nuclear, and apicoplast genomes revealed six divergent and well-supported clades within the Laverania parasite group. Although two of these clades exhibited deep subdivisions in phylogenies estimated from organelle gene sequences, these sublineages were geographically defined and not present in trees from four unlinked nuclear loci. This greatly expanded sequence data set thus confirms six, and not seven or more, ape Laverania species, of which P. reichenowi, Plasmodium gaboni, and Plasmodium billcollinsi only infect chimpanzees, whereas Plasmodium praefalciparum, Plasmodium adleri, and Pladmodium blacklocki only infect gorillas. The new sequence data also confirm the P. praefalciparum origin of human P. falciparum. © The Author(s) 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  7. Immunization of mice with Plasmodium TCTP delays establishment of Plasmodium infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, K J; Van, T T H; MacDonald, S M; Meshnick, S R; Fernley, R T; Macreadie, I G; Smooker, P M

    2015-01-01

    Translationally controlled tumour protein (TCTP) may play an important role in the establishment or maintenance of parasitemia in a malarial infection. In this study, the potential of TCTP as a malaria vaccine was investigated in two trials. In the initial vaccine trial, Plasmodium falciparum TCTP (PfTCTP) was expressed in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and used to immunize BALB/c mice. Following challenge with Plasmodium yoelii YM, parasitemia was significantly reduced during the early stages of infection. In the second vaccine trial, the TCTP from P. yoelii and P. berghei was expressed in Escherichia coli and used in several mouse malaria models. A significant reduction in parasitemia in the early stages of infection was observed in BALB/c mice challenged with P. yoelii YM. A significantly reduced parasitemia at each day leading up to a delayed and reduced peak parasitemia was also observed in BALB/c mice challenged with the nonlethal Plasmodium chabaudi (P.c.) chabaudi AS. These results suggest that TCTP has an important role for parasite establishment and may be important for pathogenesis. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Mitochondrial ATP synthase is dispensable in blood-stage Plasmodium berghei rodent malaria but essential in the mosquito phase

    OpenAIRE

    Sturm, Angelika; Mollard, Vanessa; Cozijnsen, Anton; Goodman, Christopher D; McFadden, Geoffrey I.

    2015-01-01

    Mitochondrial ATP synthase is driven by chemiosmotic oxidation of pyruvate derived from glycolysis. Blood-stage malaria parasites eschew chemiosmosis, instead relying almost solely on glycolysis for their ATP generation, which begs the question of whether mitochondrial ATP synthase is necessary during the blood stage of the parasite life cycle. We knocked out the mitochondrial ATP synthase β subunit gene in the rodent malaria parasite, Plasmodium berghei, ablating the protein that converts AD...

  9. Small molecule screen for candidate antimalarials targeting Plasmodium Kinesin-5.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Liqiong; Richard, Jessica; Kim, Sunyoung; Wojcik, Edward J

    2014-06-06

    Plasmodium falciparum and vivax are responsible for the majority of malaria infections worldwide, resulting in over a million deaths annually. Malaria parasites now show measured resistance to all currently utilized drugs. Novel antimalarial drugs are urgently needed. The Plasmodium Kinesin-5 mechanoenzyme is a suitable "next generation" target. Discovered via small molecule screen experiments, the human Kinesin-5 has multiple allosteric sites that are "druggable." One site in particular, unique in its sequence divergence across all homologs in the superfamily and even within the same family, exhibits exquisite drug specificity. We propose that Plasmodium Kinesin-5 shares this allosteric site and likewise can be targeted to uncover inhibitors with high specificity. To test this idea, we performed a screen for inhibitors selective for Plasmodium Kinesin-5 ATPase activity in parallel with human Kinesin-5. Our screen of nearly 2000 compounds successfully identified compounds that selectively inhibit both P. vivax and falciparum Kinesin-5 motor domains but, as anticipated, do not impact human Kinesin-5 activity. Of note is a candidate drug that did not biochemically compete with the ATP substrate for the conserved active site or disrupt the microtubule-binding site. Together, our experiments identified MMV666693 as a selective allosteric inhibitor of Plasmodium Kinesin-5; this is the first identified protein target for the Medicines of Malaria Venture validated collection of parasite proliferation inhibitors. This work demonstrates that chemical screens against human kinesins are adaptable to homologs in disease organisms and, as such, extendable to strategies to combat infectious disease. © 2014 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  10. Small Molecule Screen for Candidate Antimalarials Targeting Plasmodium Kinesin-5*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Liqiong; Richard, Jessica; Kim, Sunyoung; Wojcik, Edward J.

    2014-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum and vivax are responsible for the majority of malaria infections worldwide, resulting in over a million deaths annually. Malaria parasites now show measured resistance to all currently utilized drugs. Novel antimalarial drugs are urgently needed. The Plasmodium Kinesin-5 mechanoenzyme is a suitable “next generation” target. Discovered via small molecule screen experiments, the human Kinesin-5 has multiple allosteric sites that are “druggable.” One site in particular, unique in its sequence divergence across all homologs in the superfamily and even within the same family, exhibits exquisite drug specificity. We propose that Plasmodium Kinesin-5 shares this allosteric site and likewise can be targeted to uncover inhibitors with high specificity. To test this idea, we performed a screen for inhibitors selective for Plasmodium Kinesin-5 ATPase activity in parallel with human Kinesin-5. Our screen of nearly 2000 compounds successfully identified compounds that selectively inhibit both P. vivax and falciparum Kinesin-5 motor domains but, as anticipated, do not impact human Kinesin-5 activity. Of note is a candidate drug that did not biochemically compete with the ATP substrate for the conserved active site or disrupt the microtubule-binding site. Together, our experiments identified MMV666693 as a selective allosteric inhibitor of Plasmodium Kinesin-5; this is the first identified protein target for the Medicines of Malaria Venture validated collection of parasite proliferation inhibitors. This work demonstrates that chemical screens against human kinesins are adaptable to homologs in disease organisms and, as such, extendable to strategies to combat infectious disease. PMID:24737313

  11. A bioinformatic survey of RNA-binding proteins in Plasmodium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reddy, B P Niranjan; Shrestha, Sony; Hart, Kevin J; Liang, Xiaoying; Kemirembe, Karen; Cui, Liwang; Lindner, Scott E

    2015-11-02

    The malaria parasites in the genus Plasmodium have a very complicated life cycle involving an invertebrate vector and a vertebrate host. RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) are critical factors involved in every aspect of the development of these parasites. However, very few RBPs have been functionally characterized to date in the human parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Using different bioinformatic methods and tools we searched P. falciparum genome to list and annotate RBPs. A representative 3D models for each of the RBD domain identified in P. falciparum was created using I-TESSAR and SWISS-MODEL. Microarray and RNAseq data analysis pertaining PfRBPs was performed using MeV software. Finally, Cytoscape was used to create protein-protein interaction network for CITH-Dozi and Caf1-CCR4-Not complexes. We report the identification of 189 putative RBP genes belonging to 13 different families in Plasmodium, which comprise 3.5% of all annotated genes. Almost 90% (169/189) of these genes belong to six prominent RBP classes, namely RNA recognition motifs, DEAD/H-box RNA helicases, K homology, Zinc finger, Puf and Alba gene families. Interestingly, almost all of the identified RNA-binding helicases and KH genes have cognate homologs in model species, suggesting their evolutionary conservation. Exploration of the existing P. falciparum blood-stage transcriptomes revealed that most RBPs have peak mRNA expression levels early during the intraerythrocytic development cycle, which taper off in later stages. Nearly 27% of RBPs have elevated expression in gametocytes, while 47 and 24% have elevated mRNA expression in ookinete and asexual stages. Comparative interactome analyses using human and Plasmodium protein-protein interaction datasets suggest extensive conservation of the PfCITH/PfDOZI and PfCaf1-CCR4-NOT complexes. The Plasmodium parasites possess a large number of putative RBPs belonging to most of RBP families identified so far, suggesting the presence of extensive post

  12. Big bang in the evolution of extant malaria parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayakawa, Toshiyuki; Culleton, Richard; Otani, Hiroto; Horii, Toshihiro; Tanabe, Kazuyuki

    2008-10-01

    Malaria parasites (genus Plasmodium) infect all classes of terrestrial vertebrates and display host specificity in their infections. It is therefore assumed that malaria parasites coevolved intimately with their hosts. Here, we propose a novel scenario of malaria parasite-host coevolution. A phylogenetic tree constructed using the malaria parasite mitochondrial genome reveals that the extant primate, rodent, bird, and reptile parasite lineages rapidly diverged from a common ancestor during an evolutionary short time period. This rapid diversification occurred long after the establishment of the primate, rodent, bird, and reptile host lineages, which implies that host-switch events contributed to the rapid diversification of extant malaria parasite lineages. Interestingly, the rapid diversification coincides with the radiation of the mammalian genera, suggesting that adaptive radiation to new mammalian hosts triggered the rapid diversification of extant malaria parasite lineages.

  13. Contribution of Plasmodium knowlesi to Multispecies Human Malaria Infections in North Sumatera, Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lubis, Inke N D; Wijaya, Hendri; Lubis, Munar; Lubis, Chairuddin P; Divis, Paul C S; Beshir, Khalid B; Sutherland, Colin J

    2017-04-01

    As Indonesia works toward the goal of malaria elimination, information is lacking on malaria epidemiology from some western provinces. As a basis for studies of antimalarial efficacy, we set out to survey parasite carriage in 3 communities in North Sumatera Province. A combination of active and passive detection of infection was carried out among communities in Batubara, Langkat, and South Nias regencies. Finger-prick blood samples from consenting individuals of all ages provided blood films for microscopic examination and blood spots on filter paper. Plasmodium species were identified using nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR) of ribosomal RNA genes and a novel assay that amplifies a conserved sequence specific for the sicavar gene family of Plasmodium knowlesi. Of 3731 participants, 614 (16.5%) were positive for malaria parasites by microscopy. PCR detected parasite DNA in samples from 1169 individuals (31.3%). In total, 377 participants (11.8%) harbored P. knowlesi. Also present were Plasmodium vivax (14.3%), Plasmodium falciparum (10.5%) and Plasmodium malariae (3.4%). Amplification of sicavar is a specific and sensitive test for the presence of P. knowlesi DNA in humans. Subpatent and asymptomatic multispecies parasitemia is relatively common in North Sumatera, so PCR-based surveillance is required to support control and elimination activities.

  14. Fish parasites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    This book contains 22 chapters on some of the most important parasitic diseases in wild and farmed fish. International experts give updated reviews and provide solutions to the problems......This book contains 22 chapters on some of the most important parasitic diseases in wild and farmed fish. International experts give updated reviews and provide solutions to the problems...

  15. Parasitic Diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... to live. You can get them from contaminated food or water, a bug bite, or sexual contact. Some parasitic diseases are easily treated and some are not. Parasites range in size from tiny, one-celled organisms called protozoa to worms that can be seen with the naked eye. ...

  16. Transmission of Human and Macaque Plasmodium spp. to Ex-Captive Orangutans in Kalimantan, Indonesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reid, Michael J.C.; Ursic, Raul; Cooper, Dawn; Nazzari, Hamed; Griffiths, Melinda; Galdikas, Birute M.; Garriga, Rosa M.; Skinner, Mark; Lowenberger, Carl

    2006-01-01

    Data are lacking on the specific diseases to which great apes are susceptible and the transmission dynamics and overall impact of these diseases. We examined the prevalence of Plasmodium spp. infections in semicaptive orangutans housed at the Orangutan Care Center and Quarantine, Central Kalimantan, Indonesia, by using a combination of microscopic and DNA molecular techniques to identify the Plasmodium spp. in each animal. Previous studies indicated 2 orangutan-specific Plasmodium spp., but our data show 4 Plasmodium spp. These findings provide evidence for P. vivax transmission between humans and orangutans and for P. cynomolgi transmission between macaques and orangutans. These data have potential implications for the conservation of orangutans and also for the bidirectional transmission of parasites between orangutans and humans visiting or living in the region. PMID:17326942

  17. Intra-specific diversity of Serratia marcescens in Anopheles mosquito midgut defines Plasmodium transmission capacity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bando, Hironori; Okado, Kiyoshi; Guelbeogo, Wamdaogo M.; Badolo, Athanase; Aonuma, Hiroka; Nelson, Bryce; Fukumoto, Shinya; Xuan, Xuenan; Sagnon, N'Fale; Kanuka, Hirotaka

    2013-01-01

    A critical stage in malaria transmission occurs in the Anopheles mosquito midgut, when the malaria parasite, Plasmodium, ingested with blood, first makes contact with the gut epithelial surface. To understand the response mechanisms within the midgut environment, including those influenced by resident microbiota against Plasmodium, we focus on a midgut bacteria species' intra-specific variation that confers diversity to the mosquito's competency for malaria transmission. Serratia marcescens isolated from either laboratory-reared mosquitoes or wild populations in Burkina Faso shows great phenotypic variation in its cellular and structural features. Importantly, this variation is directly correlated with its ability to inhibit Plasmodium development within the mosquito midgut. Furthermore, this anti-Plasmodium function conferred by Serratia marcescens requires increased expression of the flagellum biosynthetic pathway that is modulated by the motility master regulatory operon, flhDC. These findings point to new strategies for controlling malaria through genetic manipulation of midgut bacteria within the mosquito. PMID:23571408

  18. Haemosporidian parasite infections in grouse and ptarmigan: Prevalence and genetic diversity of blood parasites in resident Alaskan birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Matthew M.; Van Hemert, Caroline R.; Merizon, Richard

    2016-01-01

    Projections related to future climate warming indicate the potential for an increase in the distribution and prevalence of blood parasites in northern regions. However, baseline data are lacking for resident avian host species in Alaska. Grouse and ptarmigan occupy a diverse range of habitat types throughout the northern hemisphere and are among the most well-known and important native game birds in North America. Information regarding the prevalence and diversity of haemosporidian parasites in tetraonid species is limited, with few recent studies and an almost complete lack of genetic data. To better understand the genetic diversity of haemosporidian parasites in Alaskan tetraonids and to determine current patterns of geographic range and host specificity, we used molecular methods to screen 459 tissue samples collected from grouse and ptarmigan species across multiple regions of Alaska for infection by Leucocytozoon, Haemoproteus, and Plasmodium blood parasites. Infections were detected in 342 individuals, with overall apparent prevalence of 53% for Leucocytozoon, 21% for Haemoproteus, and 9% for Plasmodium. Parasite prevalence varied by region, with different patterns observed between species groups (grouse versus ptarmigan). Leucocytozoon was more common in ptarmigan, whereas Haemoproteus was more common in grouse. We detected Plasmodium infections in grouse only. Analysis of haemosporidian mitochondrial DNA cytochrome b sequences revealed 23 unique parasite haplotypes, several of which were identical to lineages previously detected in other avian hosts. Phylogenetic analysis showed close relationships between haplotypes from our study and those identified in Alaskan waterfowl for Haemoproteus and Plasmodium parasites. In contrast, Leucocytozoon lineages were structured strongly by host family. Our results provide some of the first genetic data for haemosporidians in grouse and ptarmigan species, and provide an initial baseline on the prevalence and diversity

  19. Plasmodium falciparum secretome in erythrocyte and beyond

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rani eSoni

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Plasmodium falciparum is the causative agent of deadly malaria disease. It is an intracellular eukaryote and completes its multi-stage life cycle spanning the two hosts viz, mosquito and human. In order to habituate within host environment, parasite conform several strategies to evade host immune responses such as surface antigen polymorphism or modulation of host immune system and it is mediated by secretion of proteins from parasite to the host erythrocyte and beyond, collectively known as, malaria secretome. In this review, we will discuss about the deployment of parasitic secretory protein in mechanism implicated for immune evasion, protein trafficking, providing virulence, changing permeability and cyto-adherence of infected erythrocyte. We will be covering the possibilities of developing malaria secretome as a drug/vaccine target. This gathered information will be worthwhile in depicting a well-organized picture for host-pathogen interplay during the malaria infection and may also provide some clues for development of novel anti-malarial therapies.

  20. Anopheles Gambiae PRS1 Modulates Plasmodium Development at Both Midgut and Salivary Gland Steps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perrot, Sylvie; Sautereau, Jean; Jacques, Jean-Claude; Thiery, Isabelle; Bourgouin, Catherine; Rosinski-Chupin, Isabelle

    2010-01-01

    Background Invasion of the mosquito salivary glands by Plasmodium is a critical step for malaria transmission. From a SAGE analysis, we previously identified several genes whose expression in salivary glands was regulated coincident with sporozoite invasion of salivary glands. To get insights into the consequences of these salivary gland responses, here we have studied one of the genes, PRS1 (Plasmodium responsive salivary 1), whose expression was upregulated in infected glands, using immunolocalization and functional inactivation approaches. Methodology/Principal Findings PRS1 belongs to a novel insect superfamily of genes encoding proteins with DM9 repeat motifs of uncharacterized function. We show that PRS1 is induced in response to Plasmodium, not only in the salivary glands but also in the midgut, the other epithelial barrier that Plasmodium has to cross to develop in the mosquito. Furthermore, this induction is observed using either the rodent parasite Plasmodium berghei or the human pathogen Plasmodium falciparum. In the midgut, PRS1 overexpression is associated with a relocalization of the protein at the periphery of invaded cells. We also find that sporozoite invasion of salivary gland cells occurs sequentially and induces intra-cellular modifications that include an increase in PRS1 expression and a relocalization of the corresponding protein into vesicle-like structures. Importantly, PRS1 knockdown during the onset of midgut and salivary gland invasion demonstrates that PRS1 acts as an agonist for the development of both parasite species in the two epithelia, highlighting shared vector/parasite interactions in both tissues. Conclusions/Significance While providing insights into potential functions of DM9 proteins, our results reveal that PRS1 likely contributes to fundamental interactions between Plasmodium and mosquito epithelia, which do not depend on the specific Anopheles/P. falciparum coevolutionary history. PMID:20634948

  1. Anopheles gambiae PRS1 modulates Plasmodium development at both midgut and salivary gland steps.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Chertemps

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Invasion of the mosquito salivary glands by Plasmodium is a critical step for malaria transmission. From a SAGE analysis, we previously identified several genes whose expression in salivary glands was regulated coincident with sporozoite invasion of salivary glands. To get insights into the consequences of these salivary gland responses, here we have studied one of the genes, PRS1 (Plasmodium responsive salivary 1, whose expression was upregulated in infected glands, using immunolocalization and functional inactivation approaches. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: PRS1 belongs to a novel insect superfamily of genes encoding proteins with DM9 repeat motifs of uncharacterized function. We show that PRS1 is induced in response to Plasmodium, not only in the salivary glands but also in the midgut, the other epithelial barrier that Plasmodium has to cross to develop in the mosquito. Furthermore, this induction is observed using either the rodent parasite Plasmodium berghei or the human pathogen Plasmodium falciparum. In the midgut, PRS1 overexpression is associated with a relocalization of the protein at the periphery of invaded cells. We also find that sporozoite invasion of salivary gland cells occurs sequentially and induces intra-cellular modifications that include an increase in PRS1 expression and a relocalization of the corresponding protein into vesicle-like structures. Importantly, PRS1 knockdown during the onset of midgut and salivary gland invasion demonstrates that PRS1 acts as an agonist for the development of both parasite species in the two epithelia, highlighting shared vector/parasite interactions in both tissues. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: While providing insights into potential functions of DM9 proteins, our results reveal that PRS1 likely contributes to fundamental interactions between Plasmodium and mosquito epithelia, which do not depend on the specific Anopheles/P. falciparum coevolutionary history.

  2. Progression of Plasmodium berghei through Anopheles stephensi is density-dependent.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert E Sinden

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available It is well documented that the density of Plasmodium in its vertebrate host modulates the physiological response induced; this in turn regulates parasite survival and transmission. It is less clear that parasite density in the mosquito regulates survival and transmission of this important pathogen. Numerous studies have described conversion rates of Plasmodium from one life stage to the next within the mosquito, yet few have considered that these rates might vary with parasite density. Here we establish infections with defined numbers of the rodent malaria parasite Plasmodium berghei to examine how parasite density at each stage of development (gametocytes; ookinetes; oocysts and sporozoites influences development to the ensuing stage in Anopheles stephensi, and thus the delivery of infectious sporozoites to the vertebrate host. We show that every developmental transition exhibits strong density dependence, with numbers of the ensuing stages saturating at high density. We further show that when fed ookinetes at very low densities, oocyst development is facilitated by increasing ookinete number (i.e., the efficiency of ookinete-oocyst transformation follows a sigmoid relationship. We discuss how observations on this model system generate important hypotheses for the understanding of malaria biology, and how these might guide the rational analysis of interventions against the transmission of the malaria parasites of humans by their diverse vector species.

  3. Gestational and placental malaria parasites in pregnant mothers ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Malaria infection especially with Plasmodium falciparum causes high mortality and morbidity rates among pregnant women in Nigeria. Gestational and placental malaria parasites was assessed using a total of 550 women made of 50 non- pregnant women and 500 pregnant women who attended the antenatal clinic ...

  4. Genetic mapping and coccidial parasites: Past achievements and ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    2012-10-15

    Oct 15, 2012 ... gondii and the Eimeria species can cause severe disease of medical and veterinary importance. As many as one-third ... Cyclospora cayetanensis can cause severe human disease. Indeed, as much as a third of the ..... malarial parasite Plasmodium chabaudi supported the notion. (Martinelli et al. 2005a).

  5. Communal prevalence of malaria parasite and evaluation of Long ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Communal prevalence of malaria parasite and evaluation of Long Lasting Insecticidal Treated Nets (LLINs) for malaria control in Ikenne, Ogun State, Nigeria. ... Respondents who do not sleep under LLINs the night preceding the survey are more than ten times at risk of Plasmodium infections compared to those who slept ...

  6. Blood protozoan parasites of rodents in Jos, Plateau State, Nigerai ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    One hundred and thirty rodents, comprising nine different species caught from seven different locations in Jos, Nigeria, were examined for blood protozoan parasites, and 82(63.08%) were positive, with Plasmodium 63(48.46%), Trypanosoma 4(3.08%), Toxoplasma 6(4.62%), Babesia 7(5.38%) and Anaplasma 2(1.54%).

  7. Malaria Parasite Metabolic Pathways (MPMP) Upgraded with Targeted Chemical Compounds

    KAUST Repository

    Ginsburg, Hagai

    2015-10-31

    Malaria Parasite Metabolic Pathways (MPMP) is the website for the functional genomics of intraerythrocytic Plasmodium falciparum. All the published information about targeted chemical compounds has now been added. Users can find the drug target and publication details linked to a drug database for further information about the medicinal properties of each compound.

  8. PLASMODIUM MALARIAE INFECTION BOOSTS PLASMODIUM FALCIPARUM GAMETOCYTE PRODUCTION

    Science.gov (United States)

    MCKENZIE, F. ELLIS; JEFFERY, GEOFFREY M.; COLLINS, WILLIAM E.

    2008-01-01

    We analyzed records of malariotherapy patients sequentially or simultaneously inoculated with Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium malariae. Gametocyte production was enhanced in P. falciparum by prior or concurrent P. malariae infection but diminished or unaffected in P. malariae by P. falciparum. Conversely, asexual-form production was diminished in P. malariae but unaffected in P. falciparum. PMID:12452496

  9. Sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine impairs Plasmodium falciparum gametocyte infectivity and Anopheles mosquito survival.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kone, A.; Vegte-Bolmer, M.G. van de; Siebelink-Stoter, R.; Gemert, G.J.A. van; Dara, A.; Niangaly, H.; Luty, A.J.F.; Doumbo, O.K.; Sauerwein, R.W.; Djimde, A.A.

    2010-01-01

    Sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP) is currently the drug of choice for intermittent preventive treatment of Plasmodium falciparum both in pregnancy and infancy. A prolonged parasite clearance time conferred by dhfr and dhps mutations is believed to be responsible for increased gametocyte prevalence in

  10. The systematic functional analysis of plasmodium protein kinases identifies essential regulators of mosquito transmission

    KAUST Repository

    Tewari, Rita

    2010-10-21

    Although eukaryotic protein kinases (ePKs) contribute to many cellular processes, only three Plasmodium falciparum ePKs have thus far been identified as essential for parasite asexual blood stage development. To identify pathways essential for parasite transmission between their mammalian host and mosquito vector, we undertook a systematic functional analysis of ePKs in the genetically tractable rodent parasite Plasmodium berghei. Modeling domain signatures of conventional ePKs identified 66 putative Plasmodium ePKs. Kinomes are highly conserved between Plasmodium species. Using reverse genetics, we show that 23 ePKs are redundant for asexual erythrocytic parasite development in mice. Phenotyping mutants at four life cycle stages in Anopheles stephensi mosquitoes revealed functional clusters of kinases required for sexual development and sporogony. Roles for a putative SR protein kinase (SRPK) in microgamete formation, a conserved regulator of clathrin uncoating (GAK) in ookinete formation, and a likely regulator of energy metabolism (SNF1/KIN) in sporozoite development were identified. 2010 Elsevier Inc.

  11. Acute respiratory distress syndrome and acute renal failure from Plasmodium ovale infection with fatal outcome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lau, Yee-Ling; Lee, Wenn-Chyau; Tan, Lian-Huat; Kamarulzaman, Adeeba; Syed Omar, Sharifah Faridah; Fong, Mun-Yik; Cheong, Fei-Wen; Mahmud, Rohela

    2013-11-04

    Plasmodium ovale is one of the causative agents of human malaria. Plasmodium ovale infection has long been thought to be non-fatal. Due to its lower morbidity, P. ovale receives little attention in malaria research. Two Malaysians went to Nigeria for two weeks. After returning to Malaysia, they fell sick and were admitted to different hospitals. Plasmodium ovale parasites were identified from blood smears of these patients. The species identification was further confirmed with nested PCR. One of them was successfully treated with no incident of relapse within 12-month medical follow-up. The other patient came down with malaria-induced respiratory complication during the course of treatment. Although parasites were cleared off the circulation, the patient's condition worsened. He succumbed to multiple complications including acute respiratory distress syndrome and acute renal failure. Sequencing of the malaria parasite DNA from both cases, followed by multiple sequence alignment and phylogenetic tree construction suggested that the causative agent for both malaria cases was P. ovale curtisi. In this report, the differences between both cases were discussed, and the potential capability of P. ovale in causing severe complications and death as seen in this case report was highlighted. Plasmodium ovale is potentially capable of causing severe complications, if not death. Complete travel and clinical history of malaria patient are vital for successful diagnoses and treatment. Monitoring of respiratory and renal function of malaria patients, regardless of the species of malaria parasites involved is crucial during the course of hospital admission.

  12. Transgenic fluorescent Plasmodium cynomolgi liver stages enable live imaging and purification of Malaria hypnozoite-forms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Voorberg-van de Wel, A.; Zeeman, A.M.; Amsterdam, S.M. van; Berg, A. van den; Klooster, E.J.; Iwanaga, S.; Janse, C.J.; Gemert, G.J.A. van; Sauerwein, R.; Beenhakker, N.; Koopman, G.; Thomas, A.W.; Kocken, C.H.

    2013-01-01

    A major challenge for strategies to combat the human malaria parasite Plasmodium vivax is the presence of hypnozoites in the liver. These dormant forms can cause renewed clinical disease after reactivation through unknown mechanisms. The closely related non-human primate malaria P. cynomolgi is a

  13. piggyBac is an effective tool for functional analysis of the Plasmodium falciparum genome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kissinger Jessica C

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Much of the Plasmodium falciparum genome encodes hypothetical proteins with limited homology to other organisms. A lack of robust tools for genetic manipulation of the parasite limits functional analysis of these hypothetical proteins and other aspects of the Plasmodium genome. Transposon mutagenesis has been used widely to identify gene functions in many organisms and would be extremely valuable for functional analysis of the Plasmodium genome. Results In this study, we investigated the lepidopteran transposon, piggyBac, as a molecular genetic tool for functional characterization of the Plasmodium falciparum genome. Through multiple transfections, we generated 177 unique P. falciparum mutant clones with mostly single piggyBac insertions in their genomes. Analysis of piggyBac insertion sites revealed random insertions into the P. falciparum genome, in regards to gene expression in parasite life cycle stages and functional categories. We further explored the possibility of forward genetic studies in P. falciparum with a phenotypic screen for attenuated growth, which identified several parasite genes and pathways critical for intra-erythrocytic development. Conclusion Our results clearly demonstrate that piggyBac is a novel, indispensable tool for forward functional genomics in P. falciparum that will help better understand parasite biology and accelerate drug and vaccine development.

  14. Identification of glycosaminoglycan binding regions in the Plasmodium falciparum encoded placental sequestration ligand, VAR2CSA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Resende, Mafalda; Nielsen, Morten A.; Dahlbaeck, Madeleine

    2008-01-01

    Background: Pregnancy malaria is caused by Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes binding the placental receptor chondroitin sulfate A (CSA). This results in accumulation of parasites in the placenta with severe clinical consequences for the mother and her unborn child. Women become resistan...

  15. The Use of Highly Sensitive Detection Methods for Eradication of Plasmodium

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hede, Marianne Smedegaard; Knudsen, Birgitta R.

    2017-01-01

    The key to a successful malaria eradication program is highly efficient detection of Plasmodium infected people followed by appropriate treatment to avoid spreading of the parasite. We will discuss some of the demands that such a detection method needs to fulfill and review some of the advantages...... and disadvantages of currently available detection methods...

  16. Observations on the periodicity of Plasmodium falciparum gametocytes in natural human infections

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Magesa, S M; Mdira, Y K; Akida, J A

    2000-01-01

    The circadian periodicity of Plasmodium falciparum gametocytes in peripheral blood was analysed in a group of children from an holoendemic community of north-eastern Tanzania. No periodicity was observed with asexual stage parasites. Gametocytes were shown to display a diurnal subperiodic pattern...

  17. Transportproteiner som drug-targets hos Plasmodium falciparum. Nye perspektiver i behandlingen af malaria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ellekvist, Peter; Colding, Hanne

    2006-01-01

    The malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, infects and replicates in human erythrocytes. Through the use of substrate-specific transport proteins, P. falciparum takes up nutrients from the erythrocyte's cytoplasm. The sequencing and publishing of the P. falciparum genome have made it possible...

  18. Plasmodium falciparum infection increases Anopheles gambiae attraction to nectar sources and sugar uptake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plasmodium parasites are known to manipulate the behaviour of their vectors so as to enhance their transmission. However, it is unknown if this vector manipulation also affects mosquito-plant interaction and sugar uptake. Dual-choice olfactometer and probing assays were used to study plant seeking b...

  19. Detection of Mixed Infections with Plasmodium spp. by PCR, India, 2014.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krishna, Sri; Bharti, Praveen K; Chandel, Himashu S; Ahmad, Amreen; Kumar, Rajesh; Singh, Puspendra P; Singh, Mrigendra P; Singh, Neeru

    2015-10-01

    In 8 malaria-endemic states in India, mixed Plasmodium spp. infections were detected by PCR in 17.4% (265/1,521) of blood samples that microscopy had shown to contain only P. falciparum. The quality of microscopy must be improved because use of PCR for detection of malaria parasites is limited in rural areas.

  20. Expression of a type B RIFIN in Plasmodium falciparum merozoites and gametes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mwakalinga, Steven B; Wang, Christian W; Bengtsson, Dominique C

    2012-01-01

    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: The ability of Plasmodium falciparum to undergo antigenic variation, by switching expression among protein variants encoded by multigene families, such as var, rif and stevor, is key to the survival of this parasite in the human host. The RIFIN protein family can be divided...

  1. Genetics of refractoriness to Plasmodium falciparum in the mosquito Anopheles stephensi

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Feldmann, A.M.; Gemert, Geert-Jan van; Vegte-Bolmer, Marga G. van de; Jansen, Ritsert C.

    1998-01-01

    We previously selected a line of the malaria vector mosquito Anopheles stephensi refractory (resistant) to the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, using in vitro infections with P. falciparum gametocytes. This report presents data on the genetic background of refractoriness. The results of

  2. A simple and fast method to exclude high Plasmodium falciparum parasitaemia in travellers with imported malaria

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    T. van Gool (Tom); M.E. van Wolfswinkel (Marlies); R. Koelewijn (Rob); P.P.A.M. van Thiel (Pieter); J. Jacobs (Jan); J.J. van Hellemond (Jaap); P.J.J. van Genderen (Perry)

    2011-01-01

    textabstractBackground: Counts of malaria parasites in peripheral blood are important to assess severity of Plasmodium falciparum malaria. Thin and thick smears are routinely used for this purpose. Methods. In this study the Binax NOW® Malaria Test, an easy-to-perform rapid diagnostic test, with

  3. Iron chelators: correlation between effects on Plasmodium spp. and immune functions.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Golenser, J.; Domb, A.; Mordechai-Daniel, T.; Leshem, B.; Luty, J.F.; Kremsner, P.

    2006-01-01

    Iron chelating agents, which permeate through erythrocytic and parasite membranes, are effective against Plasmodium falciparum in vitro. However, the protective effect in humans is transient. We examined the antiplasmodial capacity of several iron chelators in vitro and in vivo. The chelators

  4. Sequential, ordered acquisition of antibodies to Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 domains

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cham, Gerald K K; Turner, Louise; Lusingu, John

    2009-01-01

    The binding of erythrocytes infected with mature blood stage parasites to the vascular bed is key to the pathogenesis of malignant malaria. The binding is mediated by members of Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) family. PfEMP1s can be divided into groups, and it has...

  5. Identification of vital and dispensable sulfur utilization factors in the Plasmodium apicoplast

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Haussig, J.M.; Matuschewski, K.; Kooij, T.W.A.

    2014-01-01

    Iron-sulfur [Fe-S] clusters are ubiquitous and critical cofactors in diverse biochemical processes. They are assembled by distinct [Fe-S] cluster biosynthesis pathways, typically in organelles of endosymbiotic origin. Apicomplexan parasites, including Plasmodium, the causative agent of malaria,

  6. Management of relapsing Plasmodium vivax malaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chu, Cindy S; White, Nicholas J

    2016-10-01

    Relapses are important contributors to illness and morbidity in Plasmodium vivax and P. ovale infections. Relapse prevention (radical cure) with primaquine is required for optimal management, control and ultimately elimination of Plasmodium vivax malaria. A review was conducted with publications in English, French, Portuguese and Spanish using the search terms 'P. vivax' and 'relapse'. Hypnozoites causing relapses may be activated weeks or months after initial infection. Incidence and temporal patterns of relapse varies geographically. Relapses derive from parasites either genetically similar or different from the primary infection indicating that some derive from previous infections. Malaria illness itself may activate relapse. Primaquine is the only widely available treatment for radical cure. However, it is often not given because of uncertainty over the risks of primaquine induced haemolysis when G6PD deficiency testing is unavailable. Recommended dosing of primaquine for radical cure in East Asia and Oceania is 0.5 mg base/kg/day and elsewhere is 0.25 mg base/kg/day. Alternative treatments are under investigation. Expert commentary: Geographic heterogeneity in relapse patterns and chloroquine susceptibility of P. vivax, and G6PD deficiency epidemiology mean that radical treatment should be given much more than it is today. G6PD testing should be made widely available so primaquine can be given more safely.

  7. In situ hybridization and sequence analysis reveal an association of Plasmodium spp. with mortalities in wild passerine birds in Austria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dinhopl, Nora; Nedorost, Nora; Mostegl, Meike M; Weissenbacher-Lang, Christiane; Weissenböck, Herbert

    2015-04-01

    Native European passerine birds are frequently clinically inapparent carriers of haemosporidian parasites of the genus Plasmodium. Clinical disease and death are only exceptionally reported. In the present study, tissue samples of 233 wild passerine birds found dead in Eastern Austria were examined by in situ hybridization (ISH) and partial cytochrome B gene sequence analysis for the presence, abundance and taxonomic assignment of Plasmodium spp. In 34 cases (14.6%), ISH yielded a positive result with large numbers of developmental stages in different cell types of the spleen, liver, brain and lung. The abundance of the tissue stages, which was comparable to fatal cases of avian malaria in penguins, suggested a major contribution to the cause of death. Genetic analysis revealed infections with representatives of three different valid species of Plasmodium, Plasmodium elongatum, Plasmodium lutzi and Plasmodium vaughani. Genetically identical parasite lineages had been found in a previous study in penguins kept in the Vienna zoo, providing evidence for the role of wild birds as reservoir hosts. Further, this study provides evidence that several species of Plasmodium are able to abundantly proliferate in endemic wild birds ultimately resulting in mortalities.

  8. Inhibition of Plasmodium Liver Infection by Ivermectin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendes, António M; Albuquerque, Inês S; Machado, Marta; Pissarra, Joana; Meireles, Patrícia; Prudêncio, Miguel

    2017-02-01

    Avermectins are powerful endectocides with an established potential to reduce the incidence of vector-borne diseases. Here, we show that several avermectins inhibit the hepatic stage of Plasmodium infection in vitro Notably, ivermectin potently inhibits liver infection in vivo by impairing parasite development inside hepatocytes. This impairment has a clear impact on the ensuing blood stage parasitemia, reducing disease severity and enhancing host survival. Ivermectin has been proposed as a tool to control malaria transmission because of its effects on the mosquito vector. Our study extends the effect of ivermectin to the early stages of mammalian host infection and supports the inclusion of this multipurpose drug in malaria control strategies. Copyright © 2017 Mendes et al.

  9. P. berghei telomerase subunit TERT is essential for parasite survival.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Agnieszka A Religa

    Full Text Available Telomeres define the ends of chromosomes protecting eukaryotic cells from chromosome instability and eventual cell death. The complex regulation of telomeres involves various proteins including telomerase, which is a specialized ribonucleoprotein responsible for telomere maintenance. Telomeres of chromosomes of malaria parasites are kept at a constant length during blood stage proliferation. The 7-bp telomere repeat sequence is universal across different Plasmodium species (GGGTTT/CA, though the average telomere length varies. The catalytic subunit of telomerase, telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT, is present in all sequenced Plasmodium species and is approximately three times larger than other eukaryotic TERTs. The Plasmodium RNA component of TERT has recently been identified in silico. A strategy to delete the gene encoding TERT via double cross-over (DXO homologous recombination was undertaken to study the telomerase function in P. berghei. Expression of both TERT and the RNA component (TR in P. berghei blood stages was analysed by Western blotting and Northern analysis. Average telomere length was measured in several Plasmodium species using Telomere Restriction Fragment (TRF analysis. TERT and TR were detected in blood stages and an average telomere length of ∼ 950 bp established. Deletion of the tert gene was performed using standard transfection methodologies and we show the presence of tert- mutants in the transfected parasite populations. Cloning of tert- mutants has been attempted multiple times without success. Thorough analysis of the transfected parasite populations and the parasite obtained from extensive parasite cloning from these populations provide evidence for a so called delayed death phenotype as observed in different organisms lacking TERT. The findings indicate that TERT is essential for P. berghei cell survival. The study extends our current knowledge on telomere biology in malaria parasites and validates further

  10. Exploring Drug Targets in Isoprenoid Biosynthetic Pathway for Plasmodium falciparum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tabish Qidwai

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Emergence of rapid drug resistance to existing antimalarial drugs in Plasmodium falciparum has created the need for prediction of novel targets as well as leads derived from original molecules with improved activity against a validated drug target. The malaria parasite has a plant plastid-like apicoplast. To overcome the problem of falciparum malaria, the metabolic pathways in parasite apicoplast have been used as antimalarial drug targets. Among several pathways in apicoplast, isoprenoid biosynthesis is one of the important pathways for parasite as its multiplication in human erythrocytes requires isoprenoids. Therefore targeting this pathway and exploring leads with improved activity is a highly attractive approach. This report has explored progress towards the study of proteins and inhibitors of isoprenoid biosynthesis pathway. For more comprehensive analysis, antimalarial drug-protein interaction has been covered.

  11. Engineered resistance to Plasmodium falciparum development in transgenic Anopheles stephensi.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alison T Isaacs

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Transposon-mediated transformation was used to produce Anopheles stephensi that express single-chain antibodies (scFvs designed to target the human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. The scFvs, m1C3, m4B7, and m2A10, are derived from mouse monoclonal antibodies that inhibit either ookinete invasion of the midgut or sporozoite invasion of salivary glands. The scFvs that target the parasite surface, m4B7 and m2A10, were fused to an Anopheles gambiae antimicrobial peptide, Cecropin A. Previously-characterized Anopheles cis-acting DNA regulatory elements were included in the transgenes to coordinate scFv production with parasite development. Gene amplification and immunoblot analyses showed promoter-specific increases in transgene expression in blood-fed females. Transgenic mosquito lines expressing each of the scFv genes had significantly lower infection levels than controls when challenged with P. falciparum.

  12. Merozoite surface protein-1 genetic diversity in Plasmodium malariae and Plasmodium brasilianum from Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guimarães, Lilian O; Wunderlich, Gerhard; Alves, João M P; Bueno, Marina G; Röhe, Fabio; Catão-Dias, José L; Neves, Amanda; Malafronte, Rosely S; Curado, Izilda; Domingues, Wilson; Kirchgatter, Karin

    2015-11-16

    The merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP1) gene encodes the major surface antigen of invasive forms of the Plasmodium erythrocytic stages and is considered a candidate vaccine antigen against malaria. Due to its polymorphisms, MSP1 is also useful for strain discrimination and consists of a good genetic marker. Sequence diversity in MSP1 has been analyzed in field isolates of three human parasites: P. falciparum, P. vivax, and P. ovale. However, the extent of variation in another human parasite, P. malariae, remains unknown. This parasite shows widespread, uneven distribution in tropical and subtropical regions throughout South America, Asia, and Africa. Interestingly, it is genetically indistinguishable from P. brasilianum, a parasite known to infect New World monkeys in Central and South America. Specific fragments (1 to 5) covering 60 % of the MSP1 gene (mainly the putatively polymorphic regions), were amplified by PCR in isolates of P. malariae and P. brasilianum from different geographic origin and hosts. Sequencing of the PCR-amplified products or cloned PCR fragments was performed and the sequences were used to construct a phylogenetic tree by the maximum likelihood method. Data were computed to give insights into the evolutionary and phylogenetic relationships of these parasites. Except for fragment 4, sequences from all other fragments consisted of unpublished sequences. The most polymorphic gene region was fragment 2, and in samples where this region lacks polymorphism, all other regions are also identical. The low variability of the P. malariae msp1 sequences of these isolates and the identification of the same haplotype in those collected many years apart at different locations is compatible with a low transmission rate. We also found greater diversity among P. brasilianum isolates compared with P. malariae ones. Lastly, the sequences were segregated according to their geographic origins and hosts, showing a strong genetic and geographic structure. Our data

  13. Reduced susceptibility of Plasmodium falciparum to artesunate in southern Myanmar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kyaw, Myat P; Nyunt, Myat H; Chit, Khin; Aye, Moe M; Aye, Kyin H; Aye, Moe M; Lindegardh, Niklas; Tarning, Joel; Imwong, Mallika; Jacob, Christopher G; Rasmussen, Charlotte; Perin, Jamie; Ringwald, Pascal; Nyunt, Myaing M

    2013-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum resistance to artemisinins, the first line treatment for malaria worldwide, has been reported in western Cambodia. Resistance is characterized by significantly delayed clearance of parasites following artemisinin treatment. Artemisinin resistance has not previously been reported in Myanmar, which has the highest falciparum malaria burden among Southeast Asian countries. A non-randomized, single-arm, open-label clinical trial of artesunate monotherapy (4 mg/kg daily for seven days) was conducted in adults with acute blood-smear positive P. falciparum malaria in Kawthaung, southern Myanmar. Parasite density was measured every 12 hours until two consecutive negative smears were obtained. Participants were followed weekly at the study clinic for three additional weeks. Co-primary endpoints included parasite clearance time (the time required for complete clearance of initial parasitemia), parasite clearance half-life (the time required for parasitemia to decrease by 50% based on the linear portion of the parasite clearance slope), and detectable parasitemia 72 hours after commencement of artesunate treatment. Drug pharmacokinetics were measured to rule out delayed clearance due to suboptimal drug levels. The median (range) parasite clearance half-life and time were 4.8 (2.1-9.7) and 60 (24-96) hours, respectively. The frequency distributions of parasite clearance half-life and time were bimodal, with very slow parasite clearance characteristic of the slowest-clearing Cambodian parasites (half-life longer than 6.2 hours) in approximately 1/3 of infections. Fourteen of 52 participants (26.9%) had a measurable parasitemia 72 hours after initiating artesunate treatment. Parasite clearance was not associated with drug pharmacokinetics. A subset of P. falciparum infections in southern Myanmar displayed markedly delayed clearance following artemisinin treatment, suggesting either emergence of artemisinin resistance in southern Myanmar or spread to this

  14. Reduced susceptibility of Plasmodium falciparum to artesunate in southern Myanmar.

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    Myat P Kyaw

    Full Text Available Plasmodium falciparum resistance to artemisinins, the first line treatment for malaria worldwide, has been reported in western Cambodia. Resistance is characterized by significantly delayed clearance of parasites following artemisinin treatment. Artemisinin resistance has not previously been reported in Myanmar, which has the highest falciparum malaria burden among Southeast Asian countries.A non-randomized, single-arm, open-label clinical trial of artesunate monotherapy (4 mg/kg daily for seven days was conducted in adults with acute blood-smear positive P. falciparum malaria in Kawthaung, southern Myanmar. Parasite density was measured every 12 hours until two consecutive negative smears were obtained. Participants were followed weekly at the study clinic for three additional weeks. Co-primary endpoints included parasite clearance time (the time required for complete clearance of initial parasitemia, parasite clearance half-life (the time required for parasitemia to decrease by 50% based on the linear portion of the parasite clearance slope, and detectable parasitemia 72 hours after commencement of artesunate treatment. Drug pharmacokinetics were measured to rule out delayed clearance due to suboptimal drug levels.The median (range parasite clearance half-life and time were 4.8 (2.1-9.7 and 60 (24-96 hours, respectively. The frequency distributions of parasite clearance half-life and time were bimodal, with very slow parasite clearance characteristic of the slowest-clearing Cambodian parasites (half-life longer than 6.2 hours in approximately 1/3 of infections. Fourteen of 52 participants (26.9% had a measurable parasitemia 72 hours after initiating artesunate treatment. Parasite clearance was not associated with drug pharmacokinetics.A subset of P. falciparum infections in southern Myanmar displayed markedly delayed clearance following artemisinin treatment, suggesting either emergence of artemisinin resistance in southern Myanmar or spread

  15. Characterizing Antibody Responses to Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium falciparum Antigens in India Using Genome-Scale Protein Microarrays.

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    Swapna Uplekar

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Understanding naturally acquired immune responses to Plasmodium in India is key to improving malaria surveillance and diagnostic tools. Here we describe serological profiling of immune responses at three sites in India by probing protein microarrays consisting of 515 Plasmodium vivax and 500 Plasmodium falciparum proteins with 353 plasma samples. A total of 236 malaria-positive (symptomatic and asymptomatic plasma samples and 117 malaria-negative samples were collected at three field sites in Raurkela, Nadiad, and Chennai. Indian samples showed significant seroreactivity to 265 P. vivax and 373 P. falciparum antigens, but overall seroreactivity to P. vivax antigens was lower compared to P. falciparum antigens. We identified the most immunogenic antigens of both Plasmodium species that were recognized at all three sites in India, as well as P. falciparum antigens that were associated with asymptomatic malaria. This is the first genome-scale analysis of serological responses to the two major species of malaria parasite in India. The range of immune responses characterized in different endemic settings argues for targeted surveillance approaches tailored to the diverse epidemiology of malaria across the world.

  16. Plasmodium-specific molecular assays produce uninterpretable results and non-Plasmodium spp. sequences in field-collected Anopheles vectors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrison, Genelle F; Foley, Desmond H; Rueda, Leopoldo M; Melanson, Vanessa R; Wilkerson, Richard C; Long, Lewis S; Richardson, Jason H; Klein, Terry A; Kim, Heung-Chul; Lee, Won-Ja

    2013-12-01

    The Malaria Research and Reference Reagent Resource-recommended PLF/UNR/VIR polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was used to detect Plasmodium vivax in Anopheles spp. mosquitoes collected in South Korea. Samples that were amplified were sequenced and compared with known Plasmodium spp. by using the PlasmoDB.org Basic Local Alignment Search Tool/n and the National Center for Biotechnology Information Basic Local Alignment Search Tool/n tools. Results show that the primers PLF/UNR/VIR used in this PCR can produce uninterpretable results and non-specific sequences in field-collected mosquitoes. Three additional PCRs (PLU/VIV, specific for 18S small subunit ribosomal DNA; Pvr47, specific for a nuclear repeat; and GDCW/PLAS, specific for the mitochondrial marker, cytB) were then used to find a more accurate and interpretable assay. Samples that were amplified were again sequenced. The PLU/VIV and Pvr47 assays showed cross-reactivity with non-Plasmodium spp. and an arthropod fungus (Zoophthora lanceolata). The GDCW/PLAS assay amplified only Plasmodium spp. but also amplified the non-human specific parasite P. berghei from an Anopheles belenrae mosquito. Detection of P. berghei in South Korea is a new finding.

  17. Yurt Dışı Kökenli Plasmodium falciparum Suşlarının Tanısında Serolojik ve Moleküler Yöntemlerin Kullanılması

    OpenAIRE

    Eroglu, Fadime; Genç, Ahmet; Çürük, Mehmet Akif; Koltaş, İsmail Soner

    2018-01-01

    ÖzetPlasmodium falciparum, sıtmaya neden olan Plasmodium türlerinden biridir. Plasmodium falciparum sıtması, sıtma çeşitleri içerisinde ölüm oranı en yüksek ve en tehlikeli olandır. Bu nedenle Plasmodium falciparum sıtmasının erken tanısı çok önemlidir. Anahtar Kelime: Plasmodium falciparum, serolojik tanı, moleküler tanıThe Use of Serological and Molecular Methods in Diagnosis of Foreign Origin Plasmodium falciparum StrainsAbstractPlasmodium falciparum is a protozoan parasite, one of the spe...

  18. From cradle to grave: RNA biology in malaria parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Katie R; Philip, Nisha; Starnes, G Lucas; Taylor, Sonya; Waters, Andrew P

    2010-01-01

    Malaria is caused by the unicellular apicomplexan parasites of the genus Plasmodium, some of which, including the major human parasite Plasmodium falciparum, have extreme genome compositions (A/T content > 80%). In this overview of RNA production, roles and degradation, we show that despite their unusual genome composition these parasites generally exhibit the standard eukaryotic features of these processes. Thus genes are monocistronic and transcribed by RNA polymerases that conform to the general categories of I, II, and III. Plasmodium spp. are unusual in that they possess structurally distinct rRNA genes that are expressed at different points in the complicated life cycle of the parasite. Transcription in blood stage asexual parasites follows a cascade consistent with a dependency upon plant-like apetala 2 (AP2) DNA-binding proteins. mRNA is transported to, translated and degraded in the cytoplasm and the transcription pattern is largely inflexible and responsive to temperature and glucose but not drugs. Furthermore, although Plasmodium spp. undertake controlled repression of mRNA species at a number of points in their life cycle only one mechanism, employed by female gametocytes (gamete precursor cells), is clear; it resembles that of metazoan female gametes, consisting of a complex of repression-associated proteins in an architecture formed with the mRNA 5' cap and dependent on U-rich untranslated region (UTR) elements. Extensive antisense transcription has been documented resulting in the production of both short and long transcripts of generally unknown functional significance. This review attempts to summarize what is currently known about the biology of Plasmodium RNA. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  19. New potential Plasmodium brasilianum hosts: tamarin and marmoset monkeys (family Callitrichidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarenga, Denise A M; Pina-Costa, Anielle; Bianco, Cesare; Moreira, Silvia B; Brasil, Patricia; Pissinatti, Alcides; Daniel-Ribeiro, Claudio T; Brito, Cristiana F A

    2017-02-10

    Non-human primates (NHPs) as a source for Plasmodium infections in humans are a challenge for malaria elimination. In Brazil, two species of Plasmodium have been described infecting NHPs, Plasmodium brasilianum and Plasmodium simium. Both species are infective to man. Plasmodium brasilianum resembles morphologically, genetically and immunologically the human quartan Plasmodium malariae. Plasmodium brasilianum naturally infects species of non-human primates from all New World monkey families from a large geographic area. In the family Callitrichidae only the genus Saguinus has been described infected so far. The present study describes the natural infection of P. brasilianum in tamarins and marmosets of the genera Callithrix, Mico and Leontopithecus in the Atlantic forest. One hundred and twenty-two NHPs of the family Callitrichidae housed in the Primate Centre of Rio de Janeiro (CPRJ) were sampled in June 2015, and January and July 2016. The CPRJ is located in the Atlantic forest in the Guapimirim municipality, in the Rio de Janeiro state, where human autochthonous cases of malaria have been reported. The samples were screened for the presence of Plasmodium using optical microscopy and nested PCR for detection of 18S small subunit rRNA gene. The amplicon was sequenced to confirm the molecular diagnosis. The frequency of Plasmodium infections detected by nested PCR in New World monkeys of the family Callitrichidae was 6.6%. For the first time, Callitrichidae primates of genera Callithrix, Mico and Leontopithecus were found naturally infected with P. brasilianum. Infection was confirmed by sequencing a small fragment of 18S rRNA gene, although no parasites were detected in blood smears. The reported P. brasilianum infection in NHP species maintained in captivity suggests that infection can be favoured by the presence of vectors and the proximity between known (and unknown) hosts of malaria. Thus, the list of potential malaria reservoirs needs to be further explored.

  20. Report: Unsupervised identification of malaria parasites using computer vision.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Najeed Ahmed; Pervaz, Hassan; Latif, Arsalan; Musharaff, Ayesha

    2017-01-01

    Malaria in human is a serious and fatal tropical disease. This disease results from Anopheles mosquitoes that are infected by Plasmodium species. The clinical diagnosis of malaria based on the history, symptoms and clinical findings must always be confirmed by laboratory diagnosis. Laboratory diagnosis of malaria involves identification of malaria parasite or its antigen / products in the blood of the patient. Manual diagnosis of malaria parasite by the pathologists has proven to become cumbersome. Therefore, there is a need of automatic, efficient and accurate identification of malaria parasite. In this paper, we proposed a computer vision based approach to identify the malaria parasite from light microscopy images. This research deals with the challenges involved in the automatic detection of malaria parasite tissues. Our