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Sample records for falciparum asexual blood

  1. Induction of cell death on Plasmodium falciparum asexual blood stages by Solanum nudum steroids

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    López, Mary Luz; Vommaro, Rossiane; Zalis, Mariano

    2010-01-01

    Solanum nudum Dunal (Solanaceae) is a plant used in traditional medicine in Colombian Pacific Coast, from which five steroids denominated SNs have been isolated. The SNs compounds have antiplasmodial activity against asexual blood stages of Plasmodium falciparum strain 7G8 with an IC50 between 20...

  2. Widespread occurrence of lysine methylation in Plasmodium falciparum proteins at asexual blood stages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaur, Inderjeet; Zeeshan, Mohammad; Saini, Ekta; Kaushik, Abhinav; Mohmmed, Asif; Gupta, Dinesh; Malhotra, Pawan

    2016-10-20

    Post-transcriptional and post-translational modifications play a major role in Plasmodium life cycle regulation. Lysine methylation of histone proteins is well documented in several organisms, however in recent years lysine methylation of proteins outside histone code is emerging out as an important post-translational modification (PTM). In the present study we have performed global analysis of lysine methylation of proteins in asexual blood stages of Plasmodium falciparum development. We immunoprecipitated stage specific Plasmodium lysates using anti-methyl lysine specific antibodies that immunostained the asexual blood stage parasites. Using liquid chromatography and tandem mass spectrometry analysis, 570 lysine methylated proteins at three different blood stages were identified. Analysis of the peptide sequences identified 605 methylated sites within 422 proteins. Functional classification of the methylated proteins revealed that the proteins are mainly involved in nucleotide metabolic processes, chromatin organization, transport, homeostatic processes and protein folding. The motif analysis of the methylated lysine peptides reveals novel motifs. Many of the identified lysine methylated proteins are also interacting partners/substrates of PfSET domain proteins as revealed by STRING database analysis. Our findings suggest that the protein methylation at lysine residues is widespread in Plasmodium and plays an important regulatory role in diverse set of the parasite pathways.

  3. The cytosolic glyoxalases of Plasmodium falciparum are dispensable during asexual blood-stage development

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    Cletus A. Wezena

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The enzymes glyoxalase 1 and 2 (Glo1 and Glo2 are found in most eukaryotes and catalyze the glutathione-dependent conversion of 2-oxoaldehydes to 2-hydroxycarboxylic acids. Four glyoxalases are encoded in the genome of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, the cytosolic enzymes PfGlo1 and PfcGlo2, the apicoplast enzyme PftGlo2, and an inactive Glo1-like protein that also carries an apicoplast-targeting sequence. Inhibition or knockout of the Plasmodium glyoxalases was hypothesized to lead to an accumulation of 2-oxoaldehydes and advanced glycation end-products (AGE in the host-parasite unit and to result in parasite death. Here, we generated clonal P. falciparum strain 3D7 knockout lines for PFGLO1 and PFcGLO2 using the CRISPR-Cas9 system. Although 3D7Δglo1 knockout clones had an increased susceptibility to external glyoxal, all 3D7Δglo1 and 3D7Δcglo2 knockout lines were viable and showed no significant growth phenotype under standard growth conditions. Furthermore, the lack of PfcGlo2, but not PfGlo1, increased gametocyte commitment in the knockout lines. In summary, PfGlo1 and PfcGlo2 are dispensable during asexual blood-stage development while the loss of PfcGlo2 may induce the formation of transmissible gametocytes. These combined data show that PfGlo1 and PfcGlo2 are most likely not suited as targets for selective drug development.

  4. A Global Survey of ATPase Activity in Plasmodium falciparum Asexual Blood Stages and Gametocytes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ortega, Corrie; Frando, Andrew; Webb-Robertson, Bobbie-Jo; Anderson, Lindsey N.; Fleck, Neil; Flannery, Erika L.; Fishbaugher, Matthew; Murphree, Taylor A.; Hansen, Joshua R.; Smith, Richard D.; Kappe, Stefan H. I.; Wright, Aaron T.; Grundner, Christoph

    2017-10-27

    Effective malaria control and elimination in hyperendemic areas of the world will require treatment of disease-causing Plasmodium falciparum (Pf) blood stage infection but also blocking parasite transmission from humans to mosquito to prevent disease spread. Numerous antimalarial drugs have become ineffective due to parasite drug resistance and many currently used therapies do not kill gametocytes, highly specialized sexual parasite stages with distinct physiology that are necessary for transmission from the human host to the mosquito vector. Further confounding next generation drug development against Pf is the lack of known biochemical activity for most parasite gene products as well as the unknown metabolic needs of non-replicating gametocyte. Here, we take a systematic activity-based proteomics approach to survey the large and druggable ATPase family that is associated with replicating blood stage asexual parasites and transmissible gametocytes. We experimentally confirm existing annotation and predict ATPase function for 38 uncharacterized proteins. ATPase activity broadly changes during the transition from asexual schizonts to gametocytes, indicating altered metabolism and regulatory roles of ATPases specific for each lifecycle stage. By mapping the activity of ATPases associated with gametocytogenesis, we assign biochemical activity to a large number of uncharacterized proteins and identify new candidate transmission blocking targets.

  5. Effect of selected local medicinal plants on the asexual blood stage of chloroquine resistant Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohd Abd Razak, Mohd Ridzuan; Afzan, Adlin; Ali, Rosnani; Amir Jalaluddin, Nur Fasihah; Wasiman, Mohd Isa; Shiekh Zahari, Siti Habsah; Abdullah, Noor Rain; Ismail, Zakiah

    2014-12-15

    The development of resistant to current antimalarial drugs is a major challenge in achieving malaria elimination status in many countries. Therefore there is a need for new antimalarial drugs. Medicinal plants have always been the major source for the search of new antimalarial drugs. The aim of this study was to screen selected Malaysian medicinal plants for their antiplasmodial properties. Each part of the plants were processed, defatted by hexane and sequentially extracted with dichloromethane, methanol and water. The antiplasmodial activities of 54 plant extracts from 14 species were determined by Plasmodium falciparum Histidine Rich Protein II ELISA technique. In order to determine the selectivity index (SI), all plant extracts demonstrating a good antiplasmodial activity were tested for their cytotoxicity activity against normal Madin-Darby Bovine Kidney (MDBK) cell lines by 3-(4, 5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2, 5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay. Twenty three extracts derived from Curcuma zedoaria (rhizome), Curcuma aeruginosa (rhizome), Alpinia galanga (rhizome), Morinda elliptica (leaf), Curcuma mangga (rhizome), Elephantopus scaber (leaf), Vitex negundo (leaf), Brucea javanica (leaf, root and seed), Annona muricata (leaf), Cinnamomun iners (leaf) and Vernonia amygdalina (leaf) showed promising antiplasmodial activities against the blood stage chloroquine resistant P. falciparum (EC50 toxicity effect to MDBK cells in vitro (SI ≥10). The extracts belonging to eleven plant species were able to perturb the growth of chloroquine resistant P. falciparum effectively. The findings justified the bioassay guided fractionation on these plants for the search of potent antimalarial compounds or formulation of standardized extracts which may enhance the antimalarial effect in vitro and in vivo.

  6. Phase 1 trial of AMA1-C1/Alhydrogel plus CPG 7909: an asexual blood-stage vaccine for Plasmodium falciparum malaria.

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    Gregory E D Mullen

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available Apical Membrane Antigen 1 (AMA1, a polymorphic merozoite surface protein, is a leading blood-stage malaria vaccine candidate. This is the first reported use in humans of an investigational vaccine, AMA1-C1/Alhydrogel, with the novel adjuvant CPG 7909.A phase 1 trial was conducted at the University of Rochester with 75 malaria-naive volunteers to assess the safety and immunogenicity of the AMA1-C1/Alhydrogel+CPG 7909 malaria vaccine. Participants were sequentially enrolled and randomized within dose escalating cohorts to receive three vaccinations on days 0, 28 and 56 of either 20 microg of AMA1-C1/Alhydrogel+564 microg CPG 7909 (n = 15, 80 microg of AMA1-C1/Alhydrogel (n = 30, or 80 microg of AMA1-C1/Alhydrogel+564 microg CPG 7909 (n = 30.Local and systemic adverse events were significantly more likely to be of higher severity with the addition of CPG 7909. Anti-AMA1 immunoglobulin G (IgG were detected by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA, and the immune sera of volunteers that received 20 microg or 80 microg of AMA1-C1/Alhydrogel+CPG 7909 had up to 14 fold significant increases in anti-AMA1 antibody concentration compared to 80 microg of AMA1-C1/Alhydrogel alone. The addition of CPG 7909 to the AMA1-C1/Alhydrogel vaccine in humans also elicited AMA1 specific immune IgG that significantly and dramatically increased the in vitro growth inhibition of homologous parasites to levels as high as 96% inhibition.The safety profile of the AMA1-C1/Alhydrogel+CPG 7909 malaria vaccine is acceptable, given the significant increase in immunogenicity observed. Further clinical development is ongoing.ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00344539.

  7. Robust inducible Cre recombinase activity in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum enables efficient gene deletion within a single asexual erythrocytic growth cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Christine R; Das, Sujaan; Wong, Eleanor H; Andenmatten, Nicole; Stallmach, Robert; Hackett, Fiona; Herman, Jean-Paul; Müller, Sylke; Meissner, Markus; Blackman, Michael J

    2013-05-01

    Asexual blood stages of the malaria parasite, which cause all the pathology associated with malaria, can readily be genetically modified by homologous recombination, enabling the functional study of parasite genes that are not essential in this part of the life cycle. However, no widely applicable method for conditional mutagenesis of essential asexual blood-stage malarial genes is available, hindering their functional analysis. We report the application of the DiCre conditional recombinase system to Plasmodium falciparum, the causative agent of the most dangerous form of malaria. We show that DiCre can be used to obtain rapid, highly regulated site-specific recombination in P. falciparum, capable of excising loxP-flanked sequences from a genomic locus with close to 100% efficiency within the time-span of a single erythrocytic growth cycle. DiCre-mediated deletion of the SERA5 3' UTR failed to reduce expression of the gene due to the existence of alternative cryptic polyadenylation sites within the modified locus. However, we successfully used the system to recycle the most widely used drug resistance marker for P. falciparum, human dihydrofolate reductase, in the process producing constitutively DiCre-expressing P. falciparum clones that have broad utility for the functional analysis of essential asexual blood-stage parasite genes. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Plasmodium falciparum Calcium-Dependent Protein Kinase 2 Is Critical for Male Gametocyte Exflagellation but Not Essential for Asexual Proliferation

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    Abhisheka Bansal

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Drug development efforts have focused mostly on the asexual blood stages of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Except for primaquine, which has its own limitations, there are no available drugs that target the transmission of the parasite to mosquitoes. Therefore, there is a need to validate new parasite proteins that can be targeted for blocking transmission. P. falciparum calcium-dependent protein kinases (PfCDPKs play critical roles at various stages of the parasite life cycle and, importantly, are absent in the human host. These features mark them as attractive drug targets. In this study, using CRISPR/Cas9 we successfully knocked out PfCDPK2 from blood-stage parasites, which was previously thought to be an indispensable protein. The growth rate of the PfCDPK2 knockout (KO parasites was similar to that of wild-type parasites, confirming that PfCDPK2 function is not essential for the asexual proliferation of the parasite in vitro. The mature male and female gametocytes of PfCDPK2 KO parasites become round after induction. However, they fail to infect female Anopheles stephensi mosquitoes due to a defect(s in male gametocyte exflagellation and possibly in female gametes.

  9. Hepatitis C virus infection may lead to slower emergence of P. falciparum in blood.

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    Odile Ouwe-Missi-Oukem-Boyer

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Areas endemic for Plasmodium falciparum, hepatitis B virus (HBV and hepatitis C virus (HCV overlap in many parts of sub-Saharan Africa. HBV and HCV infections develop in the liver, where takes place the first development stage of P. falciparum before its further spread in blood. The complex mechanisms involved in the development of hepatitis may potentially influence the development of the liver stage of malaria parasites. Understanding the molecular mechanisms of these interactions could provide new pathophysiological insights for treatment strategies in Malaria. METHODOLOGY: We studied a cohort of 319 individuals living in a village where the three infections are prevalent. The patients were initially given a curative antimalarial treatment and were then monitored for the emergence of asexual P. falciparum forms in blood, fortnightly for one year, by microscopy and polymerase chain reaction. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: At inclusion, 65 (20.4% subjects had detectable malaria parasites in blood, 36 (11.3% were HBV chronic carriers, and 61 (18.9% were HCV chronic carriers. During follow-up, asexual P. falciparum forms were detected in the blood of 203 patients. The median time to P. falciparum emergence in blood was respectively 140 and 120 days in HBV- and HBV+ individuals, and 135 and 224 days in HCV- and HCV+ individuals. HCV carriage was associated with delayed emergence of asexual P. falciparum forms in blood relative to patients without HCV infection. CONCLUSIONS: This pilot study represents first tentative evidence of a potential epidemiological interaction between HBV, HCV and P. falciparum infections. Age is an important confounding factor in this setting however multivariate analysis points to an interaction between P. falciparum and HCV at the hepatic level with a slower emergence of P. falciparum in HCV chronic carriers. More in depth analysis are necessary to unravel the basis of hepatic interactions between these two pathogens

  10. Ned-19 inhibition of parasite growth and multiplication suggests a role for NAADP mediated signalling in the asexual development of Plasmodium falciparum.

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    Suárez-Cortés, Pablo; Gambara, Guido; Favia, Annarita; Palombi, Fioretta; Alano, Pietro; Filippini, Antonio

    2017-09-12

    Although malaria is a preventable and curable human disease, millions of people risk to be infected by the Plasmodium parasites and to develop this illness. Therefore, there is an urgent need to identify new anti-malarial drugs. Ca 2+ signalling regulates different processes in the life cycle of Plasmodium falciparum, representing a suitable target for the development of new drugs. This study investigated for the first time the effect of a highly specific inhibitor of nicotinic acid adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NAADP)-induced Ca 2+ release (Ned-19) on P. falciparum, revealing the inhibitory effect of this compound on the blood stage development of this parasite. Ned-19 inhibits both the transition of the parasite from the early to the late trophozoite stage and the ability of the late trophozoite to develop to the multinucleated schizont stage. In addition, Ned-19 affects spontaneous intracellular Ca 2+ oscillations in ring and trophozoite stage parasites, suggesting that the observed inhibitory effects may be associated to regulation of intracellular Ca 2+ levels. This study highlights the inhibitory effect of Ned-19 on progression of the asexual life cycle of P. falciparum. The observation that Ned-19 inhibits spontaneous Ca 2+ oscillations suggests a potential role of NAADP in regulating Ca 2+ signalling of P. falciparum.

  11. Plasmodium falciparum malaria associated with ABO blood ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The present study was carried out to investigate the relationship between blood group types and P. falciparum malaria, as well as malaria preventive measures. The venous blood specimens were collected, processed, Giemsa-stained and examined microscopically. ABO groups were determined by agglutination test using ...

  12. The homeostasis of Plasmodium falciparum-infected red blood cells.

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    Jakob M A Mauritz

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available The asexual reproduction cycle of Plasmodium falciparum, the parasite responsible for severe malaria, occurs within red blood cells. A merozoite invades a red cell in the circulation, develops and multiplies, and after about 48 hours ruptures the host cell, releasing 15-32 merozoites ready to invade new red blood cells. During this cycle, the parasite increases the host cell permeability so much that when similar permeabilization was simulated on uninfected red cells, lysis occurred before approximately 48 h. So how could infected cells, with a growing parasite inside, prevent lysis before the parasite has completed its developmental cycle? A mathematical model of the homeostasis of infected red cells suggested that it is the wasteful consumption of host cell hemoglobin that prevents early lysis by the progressive reduction in the colloid-osmotic pressure within the host (the colloid-osmotic hypothesis. However, two critical model predictions, that infected cells would swell to near prelytic sphericity and that the hemoglobin concentration would become progressively reduced, remained controversial. In this paper, we are able for the first time to correlate model predictions with recent experimental data in the literature and explore the fine details of the homeostasis of infected red blood cells during five model-defined periods of parasite development. The conclusions suggest that infected red cells do reach proximity to lytic rupture regardless of their actual volume, thus requiring a progressive reduction in their hemoglobin concentration to prevent premature lysis.

  13. Antibody responses to a panel of Plasmodium falciparum malaria blood-stage antigens in relation to clinical disease outcome in Sudan

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Iriemenam, Nnaemeka C; Khirelsied, Atif H; Nasr, Amre

    2009-01-01

    Despite many intervention programmes aimed at curtailing the scourge, malaria remains a formidable problem of human health. Immunity to asexual blood-stage of Plasmodium falciparum malaria is thought to be associated with protective antibodies of certain immunoglobulin classes and subclasses. We ...

  14. Directional gene expression and antisense transcripts in sexual and asexual stages of Plasmodium falciparum

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    López-Barragán María J

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background It has been shown that nearly a quarter of the initial predicted gene models in the Plasmodium falciparum genome contain errors. Although there have been efforts to obtain complete cDNA sequences to correct the errors, the coverage of cDNA sequences on the predicted genes is still incomplete, and many gene models for those expressed in sexual or mosquito stages have not been validated. Antisense transcripts have widely been reported in P. falciparum; however, the extent and pattern of antisense transcripts in different developmental stages remain largely unknown. Results We have sequenced seven bidirectional libraries from ring, early and late trophozoite, schizont, gametocyte II, gametocyte V, and ookinete, and four strand-specific libraries from late trophozoite, schizont, gametocyte II, and gametocyte V of the 3D7 parasites. Alignment of the cDNA sequences to the 3D7 reference genome revealed stage-specific antisense transcripts and novel intron-exon splicing junctions. Sequencing of strand-specific cDNA libraries suggested that more genes are expressed in one direction in gametocyte than in schizont. Alternatively spliced genes, antisense transcripts, and stage-specific expressed genes were also characterized. Conclusions It is necessary to continue to sequence cDNA from different developmental stages, particularly those of non-erythrocytic stages. The presence of antisense transcripts in some gametocyte and ookinete genes suggests that these antisense RNA may play an important role in gene expression regulation and parasite development. Future gene expression studies should make use of directional cDNA libraries. Antisense transcripts may partly explain the observed discrepancy between levels of mRNA and protein expression.

  15. Identification of a Golgi apparatus protein complex important for the asexual erythrocytic cycle of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

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    Hallée, Stéphanie; Thériault, Catherine; Gagnon, Dominic; Kehrer, Jessica; Frischknecht, Friedrich; Mair, Gunnar R; Richard, Dave

    2018-03-26

    Compared with other eukaryotic cell types, malaria parasites appear to possess a more rudimentary Golgi apparatus being composed of dispersed, unstacked cis and trans-cisternae. Despite playing a central role in the secretory pathway of the parasite, few Plasmodium Golgi resident proteins have been characterised. We had previously identified a new Golgi resident protein of unknown function, which we had named Golgi Protein 1, and now show that it forms a complex with a previously uncharacterised transmembrane protein (Golgi Protein 2, GP2). The Golgi Protein complex localises to the cis-Golgi throughout the erythrocytic cycle and potentially also during the mosquito stages. Analysis of parasite strains where GP1 expression is conditionally repressed and/or the GP2 gene is inactivated reveals that though the Golgi protein complex is not essential at any stage of the parasite life cycle, it is important for optimal asexual development in the blood stages. © 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Flow cytometric readout based on Mitotracker Red CMXRos staining of live asexual blood stage malarial parasites reliably assesses antibody dependent cellular inhibition

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jogdand, Prajakta S; Singh, Susheel K; Christiansen, Michael

    2012-01-01

    asynchronous and tightly synchronized asexual blood stage cultures of Plasmodium falciparum were stained with CMXRos and subjected to detection by flow cytometry and fluorescence microscopy. The parasite counts obtained by flow cytometry were compared to standard microscopic counts obtained through examination......ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Functional in vitro assays could provide insights into the efficacy of malaria vaccine candidates. For estimating the anti-parasite effect induced by a vaccine candidate, an accurate determination of live parasite count is an essential component of most in vitro bioassays....... Although traditionally parasites are counted microscopically, a faster, more accurate and less subjective method for counting parasites is desirable. In this study mitochondrial dye (Mitotracker Red CMXRos) was used for obtaining reliable live parasite counts through flow cytometry. METHODS: Both...

  17. Selection of Plasmodium falciparum Multidrug Resistance Gene 1 Alleles in Asexual Stages and Gametocytes by Artemether-Lumefantrine in Nigerian Children with Uncomplicated Falciparum Malaria ▿

    OpenAIRE

    Happi, C. T.; Gbotosho, G. O.; Folarin, O. A.; Sowunmi, A.; Hudson, T.; O'Neil, M.; Milhous, W.; Wirth, D. F.; Oduola, A. M. J.

    2008-01-01

    We assessed Plasmodium falciparum mdr1 (Pfmdr1) gene polymorphisms and copy numbers as well as P. falciparum Ca2+ ATPase (PfATPase6) gene polymorphisms in 90 Nigerian children presenting with uncomplicated falciparum malaria and enrolled in a study of the efficacy of artemether-lumefantrine (AL). The nested PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism and the quantitative real-time PCR methodologies were used to determine the alleles of the Pfmdr1 and PfATPase6 genes and the Pfmdr1 copy numbe...

  18. Positive blood culture with Plasmodium falciparum : Case report

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    De Vries, Jutte J. C.; Van Assen, Sander; Mulder, André B.; Kampinga, Greetje A.

    2007-01-01

    An adult traveler presented with fever and malaise after returning from Sierra Leone. Young trophozoites of Plasmodium falciparum were seen in a blood smear, with parasitemia being 10%. Moreover, blood cultures drawn on admission signaled as "positive" after 1 day of incubation, but no bacteria were

  19. Blood monocyte oxidative burst activity in acute P. falciparum malaria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, H; Theander, T G

    1989-01-01

    The release of superoxide anion from blood monocytes was studied in eight patients with acute primary attack P. falciparum malaria. Before treatment a significant enhancement of the oxidative burst prevailed, which contrasts with previous findings of a depressed monocyte chemotactic responsiveness...

  20. Selection of Plasmodium falciparum Multidrug Resistance Gene 1 Alleles in Asexual Stages and Gametocytes by Artemether-Lumefantrine in Nigerian Children with Uncomplicated Falciparum Malaria ▿

    Science.gov (United States)

    Happi, C. T.; Gbotosho, G. O.; Folarin, O. A.; Sowunmi, A.; Hudson, T.; O'Neil, M.; Milhous, W.; Wirth, D. F.; Oduola, A. M. J.

    2009-01-01

    We assessed Plasmodium falciparum mdr1 (Pfmdr1) gene polymorphisms and copy numbers as well as P. falciparum Ca2+ ATPase (PfATPase6) gene polymorphisms in 90 Nigerian children presenting with uncomplicated falciparum malaria and enrolled in a study of the efficacy of artemether-lumefantrine (AL). The nested PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism and the quantitative real-time PCR methodologies were used to determine the alleles of the Pfmdr1 and PfATPase6 genes and the Pfmdr1 copy number variation, respectively, in patients samples collected prior to treatment and at the reoccurrence of parasites during a 42-day follow-up. The Pfmdr1 haplotype 86N-184F-1246D was significantly associated (P copy of the Pfmdr1 gene and the wild-type allele (L89) at codon 89 of the PfATPase6 gene. These findings suggest that polymorphisms in the Pfmdr1 gene are under AL selection pressure. Pfmdr1 polymorphisms may result in reduction in the therapeutic efficacy of this newly adopted combination treatment for uncomplicated falciparum malaria in Saharan countries of Africa. PMID:19075074

  1. Selection of Plasmodium falciparum multidrug resistance gene 1 alleles in asexual stages and gametocytes by artemether-lumefantrine in Nigerian children with uncomplicated falciparum malaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Happi, C T; Gbotosho, G O; Folarin, O A; Sowunmi, A; Hudson, T; O'Neil, M; Milhous, W; Wirth, D F; Oduola, A M J

    2009-03-01

    We assessed Plasmodium falciparum mdr1 (Pfmdr1) gene polymorphisms and copy numbers as well as P. falciparum Ca(2+) ATPase (PfATPase6) gene polymorphisms in 90 Nigerian children presenting with uncomplicated falciparum malaria and enrolled in a study of the efficacy of artemether-lumefantrine (AL). The nested PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism and the quantitative real-time PCR methodologies were used to determine the alleles of the Pfmdr1 and PfATPase6 genes and the Pfmdr1 copy number variation, respectively, in patients samples collected prior to treatment and at the reoccurrence of parasites during a 42-day follow-up. The Pfmdr1 haplotype 86N-184F-1246D was significantly associated (P copy of the Pfmdr1 gene and the wild-type allele (L89) at codon 89 of the PfATPase6 gene. These findings suggest that polymorphisms in the Pfmdr1 gene are under AL selection pressure. Pfmdr1 polymorphisms may result in reduction in the therapeutic efficacy of this newly adopted combination treatment for uncomplicated falciparum malaria in Saharan countries of Africa.

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

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    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

    2018-03-01

    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.

  3. In vitro growth of Plasmodium falciparum in neonatal blood.

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    Sauerzopf, Ulrich; Honkpehedji, Yabo J; Adgenika, Ayôla A; Feugap, Elianne N; Ngoma, Ghyslain Mombo; Mackanga, Jean-Rodolphe; Lötsch, Felix; Loembe, Marguerite M; Kremsner, Peter G; Mordmüller, Benjamin; Ramharter, Michael

    2014-11-18

    Children below the age of six months suffer less often from malaria than older children in sub-Saharan Africa. This observation is commonly attributed to the persistence of foetal haemoglobin (HbF), which is considered not to permit growth of Plasmodium falciparum and therefore providing protection against malaria. Since this concept has recently been challenged, this study evaluated the effect of HbF erythrocytes and maternal plasma on in vitro parasite growth of P. falciparum in Central African Gabon. Umbilical cord blood and peripheral maternal blood were collected at delivery at the Albert Schweitzer Hospital in Gabon. Respective erythrocyte suspension and plasma were used in parallel for in vitro culture. In vitro growth rates were compared between cultures supplemented with either maternal or cord erythrocytes. Plasma of maternal blood and cord blood was evaluated. Parasite growth rates were assessed by the standard HRP2-assay evaluating the increase of HRP2 concentration in Plasmodium culture. Culture of P. falciparum using foetal erythrocytes led to comparable growth rates (mean growth rate = 4.2, 95% CI: 3.5 - 5.0) as cultures with maternal red blood cells (mean growth rate =4.2, 95% CI: 3.4 - 5.0) and those from non-malaria exposed individuals (mean growth rate = 4.6, 95% CI: 3.8 - 5.5). Standard in vitro culture of P. falciparum supplemented with either maternal or foetal plasma showed both significantly lower growth rates than a positive control using non-malaria exposed donor plasma. These data challenge the concept of HbF serving as intrinsic inhibitor of P. falciparum growth in the first months of life. Erythrocytes containing HbF are equally permissive to P. falciparum growth in vitro. However, addition of maternal and cord plasma led to reduced in vitro growth which may translate to protection against clinical disease or show synergistic effects with HbF in vivo. Further studies are needed to elucidate the pathophysiology of innate and acquired

  4. Correlation between 'H' blood group antigen and Plasmodium falciparum invasion.

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    Pathak, Vrushali; Colah, Roshan; Ghosh, Kanjaksha

    2016-06-01

    The ABO blood group system is the most important blood group system in clinical practice. The relationship between Plasmodium falciparum and ABO blood groups has been studied for many years. This study was undertaken to investigate the abilities of different blood group erythrocytes to support in vitro growth of P. falciparum parasites. P. falciparum parasites of four different strains (3D7, 7G8, Dd2 and RKL9) were co-cultured with erythrocytes of blood group 'A', 'B', 'O' (n = 10 for each) and 'O(h)' (Bombay group) (n = 7) for 5 days. Statistically significant differences were observed on the fourth day among the mean percent parasitemias of 'O', non-'O' ('A' and 'B') and 'O(h)' group cultures. The parasitemias of four strains ranged from 12.23 to 14.66, 11.68 to 13.24, 16.89 to 22.3, and 7.37 to 11.27 % in 'A', 'B', 'O' and Bombay group cultures, respectively. As the expression of H antigen decreased from 'O' blood group to 'A' and 'B' and then to Bombay blood group, parasite invasion (percent parasitemia) also decreased significantly (p Ulex europaeus seeds. Mean percent parasitemia of lectin-treated cultures on the fourth day was significantly lower (p < 0.05) than that of non-treated cultures and was found to be similar with the mean percent parasitemia demonstrated by the Bombay group erythrocyte cultures, thus further strengthening the hypothesis.

  5. Antiplasmodial activities of dyes against Plasmodium falciparum asexual and sexual stages: Contrasted uptakes of triarylmethanes Brilliant green, Green S (E142), and Patent Blue V (E131) by erythrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leba, Louis-Jérôme; Popovici, Jean; Estevez, Yannick; Pelleau, Stéphane; Legrand, Eric; Musset, Lise; Duplais, Christophe

    2017-12-01

    The search for safe antimalarial compounds acting against asexual symptom-responsible stages and sexual transmission-responsible forms of Plasmodium species is one of the major challenges in malaria elimination programs. So far, among current drugs approved for human use, only primaquine has transmission-blocking activity. The discovery of small molecules targeting different Plasmodium falciparum life stages remains a priority in antimalarial drug research. In this context, several independent studies have recently reported antiplasmodial and transmission-blocking activities of commonly used stains, dyes and fluorescent probes against P. falciparum including chloroquine-resistant isolates. Herein we have studied the antimalarial activities of dyes with different scaffold and we report that the triarylmethane dye (TRAM) Brilliant green inhibits the growth of asexual stages (IC 50  ≤ 2 μM) and has exflagellation-blocking activity (IC 50  ≤ 800 nM) against P. falciparum reference strains (3D7, 7G8) and chloroquine-resistant clinical isolate (Q206). In a second step we have investigated the antiplasmodial activities of two polysulfonated triarylmethane food dyes. Green S (E142) is weakly active against P. falciparum asexual stage (IC 50 ≃ 17 μM) whereas Patent Blue V (E131) is inactive in both antimalarial assays. By applying liquid chromatography techniques for the culture supernatant analysis after cell washings and lysis, we report the detection of Brilliant green in erythrocytes, the selective uptake of Green S (E142) by infected erythrocytes, whereas Patent Blue V (E131) could not be detected within non-infected and 3D7-infected erythrocytes. Overall, our results suggest that two polysulfonated food dyes might display different affinity with transporters or channels on infected RBC membrane. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  6. Antiplasmodial activities of dyes against Plasmodium falciparum asexual and sexual stages: Contrasted uptakes of triarylmethanes Brilliant green, Green S (E142, and Patent Blue V (E131 by erythrocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louis-Jérôme Leba

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The search for safe antimalarial compounds acting against asexual symptom-responsible stages and sexual transmission-responsible forms of Plasmodium species is one of the major challenges in malaria elimination programs. So far, among current drugs approved for human use, only primaquine has transmission-blocking activity. The discovery of small molecules targeting different Plasmodium falciparum life stages remains a priority in antimalarial drug research. In this context, several independent studies have recently reported antiplasmodial and transmission-blocking activities of commonly used stains, dyes and fluorescent probes against P. falciparum including chloroquine-resistant isolates. Herein we have studied the antimalarial activities of dyes with different scaffold and we report that the triarylmethane dye (TRAM Brilliant green inhibits the growth of asexual stages (IC50 ≤ 2 μM and has exflagellation-blocking activity (IC50 ≤ 800 nM against P. falciparum reference strains (3D7, 7G8 and chloroquine-resistant clinical isolate (Q206. In a second step we have investigated the antiplasmodial activities of two polysulfonated triarylmethane food dyes. Green S (E142 is weakly active against P. falciparum asexual stage (IC50 ≃ 17 μM whereas Patent Blue V (E131 is inactive in both antimalarial assays. By applying liquid chromatography techniques for the culture supernatant analysis after cell washings and lysis, we report the detection of Brilliant green in erythrocytes, the selective uptake of Green S (E142 by infected erythrocytes, whereas Patent Blue V (E131 could not be detected within non-infected and 3D7-infected erythrocytes. Overall, our results suggest that two polysulfonated food dyes might display different affinity with transporters or channels on infected RBC membrane. Keywords: Antimalarial dyes, Transmission blocking, Triarylmethanes, Drug uptake, Brilliant green, Food dyes

  7. The disruption of GDP-fucose de novo biosynthesis suggests the presence of a novel fucose-containing glycoconjugate in Plasmodium asexual blood stages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanz, Sílvia; López-Gutiérrez, Borja; Bandini, Giulia; Damerow, Sebastian; Absalon, Sabrina; Dinglasan, Rhoel R; Samuelson, John; Izquierdo, Luis

    2016-11-16

    Glycosylation is an important posttranslational protein modification in all eukaryotes. Besides glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) anchors and N-glycosylation, O-fucosylation has been recently reported in key sporozoite proteins of the malaria parasite. Previous analyses showed the presence of GDP-fucose (GDP-Fuc), the precursor for all fucosylation reactions, in the blood stages of Plasmodium falciparum. The GDP-Fuc de novo pathway, which requires the action of GDP-mannose 4,6-dehydratase (GMD) and GDP-L-fucose synthase (FS), is conserved in the parasite genome, but the importance of fucose metabolism for the parasite is unknown. To functionally characterize the pathway we generated a PfGMD mutant and analyzed its phenotype. Although the labelling by the fucose-binding Ulex europaeus agglutinin I (UEA-I) was completely abrogated, GDP-Fuc was still detected in the mutant. This unexpected result suggests the presence of an alternative mechanism for maintaining GDP-Fuc in the parasite. Furthermore, PfGMD null mutant exhibited normal growth and invasion rates, revealing that the GDP-Fuc de novo metabolic pathway is not essential for the development in culture of the malaria parasite during the asexual blood stages. Nonetheless, the function of this metabolic route and the GDP-Fuc pool that is generated during this stage may be important for gametocytogenesis and sporogonic development in the mosquito.

  8. The disruption of GDP-fucose de novo biosynthesis suggests the presence of a novel fucose-containing glycoconjugate in Plasmodium asexual blood stages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanz, Sílvia; López-Gutiérrez, Borja; Bandini, Giulia; Damerow, Sebastian; Absalon, Sabrina; Dinglasan, Rhoel R.; Samuelson, John; Izquierdo, Luis

    2016-01-01

    Glycosylation is an important posttranslational protein modification in all eukaryotes. Besides glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) anchors and N-glycosylation, O-fucosylation has been recently reported in key sporozoite proteins of the malaria parasite. Previous analyses showed the presence of GDP-fucose (GDP-Fuc), the precursor for all fucosylation reactions, in the blood stages of Plasmodium falciparum. The GDP-Fuc de novo pathway, which requires the action of GDP-mannose 4,6-dehydratase (GMD) and GDP-L-fucose synthase (FS), is conserved in the parasite genome, but the importance of fucose metabolism for the parasite is unknown. To functionally characterize the pathway we generated a PfGMD mutant and analyzed its phenotype. Although the labelling by the fucose-binding Ulex europaeus agglutinin I (UEA-I) was completely abrogated, GDP-Fuc was still detected in the mutant. This unexpected result suggests the presence of an alternative mechanism for maintaining GDP-Fuc in the parasite. Furthermore, PfGMD null mutant exhibited normal growth and invasion rates, revealing that the GDP-Fuc de novo metabolic pathway is not essential for the development in culture of the malaria parasite during the asexual blood stages. Nonetheless, the function of this metabolic route and the GDP-Fuc pool that is generated during this stage may be important for gametocytogenesis and sporogonic development in the mosquito. PMID:27849032

  9. A nested real-time PCR assay for the quantification of Plasmodium falciparum DNA extracted from dried blood spots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tran, Tuan M; Aghili, Amirali; Li, Shanping; Ongoiba, Aissata; Kayentao, Kassoum; Doumbo, Safiatou; Traore, Boubacar; Crompton, Peter D

    2014-10-04

    As public health efforts seek to eradicate malaria, there has been an emphasis on eliminating low-density parasite reservoirs in asymptomatic carriers. As such, diagnosing submicroscopic Plasmodium infections using PCR-based techniques has become important not only in clinical trials of malaria vaccines and therapeutics, but also in active malaria surveillance campaigns. However, PCR-based quantitative assays that rely on nucleic acid extracted from dried blood spots (DBS) have demonstrated lower sensitivity than assays that use cryopreserved whole blood as source material. The density of Plasmodium falciparum asexual parasites was quantified using genomic DNA extracted from dried blood spots (DBS) and the sensitivity of two approaches was compared: quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) targeting the P. falciparum 18S ribosomal RNA gene, either with an initial conventional PCR amplification prior to qPCR (nested qPCR), or without an initial amplification (qPCR only). Parasite densities determined by nested qPCR, qPCR only, and light microscopy were compared. Nested qPCR results in 10-fold higher sensitivity (0.5 parasites/μl) when compared to qPCR only (five parasites/ul). Among microscopy-positive samples, parasite densities calculated by nested qPCR correlated strongly with microscopy for both asymptomatic (Pearson's r=0.58, PNested qPCR improves the sensitivity for the detection of P. falciparum blood-stage infection from clinical DBS samples. This approach may be useful for active malaria surveillance in areas where submicroscopic asymptomatic infections are prevalent.

  10. The Redox Cycler Plasmodione Is a Fast-Acting Antimalarial Lead Compound with Pronounced Activity against Sexual and Early Asexual Blood-Stage Parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehrhardt, Katharina; Deregnaucourt, Christiane; Goetz, Alice-Anne; Tzanova, Tzvetomira; Gallo, Valentina; Arese, Paolo; Pradines, Bruno; Adjalley, Sophie H; Bagrel, Denyse; Blandin, Stephanie; Lanzer, Michael; Davioud-Charvet, Elisabeth

    2016-09-01

    Previously, we presented the chemical design of a promising series of antimalarial agents, 3-[substituted-benzyl]-menadiones, with potent in vitro and in vivo activities. Ongoing studies on the mode of action of antimalarial 3-[substituted-benzyl]-menadiones revealed that these agents disturb the redox balance of the parasitized erythrocyte by acting as redox cyclers-a strategy that is broadly recognized for the development of new antimalarial agents. Here we report a detailed parasitological characterization of the in vitro activity profile of the lead compound 3-[4-(trifluoromethyl)benzyl]-menadione 1c (henceforth called plasmodione) against intraerythrocytic stages of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum We show that plasmodione acts rapidly against asexual blood stages, thereby disrupting the clinically relevant intraerythrocytic life cycle of the parasite, and furthermore has potent activity against early gametocytes. The lead's antiplasmodial activity was unaffected by the most common mechanisms of resistance to clinically used antimalarials. Moreover, plasmodione has a low potential to induce drug resistance and a high killing speed, as observed by culturing parasites under continuous drug pressure. Drug interactions with licensed antimalarial drugs were also established using the fixed-ratio isobologram method. Initial toxicological profiling suggests that plasmodione is a safe agent for possible human use. Our studies identify plasmodione as a promising antimalarial lead compound and strongly support the future development of redox-active benzylmenadiones as antimalarial agents. Copyright © 2016, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  11. IgG isotypic antibodies to crude Plasmodium falciparum blood-stage ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Methods: Levels of IgG (IgG1-IgG4) and IgM to crude P. falciparum blood stage antigen ... dosage influenced P. falciparum-specific isotypic antibody responses to blood stage .... exposed Swedish donors. ..... with adverse pregnancy outcomes.

  12. Plasmodium falciparum field isolates from South America use an atypical red blood cell invasion pathway associated with invasion ligand polymorphisms.

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    Mary Lopez-Perez

    Full Text Available Studies of Plasmodium falciparum invasion pathways in field isolates have been limited. Red blood cell (RBC invasion is a complex process involving two invasion protein families; Erythrocyte Binding-Like (EBL and the Reticulocyte Binding-Like (PfRh proteins, which are polymorphic and not fully characterized in field isolates. To determine the various P. falciparum invasion pathways used by parasite isolates from South America, we studied the invasion phenotypes in three regions: Colombia, Peru and Brazil. Additionally, polymorphisms in three members of the EBL (EBA-181, EBA-175 and EBL-1 and five members of the PfRh (PfRh1, PfRh2a, PfRh2b, PfRh4, PfRh5 families were determined. We found that most P. falciparum field isolates from Colombia and Peru invade RBCs through an atypical invasion pathway phenotypically characterized as resistant to all enzyme treatments (NrTrCr. Moreover, the invasion pathways and the ligand polymorphisms differed substantially among the Colombian and Brazilian isolates while the Peruvian isolates represent an amalgam of those present in the Colombian and Brazilian field isolates. The NrTrCr invasion profile was associated with the presence of the PfRh2a pepC variant, the PfRh5 variant 1 and EBA-181 RVNKN variant. The ebl and Pfrh expression levels in a field isolate displaying the NrTrCr profile also pointed to PfRh2a, PfRh5 and EBA-181 as being possibly the major players in this invasion pathway. Notably, our studies demonstrate the uniqueness of the Peruvian P. falciparum field isolates in terms of their invasion profiles and ligand polymorphisms, and present a unique opportunity for studying the ability of P. falciparum parasites to expand their invasion repertoire after being reintroduced to human populations. The present study is directly relevant to asexual blood stage vaccine design focused on invasion pathway proteins, suggesting that regional invasion variants and global geographical variation are likely to

  13. 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.

  14. The Heme Biosynthesis Pathway Is Essential for Plasmodium falciparum Development in Mosquito Stage but Not in Blood Stages*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ke, Hangjun; Sigala, Paul A.; Miura, Kazutoyo; Morrisey, Joanne M.; Mather, Michael W.; Crowley, Jan R.; Henderson, Jeffrey P.; Goldberg, Daniel E.; Long, Carole A.; Vaidya, Akhil B.

    2014-01-01

    Heme is an essential cofactor for aerobic organisms. Its redox chemistry is central to a variety of biological functions mediated by hemoproteins. In blood stages, malaria parasites consume most of the hemoglobin inside the infected erythrocytes, forming nontoxic hemozoin crystals from large quantities of heme released during digestion. At the same time, the parasites possess a heme de novo biosynthetic pathway. This pathway in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum has been considered essential and is proposed as a potential drug target. However, we successfully disrupted the first and last genes of the pathway, individually and in combination. These knock-out parasite lines, lacking 5-aminolevulinic acid synthase and/or ferrochelatase (FC), grew normally in blood-stage culture and exhibited no changes in sensitivity to heme-related antimalarial drugs. We developed a sensitive LC-MS/MS assay to monitor stable isotope incorporation into heme from its precursor 5-[13C4]aminolevulinic acid, and this assay confirmed that de novo heme synthesis was ablated in FC knock-out parasites. Disrupting the FC gene also caused no defects in gametocyte generation or maturation but resulted in a greater than 70% reduction in male gamete formation and completely prevented oocyst formation in female Anopheles stephensi mosquitoes. Our data demonstrate that the heme biosynthesis pathway is not essential for asexual blood-stage growth of P. falciparum parasites but is required for mosquito transmission. Drug inhibition of pathway activity is therefore unlikely to provide successful antimalarial therapy. These data also suggest the existence of a parasite mechanism for scavenging host heme to meet metabolic needs. PMID:25352601

  15. Peripheral blood cell signatures of Plasmodium falciparum infection during pregnancy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ibitokou, Samad; Oesterholt, Mayke; Brutus, Laurent

    2012-01-01

    Sequestration of Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes in placental intervillous spaces causes inflammation and pathology. Knowledge of the profiles of immune cells associated with the physiopathology of pregnancy-associated malaria (PAM) is scarce. We conducted a longitudinal, prospective ...

  16. Analysis of the plasmodium falciparum proteome by high-accuracy mass spectrometry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lasonder, Edwin; Ishihama, Yasushi; Andersen, Jens S

    2002-01-01

    -accuracy (average deviation less than 0.02 Da at 1,000 Da) mass spectrometric proteome analysis of selected stages of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. The analysis revealed 1,289 proteins of which 714 proteins were identified in asexual blood stages, 931 in gametocytes and 645 in gametes. The last...

  17. Relative Susceptibilities of ABO Blood Groups to Plasmodium falciparum Malaria in Ghana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Afoakwah, Richmond; Aubyn, Edmond; Prah, James; Nwaefuna, Ekene Kwabena; Boampong, Johnson N

    2016-01-01

    The clinical outcome of falciparum malaria in endemic areas is influenced by erythrocyte polymorphisms including the ABO blood groups. Studies have reported association of ABO blood group to resistance, susceptibility, and severity of P. falciparum malaria infection. Individuals with blood group "A" have been found to be highly susceptible to falciparum malaria whereas blood group "O" is said to confer protection against complicated cases. We analyzed samples from 293 young children less than six years old with malaria in the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital in Accra, Ghana. It was observed that group O was present in about 16.1% of complicated cases weighed against 40.9% of uncomplicated controls. Individuals with complicated malaria were about twice likely to be of blood groups A and B compared to group O (A versus O, OR = 1.90, 95% CI = 1.59-2.26, P Blood group O participants with complicated diseases had low parasitaemia compared to the other blood groups (P blood group O individuals a survival advantage over the other groups in complicated malaria as suggested. Participants with complicated falciparum malaria were generally anaemic and younger than those with uncomplicated disease.

  18. Relative Susceptibilities of ABO Blood Groups to Plasmodium falciparum Malaria in Ghana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richmond Afoakwah

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The clinical outcome of falciparum malaria in endemic areas is influenced by erythrocyte polymorphisms including the ABO blood groups. Studies have reported association of ABO blood group to resistance, susceptibility, and severity of P. falciparum malaria infection. Individuals with blood group “A” have been found to be highly susceptible to falciparum malaria whereas blood group “O” is said to confer protection against complicated cases. We analyzed samples from 293 young children less than six years old with malaria in the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital in Accra, Ghana. It was observed that group O was present in about 16.1% of complicated cases weighed against 40.9% of uncomplicated controls. Individuals with complicated malaria were about twice likely to be of blood groups A and B compared to group O (A versus O, OR = 1.90, 95% CI = 1.59–2.26, P<0.0001; B versus O, OR = 1.82. 95% CI = 1.57–2.23, P<0.0001. Blood group O participants with complicated diseases had low parasitaemia compared to the other blood groups (P<0.0001. This may give blood group O individuals a survival advantage over the other groups in complicated malaria as suggested. Participants with complicated falciparum malaria were generally anaemic and younger than those with uncomplicated disease.

  19. ABO Blood Groups Influence Macrophage-mediated Phagocytosis of Plasmodium falciparum-infected Erythrocytes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Branch, Donald R.; Hult, Annika K.; Olsson, Martin L.; Liles, W. Conrad; Cserti-Gazdewich, Christine M.; Kain, Kevin C.

    2012-01-01

    Erythrocyte polymorphisms associated with a survival advantage to Plasmodium falciparum infection have undergone positive selection. There is a predominance of blood group O in malaria-endemic regions, and several lines of evidence suggest that ABO blood groups may influence the outcome of P. falciparum infection. Based on the hypothesis that enhanced innate clearance of infected polymorphic erythrocytes is associated with protection from severe malaria, we investigated whether P. falciparum-infected O erythrocytes are more efficiently cleared by macrophages than infected A and B erythrocytes. We show that human macrophages in vitro and mouse monocytes in vivo phagocytose P. falciparum-infected O erythrocytes more avidly than infected A and B erythrocytes and that uptake is associated with increased hemichrome deposition and high molecular weight band 3 aggregates in infected O erythrocytes. Using infected A1, A2, and O erythrocytes, we demonstrate an inverse association of phagocytic capacity with the amount of A antigen on the surface of infected erythrocytes. Finally, we report that enzymatic conversion of B erythrocytes to type as O before infection significantly enhances their uptake by macrophages to observed level comparable to that with infected O wild-type erythrocytes. These data provide the first evidence that ABO blood group antigens influence macrophage clearance of P. falciparum-infected erythrocytes and suggest an additional mechanism by which blood group O may confer resistance to severe malaria. PMID:23071435

  20. The effect of sulphadoxine/pyrimethamine on gametocytes in falciparum malaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ittiravivongs, A; Vasuvat, C; Kongrod, S

    1984-09-01

    A study of the effect of sulphadoxine/pyrimethamine (Fansidar) on P. falciparum's gametocytes in peripheral blood was carried out in Western Thailand. One group of 77 patients with asexual form P. falciparum sensitive to Fansidar were followed weekly to detect the appearance and the duration of gametocytes in peripheral blood after Fansidar treatment on the basis of thick blood film examination. Another group of 14 patients with sexual form P. falciparum was not given any antimalarial treatment and also followed up weekly. No significant difference of average duration of detectable gametocytes was observed between the groups. The average number of days that gametocytes appeared after asexual form in patients receiving treatment was the same as in the untreated group. It is unlikely that Fansidar has the stimulating effect on gametocytogenesis as previously reported.

  1. P. falciparum malaria prevalence among blood donors in Bamako, Mali.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kouriba, B; Diarra, A B; Douyon, I; Diabaté, D T; Kamissoko, F; Guitteye, H; Baby, M; Guindo, M A; Doumbo, O K

    2017-06-01

    Malaria parasite is usually transmitted to humans by Anopheles mosquitoes but it can also be transmitted through blood transfusion. Usually malaria transmission is low in African urban settings. In West Africa where the P. falciparum is the most predominant malaria species, there are limited measures to reduce the risk of blood transfusion malaria. The aim of this study was to evaluate the prevalence of P. falciparum malaria carriage among blood donors in the National Blood Center of Bamako, capital city of Mali. The study was conducted using a random sample of 946 blood donors in Bamako, Mali, from January to December 2011. Screening for malaria was performed by thick smear and rapid diagnostic test (RDT). Blood group was typed by Beth-Vincent and Simonin techniques. The frequency of malaria infection was 1.4% by thick smear and 0.8% by the RDT. The pick prevalence of P. falciparum malaria was in rainy season, indicating a probable high seasonal risk of malaria by blood transfusion, in Mali. The prevalence of P. falciparum infection was 2% among donors of group O the majority being in this group. There is a seasonal prevalence of malaria among blood donors in Bamako. A prevention strategy of transfusion malaria based on the combination of selection of blood donors through the medical interview, promoting a voluntary low-risk blood donation and screening all blood bags intended to be transfused to children under 5, pregnant women and immune-compromised patients during transmission season using thick smear will reduce the risk of transfusion malaria in Mali. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  2. Falciparum malaria transmitted by a thick blood smear negative kidney donor

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bemelman, Frederike; de Blok, Koen; de Vries, Peter; Surachno, S.; ten Berge, Ineke

    2004-01-01

    This report describes a case of P. falciparum transmission by a recent-immigrant renal donor. The donor tested negative upon microscopy of a thick blood smear. The diagnosis was made after analysis of a Quantified Buffy Coat(R). In our opinion, a renal donor from a malaria endemic country should be

  3. Infants' Peripheral Blood Lymphocyte Composition Reflects Both Maternal and Post-Natal Infection with Plasmodium falciparum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Odilon Nouatin

    Full Text Available Maternal parasitoses modulate fetal immune development, manifesting as altered cellular immunological activity in cord blood that may be linked to enhanced susceptibility to infections in early life. Plasmodium falciparum typifies such infections, with distinct placental infection-related changes in cord blood exemplified by expanded populations of parasite antigen-specific regulatory T cells. Here we addressed whether such early-onset cellular immunological alterations persist through infancy. Specifically, in order to assess the potential impacts of P. falciparum infections either during pregnancy or during infancy, we quantified lymphocyte subsets in cord blood and in infants' peripheral blood during the first year of life. The principal age-related changes observed, independent of infection status, concerned decreases in the frequencies of CD4+, NKdim and NKT cells, whilst CD8+, Treg and Teff cells' frequencies increased from birth to 12 months of age. P. falciparum infections present at delivery, but not those earlier in gestation, were associated with increased frequencies of Treg and CD8+ T cells but fewer CD4+ and NKT cells during infancy, thus accentuating the observed age-related patterns. Overall, P. falciparum infections arising during infancy were associated with a reversal of the trends associated with maternal infection i.e. with more CD4+ cells, with fewer Treg and CD8+ cells. We conclude that maternal P. falciparum infection at delivery has significant and, in some cases, year-long effects on the composition of infants' peripheral blood lymphocyte populations. Those effects are superimposed on separate and independent age- as well as infant infection-related alterations that, respectively, either match or run counter to them.

  4. Antimalarial iron chelator, FBS0701, shows asexual and gametocyte Plasmodium falciparum activity and single oral dose cure in a murine malaria model.

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    Patricia Ferrer

    Full Text Available Iron chelators for the treatment of malaria have proven therapeutic activity in vitro and in vivo in both humans and mice, but their clinical use is limited by the unsuitable absorption and pharmacokinetic properties of the few available iron chelators. FBS0701, (S3"-(HO-desazadesferrithiocin-polyether [DADFT-PE], is an oral iron chelator currently in Phase 2 human studies for the treatment of transfusional iron overload. The drug has very favorable absorption and pharmacokinetic properties allowing for once-daily use to deplete circulating free iron with human plasma concentrations in the high µM range. Here we show that FBS0701 has inhibition concentration 50% (IC(50 of 6 µM for Plasmodium falciparum in contrast to the IC(50 for deferiprone and deferoxamine at 15 and 30 µM respectively. In combination, FBS0701 interfered with artemisinin parasite inhibition and was additive with chloroquine or quinine parasite inhibition. FBS0701 killed early stage P. falciparum gametocytes. In the P. berghei Thompson suppression test, a single dose of 100 mg/kg reduced day three parasitemia and prolonged survival, but did not cure mice. Treatment with a single oral dose of 100 mg/kg one day after infection with 10 million lethal P. yoelii 17XL cured all the mice. Pretreatment of mice with a single oral dose of FBS0701 seven days or one day before resulted in the cure of some mice. Plasma exposures and other pharmacokinetics parameters in mice of the 100 mg/kg dose are similar to a 3 mg/kg dose in humans. In conclusion, FBS0701 demonstrates a single oral dose cure of the lethal P. yoelii model. Significantly, this effect persists after the chelator has cleared from plasma. FBS0701 was demonstrated to remove labile iron from erythrocytes as well as enter erythrocytes to chelate iron. FBS0701 may find clinically utility as monotherapy, a malarial prophylactic or, more likely, in combination with other antimalarials.

  5. Synthetic TLR4 agonists enhance functional antibodies and CD4+ T-cell responses against the Plasmodium falciparum GMZ2.6C multi-stage vaccine antigen

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baldwin, S.L.; Roeffen, W.; Singh, S.K; Tiendrebeogo, R.W.; Christiansen, M.; Beebe, E.; Carter, D.; Fox, C.B.; Howard, R.F.; Reed, S.G.; Sauerwein, R.; Theisen, M.

    2016-01-01

    A subunit vaccine targeting both transmission and pathogenic asexual blood stages of Plasmodium falciparum, i.e., a multi-stage vaccine, could be a powerful tool to combat malaria. Here, we report production and characterization of the recombinant protein GMZ2.6C, which contains a fragment of the

  6. Malaria resistance genes are associated with the levels of IgG subclasses directed against Plasmodium falciparum blood-stage antigens in Burkina Faso

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Afridi Sarwat

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background HBB, IL4, IL12, TNF, LTA, NCR3 and FCGR2A polymorphisms have been associated with malaria resistance in humans, whereas cytophilic immunoglobulin G (IgG antibodies are thought to play a critical role in immune protection against asexual blood stages of the parasite. Furthermore, HBB, IL4, TNF, and FCGR2A have been associated with both malaria resistance and IgG levels. This suggests that some malaria resistance genes influence the levels of IgG subclass antibodies. Methods In this study, the effect of HBB, IL4, IL12, TNF, LTA, NCR3 and FCGR2A polymorphisms on the levels of IgG responses against Plasmodium falciparum blood-stage extract was investigated in 220 individuals living in Burkina Faso. The Pearson’s correlation coefficient among IgG subclasses was determined. A family-based approach was used to assess the association of polymorphisms with anti-P. falciparum IgG, IgG1, IgG2, IgG3 and IgG4 levels. Results After applying a multiple test correction, several polymorphisms were associated with IgG subclass or IgG levels. There was an association of i haemoglobin C with IgG levels; ii the FcγRIIa H/R131 with IgG2 and IgG3 levels; iii TNF-863 with IgG3 levels; iv TNF-857 with IgG levels; and, v TNF1304 with IgG3, IgG4, and IgG levels. Conclusion Taken together, the results support the hypothesis that some polymorphisms affect malaria resistance through their effect on the acquired immune response, and pave the way towards further comprehension of genetic control of an individual’s humoral response against malaria.

  7. Gametocyte clearance in uncomplicated and severe Plasmodium falciparum malaria after artesunate-mefloquine treatment in Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tangpukdee, Noppadon; Krudsood, Srivicha; Srivilairit, Siripan; Phophak, Nanthaporn; Chonsawat, Putza; Yanpanich, Wimon; Kano, Shigeyuki; Wilairatana, Polrat

    2008-06-01

    Artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT) is currently promoted as a strategy for treating both uncomplicated and severe falciparum malaria, targeting asexual blood-stage Plasmodium falciparum parasites. However, the effect of ACT on sexual-stage parasites remains controversial. To determine the clearance of sexual-stage P. falciparum parasites from 342 uncomplicated, and 217 severe, adult malaria cases, we reviewed and followed peripheral blood sexual-stage parasites for 4 wk after starting ACT. All patients presented with both asexual and sexual stage parasites on admission, and were treated with artesunate-mefloquine as the standard regimen. The results showed that all patients were asymptomatic and negative for asexual forms before discharge from hospital. The percentages of uncomplicated malaria patients positive for gametocytes on days 3, 7, 14, 21, and 28 were 41.5, 13.1, 3.8, 2.0, and 2.0%, while the percentages of gametocyte positive severe malaria patients on days 3, 7, 14, 21, and 28 were 33.6, 8.2, 2.7, 0.9, and 0.9%, respectively. Although all patients were negative for asexual parasites by day 7 after completion of the artesunate-mefloquine course, gametocytemia persisted in some patients. Thus, a gametocytocidal drug, e.g., primaquine, may be useful in combination with an artesunate-mefloquine regimen to clear gametocytes, so blocking transmission more effectively than artesunate alone, in malaria transmission areas.

  8. Multiple essential functions of Plasmodium falciparum actin-1 during malaria blood-stage development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Sujaan; Lemgruber, Leandro; Tay, Chwen L; Baum, Jake; Meissner, Markus

    2017-08-15

    The phylum Apicomplexa includes intracellular parasites causing immense global disease burden, the deadliest of them being the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, which invades and replicates within erythrocytes. The cytoskeletal protein actin is well conserved within apicomplexans but divergent from mammalian actins, and was primarily reported to function during host cell invasion. However, novel invasion mechanisms have been described for several apicomplexans, and specific functions of the acto-myosin system are being reinvestigated. Of the two actin genes in P. falciparum, actin-1 (pfact1) is ubiquitously expressed in all life-cycle stages and is thought to be required for erythrocyte invasion, although its functions during parasite development are unknown, and definitive in vivo characterisation during invasion is lacking. Here we have used a conditional Cre-lox system to investigate the functions of PfACT1 during P. falciparum blood-stage development and host cell invasion. We demonstrate that PfACT1 is crucially required for segregation of the plastid-like organelle, the apicoplast, and for efficient daughter cell separation during the final stages of cytokinesis. Surprisingly, we observe that egress from the host cell is not an actin-dependent process. Finally, we show that parasites lacking PfACT1 are capable of microneme secretion, attachment and formation of a junction with the erythrocyte, but are incapable of host cell invasion. This study provides important mechanistic insights into the definitive essential functions of PfACT1 in P. falciparum, which are not only of biological interest, but owing to functional divergence from mammalian actins, could also form the basis for the development of novel therapeutics against apicomplexans.

  9. Wherever I may roam: protein and membrane trafficking in P. falciparum-infected red blood cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deponte, Marcel; Hoppe, Heinrich C; Lee, Marcus C S; Maier, Alexander G; Richard, Dave; Rug, Melanie; Spielmann, Tobias; Przyborski, Jude M

    2012-12-01

    Quite aside from its immense importance as a human pathogen, studies in recent years have brought to light the fact that the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum is an interesting eukaryotic model system to study protein trafficking. Studying parasite cell biology often reveals an overrepresentation of atypical cell biological features, possibly driven by the parasites' need to survive in an unusual biological niche. Malaria parasites possess uncommon cellular compartments to which protein traffic must be directed, including secretory organelles such as rhoptries and micronemes, a lysosome-like compartment referred to as the digestive vacuole and a complex (four membrane-bound) plastid, the apicoplast. In addition, the parasite must provide proteins to extracellular compartments and structures including the parasitophorous vacuole, the parasitophorous vacuolar membrane, the Maurer's clefts and both cytosol and plasma membrane of the host cell, the mature human red blood cell. Although some of these unusual destinations are possessed by other cell types, only Plasmodium parasites contain them all within one cell. Here we review what is known about protein and membrane transport in the P. falciparum-infected cell, highlighting novel features of these processes. A growing body of evidence suggests that this parasite is a real "box of tricks" with regards to protein traffic. Possibly, these tricks may be turned against the parasite by exploiting them as novel therapeutic targets. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. The Effect of Storage and Extraction Methods on Amplification of Plasmodium falciparum DNA from Dried Blood Spots

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schwartz, A.; Baidjoe, A.Y.; Rosenthal, P.J.; Dorsey, G.; Bousema, T.; Greenhouse, B.

    2015-01-01

    Extraction and amplification of DNA from dried blood spots (DBS) collected in field studies is commonly used for detection of Plasmodium falciparum. However, there have been few systematic efforts to determine the effects of storage and extraction methods on the sensitivity of DNA amplification. We

  11. Screening and hit evaluation of a chemical library against blood-stage Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avery, Vicky M; Bashyam, Sridevi; Burrows, Jeremy N; Duffy, Sandra; Papadatos, George; Puthukkuti, Shyni; Sambandan, Yuvaraj; Singh, Shivendra; Spangenberg, Thomas; Waterson, David; Willis, Paul

    2014-05-27

    In view of the need to continuously feed the pipeline with new anti-malarial agents adapted to differentiated and more stringent target product profiles (e.g., new modes of action, transmission-blocking activity or long-duration chemo-protection), a chemical library consisting of more than 250,000 compounds has been evaluated in a blood-stage Plasmodium falciparum growth inhibition assay and further assessed for chemical diversity and novelty. The selection cascade used for the triaging of hits from the chemical library started with a robust three-step in vitro assay followed by an in silico analysis of the resulting confirmed hits. Upon reaching the predefined requirements for selectivity and potency, the set of hits was subjected to computational analysis to assess chemical properties and diversity. Furthermore, known marketed anti-malarial drugs were co-clustered acting as 'signposts' in the chemical space defined by the hits. Then, in cerebro evaluation of the chemical structures was performed to identify scaffolds that currently are or have been the focus of anti-malarial medicinal chemistry programmes. Next, prioritization according to relaxed physicochemical parameters took place, along with the search for structural analogues. Ultimately, synthesis of novel chemotypes with desired properties was performed and the resulting compounds were subsequently retested in a P. falciparum growth inhibition assay. This screening campaign led to a 1.25% primary hit rate, which decreased to 0.77% upon confirmatory repeat screening. With the predefined potency (EC₅₀  10) criteria, 178 compounds progressed to the next steps where chemical diversity, physicochemical properties and novelty assessment were taken into account. This resulted in the selection of 15 distinct chemical series. A selection cascade was applied to prioritize hits resulting from the screening of a medium-sized chemical library against blood-stage P. falciparum. Emphasis was placed on chemical

  12. Evasion of Immunity to Plasmodium falciparum: Rosettes of Blood Group A Impair Recognition of PfEMP1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moll, Kirsten; Palmkvist, Mia; Ch'ng, Junhong; Kiwuwa, Mpungu Steven; Wahlgren, Mats

    2015-01-01

    The ABO blood group antigens are expressed on erythrocytes but also on endothelial cells, platelets and serum proteins. Notably, the ABO blood group of a malaria patient determines the development of the disease given that blood group O reduces the probability to succumb in severe malaria, compared to individuals of groups A, B or AB. P. falciparum rosetting and sequestration are mediated by PfEMP1, RIFIN and STEVOR, expressed at the surface of the parasitized red blood cell (pRBC). Antibodies to these antigens consequently modify the course of a malaria infection by preventing sequestration and promoting phagocytosis of pRBC. Here we have studied rosetting P. falciparum and present evidence of an immune evasion mechanism not previously recognized. We find the accessibility of antibodies to PfEMP1 at the surface of the pRBC to be reduced when P. falciparum forms rosettes in blood group A RBC, as compared to group O RBC. The pRBC surrounds itself with tightly bound normal RBC that makes PfEMP1 inaccessible to antibodies and clearance by the immune system. Accordingly, pRBC of in vitro cloned P. falciparum devoid of ABO blood group dependent rosetting were equally well detected by anti-PfEMP1 antibodies, independent of the blood group utilized for their propagation. The pathogenic mechanisms underlying the severe forms of malaria may in patients of blood group A depend on the ability of the parasite to mask PfEMP1 from antibody recognition, in so doing evading immune clearance. PMID:26714011

  13. Plasmodium falciparum HRP2 ELISA for analysis of dried blood spot samples in rural Zambia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibson, Lauren E; Markwalter, Christine F; Kimmel, Danielle W; Mudenda, Lwiindi; Mbambara, Saidon; Thuma, Philip E; Wright, David W

    2017-08-23

    Dried blood spots are commonly used for sample collection in clinical and non-clinical settings. This method is simple, and biomolecules in the samples remain stable for months at room temperature. In the field, blood samples for the study and diagnosis of malaria are often collected on dried blood spot cards, so development of a biomarker extraction and analysis method is needed. A simple extraction procedure for the malarial biomarker Plasmodium falciparum histidine-rich protein 2 (HRP2) from dried blood spots was optimized to achieve maximum extraction efficiency. This method was used to assess the stability of HRP2 in dried blood spots. Furthermore, 328 patient samples made available from rural Zambia were analysed for HRP2 using the developed method. These samples were collected at the initial administration of artemisinin-based combination therapy and at several points following treatment. An average extraction efficiency of 70% HRP2 with a low picomolar detection limit was achieved. In specific storage conditions HRP2 was found to be stable in dried blood spots for at least 6 months. Analysis of patient samples showed the method to have a sensitivity of 94% and a specificity of 89% when compared with microscopy, and trends in HRP2 clearance after treatment were observed. The dried blood spot ELISA for HRP2 was found to be sensitive, specific and accurate. The method was effectively used to assess biomarker clearance characteristics in patient samples, which prove it to be ideal for gaining further insight into the disease and epidemiological applications.

  14. Submicroscopic Plasmodium falciparum gametocyte carriage is common in an area of low and seasonal transmission in Tanzania

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Shekalaghe, Seif A; Bousema, J Teun; Kunei, Karaine K

    2007-01-01

    . In this study, we investigated submicroscopic asexual parasitaemia and gametocytaemia in inhabitants of an area of hypoendemic and seasonal malaria in Tanzania. METHODS: Two cross-sectional malariometric surveys were conducted in the dry and wet seasons of 2005 in villages in lower Moshi, Tanzania. Finger prick...... blood samples were taken to determine the prevalence of P. falciparum parasites by microscopy, rapid diagnostic test and real-time nucleic acid sequence-based amplification (QT-NASBA). RESULTS: 2752 individuals participated in the surveys, of whom 1.9% (51/2721) had microscopically confirmed asexual...... reveal that carriage of submicroscopic asexual parasite and gametocyte densities is relatively common in this low transmission area. Submicroscopic gametocytaemia is likely to be responsible for maintaining malarial transmission in the study area....

  15. Seasonality, Blood Feeding Behavior, and Transmission of Plasmodium Falciparum by Anopheles Arabiensis after an Extended Drought In Southern Zambia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thuma, Philip E.; Mharakurwa, Sungano; Norris, Douglas E.

    2014-01-01

    Transmission of Plasmodium falciparum is hyperendemic in southern Zambia. However, no data on the entomologic aspects of malaria transmission have been published from Zambia in more than 25 years. We evaluated seasonal malaria transmission by Anopheles arabiensis and An. funestus s.s. and characterized the blood feeding behavior of An. arabiensis in two village areas. Transmission during the 2004–2005 rainy season was nearly zero because of widespread drought. During 2005–2006, the estimated entomologic inoculation rate values were 1.6 and 18.3 infective bites per person per transmission season in each of the two village areas, respectively. Finally, with a human blood index of 0.923, An. arabiensis was substantially more anthropophilic in our study area than comparable samples of indoor-resting An. arabiensis throughout Africa and was the primary vector responsible for transmission of P. falciparum. PMID:17297034

  16. Antibody recognition of Plasmodium falciparum infected red blood cells by symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals in the Brazilian Amazon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fratus, Alessandra Sampaio Bassi; Cabral, Fernanda Janku; Fotoran, Wesley Luzetti; Medeiros, Márcia Melo; Carlos, Bianca Cechetto; Martha, Rosimeire dalla; da Silva, Luiz Hildebrando Pereira; Lopes, Stefanie Costa Pinto; Costa, Fabio Trindade Maranhão; Wunderlich, Gerhard

    2014-01-01

    In the Amazon Region, there is a virtual absence of severe malaria and few fatal cases of naturally occurring Plasmodium falciparum infections; this presents an intriguing and underexplored area of research. In addition to the rapid access of infected persons to effective treatment, one cause of this phenomenon might be the recognition of cytoadherent variant proteins on the infected red blood cell (IRBC) surface, including the var gene encoded P. falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1. In order to establish a link between cytoadherence, IRBC surface antibody recognition and the presence or absence of malaria symptoms, we phenotype-selected four Amazonian P. falciparum isolates and the laboratory strain 3D7 for their cytoadherence to CD36 and ICAM1 expressed on CHO cells. We then mapped the dominantly expressed var transcripts and tested whether antibodies from symptomatic or asymptomatic infections showed a differential recognition of the IRBC surface. As controls, the 3D7 lineages expressing severe disease-associated phenotypes were used. We showed that there was no profound difference between the frequency and intensity of antibody recognition of the IRBC-exposed P. falciparum proteins in symptomatic vs. asymptomatic infections. The 3D7 lineages, which expressed severe malaria-associated phenotypes, were strongly recognised by most, but not all plasmas, meaning that the recognition of these phenotypes is frequent in asymptomatic carriers, but is not necessarily a prerequisite to staying free of symptoms. PMID:25099336

  17. 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.

  18. Salivary Glands Proteins Expression of Anopheles dirus A Fed on Plasmodium vivax- and Plasmodium falciparum-Infected Human Blood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saowanee Cotama

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Mosquitoes are able to adapt to feed on blood by the salivary glands which created a protein that works against the haemostasis process. This study aims to investigate the salivary glands proteins expression of 50 adult female An. dirus A mosquitoes, a main vector of malaria in Thailand, each group with an age of 5 days which were artificial membrane fed on sugar, normal blood, blood infected with P. vivax, and blood infected with P. falciparum. Then mosquito salivary gland proteins were analyzed by SDS-PAGE on days 0, 1, 2, 3, and 4 after feeding. The findings revealed that the major salivary glands proteins had molecular weights of 62, 58, 43, 36, 33, 30, and 18 kDa. One protein band of approximately 13 kDa was found in normal blood and blood infected with P. vivax fed on day 0. A stronger protein band, 65 kDa, was expressed from the salivary glands of mosquitoes fed with P. vivax- or P. falciparum-infected blood on only day 0, but none on days 1 to 4. The study shows that salivary glands proteins expression of An. dirus may affect the malaria parasite life cycle and the ability of mosquitoes to transmit malaria parasites in post-24-hour disappearance observation.

  19. Using CF11 cellulose columns to inexpensively and effectively remove human DNA from Plasmodium falciparum-infected whole blood samples

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Venkatesan Meera

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Genome and transcriptome studies of Plasmodium nucleic acids obtained from parasitized whole blood are greatly improved by depletion of human DNA or enrichment of parasite DNA prior to next-generation sequencing and microarray hybridization. The most effective method currently used is a two-step procedure to deplete leukocytes: centrifugation using density gradient media followed by filtration through expensive, commercially available columns. This method is not easily implemented in field studies that collect hundreds of samples and simultaneously process samples for multiple laboratory analyses. Inexpensive syringes, hand-packed with CF11 cellulose powder, were recently shown to improve ex vivo cultivation of Plasmodium vivax obtained from parasitized whole blood. This study was undertaken to determine whether CF11 columns could be adapted to isolate Plasmodium falciparum DNA from parasitized whole blood and achieve current quantity and purity requirements for Illumina sequencing. Methods The CF11 procedure was compared with the current two-step standard of leukocyte depletion using parasitized red blood cells cultured in vitro and parasitized blood obtained ex vivo from Cambodian patients with malaria. Procedural variations in centrifugation and column size were tested, along with a range of blood volumes and parasite densities. Results CF11 filtration reliably produces 500 nanograms of DNA with less than 50% human DNA contamination, which is comparable to that obtained by the two-step method and falls within the current quality control requirements for Illumina sequencing. In addition, a centrifuge-free version of the CF11 filtration method to isolate P. falciparum DNA at remote and minimally equipped field sites in malaria-endemic areas was validated. Conclusions CF11 filtration is a cost-effective, scalable, one-step approach to remove human DNA from P. falciparum-infected whole blood samples.

  20. Decreased growth rate of P. falciparum blood stage parasitemia with age in a holoendemic population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinkevych, Mykola; Petravic, Janka; Chelimo, Kiprotich; Vulule, John; Kazura, James W; Moormann, Ann M; Davenport, Miles P

    2014-04-01

    In malaria holoendemic settings, decreased parasitemia and clinical disease is associated with age and cumulative exposure. The relative contribution of acquired immunity against various stages of the parasite life cycle is not well understood. In particular, it is not known whether changes in infection dynamics can be best explained by decreasing rates of infection, or by decreased growth rates of parasites in blood. Here, we analyze the dynamics of Plasmodium falciparum infection after treatment in a cohort of 197 healthy study participants of different ages. We use both polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and microscopy detection of parasitemia in order to understand parasite growth rates and infection rates over time. The more sensitive PCR assay detects parasites earlier than microscopy, and demonstrates a higher overall prevalence of infection than microscopy alone. The delay between PCR and microscopy detection is significantly longer in adults compared with children, consistent with slower parasite growth with age. We estimated the parasite multiplication rate from delay to PCR and microscopy detections of parasitemia. We find that both the delay between PCR and microscopy infection as well as the differing reinfection dynamics in different age groups are best explained by a slowing of parasite growth with age.

  1. Asexual sporulation facilitates adaptation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zhang, Jianhua; Debets, A.J.M.; Verweij, P.E.; Melchers, W.J.G.; Zwaan, B.J.; Schoustra, S.E.

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the occurrence and spread of azole resistance in Aspergillus fumigatus is crucial for public health. It has been hypothesized that asexual sporulation, which is abundant in nature, is essential for phenotypic expression of azole resistance mutations in A. fumigatus facilitating

  2. Plasmodium falciparum field isolates from South America use an atypical red blood cell invasion pathway associated with invasion ligand polymorphisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lopez-Perez, Mary; Villasis, Elizabeth; Machado, Ricardo L D

    2012-01-01

    Studies of Plasmodium falciparum invasion pathways in field isolates have been limited. Red blood cell (RBC) invasion is a complex process involving two invasion protein families; Erythrocyte Binding-Like (EBL) and the Reticulocyte Binding-Like (PfRh) proteins, which are polymorphic and not fully...... characterized in field isolates. To determine the various P. falciparum invasion pathways used by parasite isolates from South America, we studied the invasion phenotypes in three regions: Colombia, Peru and Brazil. Additionally, polymorphisms in three members of the EBL (EBA-181, EBA-175 and EBL-1) and five...... pathways and the ligand polymorphisms differed substantially among the Colombian and Brazilian isolates while the Peruvian isolates represent an amalgam of those present in the Colombian and Brazilian field isolates. The NrTrCr invasion profile was associated with the presence of the PfRh2a pepC variant...

  3. In Vivo and In Vitro Activities and ADME-Tox Profile of a Quinolizidine-Modified 4-Aminoquinoline: A Potent Anti-P. falciparum and Anti-P. vivax Blood-Stage Antimalarial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicoletta Basilico

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Natural products are a prolific source for the identification of new biologically active compounds. In the present work, we studied the in vitro and in vivo antimalarial efficacy and ADME-Tox profile of a molecular hybrid (AM1 between 4-aminoquinoline and a quinolizidine moiety derived from lupinine (Lupinus luteus. The aim was to find a compound endowed with the target product profile-1 (TCP-1: molecules that clear asexual blood-stage parasitaemia, proposed by the Medicine for Malaria Venture to accomplish the goal of malaria elimination/eradication. AM1 displayed a very attractive profile in terms of both in vitro and in vivo activity. By using standard in vitro antimalarial assays, AM1 showed low nanomolar inhibitory activity against chloroquine-sensitive and resistant P. falciparum strains (range IC50 16–53 nM, matched with a high potency against P. vivax field isolates (Mean IC50 29 nM. Low toxicity and additivity with artemisinin derivatives were also demonstrated in vitro. High in vivo oral efficacy was observed in both P. berghei and P. yoelii mouse models with IC50 values comparable or better than those of chloroquine. The metabolic stability in different species and the pharmacokinetic profile in the mouse model makes AM1 a compound worth further investigation as a potential novel schizonticidal agent.

  4. A transgenic Plasmodium falciparum NF54 strain that expresses GFP-luciferase throughout the parasite life cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaughan, Ashley M; Mikolajczak, Sebastian A; Camargo, Nelly; Lakshmanan, Viswanathan; Kennedy, Mark; Lindner, Scott E; Miller, Jessica L; Hume, Jen C C; Kappe, Stefan H I

    2012-12-01

    Plasmodium falciparum is the pathogenic agent of the most lethal of human malarias. Transgenic P. falciparum parasites expressing luciferase have been created to study drug interventions of both asexual and sexual blood stages but luciferase-expressing mosquito stage and liver stage parasites have not been created which has prevented the easy quantification of mosquito stage development (e.g. for transmission blocking interventions) and liver stage development (for interventions that prevent infection). To overcome this obstacle, we have created a transgenic P. falciparum NF54 parasite that expresses a GFP-luciferase transgene throughout the life cycle. Luciferase expression is robust and measurable at all life cycle stages, including midgut oocyst, salivary gland sporozoites and liver stages, where in vivo development is easily measurable using humanized mouse infections in conjunction with an in vivo imaging system. This parasite reporter strain will accelerate testing of interventions against pre-erythrocytic life cycle stages. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Biosynthesis of GDP-fucose and other sugar nucleotides in the blood stages of Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanz, Sílvia; Bandini, Giulia; Ospina, Diego; Bernabeu, Maria; Mariño, Karina; Fernández-Becerra, Carmen; Izquierdo, Luis

    2013-06-07

    Carbohydrate structures play important roles in many biological processes, including cell adhesion, cell-cell communication, and host-pathogen interactions. Sugar nucleotides are activated forms of sugars used by the cell as donors for most glycosylation reactions. Using a liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry-based method, we identified and quantified the pools of UDP-glucose, UDP-galactose, UDP-N-acetylglucosamine, GDP-mannose, and GDP-fucose in Plasmodium falciparum intraerythrocytic life stages. We assembled these data with the in silico functional reconstruction of the parasite metabolic pathways obtained from the P. falciparum annotated genome, exposing new active biosynthetic routes crucial for further glycosylation reactions. Fucose is a sugar present in glycoconjugates often associated with recognition and adhesion events. Thus, the GDP-fucose precursor is essential in a wide variety of organisms. P. falciparum presents homologues of GDP-mannose 4,6-dehydratase and GDP-L-fucose synthase enzymes that are active in vitro, indicating that most GDP-fucose is formed by a de novo pathway that involves the bioconversion of GDP-mannose. Homologues for enzymes involved in a fucose salvage pathway are apparently absent in the P. falciparum genome. This is in agreement with in vivo metabolic labeling experiments showing that fucose is not significantly incorporated by the parasite. Fluorescence microscopy of epitope-tagged versions of P. falciparum GDP-mannose 4,6-dehydratase and GDP-L-fucose synthase expressed in transgenic 3D7 parasites shows that these enzymes localize in the cytoplasm of P. falciparum during the intraerythrocytic developmental cycle. Although the function of fucose in the parasite is not known, the presence of GDP-fucose suggests that the metabolite may be used for further fucosylation reactions.

  6. Biosynthesis of GDP-fucose and Other Sugar Nucleotides in the Blood Stages of Plasmodium falciparum*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanz, Sílvia; Bandini, Giulia; Ospina, Diego; Bernabeu, Maria; Mariño, Karina; Fernández-Becerra, Carmen; Izquierdo, Luis

    2013-01-01

    Carbohydrate structures play important roles in many biological processes, including cell adhesion, cell-cell communication, and host-pathogen interactions. Sugar nucleotides are activated forms of sugars used by the cell as donors for most glycosylation reactions. Using a liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry-based method, we identified and quantified the pools of UDP-glucose, UDP-galactose, UDP-N-acetylglucosamine, GDP-mannose, and GDP-fucose in Plasmodium falciparum intraerythrocytic life stages. We assembled these data with the in silico functional reconstruction of the parasite metabolic pathways obtained from the P. falciparum annotated genome, exposing new active biosynthetic routes crucial for further glycosylation reactions. Fucose is a sugar present in glycoconjugates often associated with recognition and adhesion events. Thus, the GDP-fucose precursor is essential in a wide variety of organisms. P. falciparum presents homologues of GDP-mannose 4,6-dehydratase and GDP-l-fucose synthase enzymes that are active in vitro, indicating that most GDP-fucose is formed by a de novo pathway that involves the bioconversion of GDP-mannose. Homologues for enzymes involved in a fucose salvage pathway are apparently absent in the P. falciparum genome. This is in agreement with in vivo metabolic labeling experiments showing that fucose is not significantly incorporated by the parasite. Fluorescence microscopy of epitope-tagged versions of P. falciparum GDP-mannose 4,6-dehydratase and GDP-l-fucose synthase expressed in transgenic 3D7 parasites shows that these enzymes localize in the cytoplasm of P. falciparum during the intraerythrocytic developmental cycle. Although the function of fucose in the parasite is not known, the presence of GDP-fucose suggests that the metabolite may be used for further fucosylation reactions. PMID:23615908

  7. Biochemical and functional analysis of two Plasmodium falciparum blood-stage 6-cys proteins: P12 and P41.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tana Taechalertpaisarn

    Full Text Available The genomes of Plasmodium parasites that cause malaria in humans, other primates, birds, and rodents all encode multiple 6-cys proteins. Distinct 6-cys protein family members reside on the surface at each extracellular life cycle stage and those on the surface of liver infective and sexual stages have been shown to play important roles in hepatocyte growth and fertilization respectively. However, 6-cys proteins associated with the blood-stage forms of the parasite have no known function. Here we investigate the biochemical nature and function of two blood-stage 6-cys proteins in Plasmodium falciparum, the most pathogenic species to afflict humans. We show that native P12 and P41 form a stable heterodimer on the infective merozoite surface and are secreted following invasion, but could find no evidence that this complex mediates erythrocyte-receptor binding. That P12 and P41 do not appear to have a major role as adhesins to erythrocyte receptors was supported by the observation that antisera to these proteins did not substantially inhibit erythrocyte invasion. To investigate other functional roles for these proteins their genes were successfully disrupted in P. falciparum, however P12 and P41 knockout parasites grew at normal rates in vitro and displayed no other obvious phenotypic changes. It now appears likely that these blood-stage 6-cys proteins operate as a pair and play redundant roles either in erythrocyte invasion or in host-immune interactions.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charnaud, Sarah C.; Dixon, Matthew W. A.; Nie, Catherine Q.; Chappell, Lia; Sanders, Paul R.; Nebl, Thomas; Hanssen, Eric; Berriman, Matthew; Chan, Jo-Anne; Blanch, Adam J.; Beeson, James G.; Rayner, Julian C.; Przyborski, Jude M.; Tilley, Leann; Crabb, Brendan S.

    2017-01-01

    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. PMID:28732045

  10. A malaria diagnostic tool based on computer vision screening and visualization of Plasmodium falciparum candidate areas in digitized blood smears.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nina Linder

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: Microscopy is the gold standard for diagnosis of malaria, however, manual evaluation of blood films is highly dependent on skilled personnel in a time-consuming, error-prone and repetitive process. In this study we propose a method using computer vision detection and visualization of only the diagnostically most relevant sample regions in digitized blood smears. METHODS: Giemsa-stained thin blood films with P. falciparum ring-stage trophozoites (n = 27 and uninfected controls (n = 20 were digitally scanned with an oil immersion objective (0.1 µm/pixel to capture approximately 50,000 erythrocytes per sample. Parasite candidate regions were identified based on color and object size, followed by extraction of image features (local binary patterns, local contrast and Scale-invariant feature transform descriptors used as input to a support vector machine classifier. The classifier was trained on digital slides from ten patients and validated on six samples. RESULTS: The diagnostic accuracy was tested on 31 samples (19 infected and 12 controls. From each digitized area of a blood smear, a panel with the 128 most probable parasite candidate regions was generated. Two expert microscopists were asked to visually inspect the panel on a tablet computer and to judge whether the patient was infected with P. falciparum. The method achieved a diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of 95% and 100% as well as 90% and 100% for the two readers respectively using the diagnostic tool. Parasitemia was separately calculated by the automated system and the correlation coefficient between manual and automated parasitemia counts was 0.97. CONCLUSION: We developed a decision support system for detecting malaria parasites using a computer vision algorithm combined with visualization of sample areas with the highest probability of malaria infection. The system provides a novel method for blood smear screening with a significantly reduced need for

  11. The influence of Maloprim chemoprophylaxis on cellular and humoral immune responses to Plasmodium falciparum asexual blood stage antigens in schoolchildren living in a malaria endemic area of Mozambique

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hogh, B; Thompson, R; Lobo, V

    1994-01-01

    responses to the GLURP molecule and partly to the Pf155/RESA antigen in this study population were shortlived and dependent on frequent boostering, but whether these antigens play a role in the development of natural clinical immunity remains open. In the experimental group of schoolchildren weekly...... chemoprophylaxis successfully reduced the parasite rate during the rainy season from 43% to 4%, and during the dry season from 18% to 0%. Chemoprophylaxis may therefore have a useful role in combination with another partially effective malaria control measure such as insecticide-impregnated bed nets or a malaria...

  12. 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.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mistarz, Ulrik H; Singh, Susheel K; Nguyen, Tam T T N; Roeffen, Will; Yang, Fen; Lissau, Casper; Madsen, Søren M; Vrang, Astrid; Tiendrebeogo, Régis W; Kana, Ikhlaq H; Sauerwein, Robert W; Theisen, Michael; Rand, Kasper D

    2017-09-01

    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. 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 was analysed by RP-HPLC, SEC-HPLC, 2-site ELISA, gel-electrophoresis and Western blotting. Structural characterization (mass analysis, peptide mapping and cysteine connectivity mapping) was performed by LC-MS/MS. CP-GMZ2'.10C resulted in similar purity, yield, structure and stability as compared to IP-GMZ2'.10C. CP-GMZ2'.10C and IP-GMZ2'.10C both elicited a high titer of transmission blocking (TB) antibodies in rodents. The intricate disulphide-bond connectivity of C-terminus Pfs48/45 was analysed by tandem mass spectrometry and was established for GMZ2'.10C and two reference fusion proteins encompassing similar parts of Pfs48/45. GMZ2'.10C, combining GMZ2' and correctly-folded Pfs48/45 can be produced by the Lactoccus lactis P170 based expression system in purity and quality for pharmaceutical development and elicit high level of TB antibodies. The cysteine connectivity for the 10C region of Pfs48/45 was revealed experimentally, providing an important guideline for employing the Pfs48/45 antigen in vaccine design.

  13. Blood Stage Plasmodium falciparum Exhibits Biological Responses to Direct Current Electric Fields.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorena M Coronado

    Full Text Available The development of resistance to insecticides by the vector of malaria and the increasingly faster appearance of resistance to antimalarial drugs by the parasite can dangerously hamper efforts to control and eradicate the disease. Alternative ways to treat this disease are urgently needed. Here we evaluate the in vitro effect of direct current (DC capacitive coupling electrical stimulation on the biology and viability of Plasmodium falciparum. We designed a system that exposes infected erythrocytes to different capacitively coupled electric fields in order to evaluate their effect on P. falciparum. The effect on growth of the parasite, replication of DNA, mitochondrial membrane potential and level of reactive oxygen species after exposure to electric fields demonstrate that the parasite is biologically able to respond to stimuli from DC electric fields involving calcium signaling pathways.

  14. Gametocytogenesis : the puberty of Plasmodium falciparum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ariey Frédéric

    2004-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The protozoan Plasmodium falciparum has a complex life cycle in which asexual multiplication in the vertebrate host alternates with an obligate sexual reproduction in the anopheline mosquito. Apart from the apparent recombination advantages conferred by sex, P. falciparum has evolved a remarkable biology and adaptive phenotypes to insure its transmission despite the dangers of sex. This review mainly focuses on the current knowledge on commitment to sexual development, gametocytogenesis and the evolutionary significance of various aspects of gametocyte biology. It goes further than pure biology to look at the strategies used to improve successful transmission. Although gametocytes are inevitable stages for transmission and provide a potential target to fight malaria, they have received less attention than the pathogenic asexual stages. There is a need for research on gametocytes, which are a fascinating stage, responsible to a large extent for the success of P. falciparum.

  15. Genetic Investigation of Tricarboxylic Acid Metabolism during the Plasmodium falciparum Life Cycle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hangjun Ke

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available New antimalarial drugs are urgently needed to control drug-resistant forms of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Mitochondrial electron transport is the target of both existing and new antimalarials. Herein, we describe 11 genetic knockout (KO lines that delete six of the eight mitochondrial tricarboxylic acid (TCA cycle enzymes. Although all TCA KOs grew normally in asexual blood stages, these metabolic deficiencies halted life-cycle progression in later stages. Specifically, aconitase KO parasites arrested as late gametocytes, whereas α-ketoglutarate-dehydrogenase-deficient parasites failed to develop oocysts in the mosquitoes. Mass spectrometry analysis of 13C-isotope-labeled TCA mutant parasites showed that P. falciparum has significant flexibility in TCA metabolism. This flexibility manifested itself through changes in pathway fluxes and through altered exchange of substrates between cytosolic and mitochondrial pools. Our findings suggest that mitochondrial metabolic plasticity is essential for parasite development.

  16. Genetic investigation of tricarboxylic acid metabolism during the Plasmodium falciparum life cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ke, Hangjun; Lewis, Ian A; Morrisey, Joanne M; McLean, Kyle J; Ganesan, Suresh M; Painter, Heather J; Mather, Michael W; Jacobs-Lorena, Marcelo; Llinás, Manuel; Vaidya, Akhil B

    2015-04-07

    New antimalarial drugs are urgently needed to control drug-resistant forms of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Mitochondrial electron transport is the target of both existing and new antimalarials. Herein, we describe 11 genetic knockout (KO) lines that delete six of the eight mitochondrial tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle enzymes. Although all TCA KOs grew normally in asexual blood stages, these metabolic deficiencies halted life-cycle progression in later stages. Specifically, aconitase KO parasites arrested as late gametocytes, whereas α-ketoglutarate-dehydrogenase-deficient parasites failed to develop oocysts in the mosquitoes. Mass spectrometry analysis of (13)C-isotope-labeled TCA mutant parasites showed that P. falciparum has significant flexibility in TCA metabolism. This flexibility manifested itself through changes in pathway fluxes and through altered exchange of substrates between cytosolic and mitochondrial pools. Our findings suggest that mitochondrial metabolic plasticity is essential for parasite development. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Human genetic polymorphisms in the Knops blood group are not associated with a protective advantage against Plasmodium falciparum malaria in Southern Ghana

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansson, Helle H; Kurtzhals, Jørgen A; Goka, Bamenla Q

    2013-01-01

    The complex interactions between the human host and the Plasmodium falciparum parasite and the factors influencing severity of disease are still not fully understood. Human single nucleotide polymorphisms SNPs associated with Knops blood group system; carried by complement receptor 1 may...

  18. Study of some parameters affecting the in vitro cultivation of Plasmodium falciparum within saimiri sciureus red blood cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Fandeur

    1986-06-01

    Full Text Available The in vitro growth and multiplication of the erythrocytic stages of Plasmodium falciparum within Saimiri sciureus (squirrel monkey red blood cells have been studied. Various parameters, such as the origin of the red blood cells and serum supplement, nature of the buffer, influence of the final pH of the medium, role of proteose peptone and glucose addition, were investigated. The selection of the best culture conditions led to the obtention of a reproducible in vitro growth of two parasite cycles in Saimiri erythrocytes, which is an useful achievement for in vitro studies. Our failure to establish a continuous culture line for longer than 19 days, could be explained by a dramatic increasing of osmotic fragility of the Saimiri red blood cells related to their small size.O crescimento e a multiplicação dos estágios eritrocíticos do Plasmodium falciparum in vitro foi estudado em cultivos com hemácias do Saimiri sciureus (macaco de cheiro. Foram investigados vários parâmetros tais como, origem das hemácias e suplementação de soro, tipo de tampão, influência do pH final do meio, papel da proteose-peptona e da glicose adicionados. A seleção das condições ideais de cultivo permitiram, de maneira reprodutível, a obtenção de crescimento do parasita durante dois ciclos nas hemácias do Saimiri. Nosso fracasso em estabelecer uma linhagem contínua de cultivo por mais de 19 dias poderia ser explicado pelo aumento dramático da fragilidade osmótica das hemácias do Saimiri relacionado com seu pequeno tamanho.

  19. 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

    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...... 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......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...

  20. 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

    -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...... 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...

  1. Do the venous blood samples replicate malaria parasite densities found in capillary blood? A field study performed in naturally-infected asymptomatic children in Cameroon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandeu, Maurice M; Bayibéki, Albert N; Tchioffo, Majoline T; Abate, Luc; Gimonneau, Geoffrey; Awono-Ambéné, Parfait H; Nsango, Sandrine E; Diallo, Diadier; Berry, Antoine; Texier, Gaétan; Morlais, Isabelle

    2017-08-17

    The measure of new drug- or vaccine-based approaches for malaria control is based on direct membrane feeding assays (DMFAs) where gametocyte-infected blood samples are offered to mosquitoes through an artificial feeder system. Gametocyte donors are identified by the microscopic detection and quantification of malaria blood stages on blood films prepared using either capillary or venous blood. However, parasites are known to sequester in the microvasculature and this phenomenon may alter accurate detection of parasites in blood films. The blood source may then impact the success of mosquito feeding experiments and investigations are needed for the implementation of DMFAs under natural conditions. Thick blood smears were prepared from blood obtained from asymptomatic children attending primary schools in the vicinity of Mfou (Cameroon) over four transmission seasons. Parasite densities were determined microscopically from capillary and venous blood for 137 naturally-infected gametocyte carriers. The effect of the blood source on gametocyte and asexual stage densities was then assessed by fitting cumulative link mixed models (CLMM). DMFAs were performed to compare the infectiousness of gametocytes from the different blood sources to mosquitoes. Prevalence of Plasmodium falciparum asexual stages among asymptomatic children aged from 4 to 15 years was 51.8% (2116/4087). The overall prevalence of P. falciparum gametocyte carriage was 8.9% and varied from one school to another. No difference in the density of gametocyte and asexual stages was found between capillary and venous blood. Attempts to perform DMFAs with capillary blood failed. Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasite densities do not differ between capillary and venous blood in asymptomatic subjects for both gametocyte and trophozoite stages. This finding suggests that the blood source should not interfere with transmission efficiency in DMFAs.

  2. Transgenic mosquitoes expressing a phospholipase A(2 gene have a fitness advantage when fed Plasmodium falciparum-infected blood.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryan C Smith

    Full Text Available Genetically modified mosquitoes have been proposed as an alternative strategy to reduce the heavy burden of malaria. In recent years, several proof-of-principle experiments have been performed that validate the idea that mosquitoes can be genetically modified to become refractory to malaria parasite development.We have created two transgenic lines of Anophelesstephensi, a natural vector of Plasmodium falciparum, which constitutively secrete a catalytically inactive phospholipase A2 (mPLA2 into the midgut lumen to interfere with Plasmodium ookinete invasion. Our experiments show that both transgenic lines expressing mPLA2 significantly impair the development of rodent malaria parasites, but only one line impairs the development of human malaria parasites. In addition, when fed on malaria-infected blood, mosquitoes from both transgenic lines are more fecund than non-transgenic mosquitoes. Consistent with these observations, cage experiments with mixed populations of transgenic and non-transgenic mosquitoes show that the percentage of transgenic mosquitoes increases when maintained on Plasmodium-infected blood.Our results suggest that the expression of an anti-Plasmodium effector gene gives transgenic mosquitoes a fitness advantage when fed malaria-infected blood. These findings have important implications for future applications of transgenic mosquito technology in malaria control.

  3. Immunogenicity and in vitro Protective Efficacy of a Recombinant Multistage Plasmodium falciparum Candidate Vaccine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Ya Ping; Hasnain, Seyed E.; Sacci, John B.; Holloway, Brian P.; Fujioka, Hisashi; Kumar, Nirbhay; Wohlhueter, Robert; Hoffman, Stephen L.; Collins, William E.; Lal, Altaf A.

    1999-02-01

    Compared with a single-stage antigen-based vaccine, a multistage and multivalent Plasmodium falciparum vaccine would be more efficacious by inducing "multiple layers" of immunity. We have constructed a synthetic gene that encodes for 12 B cell, 6 T cell proliferative, and 3 cytotoxic T lymphocyte epitopes derived from 9 stage-specific P. falciparum antigens corresponding to the sporozoite, liver, erythrocytic asexual, and sexual stages. The gene was expressed in the baculovirus system, and a 41-kDa antigen, termed CDC/NIIMALVAC-1, was purified. Immunization in rabbits with the purified protein in the presence of different adjuvants generated antibody responses that recognized vaccine antigen, linear peptides contained in the vaccine, and all stages of P. falciparum. In vitro assays of protection revealed that the vaccine-elicited antibodies strongly inhibited sporozoite invasion of hepatoma cells and growth of blood-stage parasites in the presence of monocytes. These observations demonstrate that a multicomponent, multistage malaria vaccine can induce immune responses that inhibit parasite development at multiple stages. The rationale and approach used in the development of a multicomponent P. falciparum vaccine will be useful in the development of a multispecies human malaria vaccine and vaccines against other infectious diseases.

  4. Hematological changes in complete blood picture in paedriatric patients of malaria caused by plasmodium vivax and falciparum

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Latif, I.; Jamal, A.

    2015-01-01

    Malaria is a major health problem and one of the major killers in paediatric population particularly in the developing world. High mortality is usually compounded by various haematological complications if left untreated. Their identification as risk factors for progression to severe disease may make the basis for optimal management of malaria. This study was conducted to determine various changes in the complete blood picture caused by malaria and to compare the severity of these changes among the prevalent species of plasmodia. Methods: It was cross sectional study conducted in paediatric ward of Civil Hospital, Dow University of Health Sciences, Karachi over a period of six months. Children aged >2 months to 15 years, of either sex, with fever above 101 degree F in the preceding 72 hours with positive malaria parasite on peripheral blood smear were included in the study. Children already on anti-malarial treatment and long standing antibiotics, having co-morbidities like immune-compromised states, haemolytic disease or with any other haematological disorder were excluded from the study. Blood was tested for anaemia, leukopenia, leukocytosis, and thrombocytopenia. Data analysis was done via SPSS-15.0. Results: Out of 374 children half were under 5 years of age with mean age of 66.7 ± 46.8 months, 50.8% were female with male to female ratio of 1:1.03. Overall 364 (97.3%) children had anaemia with mean haemoglobin level of 11.7 ± 6 g/dl. Overall mean WBC count was 10443 ± 154 per cubic millimetre. Leukopenia was found in 39% cases. Mean platelets count of enrolled children was 69451 ± 648 cubic millimetre and 51.3% cases had mild thrombocytopenia. Anaemia (p=0.012), leukopenia (p=0.001) and thrombocytopenia (p=0.004) were significantly more common in falciparum as compared to vivax malaria. Conclusion: We concluded that malaria frequently causes severe anaemia, leukopenia and thrombocytopenia in children. P. falciparum is the species more responsible for these

  5. The Malaria Parasite Cyclin H Homolog PfCyc1 Is Required for Efficient Cytokinesis in Blood-Stage Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robbins, Jonathan A; Absalon, Sabrina; Streva, Vincent A; Dvorin, Jeffrey D

    2017-06-13

    All well-studied eukaryotic cell cycles are driven by cyclins, which activate cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs), and these protein kinase complexes are viable drug targets. The regulatory control of the Plasmodium falciparum cell division cycle remains poorly understood, and the roles of the various CDKs and cyclins remain unclear. The P. falciparum genome contains multiple CDKs, but surprisingly, it does not contain any sequence-identifiable G 1 -, S-, or M-phase cyclins. We demonstrate that P. falciparum Cyc1 (PfCyc1) complements a G 1 cyclin-depleted Saccharomyces cerevisiae strain and confirm that other identified malaria parasite cyclins do not complement this strain. PfCyc1, which has the highest sequence similarity to the conserved cyclin H, cannot complement a temperature-sensitive yeast cyclin H mutant. Coimmunoprecipitation of PfCyc1 from P. falciparum parasites identifies PfMAT1 and PfMRK as specific interaction partners and does not identify PfPK5 or other CDKs. We then generate an endogenous conditional allele of PfCyc1 in blood-stage P. falciparum using a destabilization domain (DD) approach and find that PfCyc1 is essential for blood-stage proliferation. PfCyc1 knockdown does not impede nuclear division, but it prevents proper cytokinesis. Thus, we demonstrate that PfCyc1 has a functional divergence from bioinformatic predictions, suggesting that the malaria parasite cell division cycle has evolved to use evolutionarily conserved proteins in functionally novel ways. IMPORTANCE Human infection by the eukaryotic parasite Plasmodium falciparum causes malaria. Most well-studied eukaryotic cell cycles are driven by cyclins, which activate cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs) to promote essential cell division processes. Remarkably, there are no identifiable cyclins that are predicted to control the cell cycle in the malaria parasite genome. Thus, our knowledge regarding the basic mechanisms of the malaria parasite cell cycle remains unsatisfactory. We

  6. 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 blood...... of clinically immune pregnant women also express VSA(PAM), making them a convenient source of VSA(PAM) expressors for PAM vaccine research....

  7. ABO blood group phenotypes influence parity specific immunity to Plasmodium falciparum malaria in Malawian women

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Senga, Edward; Loscertales, Maria-Paz; Makwakwa, K. E. B.; Liomba, George N.; Dzamalala, Charles; Kazembe, Peter N.; Brabin, Bernard J.

    2007-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Blood group O has been significantly associated with increased placental malaria infection in primiparae and reduced risk of infection in multiparae in the Gambia, an area with markedly seasonal malaria transmission. This study analyses the association between ABO blood group phenotypes

  8. Epigenetic variation in asexually reproducing organisms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verhoeven, K.J.F.; Preite, V.

    2014-01-01

    The role that epigenetic inheritance can play in adaptation may differ between sexuals and asexuals because (1) the dynamics of adaptation differ under sexual and asexual reproduction and the opportunities offered by epigenetic inheritance may affect these dynamics differently; and (2) in asexual

  9. Strain-specific Plasmodium falciparum growth inhibition among Malian children immunized with a blood-stage malaria vaccine.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew B Laurens

    Full Text Available The blood-stage malaria vaccine FMP2.1/AS02A, comprised of recombinant Plasmodium falciparum apical membrane antigen 1 (AMA1 and the adjuvant system AS02A, had strain-specific efficacy against clinical malaria caused by P. falciparum with the vaccine strain 3D7 AMA1 sequence. To evaluate a potential correlate of protection, we measured the ability of participant sera to inhibit growth of 3D7 and FVO strains in vitro using high-throughput growth inhibition assay (GIA testing. Sera from 400 children randomized to receive either malaria vaccine or a control rabies vaccine were assessed at baseline and over two annual malaria transmission seasons after immunization. Baseline GIA against vaccine strain 3D7 and FVO strain was similar in both groups, but more children in the malaria vaccine group than in the control group had 3D7 and FVO GIA activity ≥15% 30 days after the last vaccination (day 90 (49% vs. 16%, p<0.0001; and 71.8% vs. 60.4%, p = 0.02. From baseline to day 90, 3D7 GIA in the vaccine group was 7.4 times the mean increase in the control group (p<0.0001. In AMA1 vaccinees, 3D7 GIA activity subsequently returned to baseline one year after vaccination (day 364 and did not correlate with efficacy in the extended efficacy time period to day 730. In Cox proportional hazards regression models with time-varying covariates, there was a slight suggestion of an association between 3D7 GIA activity and increased risk of clinical malaria between day 90 and day 240. We conclude that vaccination with this AMA1-based malaria vaccine increased inhibition of parasite growth, but this increase was not associated with allele-specific efficacy in the first malaria season. These results provide a framework for testing functional immune correlates of protection against clinical malaria in field trials, and will help to guide similar analyses for next-generation malaria vaccines. Clinical trials registry: This clinical trial was registered on clinicaltrials

  10. Antimalarial Activity of KAF156 in Falciparum and Vivax Malaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Nicholas J; Duong, Tran T; Uthaisin, Chirapong; Nosten, François; Phyo, Aung P; Hanboonkunupakarn, Borimas; Pukrittayakamee, Sasithon; Jittamala, Podjanee; Chuthasmit, Kittiphum; Cheung, Ming S; Feng, Yiyan; Li, Ruobing; Magnusson, Baldur; Sultan, Marc; Wieser, Daniela; Xun, Xiaolei; Zhao, Rong; Diagana, Thierry T; Pertel, Peter; Leong, F Joel

    2016-09-22

    KAF156 belongs to a new class of antimalarial agents (imidazolopiperazines), with activity against asexual and sexual blood stages and the preerythrocytic liver stages of malarial parasites. We conducted a phase 2, open-label, two-part study at five centers in Thailand and Vietnam to assess the antimalarial efficacy, safety, and pharmacokinetic profile of KAF156 in adults with acute Plasmodium vivax or P. falciparum malaria. Assessment of parasite clearance rates in cohorts of patients with vivax or falciparum malaria who were treated with multiple doses (400 mg once daily for 3 days) was followed by assessment of the cure rate at 28 days in a separate cohort of patients with falciparum malaria who received a single dose (800 mg). Median parasite clearance times were 45 hours (interquartile range, 42 to 48) in 10 patients with falciparum malaria and 24 hours (interquartile range, 20 to 30) in 10 patients with vivax malaria after treatment with the multiple-dose regimen and 49 hours (interquartile range, 42 to 54) in 21 patients with falciparum malaria after treatment with the single dose. Among the 21 patients who received the single dose and were followed for 28 days, 1 had reinfection and 7 had recrudescent infections (cure rate, 67%; 95% credible interval, 46 to 84). The mean (±SD) KAF156 terminal elimination half-life was 44.1±8.9 hours. There were no serious adverse events in this small study. The most common adverse events included sinus bradycardia, thrombocytopenia, hypokalemia, anemia, and hyperbilirubinemia. Vomiting of grade 2 or higher occurred in 2 patients, 1 of whom discontinued treatment because of repeated vomiting after receiving the single 800-mg dose. More adverse events were reported in the single-dose cohort, which had longer follow-up, than in the multiple-dose cohorts. KAF156 showed antimalarial activity without evident safety concerns in a small number of adults with uncomplicated P. vivax or P. falciparum malaria. (Funded by Novartis and

  11. A switch in infected erythrocyte deformability at the maturation and blood circulation of Plasmodium falciparum transmission stages.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tiburcio, M.; Niang, M.; Deplaine, G.; Perrot, S.; Bischoff, E.; Ndour, P.A.; Silvestrini, F.; Khattab, A.; Milon, G.; David, P.H.; Hardeman, M.; Vernick, K.D.; Sauerwein, R.W.; Preiser, P.R.; Mercereau-Puijalon, O.; Buffet, P.; Alano, P.; Lavazec, C.

    2012-01-01

    Achievement of malaria elimination requires development of novel strategies interfering with parasite transmission, including targeting the parasite sexual stages (gametocytes). The formation of Plasmodium falciparum gametocytes in the human host takes several days during which immature

  12. A switch in infected erythrocyte deformability at the maturation and blood circulation of Plasmodium falciparum transmission stages

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tibúrcio, Marta; Niang, Makhtar; Deplaine, Guillaume; Perrot, Sylvie; Bischoff, Emmanuel; Ndour, Papa Alioune; Silvestrini, Francesco; Khattab, Ayman; Milon, Geneviève; David, Peter H.; Hardeman, Max; Vernick, Kenneth D.; Sauerwein, Robert W.; Preiser, Peter R.; Mercereau-Puijalon, Odile; Buffet, Pierre; Alano, Pietro; Lavazec, Catherine

    2012-01-01

    Achievement of malaria elimination requires development of novel strategies interfering with parasite transmission, including targeting the parasite sexual stages (gametocytes). The formation of Plasmodium falciparum gametocytes in the human host takes several days during which immature

  13. Dual stage synthesis and crucial role of cytoadherence-linked asexual gene 9 in the surface expression of malaria parasite var proteins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Goel, Suchi; Valiyaveettil, Manojkumar; Achur, Rajeshwara N

    2010-01-01

    adherence. However, how CLAG9 influences this process remains unknown. In this study, we show that CLAG9 interacts with VAR2CSA, a PfEMP1 that mediates IRBC adherence to chondroitin 4-sulfate in the placenta. Importantly, our results show that the adherent parasites synthesize CLAG9 at two stages--the early......Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) family members mediate the adherence of parasite-infected red blood cells (IRBCs) to various host receptors. A previous study has shown that the parasite protein, cytoadherence-linked asexual gene 9 (CLAG9), is also essential for IRBC...... within the parasite. Based on these findings, we propose that CLAG9 plays a critical role in the trafficking of PfEMP1s onto the IRBC surface. These results have important implications for the development of therapeutics for cerebral, placental, and other cytoadherence-associated malaria illnesses....

  14. 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...

  15. A comparison of the sensitivities of detection of Plasmodium falciparum gametocytes by magnetic fractionation, thick blood film microscopy, and RT-PCR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    St-Pierre Tim G

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The magnetic properties of Plasmodium-infected erythrocytes have been exploited for different clinical and research purposes. A recent study in a rural clinical setting in Papua New Guinea has demonstrated that Plasmodium falciparum gametocyte detection is facilitated by magnetic deposition microscopy but no study has yet determined the relative sensitivity and limit of detection of a magnetic fractionation technique. The present study compares the detection limit and sensitivity of a technique based on the use of commercially available magnetic fractionation columns with those for thick blood film microscopy and reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR methods. Methods Gametocyte detection in six series of dilutions of cultured P. falciparum parasites with known gametocytaemia was conducted using magnetic fractionation, thick blood film, and RT-PCR techniques. Results The preparations obtained by the magnetic fractionation method were of thin film quality allowing easy gametocyte identification by light microscopy. Magnetic fractionation had a higher sensitivity and approximately two orders of magnitude better limit of detection than thick blood film microscopy. Gametocytes were also more readily detectable on the magnetically fractionated preparations. Magnetic fractionation had a similar limit of detection to that of RT-PCR. Conclusion Magnetic fractionation is a highly sensitive and convenient method for gametocyte detection in comparison with the standard thick blood film and RT-PCR methods, and could readily be adapted to field application.

  16. Mutations in the Plasmodium falciparum Cyclic Amine Resistance Locus (PfCARL Confer Multidrug Resistance

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    Gregory LaMonte

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Mutations in the Plasmodium falciparum cyclic amine resistance locus (PfCARL are associated with parasite resistance to the imidazolopiperazines, a potent class of novel antimalarial compounds that display both prophylactic and transmission-blocking activity, in addition to activity against blood-stage parasites. Here, we show that pfcarl encodes a protein, with a predicted molecular weight of 153 kDa, that localizes to the cis-Golgi apparatus of the parasite in both asexual and sexual blood stages. Utilizing clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat (CRISPR-mediated gene introduction of 5 variants (L830V, S1076N/I, V1103L, and I1139K, we demonstrate that mutations in pfcarl are sufficient to generate resistance against the imidazolopiperazines in both asexual and sexual blood-stage parasites. We further determined that the mutant PfCARL protein confers resistance to several structurally unrelated compounds. These data suggest that PfCARL modulates the levels of small-molecule inhibitors that affect Golgi-related processes, such as protein sorting or membrane trafficking, and is therefore an important mechanism of resistance in malaria parasites.

  17. Raman acoustic levitation spectroscopy of red blood cells and Plasmodium falciparum trophozoites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puskar, Ljiljana; Tuckermann, Rudolf; Frosch, Torsten; Popp, Jürgen; Ly, Vanalysa; McNaughton, Don; Wood, Bayden R

    2007-09-01

    Methods to probe the molecular structure of living cells are of paramount importance in understanding drug interactions and environmental influences in these complex dynamical systems. The coupling of an acoustic levitation device with a micro-Raman spectrometer provides a direct molecular probe of cellular chemistry in a containerless environment minimizing signal attenuation and eliminating the affects of adhesion to walls and interfaces. We show that the Raman acoustic levitation spectroscopic (RALS) approach can be used to monitor the heme dynamics of a levitated 5 microL suspension of red blood cells and to detect hemozoin in malaria infected cells. The spectra obtained have an excellent signal-to-noise ratio and demonstrate for the first time the utility of the technique as a diagnostic and monitoring tool for minute sample volumes of living animal cells.

  18. Plasmodium falciparum mitochondria import tRNAs along with an active phenylalanyl-tRNA synthetase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Arvind; Sharma, Amit

    2015-02-01

    The Plasmodium falciparum protein translation enzymes aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases (aaRSs) are an emergent family of drug targets. The aaRS ensemble catalyses transfer of amino acids to cognate tRNAs, thus providing charged tRNAs for ribosomal consumption. P. falciparum proteome expression relies on a total of 36 aaRSs for the three translationally independent compartments of cytoplasm, apicoplast and mitochondria. In the present study, we show that, of this set of 36, a single genomic copy of mitochondrial phenylalanyl-tRNA synthetase (mFRS) is targeted to the parasite mitochondria, and that the mFRS gene is exclusive to malaria parasites within the apicomplexan phyla. Our protein cellular localization studies based on immunofluorescence data show that, along with mFRS, P. falciparum harbours two more phenylalanyl-tRNA synthetase (FRS) assemblies that are localized to its apicoplast and cytoplasm. The 'extra' mFRS is found in mitochondria of all asexual blood stage parasites and is competent in aminoacylation. We show further that the parasite mitochondria import tRNAs from the cytoplasmic tRNA pool. Hence drug targeting of FRSs presents a unique opportunity to potentially stall protein production in all three parasite translational compartments.

  19. The pathogenesis of Plasmodium falciparum malaria in humans: insights from splenic physiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Safeukui, Innocent; Deplaine, Guillaume; Brousse, Valentine; Prendki, Virginie; Thellier, Marc; Turner, Gareth D.; Mercereau-Puijalon, Odile

    2011-01-01

    Clinical manifestations of Plasmodium falciparum infection are induced by the asexual stages of the parasite that develop inside red blood cells (RBCs). Because splenic microcirculatory beds filter out altered RBCs, the spleen can innately clear subpopulations of infected or uninfected RBC modified during falciparum malaria. The spleen appears more protective against severe manifestations of malaria in naïve than in immune subjects. The spleen-specific pitting function accounts for a large fraction of parasite clearance in artemisinin-treated patients. RBC loss contributes to malarial anemia, a clinical form associated with subacute progression, frequent splenomegaly, and relatively low parasitemia. Stringent splenic clearance of ring-infected RBCs and uninfected, but parasite-altered, RBCs, may altogether exacerbate anemia and reduce the risks of severe complications associated with high parasite loads, such as cerebral malaria. The age of the patient directly influences the risk of severe manifestations. We hypothesize that coevolution resulting in increased splenic clearance of P. falciparum–altered RBCs in children favors the survival of the host and, ultimately, sustained parasite transmission. This analysis of the RBC–spleen dynamic interactions during P falciparum infection reflects both data and hypotheses, and provides a framework on which a more complete immunologic understanding of malaria pathogenesis may be elaborated. PMID:20852127

  20. Simultaneous determination of phagocytosis of Plasmodium falciparum-parasitized and non-parasitized red blood cells by flow cytometry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gallo Valentina

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Severe falciparum malaria anaemia (SMA is a frequent cause of mortality in children and pregnant women. The most important determinant of SMA appears to be the loss of non-parasitized red blood cells (np-RBCs in excess of loss of parasitized (p- RBCs at schizogony. Based on data from acute SMA where excretion of haemoglobin in urine and increased plasma haemoglobin represented respectively less than 1% and 0.5% of total Hb loss, phagocytosis appears to be the predominant mechanism of removal of np- and p-RBC. Estimates indicate that np-RBCs are cleared in approximately 10-fold excess compared to p-RBCs. An even larger removal of np-RBCs has been described in vivax malaria anaemia. Estimates were based on two single studies both performed on neurosyphilitic patients who underwent malaria therapy. As the share of np-RBC removal is likely to vary between wide limits, it is important to assess the contribution of both np- and p-RBC populations to overall RBC loss, and disclose the mechanism of such variability. As available methods do not discriminate between the removal of np- vs p-RBCs, the purpose of this study was to set up a system allowing the simultaneous determination of phagocytosis of p- and np-RBC in the same sample. Methods and Results Phagocytosis of p- and np-RBCs was quantified in the same sample using double-labelled target cells and the human phagocytic cell-line THP-1, pre-activated by TNF and IFNγ to enhance their phagocytic activity. Target RBCs were double-labelled with fluorescent carboxyfluorescein-succinimidyl ester (CF-SE and the DNA label ethidium bromide (EB. EB, a DNA label, allowed to discriminate p-RBCs that contain parasitic DNA from the np-RBCs devoid of DNA. FACS analysis of THP-1 cells fed with double-labelled RBCs showed that p- and np-RBCs were phagocytosed in different proportions in relation to parasitaemia. Conclusions The assay allowed the analysis of phagocytosis rapidly and with low

  1. Hyperreactive malarial splenomegaly is associated with low levels of antibodies against red blood cell and Plasmodium falciparum derived glycolipids in Yanomami Amerindians from Venezuela.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vivas, Livia; O'Dea, Kieran P; Noya, Oscar; Pabon, Rosalba; Magris, Magda; Botto, Carlos; Holder, Anthony A; Brown, K Neil

    2008-03-01

    The immunological basis of the aberrant immune response in hyperreactive malarial splenomegaly (HMS) is poorly understood, but believed to be associated with polyclonal B cell activation by an unidentified malaria mitogen, leading to unregulated immunoglobulin and autoantibody production. HMS has been previously reported in Yanomami communities in the Upper Orinoco region of the Venezuelan Amazon. To investigate a possible association between antibody responses against Plasmodium falciparum and uninfected red blood cell (URBC) glycolipids and splenomegaly, a direct comparison of the parasite versus host anti-glycolipid antibody responses was made in an isolated community of this area. The anti-P. falciparum glycolipid (Pfglp) response was IgG3 dominated, whereas the uninfected red blood cell glycolipid (URBCglp) response showed a predominance of IgG1. The levels of IgG1 against Pfglp, and of IgG4 and IgM against URBCglp were significantly higher in women, while the anti-Pfglp or URBCglp IgM levels were inversely correlated with the degree of splenomegaly. Overall, these results suggest differential regulation of anti-parasite and autoreactive responses and that these responses may be linked to the development and evolution of HMS in this population exposed to endemic malaria. The high mortality rates associated with HMS point out that its early diagnosis together with the implementation of malaria control measures in these isolated Amerindian communities are a priority.

  2. How Large Asexual Populations Adapt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desai, Michael

    2007-03-01

    We often think of beneficial mutations as being rare, and of adaptation as a sequence of selected substitutions: a beneficial mutation occurs, spreads through a population in a selective sweep, then later another beneficial mutation occurs, and so on. This simple picture is the basis for much of our intuition about adaptive evolution, and underlies a number of practical techniques for analyzing sequence data. Yet many large and mostly asexual populations -- including a wide variety of unicellular organisms and viruses -- live in a very different world. In these populations, beneficial mutations are common, and frequently interfere or cooperate with one another as they all attempt to sweep simultaneously. This radically changes the way these populations adapt: rather than an orderly sequence of selective sweeps, evolution is a constant swarm of competing and interfering mutations. I will describe some aspects of these dynamics, including why large asexual populations cannot evolve very quickly and the character of the diversity they maintain. I will explain how this changes our expectations of sequence data, how sex can help a population adapt, and the potential role of ``mutator'' phenotypes with abnormally high mutation rates. Finally, I will discuss comparisons of these predictions with evolution experiments in laboratory yeast populations.

  3. The Exported Chaperone PfHsp70x Is Dispensable for the Plasmodium falciparum Intraerythrocytic Life Cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cobb, David W; Florentin, Anat; Fierro, Manuel A; Krakowiak, Michelle; Moore, Julie M; Muralidharan, Vasant

    2017-01-01

    Export of parasite proteins into the host erythrocyte is essential for survival of Plasmodium falciparum during its asexual life cycle. While several studies described key factors within the parasite that are involved in protein export, the mechanisms employed to traffic exported proteins within the host cell are currently unknown. Members of the Hsp70 family of chaperones, together with their Hsp40 cochaperones, facilitate protein trafficking in other organisms, and are thus likely used by P. falciparum in the trafficking of its exported proteins. A large group of Hsp40 proteins is encoded by the parasite and exported to the host cell, but only one Hsp70, P. falciparum Hsp70x (PfHsp70x), is exported with them. PfHsp70x is absent in most Plasmodium species and is found only in P. falciparum and closely related species that infect apes. Herein, we have utilized clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat (CRISPR)/Cas9 genome editing in P. falciparum to investigate the essentiality of PfHsp70x. We show that parasitic growth was unaffected by knockdown of PfHsp70x using both the dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR)-based destabilization domain and the glmS ribozyme system. Similarly, a complete gene knockout of PfHsp70x did not affect the ability of P. falciparum to proceed through its intraerythrocytic life cycle. The effect of PfHsp70x knockdown/knockout on the export of proteins to the host red blood cell (RBC), including the critical virulence factor P. falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1), was tested, and we found that this process was unaffected. These data show that although PfHsp70x is the sole exported Hsp70, it is not essential for the asexual development of P. falciparum . IMPORTANCE Half of the world's population lives at risk for malaria. The intraerythrocytic life cycle of Plasmodium spp. is responsible for clinical manifestations of malaria; therefore, knowledge of the parasite's ability to survive within the erythrocyte is

  4. Coming to an Asexual Identity: Negotiating Identity, Negotiating Desire.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scherrer, Kristin S

    2008-10-01

    Sexuality is generally considered an important aspect of self-hood. Therefore, individuals who do not experience sexual attraction, and embrace an asexual identity are in a unique position to inform the social construction of sexuality. This study explores the experiences of asexual individuals utilizing open ended Internet survey data from 102 self-identified asexual people. In this paper I describe several distinct aspects of asexual identities: the meanings of sexual, and therefore, asexual behaviors, essentialist characterizations of asexuality, and lastly, interest in romance as a distinct dimension of sexuality. These findings have implications not only for asexual identities, but also for the connections of asexuality with other marginalized sexualities.

  5. Modeling metabolism and stage-specific growth of Plasmodium falciparum HB3 during the intraerythrocytic developmental cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Xin; Reifman, Jaques; Wallqvist, Anders

    2014-10-01

    The human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum goes through a complex life cycle, including a roughly 48-hour-long intraerythrocytic developmental cycle (IDC) in human red blood cells. A better understanding of the metabolic processes required during the asexual blood-stage reproduction will enhance our basic knowledge of P. falciparum and help identify critical metabolic reactions and pathways associated with blood-stage malaria. We developed a metabolic network model that mechanistically links time-dependent gene expression, metabolism, and stage-specific growth, allowing us to predict the metabolic fluxes, the biomass production rates, and the timing of production of the different biomass components during the IDC. We predicted time- and stage-specific production of precursors and macromolecules for P. falciparum (strain HB3), allowing us to link specific metabolites to specific physiological functions. For example, we hypothesized that coenzyme A might be involved in late-IDC DNA replication and cell division. Moreover, the predicted ATP metabolism indicated that energy was mainly produced from glycolysis and utilized for non-metabolic processes. Finally, we used the model to classify the entire tricarboxylic acid cycle into segments, each with a distinct function, such as superoxide detoxification, glutamate/glutamine processing, and metabolism of fumarate as a byproduct of purine biosynthesis. By capturing the normal metabolic and growth progression in P. falciparum during the IDC, our model provides a starting point for further elucidation of strain-specific metabolic activity, host-parasite interactions, stress-induced metabolic responses, and metabolic responses to antimalarial drugs and drug candidates.

  6. Spatiotemporal and functional characterisation of the Plasmodium falciparum cGMP-dependent protein kinase.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christine S Hopp

    Full Text Available Signalling by 3'-5'-cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP exists in virtually all eukaryotes. In the apicomplexan parasite Plasmodium, the cGMP-dependent protein kinase (PKG has previously been reported to play a critical role in four key stages of the life cycle. The Plasmodium falciparum isoform (PfPKG is essential for the initiation of gametogenesis and for blood stage schizont rupture and work on the orthologue from the rodent malaria parasite P. berghei (PbPKG has shown additional roles in ookinete differentiation and motility as well as liver stage schizont development. In the present study, PfPKG expression and subcellular location in asexual blood stages was investigated using transgenic epitope-tagged PfPKG-expressing P. falciparum parasites. In Western blotting experiments and immunofluorescence analysis (IFA, maximal PfPKG expression was detected at the late schizont stage. While IFA suggested a cytosolic location, a degree of overlap with markers of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER was found and subcellular fractionation showed some association with the peripheral membrane fraction. This broad localisation is consistent with the notion that PfPKG, as with the mammalian orthologue, has numerous cellular substrates. This idea is further supported by the global protein phosphorylation pattern of schizonts which was substantially changed following PfPKG inhibition, suggesting a complex role for PfPKG during schizogony.

  7. Identification and characterization of a novel Plasmodium falciparum adhesin involved in erythrocyte invasion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nidhi Hans

    Full Text Available Malaria remains a major health problem worldwide. All clinical symptoms of malaria are attributed to the asexual blood stages of the parasite life cycle. Proteins resident in apical organelles and present on the surface of P. falciparum merozoites are considered promising candidates for the development of blood stage malaria vaccines. In the present study, we have identified and characterized a microneme associated antigen, PfMA [PlasmoDB Gene ID: PF3D7_0316000, PFC0700c]. The gene was selected by applying a set of screening criteria such as transcriptional upregulation at late schizogony, inter-species conservation and the presence of signal sequence or transmembrane domains. The gene sequence of PfMA was found to be conserved amongst various Plasmodium species. We experimentally demonstrated that the transcript for PfMA was expressed only in the late blood stages of parasite consistent with a putative role in erythrocyte invasion. PfMA was localized by immunofluorescence and immuno-electron microscopy to be in the micronemes, an apical organelle of merozoites. The functional role of the PfMA protein in erythrocyte invasion was identified as a parasite adhesin involved in direct attachment with the target erythrocyte. PfMA was demonstrated to bind erythrocytes in a sialic acid independent, chymotrypsin and trypsin resistant manner and its antibodies inhibited P. falciparum erythrocyte invasion. Invasion of erythrocytes is a complex multistep process that involves a number of redundant ligand-receptor interactions many of which still remain unknown and even uncharacterized. Our work has identified and characterized a novel P. falciparum adhesin involved in erythrocyte invasion.

  8. A novel method for extracting nucleic acids from dried blood spots for ultrasensitive detection of low-density Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax infections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zainabadi, Kayvan; Adams, Matthew; Han, Zay Yar; Lwin, Hnin Wai; Han, Kay Thwe; Ouattara, Amed; Thura, Si; Plowe, Christopher V; Nyunt, Myaing M

    2017-09-18

    Greater Mekong Subregion countries are committed to eliminating Plasmodium falciparum malaria by 2025. Current elimination interventions target infections at parasite densities that can be detected by standard microscopy or rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs). More sensitive detection methods have been developed to detect lower density "asymptomatic" infections that may represent an important transmission reservoir. These ultrasensitive polymerase chain reaction (usPCR) tests have been used to identify target populations for mass drug administration (MDA). To date, malaria usPCR tests have used either venous or capillary blood sampling, which entails complex sample collection, processing and shipping requirements. An ultrasensitive method performed on standard dried blood spots (DBS) would greatly facilitate the molecular surveillance studies needed for targeting elimination interventions. A highly sensitive method for detecting Plasmodium falciparum and P. vivax 18S ribosomal RNA from DBS was developed by empirically optimizing nucleic acid extraction conditions. The limit of detection (LoD) was determined using spiked DBS samples that were dried and stored under simulated field conditions. Further, to assess its utility for routine molecular surveillance, two cross-sectional surveys were performed in Myanmar during the wet and dry seasons. The lower LoD of the DBS-based ultrasensitive assay was 20 parasites/mL for DBS collected on Whatman 3MM filter paper and 23 parasites/mL for Whatman 903 Protein Saver cards-equivalent to 1 parasite per 50 µL DBS. This is about 5000-fold more sensitive than standard RDTs and similar to the LoD of ≤16-22 parasites/mL reported for other ultrasensitive methods based on whole blood. In two cross-sectional surveys in Myanmar, nearly identical prevalence estimates were obtained from contemporaneous DBS samples and capillary blood samples collected during the wet and dry season. The DBS-based ultrasensitive method described in this

  9. 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

  10. The Structure of Plasmodium falciparum Blood-Stage 6-Cys Protein Pf41 Reveals an Unexpected Intra-Domain Insertion Required for Pf12 Coordination.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle L Parker

    Full Text Available Plasmodium falciparum is an apicomplexan parasite and the etiological agent of severe human malaria. The complex P. falciparum life cycle is supported by a diverse repertoire of surface proteins including the family of 6-Cys s48/45 antigens. Of these, Pf41 is localized to the surface of the blood-stage merozoite through its interaction with the glycophosphatidylinositol-anchored Pf12. Our recent structural characterization of Pf12 revealed two juxtaposed 6-Cys domains (D1 and D2. Pf41, however, contains an additional segment of 120 residues predicted to form a large spacer separating its two 6-Cys domains. To gain insight into the assembly mechanism and overall architecture of the Pf12-Pf41 complex, we first determined the 2.45 Å resolution crystal structure of Pf41 using zinc single-wavelength anomalous dispersion. Structural analysis revealed an unexpected domain organization where the Pf41 6-Cys domains are, in fact, intimately associated and the additional residues instead map predominately to an inserted domain-like region (ID located between two β-strands in D1. Notably, the ID is largely proteolyzed in the final structure suggesting inherent flexibility. To assess the contribution of the ID to complex formation, we engineered a form of Pf41 where the ID was replaced by a short glycine-serine linker and showed by isothermal titration calorimetry that binding to Pf12 was abrogated. Finally, protease protection assays showed that the proteolytic susceptibility of the ID was significantly reduced in the complex, consistent with the Pf41 ID directly engaging Pf12. Collectively, these data establish the architectural organization of Pf41 and define an essential role for the Pf41 ID in promoting assembly of the Pf12-Pf41 heterodimeric complex.

  11. Polyamine uptake by the intraerythrocytic malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niemand, J; Louw, A I; Birkholtz, L; Kirk, K

    2012-09-01

    Polyamines and the enzymes involved in their biosynthesis are present at high levels in rapidly proliferating cells, including cancer cells and protozoan parasites. Inhibition of polyamine biosynthesis in asexual blood-stage malaria parasites causes cytostatic arrest of parasite development under in vitro conditions, but does not cure infections in vivo. This may be due to replenishment of the parasite's intracellular polyamine pool via salvage of exogenous polyamines from the host. However, the mechanism(s) of polyamine uptake by the intraerythrocytic parasite are not well understood. In this study, the uptake of the polyamines, putrescine and spermidine, into Plasmodium falciparum parasites functionally isolated from their host erythrocyte was investigated using radioisotope flux techniques. Both putrescine and spermidine were taken up into isolated parasites via a temperature-dependent process that showed cross-competition between different polyamines. There was also some inhibition of polyamine uptake by basic amino acids. Inhibition of polyamine biosynthesis led to an increase in the total amount of putrescine and spermidine taken up from the extracellular medium. The uptake of putrescine and spermidine by isolated parasites was independent of extracellular Na(+) but increased with increasing external pH. Uptake also showed a marked dependence on the parasite's membrane potential, decreasing with membrane depolarization and increasing with membrane hyperpolarization. The data are consistent with polyamines being taken up into the parasite via an electrogenic uptake process, energised by the parasite's inwardly negative membrane potential. Copyright © 2012 Australian Society for Parasitology Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Nuclear pores and perinuclear expression sites of var and ribosomal DNA genes correspond to physically distinct regions in Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guizetti, Julien; Martins, Rafael Miyazawa; Guadagnini, Stéphanie; Claes, Aurélie; Scherf, Artur

    2013-05-01

    The human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum modifies the erythrocyte it infects by exporting variant proteins to the host cell surface. The var gene family that codes for a large, variant adhesive surface protein called P. falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) plays a particular role in this process, which is linked to pathogenesis and immune evasion. A single member of this gene family is highly transcribed while the other 59 members remain silenced. Importantly, var gene transcription occurs at a spatially restricted, but yet undefined, perinuclear site that is distinct from repressed var gene clusters. To advance our understanding of monoallelic expression, we investigated whether nuclear pores associate with the var gene expression site. To this end, we studied the nuclear pore organization during the asexual blood stage using a specific antibody directed against a subunit of the nuclear pore, P. falciparum Nup116 (PfNup116). Ring and schizont stage parasites showed highly polarized nuclear pore foci, whereas in trophozoite stage nuclear pores redistributed over the entire nuclear surface. Colocalization studies of var transcripts and anti-PfNup116 antibodies showed clear dissociation between nuclear pores and the var gene expression site in ring stage. Similar results were obtained for another differentially transcribed perinuclear gene family, the ribosomal DNA units. Furthermore, we show that in the poised state, the var gene locus is not physically linked to nuclear pores. Our results indicate that P. falciparum does form compartments of high transcriptional activity at the nuclear periphery which are, unlike the case in yeast, devoid of nuclear pores.

  13. Manufacture and Testing of a High Field Gradient Magnetic Fractionation System for Quantitative Detection of Plasmodium falciparum Gametocytes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karl, Stephan; Woodward, Robert C.; Davis, Timothy M. E.; St. Pierre, Tim G.

    2010-12-01

    Plasmodium falciparum is the most dangerous of the human malaria parasite species and accounts for millions of clinical episodes of malaria each year in tropical countries. The pathogenicity of Plasmodium falciparum is a result of its ability to infect erythrocytes where it multiplies asexually over 48 h or develops into sexual forms known as gametocytes. If sufficient male and female gametocytes are taken up by a mosquito vector, it becomes infectious. Therefore, the presence and density of gametocytes in human blood is an important indicator of human-to-mosquito transmission of malaria. Recently, we have shown that high field gradient magnetic fractionation improves gametocyte detection in human blood samples. Here we present two important new developments. Firstly we introduce a quantitative approach to replace the previous qualitative method and, secondly, we describe a novel method that enables cost-effective production of the magnetic fractionation equipment required to carry out gametocyte quantification. We show that our custom-made magnetic fractionation equipment can deliver results with similar sensitivity and convenience but for a small fraction of the cost.

  14. Human genetic polymorphisms in the Knops blood group are not associated with a protective advantage against Plasmodium falciparum malaria in Southern Ghana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansson, Helle H; Kurtzhals, Jørgen A; Goka, Bamenla Q; Rodriques, Onike P; Nkrumah, Francis N; Theander, Thor G; Bygbjerg, Ib Christian; Alifrangis, Michael

    2013-11-07

    The complex interactions between the human host and the Plasmodium falciparum parasite and the factors influencing severity of disease are still not fully understood. Human single nucleotide polymorphisms SNPs associated with Knops blood group system; carried by complement receptor 1 may be associated with the pathology of P. falciparum malaria, and susceptibility to disease. The objective of this study was to determine the genotype and haplotype frequencies of the SNPs defining the Knops blood group antigens; Kna/b, McCoya/b, Swain-Langley1/2 and KCAM+/- in Ghanaian patients with malaria and determine possible associations between these polymorphisms and the severity of the disease. Study participants were patients (n = 267) admitted to the emergency room at the Department of Child Health, Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, Accra, Ghana during the malaria season from June to August in 1995, 1996 and 1997, classified as uncomplicated malaria (n = 89), severe anaemia (n = 57) and cerebral malaria (n = 121) and controls who did not have a detectable Plasmodium infection or were symptomless carriers of the parasite (n = 275). The frequencies were determined using a post-PCR ligation detection reaction-fluorescent microsphere assay, developed to detect the SNPs defining the antigens. Chi-square/Fisher's exact test and logistic regression models were used to analyse the data. As expected, high frequencies of the alleles Kna, McCb, Sl2 and KCAM- were found in the Ghanaian population. Apart from small significant differences between the groups at the Sl locus, no significant allelic or genotypic differences were found between the controls and the disease groups or between the disease groups. The polymorphisms define eight different haplotypes H1(2.4%), H2(9.4%), H3(59.8%), H4(0%), H5(25.2%), H6(0.33%), H7(2.8%) and H8(0%). Investigating these haplotypes, no significant differences between any of the groups were found. The results confirm earlier findings of high frequencies of

  15. Changes in lipid composition during sexual development of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tran, Phuong N; Brown, Simon H J; Rug, Melanie; Ridgway, Melanie C; Mitchell, Todd W; Maier, Alexander G

    2016-02-06

    The development of differentiated sexual stages (gametocytes) within human red blood cells is essential for the propagation of the malaria parasite, since only mature gametocytes will survive in the mosquito's midgut. Hence gametocytogenesis is a pre-requisite for transmission of the disease. Physiological changes involved in sexual differentiation are still enigmatic. In particular the lipid metabolism-despite being central to cellular regulation and development-is not well explored. Here the lipid profiles of red blood cells infected with the five different sexual stages of Plasmodium falciparum were analysed by mass spectrometry and compared to those from uninfected and asexual trophozoite infected erythrocytes. Fundamental differences between erythrocytes infected with the different parasite stages were revealed. In mature gametocytes many lipids that decrease in the trophozoite and early gametocyte infected red blood cells are regained. In particular, regulators of membrane fluidity, cholesterol and sphingomyelin, increased significantly during gametocyte maturation. Neutral lipids (serving mainly as caloriometric reserves) increased from 3 % of total lipids in uninfected to 27 % in stage V gametocyte infected red blood cells. The major membrane lipid class (phospholipids) decreased during gametocyte development. The lipid profiles of infected erythrocytes are characteristic for the particular parasite life cycle and maturity stages of gametocytes. The obtained lipid profiles are crucial in revealing the lipid metabolism of malaria parasites and identifying targets to interfere with this deadly disease.

  16. Freeze-thaw lysates of Plasmodium falciparum-infected red blood cells induce differentiation of functionally competent regulatory T cells from memory T cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finney, Olivia C; Lawrence, Emma; Gray, Alice P; Njie, Madi; Riley, Eleanor M; Walther, Michael

    2012-07-01

    In addition to naturally occurring regulatory T (nTreg) cells derived from the thymus, functionally competent Treg cells can be induced in vitro from peripheral blood lymphocytes in response to TCR stimulation with cytokine costimulation. Using these artificial stimulation conditions, both naïve as well as memory CD4(+) T cells can be converted into induced Treg (iTreg) cells, but the cellular origin of such iTreg cells in vivo or in response to more physiologic stimulation with pathogen-derived antigens is less clear. Here, we demonstrate that a freeze/thaw lysate of Plasmodium falciparum schizont extract (PfSE) can induce functionally competent Treg cells from peripheral lymphocytes in a time- and dose-dependent manner without the addition of exogenous costimulatory factors. The PfSE-mediated induction of Treg cells required the presence of nTreg cells in the starting culture. Further experiments mixing either memory or naïve T cells with antigen presenting cells and CFSE-labeled Treg cells identified CD4(+) CD45RO(+) CD25(-) memory T cells rather than Treg cells as the primary source of PfSE-induced Treg cells. Taken together, these data suggest that in the presence of nTreg cells, PfSE induces memory T cells to convert into iTreg cells that subsequently expand alongside PfSE-induced effector T cells. © 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  17. X-ray microanalysis of Plasmodium falciparum and infected red blood cells: effects of qinghaosu and chloroquine on potassium, sodium, and phosphorus composition

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, P.; Ye, Z.; Van Dyke, K.; Kirk, R.G.

    1988-01-01

    Cryosections of human red blood cells infected by Plasmodium falciparum were analyzed by energy dispersive x-ray microanalysis to determine the elemental composition of the parasites and their red cell hosts separately. The effects of two antimalarial drugs, qinghaosu and chloroquine, on potassium, sodium, and phosphorus concentrations were studied. Malarial infection causes a decrease in potassium concentration and an increase in sodium concentration in the host red cells. The drastic change in the cation composition, however, occurs only in red cells infected by late stage parasites (late trophozoite and schizont). Red cells infected by early stage parasites (ring stage) show only small changes in sodium concentration. Furthermore, the noninfected red cells in parasitized cultures show no difference in composition from those of normal red cells. Treatment of the parasitized cultures with qinghaosu (10(-6) M) or chloroquine (10(-6) M) for 8 hr causes phosphorus concentration of both early and late parasites to decrease. An 8 hr treatment with qinghaosu also produces a reduction in potassium and an increase in sodium concentrations in early and late parasites. In contrast, 8 hr treatment with chloroquine only causes a change in the sodium and potassium concentrations of the late stage parasites and does not affect the early stage parasites

  18. Identification of Phytophthora sojae genes involved in asexual ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    ual sporulation or germination. But molecular details about asexual spore development in P. sojae are limited (Tyler et al. 2006). In the present study, to understand the molecular basis of asexual spore development in P. sojae, we investigated gene expression changes involved in asexual sporulation after ul- traviolet (UV) ...

  19. Origins of asexuality in Bryobia mites (Acari: Tetranychidae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ros, V.I.D.; Breeuwer, J.A.J.; Menken, S.B.J.

    2008-01-01

    Background Obligate asexual reproduction is rare in the animal kingdom. Generally, asexuals are considered evolutionary dead ends that are unable to radiate. The phytophagous mite genus Bryobia contains a large number of asexual species. In this study, we investigate the origin and evolution of

  20. Morphological peculiarities of bryophytes asexual organs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oksana Lobachevska

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The main types of brood organs of dominant bryophyte species on dumps of the mining factories were determined. The special features of morphology, localization and genesis of specialized asexual propagula and gemmae were detected. The analysis of their role in reproductive strategy of colonist species was conducted.

  1. Optimization of a protocol for extraction of Plasmodium falciparum ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    STORAGESEVER

    2008-05-16

    May 16, 2008 ... compared to saponin lysed samples when such whole blood ... infected blood intended for extraction of P. falciparum RNA for DNA microarrays and other sensitive ... TaqMan® and LightCycler® technology, and other.

  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

    Licochalcone A, isolated from Chinese licorice roots, inhibited the in vitro growth of both chloroquine-susceptible (3D7) and chloroquine-resistant (Dd2) Plasmodium falciparum strains in a [3H]hypoxanthine uptake assay. The growth inhibition of the chloroquine-resistant strain by licochalcone A w...... that licochalcone A exhibits potent antimalarial activity and might be developed into a new antimalarial drug....... 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...

  3. Recognition of Plasmodium falciparum mature gametocyte-infected erythrocytes by antibodies of semi-immune adults and malaria-exposed children from Gabon

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gebru, Tamirat; Ajua, Anthony; Theisen, Michael

    2017-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Transmission of malaria from man to mosquito depends on the presence of gametocytes, the sexual stage of Plasmodium parasites in the infected host. Naturally acquired antibodies against gametocytes exist and may play a role in controlling transmission by limiting the gametocyte...... falciparum mature gametocytes were investigated in sera of semi-immune adults and malaria-exposed children. In addition, the effect of immunization with GMZ2, a blood stage malaria vaccine candidate, and the effect of intestinal helminth infection on the development of immunity to gametocytes of P...... was significantly higher after fixation and permeabilization of parasitized erythrocytes. Following vaccination with the malaria vaccine candidate GMZ2, anti-gametocyte Ab concentration decreased in adults compared to baseline. Ab response to whole asexual stage antigens had a significant but weak positive...

  4. The transcriptome of the intraerythrocytic developmental cycle of Plasmodium falciparum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zbynek Bozdech

    2003-10-01

    Full Text Available Plasmodium falciparum is the causative agent of the most burdensome form of human malaria, affecting 200-300 million individuals per year worldwide. The recently sequenced genome of P. falciparum revealed over 5,400 genes, of which 60% encode proteins of unknown function. Insights into the biochemical function and regulation of these genes will provide the foundation for future drug and vaccine development efforts toward eradication of this disease. By analyzing the complete asexual intraerythrocytic developmental cycle (IDC transcriptome of the HB3 strain of P. falciparum, we demonstrate that at least 60% of the genome is transcriptionally active during this stage. Our data demonstrate that this parasite has evolved an extremely specialized mode of transcriptional regulation that produces a continuous cascade of gene expression, beginning with genes corresponding to general cellular processes, such as protein synthesis, and ending with Plasmodium-specific functionalities, such as genes involved in erythrocyte invasion. The data reveal that genes contiguous along the chromosomes are rarely coregulated, while transcription from the plastid genome is highly coregulated and likely polycistronic. Comparative genomic hybridization between HB3 and the reference genome strain (3D7 was used to distinguish between genes not expressed during the IDC and genes not detected because of possible sequence variations. Genomic differences between these strains were found almost exclusively in the highly antigenic subtelomeric regions of chromosomes. The simple cascade of gene regulation that directs the asexual development of P. falciparum is unprecedented in eukaryotic biology. The transcriptome of the IDC resembles a "just-in-time" manufacturing process whereby induction of any given gene occurs once per cycle and only at a time when it is required. These data provide to our knowledge the first comprehensive view of the timing of transcription throughout the

  5. Public goods dilemma in asexual ant societies

    OpenAIRE

    Dobata, Shigeto; Tsuji, Kazuki

    2013-01-01

    This study reports experimental evidence for the “public goods dilemma” between cooperators and cheaters in an asexual ant society, in which cheating is always more rewarding for individuals but cooperation at the cost of individual fitness leads to better performance of groups. Although this dilemma provides the basic principle of social evolution, its experimental demonstration with underlying genetics and fitness evaluation for both cooperators and cheaters still lacks in societies other t...

  6. Inflammatory reactions in placental blood of Plasmodium falciparum-infected women and high concentrations of soluble E-selectin and a circulating P. falciparum protein in the cord sera

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jakobsen, P H; Rasheed, F N; Bulmer, J N

    1998-01-01

    concentrations measured in the placenta. Markers of inflammatory reactions: IL-10, sIL-2R, sIL-4R, and soluble tumour necrosis factor receptor I (sTNF-RI) were found in high concentrations in the placenta, indicating that inflammatory reactions take place in the placenta which has been regarded...... as an immunoprivileged site. Concentrations of soluble vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (sVCAM-1) and soluble intracellular adhesion molecule-1 (sICAM-1), potential adhesion receptors for malaria parasites, were associated with an active P. falciparum infection in the placenta although the associations did not reach...

  7. Prevalence of falciparum malaria amongst pregnant women in Aba ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Malaria during pregnancy poses a substantial risk to mother and foetus especially an infection with Plasmodium falciparum. This study was undertaken to assess the prevalence of falciparum malaria among pregnant women in Aba South Local Government Area, Abia State, south-east Nigeria. Blood samples from 432 ...

  8. Novel Plasmodium falciparum metabolic network reconstruction identifies shifts associated with clinical antimalarial resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carey, Maureen A; Papin, Jason A; Guler, Jennifer L

    2017-07-19

    Malaria remains a major public health burden and resistance has emerged to every antimalarial on the market, including the frontline drug, artemisinin. Our limited understanding of Plasmodium biology hinders the elucidation of resistance mechanisms. In this regard, systems biology approaches can facilitate the integration of existing experimental knowledge and further understanding of these mechanisms. Here, we developed a novel genome-scale metabolic network reconstruction, iPfal17, of the asexual blood-stage P. falciparum parasite to expand our understanding of metabolic changes that support resistance. We identified 11 metabolic tasks to evaluate iPfal17 performance. Flux balance analysis and simulation of gene knockouts and enzyme inhibition predict candidate drug targets unique to resistant parasites. Moreover, integration of clinical parasite transcriptomes into the iPfal17 reconstruction reveals patterns associated with antimalarial resistance. These results predict that artemisinin sensitive and resistant parasites differentially utilize scavenging and biosynthetic pathways for multiple essential metabolites, including folate and polyamines. Our findings are consistent with experimental literature, while generating novel hypotheses about artemisinin resistance and parasite biology. We detect evidence that resistant parasites maintain greater metabolic flexibility, perhaps representing an incomplete transition to the metabolic state most appropriate for nutrient-rich blood. Using this systems biology approach, we identify metabolic shifts that arise with or in support of the resistant phenotype. This perspective allows us to more productively analyze and interpret clinical expression data for the identification of candidate drug targets for the treatment of resistant parasites.

  9. The Severity of Plasmodium falciparum infection is associated with transcript levels of var genes encoding endothelial protein C receptor-binding P. falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mkumbaye, Sixbert I; Wang, Christian W; Lyimo, Eric

    2017-01-01

    By attaching infected erythrocytes to the vascular lining, Plasmodium falciparum parasites leave blood circulation and avoid splenic clearance. This sequestration is central to pathogenesis. Severe malaria is associated with parasites expressing an antigenically distinct P. falciparum erythrocyte...

  10. Synthetic TLR4 agonists enhance functional antibodies and CD4+ T-cell responses against the Plasmodium falciparum GMZ2.6C multi-stage vaccine antigen

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Baldwin, Susan L; Roeffen, Will; Singh, Susheel K

    2016-01-01

    A subunit vaccine targeting both transmission and pathogenic asexual blood stages of Plasmodium falciparum, i.e., a multi-stage vaccine, could be a powerful tool to combat malaria. Here, we report production and characterization of the recombinant protein GMZ2.6C, which contains a fragment of the......-γ and TNF in response to GMZ2.6C. Both of these agonists have good safety records in humans....... of the sexual-stage protein Pfs48/45-6C genetically fused to GMZ2, an asexual vaccine antigen in advanced clinical development. To select the most suitable vaccine formulation for downstream clinical studies, GMZ2.6C was tested with various immune modulators in different adjuvant formulations (stable emulsions......, liposomes, and alum) in C57BL/6 mice. Some, but not all, formulations containing either the synthetic TLR4 agonist GLA or SLA elicited the highest parasite-specific antibody titers, the greatest IFN-γ responses in CD4+ TH1 cells, and the highest percentage of multifunctional CD4+ T cells expressing IFN...

  11. 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...... into A and B types based on the presence or absence of a 25 amino acid motif in the semi-conserved domain. A particular type B RIFIN, PF13_0006, has previously been shown to be strongly transcribed in the asexual and sexual stages of P. falciparum in vitro. METHODS: Antibodies to recombinant PF13_0006 RIFIN...... were used in immunofluorescence and confocal imaging of 3D7 parasites throughout the asexual reproduction and sexual development to examine the expression of PF13_0006. Furthermore, reactivity to recombinant PF13_0006 was measured in plasma samples collected from individuals from both East and West...

  12. FRET imaging of hemoglobin concentration in Plasmodium falciparum-infected red cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandro Esposito

    Full Text Available During its intraerythrocytic asexual reproduction cycle Plasmodium falciparum consumes up to 80% of the host cell hemoglobin, in large excess over its metabolic needs. A model of the homeostasis of falciparum-infected red blood cells suggested an explanation based on the need to reduce the colloid-osmotic pressure within the host cell to prevent its premature lysis. Critical for this hypothesis was that the hemoglobin concentration within the host cell be progressively reduced from the trophozoite stage onwards.The experiments reported here were designed to test this hypothesis by direct measurements of the hemoglobin concentration in live, infected red cells. We developed a novel, non-invasive method to quantify the hemoglobin concentration in single cells, based on Förster resonance energy transfer between hemoglobin molecules and the fluorophore calcein. Fluorescence lifetime imaging allowed the quantitative mapping of the hemoglobin concentration within the cells. The average fluorescence lifetimes of uninfected cohorts was 270+/-30 ps (mean+/-SD; N = 45. In the cytoplasm of infected cells the fluorescence lifetime of calcein ranged from 290+/-20 ps for cells with ring stage parasites to 590+/-13 ps and 1050+/-60 ps for cells with young trophozoites and late stage trophozoite/early schizonts, respectively. This was equivalent to reductions in hemoglobin concentration spanning the range from 7.3 to 2.3 mM, in line with the model predictions. An unexpected ancillary finding was the existence of a microdomain under the host cell membrane with reduced calcein quenching by hemoglobin in cells with mature trophozoite stage parasites.The results support the predictions of the colloid-osmotic hypothesis and provide a better understanding of the homeostasis of malaria-infected red cells. In addition, they revealed the existence of a distinct peripheral microdomain in the host cell with limited access to hemoglobin molecules indicating the

  13. Haemoglobin C and S role in acquired immunity against Plasmodium falciparum malaria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Federica Verra

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available A recently proposed mechanism of protection for haemoglobin C (HbC; beta6Glu-->Lys links an abnormal display of PfEMP1, an antigen involved in malaria pathogenesis, on the surface of HbC infected erythrocytes together with the observation of reduced cytoadhesion of parasitized erythrocytes and impaired rosetting in vitro. We investigated the impact of this hypothesis on the development of acquired immunity against Plasmodium falciparum variant surface antigens (VSA encoding PfEMP1 in HbC in comparison with HbA and HbS carriers of Burkina Faso. We measured: i total IgG against a single VSA, A4U, and against a panel of VSA from severe malaria cases in human sera from urban and rural areas of Burkina Faso of different haemoglobin genotypes (CC, AC, AS, SC, SS; ii total IgG against recombinant proteins of P. falciparum asexual sporozoite, blood stage antigens, and parasite schizont extract; iii total IgG against tetanus toxoid. Results showed that the reported abnormal cell-surface display of PfEMP1 on HbC infected erythrocytes observed in vitro is not associated to lower anti- PfEMP1 response in vivo. Higher immune response against the VSA panel and malaria antigens were observed in all adaptive genotypes containing at least one allelic variant HbC or HbS in the low transmission urban area whereas no differences were detected in the high transmission rural area. In both contexts the response against tetanus toxoid was not influenced by the beta-globin genotype. These findings suggest that both HbC and HbS affect the early development of naturally acquired immunity against malaria. The enhanced immune reactivity in both HbC and HbS carriers supports the hypothesis that the protection against malaria of these adaptive genotypes might be at least partially mediated by acquired immunity against malaria.

  14. Una prueba de captura rápida de antígenos con tiras reactivas para el diagnóstico de malaria por P. falciparum A rapid dipstick antigen capture assay for the diagnosis of falciparum malaria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    1997-01-01

    Full Text Available Los avances recientes en el diagnóstico de infecciones causadas por Plasmodium falciparum han permitido considerar la posibilidad de complementar la microscopia óptica con una prueba estandarizada de captura de antígenos con tiras reactivas basada en la detección de una proteína específica del parásito, que es segregada por los estadios sanguíneos asexuados y los gametocitos inmaduros, pero no por otros estadios. Los ensayos de campo indican que esta prueba proporciona resultados replicables con un umbral de detección de parasitemia de P. falciparum similar al obtenido con microscopia habitual de alta calidad para malaria y una especificidad y sensibilidad de alrededor de 90% en comparación con la microscopia habitual con extensión de sangre en capa gruesa. La estabilidad, reproducibilidad y facilidad de uso de la prueba indican claramente sus posibilidades de aplicación en el tratamiento de la malaria, particularmente en el nivel de atención de salud periférico, siempre y cuando se pueda garantizar su precisión y su costo sea módico. También debe considerarse la posibilidad de usarla más ampliamente donde lo justifiquen los requisitos operativos y los recursos y donde las decisiones se basen en una evaluación adecuada de los sistemas de prestación de asistencia de salud existentes.Recent advances in the diagnosis of Plasmodium falciparum infections have made it possible to consider supplementing light microscopy with a standardized dipstick antigen capture assay based on the detection of a parasite-specific protein, which is secreted by the asexual blood stages and immature gametocytes but not by the other stages. Field trials indicate that this dipstick assay provides consistently reproducible results, with a threshold of detection of P. falciparum parasitaemia similar to that obtained by high quality routine malaria microscopy and a specificity and sensitivity of around 90% compared with standard thick blood film

  15. Inactivation of Plasmodium falciparum in whole body by riboflavin ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Background Malaria parasites are frequently trans- mitted by unscreened blood transfusions in Africa. Pathogen reduction methods in whole blood would thus greatly improve blood safety. We aimed to determine the efficacy of riboflavin plus irradiation for treatment of whole blood infected with Plasmodium falciparum.

  16. Patterns of Asexuality in China: Sexual Activity, Sexual and Romantic Attraction, and Sexual Desire.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Lijun; Su, Yanchen

    2018-05-01

    This study examined patterns of asexuality in Chinese asexual people in terms of sexual activities, sexual/romantic attraction, and sexual desire. The sample included 227 (64 men and 163 women) asexual participants and 57 (26 men and 31 women) uncertain asexual participants recruited from social networks for asexual people. The control group included 217 (115 men and 102 women) heterosexual participants recruited from general social networks. Participants scoring 40 or higher on the Asexuality Identification Scale were classified as asexual. Asexual participants reported having less frequent masturbation, sexual intercourse experience, and sexual and romantic attraction compared to heterosexual participants. Lower sexual attraction among asexuals indicated that "people who experience little or no sexual attraction" would be a more appropriate definition of asexuality. The pattern of uncertain asexual participants' sexual/romantic attraction and sexual desire was intermediate between heterosexual and asexual participants. Asexual participants scored significantly lower on dyadic sexual desire and slightly lower on solitary sexual desire than heterosexual participants. There were significant differences in sexual activities and solitary sexual desire among romantic orientation categories. Homoromantic participants showed higher dyadic sexual desire and were more likely to engage in masturbation, indicating the heterogeneity among asexual people. The findings indicated that Chinese asexual people showed similar patterns of asexuality as in Western nations. Specifically, asexual people have little or no sexual attraction, non-partner-orientated sexual desire, and are heterogeneous in sexual activities and sexual desire. This implies similar mechanisms underlying the etiology of asexuality across cultures.

  17. A comparison of the sensitivities of detection of Plasmodium falciparum gametocytes by magnetic fractionation, thick blood film microscopy, and RT-PCR

    OpenAIRE

    Karl, Stephan; Davis, Timothy ME; St-Pierre, Tim G

    2009-01-01

    Abstract Background The magnetic properties of Plasmodium-infected erythrocytes have been exploited for different clinical and research purposes. A recent study in a rural clinical setting in Papua New Guinea has demonstrated that Plasmodium falciparum gametocyte detection is facilitated by magnetic deposition microscopy but no study has yet determined the relative sensitivity and limit of detection of a magnetic fractionation technique. The present study compares the detection limit and sens...

  18. Alanine metabolism in acute falciparum malaria

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pukrittayakamee, S.; Krishna, S.; ter Kuile, F.; Wilaiwan, O.; Williamson, D. H.; White, N. J.

    2002-01-01

    We investigated the integrity of the gluconeogenic pathway in severe malaria using alanine metabolism as a measure. Alanine disposition and liver blood flow, assessed by indocyanine green (ICG) clearance, were measured simultaneously in 10 patients with falciparum malaria (six severe and four

  19. Asexuality development among middle aged and older men.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan-Ping Huang

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVES: To assess erectile function in middle-aged and older men with asexuality status and further analyze their specific reasons for this condition. SUBJECTS AND METHODS: Men who had regular sexual intercourse attempts (sex frequency ≥ 1 time per month were classified into mild erectile dysfunction (ED, moderate to severe ED and non-ED according to International Index of Erectile Function-5, and men having no sexual intercourse attempts for at least 6 months were defined as having an asexuality status. The risk factors associated with ED were collected in a sample of 1,531 Chinese men aged 40 to 80 years, and the self-report reasons for asexuality were recorded in asexual cohort individually. Comparative analyses and multivariate regression models were conducted among these groups. RESULTS: The prevalence rates of ED and asexuality status were 49.9% and 37.2%. The asexuality status group had higher risk factors than the moderate to severe ED group in terms of old age (age ≥ 65, adjusted odds ratio (OR 17.69 versus (Vs. 7.19, diabetes (crude OR: 2.40 Vs. 2.36 and hypertension (crude OR: 1.78 Vs. 1.72. The specific reasons for the asexuality status were "erectile difficulty" (52.9%, "do not care about sexuality" (53.5%", "no longer necessary to have sexuality at this age" (47.7%, "severe stress" (44.4%, "severe fatigue" (26.3% and "masturbation" (26.9%. CONCLUSIONS: Men with an asexual status suffer from higher risk factors for ED than men with moderate to severe ED. The majority of this asexual status could be attributed to a full ED, although the reasons for this transient asexuality also involved sexual attitudes and interests, sexual partners and masturbation.

  20. Asexuality development among middle aged and older men.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yan-Ping; Chen, Bin; Ping, Ping; Wang, Hong-Xiang; Hu, Kai; Yang, Hao; Zhang, Tao; Feng, Tan; Jin, Yan; Han, Yin-Fa; Wang, Yi-Xin; Huang, Yi-Ran

    2014-01-01

    To assess erectile function in middle-aged and older men with asexuality status and further analyze their specific reasons for this condition. Men who had regular sexual intercourse attempts (sex frequency ≥ 1 time per month) were classified into mild erectile dysfunction (ED), moderate to severe ED and non-ED according to International Index of Erectile Function-5, and men having no sexual intercourse attempts for at least 6 months were defined as having an asexuality status. The risk factors associated with ED were collected in a sample of 1,531 Chinese men aged 40 to 80 years, and the self-report reasons for asexuality were recorded in asexual cohort individually. Comparative analyses and multivariate regression models were conducted among these groups. The prevalence rates of ED and asexuality status were 49.9% and 37.2%. The asexuality status group had higher risk factors than the moderate to severe ED group in terms of old age (age ≥ 65, adjusted odds ratio (OR) 17.69 versus (Vs.) 7.19), diabetes (crude OR: 2.40 Vs. 2.36) and hypertension (crude OR: 1.78 Vs. 1.72). The specific reasons for the asexuality status were "erectile difficulty" (52.9%), "do not care about sexuality" (53.5%)", "no longer necessary to have sexuality at this age" (47.7%), "severe stress" (44.4%), "severe fatigue" (26.3%) and "masturbation" (26.9%). Men with an asexual status suffer from higher risk factors for ED than men with moderate to severe ED. The majority of this asexual status could be attributed to a full ED, although the reasons for this transient asexuality also involved sexual attitudes and interests, sexual partners and masturbation.

  1. Plasmodium falciparum ookinete expression of plasmepsin VII and plasmepsin X.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Fengwu; Bounkeua, Viengngeun; Pettersen, Kenneth; Vinetz, Joseph M

    2016-02-24

    Plasmodium invasion of the mosquito midgut is a population bottleneck in the parasite lifecycle. Interference with molecular mechanisms by which the ookinete invades the mosquito midgut is one potential approach to developing malaria transmission-blocking strategies. Plasmodium aspartic proteases are one such class of potential targets: plasmepsin IV (known to be present in the asexual stage food vacuole) was previously shown to be involved in Plasmodium gallinaceum infection of the mosquito midgut, and plasmepsins VII and plasmepsin X (not known to be present in the asexual stage food vacuole) are upregulated in Plasmodium falciparum mosquito stages. These (and other) parasite-derived enzymes that play essential roles during ookinete midgut invasion are prime candidates for transmission-blocking vaccines. Reverse transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR) was used to determine timing of P. falciparum plasmepsin VII (PfPM VII) and plasmepsin X (PfPM X) mRNA transcripts in parasite mosquito midgut stages. Protein expression was confirmed by western immunoblot and immunofluorescence assays (IFA) using anti-peptide monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against immunogenic regions of PfPM VII and PfPM X. These antibodies were also used in standard membrane feeding assays (SMFA) to determine whether inhibition of these proteases would affect parasite transmission to mosquitoes. The Mann-Whitney U test was used to analyse mosquito transmission assay results. RT-PCR, western immunoblot and immunofluorescence assay confirmed expression of PfPM VII and PfPM X in mosquito stages. Whereas PfPM VII was expressed in zygotes and ookinetes, PfPM X was expressed in gametes, zygotes, and ookinetes. Antibodies against PfPM VII and PfPM X decreased P. falciparum invasion of the mosquito midgut when used at high concentrations, indicating that these proteases play a role in Plasmodium mosquito midgut invasion. Failure to generate genetic knockouts of these genes limited determination of the precise role of

  2. A portion of the Pf155/RESA antigen of Plasmodium falciparum is accessible on the surface of infected erythrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Saul, A.; Maloy, W.L.; Howard, R.J.; Rock, E.P.

    1988-01-01

    An investigation of antigens accessible to lactoperoxidase-catalysed cell surface iodination on intact Plasmodium falciparum-infected red blood cells (RBC) has identified a 125 I-labelled antigen with an apparent size of about 155 kD. This labelled protein was specifically immunoprecipitated by the following antibodies: a rabbit antiserum and a mouse monoclonal antibody raised against a synthetic peptide comprising the 3',8-mer repeat EENVEHDA of the Pf155/RESA protein; a rabbit antiserum raised against a synthetic octapeptide comprising two copies of the 3',4-mer repeat EENV of the Pf155/RESA protein; and rabbit antisera against another synthetic peptide C(MYSNNNVED) 2 . The last antibody shows a strong reaction in asexual blood state parasites with the Pf155/RESA antigen. While this antigen has been described previously as a submembrane component of the outer membrane of infected RBC, this report shows that at least part of it is accessible to the surface of both ring and late trophozoite-infected erythrocytes. 21 refs., 4 figs

  3. Persistence of atovaquone in human sera following treatment: inhibition of Plasmodium falciparum development in vivo and in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butcher, Geoff A; Sinden, Robert E

    2003-01-01

    Published pharmacokinetic data indicate that after treatment of patients with therapeutic doses of atovaquone/proguanil hydrochloride (Malarone, GlaxoSmithKline Research Triangle Park, NC), the plasma half-lives of these drugs are 70h and 15h, respectively. However, using two biologic assays (mosquito transmission and in vitro asexual stage development), we demonstrate here that sera from volunteers treated with atovaquone/proguanil retained activity against Plasmodium falciparum up to 6 weeks after such treatment. This activity was due to atovaquone, as administration of this drug alone replicated the data obtained with the combination. Most notably, asexual stage development of an atovaquone-resistant strain (NGATV01) of P. falciparum was not inhibited by sera taken after atovaquone treatment. These data indicate that for atovaquone, biologic assays, though not quantitative, are more sensitive than the usual physicochemical assays. Also, persistence of atovaquone in plasma at low concentrations for long periods may increase the risk of resistant parasites arising.

  4. Chromosome length scaling in haploid, asexual reproduction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oliveira, P M C de

    2007-01-01

    We study the genetic behaviour of a population formed by haploid individuals which reproduce asexually. The genetic information for each individual is stored along a bit-string (or chromosome) with L bits, where 0-bits represent the wild allele and 1-bits correspond to harmful mutations. Each newborn inherits this chromosome from its parent with a few random mutations: on average a fixed number m of bits are flipped. Selection is implemented according to the number N of 1-bits counted along the individual's chromosome: the smaller N the higher the probability an individual has to survive a new time step. Such a population evolves, with births and deaths, and its genetic distribution becomes stabilized after sufficiently many generations have passed. The question we pose concerns the procedure of increasing L. The aim is to get the same distribution of genetic loads N/L among the equilibrated population, in spite of a larger L. Should we keep the same mutation rate m/L for different values of L? The answer is yes, which intuitively seems to be plausible. However, this conclusion is not trivial, according to our simulation results: the question also involves the population size

  5. 4-Nitro styrylquinoline is an antimalarial inhibiting multiple stages of Plasmodium falciparum asexual life cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Bracken F; Zheng, Yongsheng; Cleaveleand, Jacob; Lee, Sukjun; Lee, Eunyoung; Ayong, Lawrence; Yuan, Yu; Chakrabarti, Debopam

    2017-04-01

    Drugs against malaria are losing their effectiveness because of emerging drug resistance. This underscores the need for novel therapeutic options for malaria with mechanism of actions distinct from current antimalarials. To identify novel pharmacophores against malaria we have screened compounds containing structural features of natural products that are pharmacologically relevant. This screening has identified a 4-nitro styrylquinoline (SQ) compound with submicromolar antiplasmodial activity and excellent selectivity. SQ exhibits a cellular action distinct from current antimalarials, acting early on malaria parasite's intraerythrocytic life cycle including merozoite invasion. The compound is a fast-acting parasitocidal agent and also exhibits curative property in the rodent malaria model when administered orally. In this report, we describe the synthesis, preliminary structure-function analysis, and the parasite developmental stage specific action of the SQ scaffold. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  6. Co-ordinated stage-dependent enhancement of Plasmodium falciparum antioxidant enzymes and heat shock protein expression in parasites growing in oxidatively stressed or G6PD-deficient red blood cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Müller Sylke

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plasmodium falciparum-parasitized red blood cells (RBCs are equipped with protective antioxidant enzymes and heat shock proteins (HSPs. The latter are only considered to protect against thermal stress. Important issues are poorly explored: first, it is insufficiently known how both systems are expressed in relation to the parasite developmental stage; secondly, it is unknown whether P. falciparum HSPs are redox-responsive, in view of redox sensitivity of HSP in eukaryotic cells; thirdly, it is poorly known how the antioxidant defense machinery would respond to increased oxidative stress or inhibited antioxidant defense. Those issues are interesting as several antimalarials increase the oxidative stress or block antioxidant defense in the parasitized RBC. In addition, numerous inhibitors of HSPs are currently developed for cancer therapy and might be tested as anti-malarials. Thus, the joint disruption of the parasite antioxidant enzymes/HSP system would interfere with parasite growth and open new perspectives for anti-malaria therapy. Methods Stage-dependent mRNA expression of ten representative P. falciparum antioxidant enzymes and hsp60/70–2/70–3/75/90 was studied by quantitative real-time RT-PCR in parasites growing in normal RBCs, in RBCs oxidatively-stressed by moderate H2O2 generation and in G6PD-deficient RBCs. Protein expression of antioxidant enzymes was assayed by Western blotting. The pentosephosphate-pathway flux was measured in isolated parasites after Sendai-virus lysis of RBC membrane. Results In parasites growing in normal RBCs, mRNA expression of antioxidant enzymes and HSPs displayed co-ordinated stage-dependent modulation, being low at ring, highest at early trophozoite and again very low at schizont stage. Additional exogenous oxidative stress or growth in antioxidant blunted G6PD-deficient RBCs indicated remarkable flexibility of both systems, manifested by enhanced, co-ordinated mRNA expression of

  7. Co-ordinated stage-dependent enhancement of Plasmodium falciparum antioxidant enzymes and heat shock protein expression in parasites growing in oxidatively stressed or G6PD-deficient red blood cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akide-Ndunge, Oscar Bate; Tambini, Elisa; Giribaldi, Giuliana; McMillan, Paul J; Müller, Sylke; Arese, Paolo; Turrini, Francesco

    2009-05-29

    Plasmodium falciparum-parasitized red blood cells (RBCs) are equipped with protective antioxidant enzymes and heat shock proteins (HSPs). The latter are only considered to protect against thermal stress. Important issues are poorly explored: first, it is insufficiently known how both systems are expressed in relation to the parasite developmental stage; secondly, it is unknown whether P. falciparum HSPs are redox-responsive, in view of redox sensitivity of HSP in eukaryotic cells; thirdly, it is poorly known how the antioxidant defense machinery would respond to increased oxidative stress or inhibited antioxidant defense. Those issues are interesting as several antimalarials increase the oxidative stress or block antioxidant defense in the parasitized RBC. In addition, numerous inhibitors of HSPs are currently developed for cancer therapy and might be tested as anti-malarials. Thus, the joint disruption of the parasite antioxidant enzymes/HSP system would interfere with parasite growth and open new perspectives for anti-malaria therapy. Stage-dependent mRNA expression of ten representative P. falciparum antioxidant enzymes and hsp60/70-2/70-3/75/90 was studied by quantitative real-time RT-PCR in parasites growing in normal RBCs, in RBCs oxidatively-stressed by moderate H2O2 generation and in G6PD-deficient RBCs. Protein expression of antioxidant enzymes was assayed by Western blotting. The pentosephosphate-pathway flux was measured in isolated parasites after Sendai-virus lysis of RBC membrane. In parasites growing in normal RBCs, mRNA expression of antioxidant enzymes and HSPs displayed co-ordinated stage-dependent modulation, being low at ring, highest at early trophozoite and again very low at schizont stage. Additional exogenous oxidative stress or growth in antioxidant blunted G6PD-deficient RBCs indicated remarkable flexibility of both systems, manifested by enhanced, co-ordinated mRNA expression of antioxidant enzymes and HSPs. Protein expression of

  8. Erasing the Epigenetic Memory and Beginning to Switch—The Onset of Antigenic Switching of var Genes in Plasmodium falciparum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fastman, Yair; Noble, Robert; Recker, Mario; Dzikowski, Ron

    2012-01-01

    Antigenic variation in Plasmodium falciparum is regulated by transcriptional switches among members of the var gene family, each expressed in a mutually exclusive manner and encoding a different variant of the surface antigens collectively named PfEMP1. Antigenic switching starts when the first merozoites egress from the liver and begin their asexual proliferation within red blood cells. By erasing the epigenetic memory we created parasites with no var background, similar to merozoites that egress from the liver where no var gene is expressed. Creating a null-var background enabled us to investigate the onset of antigenic switches at the early phase of infection. At the onset of switching, var transcription pattern is heterogeneous with numerous genes transcribed at low levels including upsA vars, a subtype that was implicated in severe malaria, which are rarely activated in growing cultures. Analysis of subsequent in vitro switches shows that the probability of a gene to turn on or off is not associated with its chromosomal position or promoter type per se but on intrinsic properties of each gene. We concluded that var switching is determined by gene specific associated switch rates rather than general promoter type or locus associated switch rates. In addition, we show that fine tuned reduction in var transcription increases their switch rate, indicating that transcriptional perturbation can alter antigenic switching. PMID:22461905

  9. Generation of antigenic diversity in Plasmodium falciparum by structured rearrangement of Var genes during mitosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antoine Claessens

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The most polymorphic gene family in P. falciparum is the ∼60 var genes distributed across parasite chromosomes, both in the subtelomeres and in internal regions. They encode hypervariable surface proteins known as P. falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1 that are critical for pathogenesis and immune evasion in Plasmodium falciparum. How var gene sequence diversity is generated is not currently completely understood. To address this, we constructed large clone trees and performed whole genome sequence analysis to study the generation of novel var gene sequences in asexually replicating parasites. While single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs were scattered across the genome, structural variants (deletions, duplications, translocations were focused in and around var genes, with considerable variation in frequency between strains. Analysis of more than 100 recombination events involving var exon 1 revealed that the average nucleotide sequence identity of two recombining exons was only 63% (range: 52.7-72.4% yet the crossovers were error-free and occurred in such a way that the resulting sequence was in frame and domain architecture was preserved. Var exon 1, which encodes the immunologically exposed part of the protein, recombined in up to 0.2% of infected erythrocytes in vitro per life cycle. The high rate of var exon 1 recombination indicates that millions of new antigenic structures could potentially be generated each day in a single infected individual. We propose a model whereby var gene sequence polymorphism is mainly generated during the asexual part of the life cycle.

  10. Generation of antigenic diversity in Plasmodium falciparum by structured rearrangement of Var genes during mitosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Claessens, Antoine; Hamilton, William L; Kekre, Mihir; Otto, Thomas D; Faizullabhoy, Adnan; Rayner, Julian C; Kwiatkowski, Dominic

    2014-12-01

    The most polymorphic gene family in P. falciparum is the ∼60 var genes distributed across parasite chromosomes, both in the subtelomeres and in internal regions. They encode hypervariable surface proteins known as P. falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) that are critical for pathogenesis and immune evasion in Plasmodium falciparum. How var gene sequence diversity is generated is not currently completely understood. To address this, we constructed large clone trees and performed whole genome sequence analysis to study the generation of novel var gene sequences in asexually replicating parasites. While single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were scattered across the genome, structural variants (deletions, duplications, translocations) were focused in and around var genes, with considerable variation in frequency between strains. Analysis of more than 100 recombination events involving var exon 1 revealed that the average nucleotide sequence identity of two recombining exons was only 63% (range: 52.7-72.4%) yet the crossovers were error-free and occurred in such a way that the resulting sequence was in frame and domain architecture was preserved. Var exon 1, which encodes the immunologically exposed part of the protein, recombined in up to 0.2% of infected erythrocytes in vitro per life cycle. The high rate of var exon 1 recombination indicates that millions of new antigenic structures could potentially be generated each day in a single infected individual. We propose a model whereby var gene sequence polymorphism is mainly generated during the asexual part of the life cycle.

  11. Genetic polymorphism of Plasmodium falciparum isolates from Loreto, Peru.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hijar, Gisely; Padilla, Carlos; Marquiño, Wilmer; Falconi, Eduardo; Montoya, Ysabel

    2002-04-01

    Eight genotypes of Plasmodium falciparum were detected after analysing blood samples obtained from 30 Peruvian jungle-dwelling patients in Loreto, a high transmission area for P. falciparum, using amplification of the polymorphic marker gene GLURP (glutamate-rich protein). Genotypes I (GLURP450) and VIII (GLURP800) were the most common (15/30 and 13/30, respectively). This single copy gene showed 15 patients to be infected with a single genotype of P. falciparum; the other 15 were infected with mixed genotypes, one of them with 4 genotypes. These findings are compatible with a high genetic complexity of P. falciparum. Further investigations are needed, using this and other markers, in order to design malaria control measures in Peru.

  12. Biological markers of asexuality: Handedness, birth order, and finger length ratios in self-identified asexual men and women.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yule, Morag A; Brotto, Lori A; Gorzalka, Boris B

    2014-02-01

    Human asexuality is defined as a lack of sexual attraction to anyone or anything and it has been suggested that it may be best conceptualized as a sexual orientation. Non-right-handedness, fraternal birth order, and finger length ratio (2D:4D) are early neurodevelopmental markers associated with sexual orientation. We conducted an Internet study investigating the relationship between self-identification as asexual, handedness, number of older siblings, and self-measured finger-lengths in comparison to individuals of other sexual orientation groups. A total of 325 asexuals (60 men and 265 women; M age, 24.8 years), 690 heterosexuals (190 men and 500 women; M age, 23.5 years), and 268 non-heterosexuals (homosexual and bisexual; 64 men and 204 women; M age, 29.0 years) completed online questionnaires. Asexual men and women were 2.4 and 2.5 times, respectively, more likely to be non-right-handed than their heterosexual counterparts and there were significant differences between sexual orientation groups in number of older brothers and older sisters, and this depended on handedness. Asexual and non-heterosexual men were more likely to be later-born than heterosexual men, and asexual women were more likely to be earlier-born than non-heterosexual women. We found no significant differences between sexual orientation groups on measurements of 2D:4D ratio. This is one of the first studies to test and provide preliminary empirical support for an underlying neurodevelopmental basis to account for the lack of sexual attraction characteristic of asexuality.

  13. Unusual Transmission of Plasmodium falciparum, Bordeaux, France, 2009

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vareil, Marc-Olivier; Tandonnet, Olivier; Chemoul, Audrey; Bogreau, Hervé; Saint-Léger, Mélanie; Micheau, Maguy; Millet, Pascal; Koeck, Jean-Louis; Boyer, Alexandre; Rogier, Christophe

    2011-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum malaria is usually transmitted by mosquitoes. We report 2 cases in France transmitted by other modes: occupational blood exposure and blood transfusion. Even where malaria is not endemic, it should be considered as a cause of unexplained acute fever. PMID:21291597

  14. 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

  15. Highly sensitive solid-phase radioimmunoassay for the assay of Plasmodium falciparum antigens and antibodies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Avraham, H.; Golenser, J.; Gazitt, Y.; Spira, D.T.; Sulitzeanu, D. (Hebrew Univ., Jerusalem (Israel). Hadassah Medical School)

    1982-08-27

    A highly sensitive radioimmunoassay for detection of P. falciparum antibodies and antigens is described. A partially purified P. falciparum antigen preparation is obtained from in vitro cultured parasites enriched after gelatin sedimentation by sonicating the infected red blood cells and precipitating the proteins with 50% saturated ammonium sulfate. The precipitate is dissolved in buffer, ultracentrifuged and used to coat wells of microtiter plates. Anti-P. falciparum antibodies are detected by incubating antiserum dilutions in the coated wells and detecting the bound IgG with radioiodinated staphylococcal protein A. P. falciparum antigens are detected by their ability to inhibit binding of antibodies to the coated wells. Sera of individuals with a history of P. falciparum infection contain antibodies detectable at a dilution of 1:75,000. P. falciparum RBC infected in vitro can be detected at levels of parasitemia of the order of 1 parasite or less per 10/sup 6/ RBC.

  16. A highly sensitive solid-phase radioimmunoassay for the assay of Plasmodium falciparum antigens and antibodies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Avraham, H.; Golenser, J.; Gazitt, Y.; Spira, D.T.; Sulitzeanu, D.

    1982-01-01

    A highly sensitive radioimmunoassay for detection of P. falciparum antibodies and antigens is described. A partially purified P. falciparum antigen preparation is obtained from in vitro cultured parasites enriched after gelatin sedimentation by sonicating the infected red blood cells and precipitating the proteins with 50% saturated ammonium sulfate. The precipitate is dissolved in buffer, ultracentrifuged and used to coat wells of microtiter plates. Anti-P. falciparum antibodies are detected by incubating antiserum dilutions in the coated wells and detecting the bound IgG with radioiodinated staphylococcal protein A. P. falciparum antigens are detected by their ability to inhibit binding of antibodies to the coated wells. Sera of individuals with a history of P. falciparum infection contain antibodies detectable at a dilution of 1:75,000. P. falciparum RBC infected in vitro can be detected at levels of parasitemia of the order of 1 parasite or less per 10 6 RBC. (Auth.)

  17. Elimination of Plasmodium falciparum malaria in Tajikistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kondrashin, Anatoly V; Sharipov, Azizullo S; Kadamov, Dilshod S; Karimov, Saifuddin S; Gasimov, Elkhan; Baranova, Alla M; Morozova, Lola F; Stepanova, Ekaterina V; Turbabina, Natalia A; Maksimova, Maria S; Morozov, Evgeny N

    2017-05-30

    Malaria was eliminated in Tajikistan by the beginning of the 1960s. However, sporadic introduced cases of malaria occurred subsequently probably as a result of transmission from infected mosquito Anopheles flying over river the Punj from the border areas of Afghanistan. During the 1970s and 1980s local outbreaks of malaria were reported in the southern districts bordering Afghanistan. The malaria situation dramatically changed during the 1990s following armed conflict and civil unrest in the newly independent Tajikistan, which paralyzed health services including the malaria control activities and a large-scale malaria epidemic occurred with more than 400,000 malaria cases. The malaria epidemic was contained by 1999 as a result of considerable financial input from the Government and the international community. Although Plasmodium falciparum constituted only about 5% of total malaria cases, reduction of its incidence was slower than that of Plasmodium vivax. To prevent increase in P. falciparum malaria both in terms of incidence and territory, a P. falciparum elimination programme in the Republic was launched in 200, jointly supported by the Government and the Global Fund for control of AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. The main activities included the use of pyrethroids for the IRS with determined periodicity, deployment of mosquito nets, impregnated with insecticides, use of larvivorous fishes as a biological larvicide, implementation of small-scale environmental management, and use of personal protection methods by population under malaria risk. The malaria surveillance system was strengthened by the use of ACD, PCD, RCD and selective use of mass blood surveys. All detected cases were timely epidemiologically investigated and treated based on the results of laboratory diagnosis. As a result, by 2009, P. falciparum malaria was eliminated from all of Tajikistan, one year ahead of the originally targeted date. Elimination of P. falciparum also contributed towards

  18. Plasmodium falciparum malaria

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Durrheim, Karen Barnes. Objectives. To assess the therapeutic efficacy of sulfadoxine- pyrimethamine (SP) after 5 years of use as first-line treatment of uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum malaria, and thus guide the selection of artemisinin-based combination therapy in Mpumalanga, South Africa. Design. An open-label ...

  19. Development of fluorescent Plasmodium falciparum for in vitro growth inhibition assays

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Crabb Brendan S

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plasmodium falciparum in vitro growth inhibition assays are widely used to evaluate and quantify the functional activity of acquired and vaccine-induced antibodies and the anti-malarial activity of known drugs and novel compounds. However, several constraints have limited the use of these assays in large-scale population studies, vaccine trials and compound screening for drug discovery and development. Methods The D10 P. falciparum line was transfected to express green fluorescent protein (GFP. In vitro growth inhibition assays were performed over one or two cycles of P. falciparum asexual replication using inhibitory polyclonal antibodies raised in rabbits, an inhibitory monoclonal antibody, human serum samples, and anti-malarials. Parasitaemia was evaluated by microscopy and flow cytometry. Results Transfected parasites expressed GFP throughout all asexual stages and were clearly detectable by flow cytometry and fluorescence microscopy. Measurement of parasite growth inhibition was the same when determined by detection of GFP fluorescence or staining with ethidium bromide. There was no difference in the inhibitory activity of samples when tested against the transfected parasites compared to the parental line. The level of fluorescence of GFP-expressing parasites increased throughout the course of asexual development. Among ring-stages, GFP-fluorescent parasites were readily separated from uninfected erythrocytes by flow cytometry, whereas this was less clear using ethidium bromide staining. Inhibition by serum and antibody samples was consistently higher when tested over two cycles of growth compared to one, and when using a 1 in 10 sample dilution compared to 1 in 20, but there was no difference detected when using a different starting parasitaemia to set-up growth assays. Flow cytometry based measurements of parasitaemia proved more reproducible than microscopy counts. Conclusions Flow cytometry based assays using GFP

  20. Understanding asexual identity as a means to facilitate culturally competent care: A systematic literature review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Catriona; Hayter, Mark; Jomeen, Julie

    2017-12-01

    To provide a contemporary overview of asexuality and the implications this has for healthcare practice. Individuals belonging to sexual minority groups face many barriers in accessing appropriate health care. The term "sexual minority group" is usually used to refer to lesbian women, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals. Anecdotal and research evidence suggests that those who identify as asexual have similar poor experiences. Systematic review and qualitative analysis. This work uses a systematic review and qualitative analysis of the existing interview data from self-identified asexuals, to construct features of the asexual identity. The findings will help practitioners and health professionals develop an understanding of this poorly understood construct. Ultimately this work is aimed at facilitating culturally competent care in the context of asexuality. Qualitative analysis produced three themes, which can be used, not only to frame asexuality in a positive and normalising way, but also to provide greater understanding of asexuality, "romantic differences coupled with sexual indifference," "validation through engagement with asexual communities" and "a diversity of subasexual identities." Having some understanding of what it means to identify as asexual, and respecting the choices made by asexuals can markedly improve the experiences of those who embrace an asexual identity when engaging with health care. Anecdotal evidence, taken from one of the largest asexual online forums, suggests that a number of self-identified asexuals choose not to disclose their identity to healthcare professionals through fear of their asexual status being pathologised, problematised or judged. Given that asexuality is a poorly understood concept, this may be due to lack of understanding on behalf of healthcare providers. The review provides health professionals and practitioners working in clinical settings with some insights of the features of an asexual identity to facilitate

  1. A Comparison of In Vitro and In Vivo Asexual Embryogenesis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hand, Melanie; Vries, de S.C.; Koltunow, Anna

    2016-01-01

    In plants, embryogenesis generally occurs through the sexual process of double fertilization, which involves a haploid sperm cell fusing with a haploid egg cell to ultimately give rise to a diploid embryo. Embryogenesis can also occur asexually in the absence of fertilization, both in vitro and in

  2. Evolution of complex asexual reproductive strategies in jellyfish

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schnedler-Meyer, Nicolas Azaña; Pigolotti, Simone; Mariani, Patrizio

    2018-01-01

    Many living organisms in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems rely on multiple reproductive strategies to reduce the risk of extinction in variable environments. Examples are provided by the polyp stage of several bloom-forming jellyfish species, which can reproduce asexually using different buddin...

  3. Human recombinant antibodies against Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 3 cloned from peripheral blood leukocytes of individuals with immunity to malaria demonstrate antiparasitic properties

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lundquist, Rasmus; Nielsen, Leif Kofoed; Jafarshad, Ali

    2006-01-01

    against MSP-3 residues 194 to 257 (MSP-3(194-257)) on the molecular level. mRNA from peripheral blood leukocytes from clinically immune individuals was used as a source of Fab (fragment antibody) genes. A Fab-phage display library was made, and three distinct antibodies designated RAM1, RAM2, and RAM3...

  4. Concentration of Plasmodium falciparum gametocytes in whole blood samples by magnetic cell sorting enhances parasite infection rates in mosquito feeding assays

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Reuling, I.J.; Stone, W.J.R.; Vegte-Bolmer, M. van de; Gemert, G.J.A. van; Siebelink-Stoter, R.; Graumans, W.; Lanke, K.H.; Bousema, T.; Sauerwein, R.W.

    2017-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Mosquito-feeding assays are important tools to guide the development and support the evaluation of transmission-blocking interventions. These functional bioassays measure the sporogonic development of gametocytes in blood-fed mosquitoes. Measuring the infectivity of low gametocyte

  5. Asexuality: Sexual Orientation, Paraphilia, Sexual Dysfunction, or None of the Above?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brotto, Lori A; Yule, Morag

    2017-04-01

    Although lack of sexual attraction was first quantified by Kinsey, large-scale and systematic research on the prevalence and correlates of asexuality has only emerged over the past decade. Several theories have been posited to account for the nature of asexuality. The goal of this review was to consider the evidence for whether asexuality is best classified as a psychiatric syndrome (or a symptom of one), a sexual dysfunction, or a paraphilia. Based on the available science, we believe there is not sufficient evidence to support the categorization of asexuality as a psychiatric condition (or symptom of one) or as a disorder of sexual desire. There is some evidence that a subset of self-identified asexuals have a paraphilia. We also considered evidence supporting the classification of asexuality as a unique sexual orientation. We conclude that asexuality is a heterogeneous entity that likely meets conditions for a sexual orientation, and that researchers should further explore evidence for such a categorization.

  6. Exitoso cultivo in vitro de gametocitos de Plasmodium falciparum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvia Blair

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Introducción. Los estadios sexuales de Plasmodium falciparum han sido menos estudiados que los estadios asexuales. Al parecer, esto se debe a la carencia de cultivos estandarizados in vitro y a la dificultad de reconocer sus estadios de desarrollo. Estos hechos no permiten el estudio de aspectos biológicos, aspectos metabólicos, expresión de genes y síntesis de proteínas durante los estadios sexuales, temas de interés en la investigación de nuevos medicamentos antipalúdicos, principalmente los aislados de plantas, y la identificación de un potencial blanco contra Plasmodium. Objetivos. Establecer un cultivo in vitro de gametocitos, con la identificación de sus cinco estadios de desarrollo, y asegurar su continua producción. Materiales y métodos. El cultivo in vitro de gametocitos se realizó a partir de la cepa NF54 de P. falciparum en medio RPMI, con determinación de la parasitemia asexual y sexual, adición de glóbulos rojos A-Rh+ sólo el primer día de cultivo y cambio diario del medio con adición de mezcla de gases (90% N2, 5% O2; 5% CO2, asegurándose que el cultivo se mantuviera a 37 °C. Cuando la parasitemia asexual estuvo entre 3% y 5%, se comenzó a agregar el doble de volumen de medio. Resultados. Se obtuvieron gametocitos en estadios I, II y III a partir del día 11 de cultivo y estadios IV y V a partir del día 14 de cultivo. Conclusiones. Se estandarizó un cultivo in vitro para estadios sexuales de P. falciparum que puede usarse para futuros estudios de evaluación de compuestos, naturales o sintéticos, que actúen sobre los gametocitos, lo cual podría permitir el desarrollo de nuevas estrategias de control contra el paludismo.

  7. The Plasmodium falciparum pseudoprotease SERA5 regulates the kinetics and efficiency of malaria parasite egress from host erythrocytes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christine R Collins

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Egress of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum from its host red blood cell is a rapid, highly regulated event that is essential for maintenance and completion of the parasite life cycle. Egress is protease-dependent and is temporally associated with extensive proteolytic modification of parasite proteins, including a family of papain-like proteins called SERA that are expressed in the parasite parasitophorous vacuole. Previous work has shown that the most abundant SERA, SERA5, plays an important but non-enzymatic role in asexual blood stages. SERA5 is extensively proteolytically processed by a parasite serine protease called SUB1 as well as an unidentified cysteine protease just prior to egress. However, neither the function of SERA5 nor the role of its processing is known. Here we show that conditional disruption of the SERA5 gene, or of both the SERA5 and related SERA4 genes simultaneously, results in a dramatic egress and replication defect characterised by premature host cell rupture and the failure of daughter merozoites to efficiently disseminate, instead being transiently retained within residual bounding membranes. SERA5 is not required for poration (permeabilization or vesiculation of the host cell membrane at egress, but the premature rupture phenotype requires the activity of a parasite or host cell cysteine protease. Complementation of SERA5 null parasites by ectopic expression of wild-type SERA5 reversed the egress defect, whereas expression of a SERA5 mutant refractory to processing failed to rescue the phenotype. Our findings implicate SERA5 as an important regulator of the kinetics and efficiency of egress and suggest that proteolytic modification is required for SERA5 function. In addition, our study reveals that efficient egress requires tight control of the timing of membrane rupture.

  8. Immunization with the Malaria Diversity-Covering Blood-Stage Vaccine Candidate Plasmodium falciparum Apical Membrane Antigen 1 DiCo in Complex with Its Natural Ligand PfRon2 Does Not Improve the In Vitro Efficacy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Holger Spiegel

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The blood-stage malaria vaccine candidate Plasmodium falciparum apical membrane antigen 1 (PfAMA1 can induce strong parasite growth-inhibitory antibody responses in animals but has not achieved the anticipated efficacy in clinical trials. Possible explanations in humans are the insufficient potency of the elicited antibody responses, as well as the high degree of sequence polymorphisms found in the field. Several strategies have been developed to improve the cross-strain coverage of PfAMA1-based vaccines, whereas innovative concepts to increase the potency of PfAMA1-specific IgG responses have received little attention even though this may be an essential requirement for protective efficacy. A previous study has demonstrated that immunization with a complex of PyAMA1 and PyRON2, a ligand with an essential functional role in erythrocyte invasion, leads to protection from lethal Plasmodium yoelli challenge in an animal model and suggested to extend this strategy toward improved strain coverage by using multiple PfAMA1 alleles in combination with PfRon2L. As an alternative approach along this line, we decided to use PfRon2L in combination with three PfAMA1 diversity covering variants (DiCo to investigate the potential of this complex to induce more potent parasite growth inhibitory immune response in combination with better cross-strain-specific efficacy. Within the limits of the study design, the ability of the PfAMA1 DiCo-Mix to induce cross-strain-specific antibodies was not affected in all immunization groups, but the DiCo–PfRon2L complexes did not improve the potency of PfAMA1-specific IgG responses.

  9. Does Magnetic Field Affect Malaria Parasite Replication in Human Red Blood Cells?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chanturiya, Alexandr N.; Glushakova, Svetlana; Yin, Dan; Zimmerberg, Joshua

    2004-01-01

    Digestion of red blood cell (RBC) hemoglobin by the malaria parasite results in the formation of paramagnetic hemazoin crystals inside the parasite body. A number of reports suggest that magnetic field interaction with hamazoin crystals significantly reduces the number of infected cells in culture, and thus magnetic field can be used to combat malaria. We studies the effects of magnetic filed on the Plasmodium falciparum asexual life cycle inside RBCs under various experimental conditions. No effect was found during prolonged exposure of infected RBCs to constant magnetic fields up to 6000 Gauss. Infected RBCs were also exposed, under temperature-controlled conditions, to oscillating magnetic fields with frequencies in the range of 500-20000 kHz, and field strength 30-600 Gauss. This exposure often changed the proportion of different parasite stages in treated culture compared to controls. However, no significant effect on parasitemia was observed in treated cultures. This result indicates that the magnetic field effect on Plasmodium falciparum is negligible, or that hypothetical negative and positive effects on different stages within one 48-hour compensate each other.

  10. Gonad establishment during asexual reproduction in the annelid Pristina leidyi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Özpolat, B Duygu; Bely, Alexandra E

    2015-09-01

    Animals that can reproduce by both asexual agametic reproduction and sexual reproduction must transmit or re-establish their germ line post-embryonically. Although such a dual reproductive mode has evolved repeatedly among animals, how asexually produced individuals establish their germ line remains poorly understood in most groups. We investigated germ line development in the annelid Pristina leidyi, a species that typically reproduces asexually by paratomic fission, intercalating a new tail and head in the middle of the body followed by splitting. We found that in fissioning individuals, gonads occur in anterior segments in the anterior-most individual as well as in new heads forming within fission zones. Homologs of the germ line/multipotency genes piwi, vasa, and nanos are expressed in the gonads, as well as in proliferative tissues including the posterior growth zone, fission zone, and regeneration blastema. In fissioning animals, certain cells on the ventral nerve cord express a homolog of piwi, are abundant near fission zones, and sometimes make contact with gonads. Such cells are typically undetectable near the blastema and posterior growth zone. Time-lapse imaging provides direct evidence that cells on the ventral nerve cord migrate preferentially towards fission zones. Our findings indicate that gonads form routinely in fissioning individuals, that a population of piwi-positive cells on the ventral nerve cord is associated with fission and gonads, and that cells resembling these piwi-positive cells migrate along the ventral nerve cord. We suggest that the piwi-positive ventral cells are germ cells that transmit the germ line across asexually produced individuals via migration along the ventral nerve cord. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Falciparum malaria infection with invasive pulmonary aspergillosis in immunocompetent host – case report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andriyani, Y.

    2018-03-01

    Invasive pulmonary aspergillosis is an extraordinary rare in the immunocompetent host. Falciparum malaria contributes to high morbidity and mortality of malaria infection cases in the world. The impairments of both humoral and cellular immunity could be the reason of invasive pulmonary aspergillosis in falciparum malaria infection. Forty-nine years old patient came with fever, jaundice, pain in the right abdomen, after visiting a remote area in Africa about one month before admission. Blood films and rapid test were positive for Plasmodium falciparum. After malaria therapy in five days, consciousness was altered into somnolence and intubated with respiratory deterioration. Invasive pulmonary aspergillosis after falciparum malaria infection is life-threatening. There should be awareness of physicians of invasive pulmonary aspergillosis in falciparum malaria infection.

  12. Sexual Fantasy and Masturbation Among Asexual Individuals: An In-Depth Exploration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yule, Morag A; Brotto, Lori A; Gorzalka, Boris B

    2017-01-01

    Human asexuality is generally defined as a lack of sexual attraction. We used online questionnaires to investigate reasons for masturbation, and explored and compared the contents of sexual fantasies of asexual individuals (identified using the Asexual Identification Scale) with those of sexual individuals. A total of 351 asexual participants (292 women, 59 men) and 388 sexual participants (221 women, 167 men) participated. Asexual women were significantly less likely to masturbate than sexual women, sexual men, and asexual men. Asexual women were less likely to report masturbating for sexual pleasure or fun than their sexual counterparts, and asexual men were less likely to report masturbating for sexual pleasure than sexual men. Both asexual women and men were significantly more likely than sexual women and men to report that they had never had a sexual fantasy. Of those who have had a sexual fantasy, asexual women and men were significantly more likely to endorse the response "my fantasies do not involve other people" compared to sexual participants, and consistently scored each sexual fantasy on a questionnaire as being less sexually exciting than did sexual participants. When using an open-ended format, asexual participants were more likely to report having fantasies about sexual activities that did not involve themselves, and were less likely to fantasize about topics such as group sex, public sex, and having an affair. Interestingly, there was a large amount of overlap between sexual fantasies of asexual and sexual participants. Notably, both asexual and sexual participants (both men and women) were equally likely to fantasize about topics such as fetishes and BDSM.

  13. RIFINs are adhesins implicated in severe Plasmodium falciparum malaria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Goel, Suchi; Palmkvist, Mia; Moll, Kirsten

    2015-01-01

    Rosetting is a virulent Plasmodium falciparum phenomenon associated with severe malaria. Here we demonstrate that P. falciparum–encoded repetitive interspersed families of polypeptides (RIFINs) are expressed on the surface of infected red blood cells (iRBCs), where they bind to RBCs—preferentiall......Rosetting is a virulent Plasmodium falciparum phenomenon associated with severe malaria. Here we demonstrate that P. falciparum–encoded repetitive interspersed families of polypeptides (RIFINs) are expressed on the surface of infected red blood cells (iRBCs), where they bind to RBCs......—preferentially of blood group A—to form large rosettes and mediate microvascular binding of iRBCs. We suggest that RIFINs have a fundamental role in the development of severe malaria and thereby contribute to the varying global distribution of ABO blood groups in the human population....

  14. Hybrid asexuality as a primary postzygotic barrier between nascent species: on the interconnection between asexuality, hybridization and speciation

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Janko, K.; Pačes, J.; Wilkinson-Herbots, H.; Costa, R. J.; Roslein, Jan; Drozd, P.; Iakovenko, N.; Rídl, J.; Hroudová, M.; Kočí, J.; Reifová, R.; Šlechtová, V.; Choleva, L.

    2018-01-01

    Roč. 27, č. 1 (2018), s. 248-263 ISSN 0962-1083 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GBP505/12/G112 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : pairwise nucleotide differences * mitochondrial-dna variation * multilocus genotype data * reproductive isolation * maximum-likelihood * loaches cobitis * migration model * gene flow * phylogenetic constraints * coalescence time * balance hypothesis * coalescence * evolution of asexuality * hybridization * phylogeography * speciation Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 6.086, year: 2016

  15. Phase 1 study in malaria naïve adults of BSAM2/Alhydrogel®+CPG 7909, a blood stage vaccine against P. falciparum malaria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruth D Ellis

    Full Text Available A Phase 1 dose escalating study was conducted in malaria naïve adults to assess the safety, reactogenicity, and immunogenicity of the blood stage malaria vaccine BSAM2/Alhydrogel®+ CPG 7909. BSAM2 is a combination of the FVO and 3D7 alleles of recombinant AMA1 and MSP1(42, with equal amounts by weight of each of the four proteins mixed, bound to Alhydrogel®, and administered with the adjuvant CPG 7909. Thirty (30 volunteers were enrolled in two dose groups, with 15 volunteers receiving up to three doses of 40 µg total protein at Days 0, 56, and 180, and 15 volunteers receiving up to three doses of 160 µg protein on the same schedule. Most related adverse events were mild or moderate, but 4 volunteers experienced severe systemic reactions and two were withdrawn from vaccinations due to adverse events. Geometric mean antibody levels after two vaccinations with the high dose formulation were 136 µg/ml for AMA1 and 78 µg/ml for MSP1(42. Antibody responses were not significantly different in the high dose versus low dose groups and did not further increase after third vaccination. In vitro growth inhibition was demonstrated and was closely correlated with anti-AMA1 antibody responses. A Phase 1b trial in malaria-exposed adults is being conducted.Clinicaltrials.gov NCT00889616.

  16. Relationship between plasma and red blood cell concentrations of quinine in Brazilian children with uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparummalaria on oral therapy Relação entre as concentrações plasmáticas e eritrocitárias de quinina em crianças com malária por Plasmodium falciparum não complicada em terapia via oral

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José L.F. Vieira

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available We determined the relationship between plasma and red blood cell concentrations of quinine in children with uncomplicated falciparum malaria from an endemic area of Amazonian region. Quinine was determined by high performance liquid chromatography with ultraviolet detection. In the steady state the ratio between plasma and red blood cell quinine concentration was 1.89 ± 1.25 ranging from 1.05 to 2.34. This result demonstrated that quinine do not concentrate in red blood cell of Brazilian children and characterize the absence of interracial difference in this relationship.Neste estudo foi determinada a relação entre as concentrações plasmáticas e eritrocitárias de quinina em crianças com malária falciparum não complicada, oriundas de área endêmica da Região Amazônica. A quinina foi detrminada por cromatografia líquida de alta eficiência. No estado de equilíbrio, a relação foi 1,89 ± 1,25 variando de 1,05 a 2,34. Estes resultados demonstraram que a quinina não se concentra nos eritrócitos das crianças e caracterizaram a ausência de diferença racial nesta relação.

  17. Coexistence of sexual individuals and genetically isolated asexual counterparts in a thrips.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kobayashi, Kazuya; Yoshimura, Jin; Hasegawa, Eisuke

    2013-11-21

    Sex is a paradoxical phenomenon because it is less efficient compared with asexual reproduction. To resolve this paradox we need a direct comparison between sexual and asexual forms. In many organisms, however, sexual and asexual forms do not occur in the same habitat, or at the same time. In a few cases where sexual and asexual forms are found in a single population, some (though rare) genetic exchange is usually detected between the two forms. When genetic exchange occurs a direct comparison is impossible. Here we investigate a thrips exhibiting both sexual and asexual forms (lineages) that are morphologically indistinguishable. We examine if the two forms are genetically isolated. Phylogeny based on nuclear genes confirms that the sexual and asexual lineages are genetically differentiated. Thus we demonstrate that the current system has certain advantages over existing and previously used model systems in the evolution of sexual reproduction.

  18. Quantifying the importance of MSP1-19 as a target of growth-inhibitory and protective antibodies against Plasmodium falciparum in humans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danny W Wilson

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Antibodies targeting blood stage antigens are important in protection against malaria, but the key targets and mechanisms of immunity are not well understood. Merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP1 is an abundant and essential protein. The C-terminal 19 kDa region (MSP1-19 is regarded as a promising vaccine candidate and may also be an important target of immunity. METHODOLOGY/FINDINGS: Growth inhibitory antibodies against asexual-stage parasites and IgG to recombinant MSP1-19 were measured in plasma samples from a longitudinal cohort of 206 children in Papua New Guinea. Differential inhibition by samples of mutant P. falciparum lines that expressed either the P. falciparum or P. chabaudi form of MSP1-19 were used to quantify MSP1-19 specific growth-inhibitory antibodies. The great majority of children had detectable IgG to MSP1-19, and high levels of IgG were significantly associated with a reduced risk of symptomatic P. falciparum malaria during the 6-month follow-up period. However, there was little evidence of PfMSP1-19 specific growth inhibition by plasma samples from children. Similar results were found when testing non-dialysed or dialysed plasma, or purified antibodies, or when measuring growth inhibition in flow cytometry or microscopy-based assays. Rabbit antisera generated by immunization with recombinant MSP1-19 demonstrated strong MSP1-19 specific growth-inhibitory activity, which appeared to be due to much higher antibody levels than human samples; antibody avidity was similar between rabbit antisera and human plasma. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These data suggest that MSP1-19 is not a major target of growth inhibitory antibodies and that the protective effects of antibodies to MSP1-19 are not due to growth inhibitory activity, but may instead be mediated by other mechanisms. Alternatively, antibodies to MSP1-19 may act as a marker of protective immunity.

  19. Diversity and population structure of Plasmodium falciparum in Thailand based on the spatial and temporal haplotype patterns of the C-terminal 19-kDa domain of merozoite surface protein-1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simpalipan, Phumin; Pattaradilokrat, Sittiporn; Siripoon, Napaporn; Seugorn, Aree; Kaewthamasorn, Morakot; Butcher, Robert D J; Harnyuttanakorn, Pongchai

    2014-02-12

    The 19-kDa C-terminal region of the merozoite surface protein-1 of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum (PfMSP-119) constitutes the major component on the surface of merozoites and is considered as one of the leading candidates for asexual blood stage vaccines. Because the protein exhibits a level of sequence variation that may compromise the effectiveness of a vaccine, the global sequence diversity of PfMSP-119 has been subjected to extensive research, especially in malaria endemic areas. In Thailand, PfMSP-119 sequences have been derived from a single parasite population in Tak province, located along the Thailand-Myanmar border, since 1995. However, the extent of sequence variation and the spatiotemporal patterns of the MSP-119 haplotypes along the Thai borders with Laos and Cambodia are unknown. Sixty-three isolates of P. falciparum from five geographically isolated populations along the Thai borders with Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia in three transmission seasons between 2002 and 2008 were collected and culture-adapted. The msp-1 gene block 17 was sequenced and analysed for the allelic diversity, frequency and distribution patterns of PfMSP-119 haplotypes in individual populations. The PfMSP-119 haplotype patterns were then compared between parasite populations to infer the population structure and genetic differentiation of the malaria parasite. Five conserved polymorphic positions, which accounted for five distinct haplotypes, of PfMSP-119 were identified. Differences in the prevalence of PfMSP-119 haplotypes were detected in different geographical regions, with the highest levels of genetic diversity being found in the Kanchanaburi and Ranong provinces along the Thailand-Myanmar border and Trat province located at the Thailand-Cambodia border. Despite this variability, the distribution patterns of individual PfMSP-119 haplotypes seemed to be very similar across the country and over the three malarial transmission seasons, suggesting that gene flow

  20. Carriage of sub-microscopic sexual and asexual Plasmodium ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    SUMMARY. Background: We investigated the prevalence of sub-microscopic Plasmodium falciparum infections and gameto- cyte carriage in asymptomatic individuals in Navrongo in northern Ghana, an area of seasonal malaria transmission. Design: A cross sectional study of 209 randomly selected participants of all ...

  1. Marginal distribution and high heterozygosity of asexual Caloglossa vieillardii (Delesseriaceae, Rhodophyta) along the Australian coasts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamiya, Mitsunobu; Saba, Erika; West, John A

    2017-12-01

    In animals and land plants, many asexual species originate through inter- or intraspecific crosses, and such heterozygous asexuals frequently are more abundant than their sexual relatives in marginal habitats. Although asexual species have been reported in various macroalgal taxa, detailed information regarding their distribution, heterozygosity, and origin is limited. Because many asexual tetrasporophyte strains of Caloglossa vieillardii have been isolated from South Australia, far from their core tropical habitats, we re-examined the distribution range of asexual C. vieillardii and genotyped these and other western Pacific strains using an actin gene marker. We confirmed the marginal distribution of the asexuals; however, a small patch of sexual thalli was newly discovered 450 km further west from asexual populations in South Australia. Three heterozygous genotypes and one homozygous genotypes were detected from nine asexual populations; 21 heterozygous strains were obligately asexual, but one homozygous strain suddenly produced sexual gametophytes after several years of culture. We hypothesized that the most abundant heterozygous genotype (defined as type 3/4) in asexual populations occurred by a cross between type 3 and type 4 allele gametophytes, both of which were isolated from the Australian coasts. In the crossing experiments, certain combinations between type 3 females and type 4 males produced tetrasporophytes, which recycled successive tetrasporophytes. In the culture experiments, whereas both sexual and asexual strains successfully produced tetraspores at 12°C, no sexual strains released carpospores below 14°C. However, it is uncertain whether this slight difference of maturation temperature was related to the marginal distribution of asexual C. vieillardii. © 2017 Phycological Society of America.

  2. Adaptations to different habitats in sexual and asexual populations of parasitoid wasps: a meta-analysis

    OpenAIRE

    Amat, I; Kacelnik, A; van Alphen, JJM; Desouhant, E; Bernstein, C

    2017-01-01

    Background Coexistence of sexual and asexual populations remains a key question in evolutionary ecology. We address the question how an asexual and a sexual form of the parasitoid Venturia canescens can coexist in southern Europe. We test the hypothesis that both forms are adapted to different habitats within their area of distribution. Sexuals inhabit natural environments that are highly unpredictable, and where density of wasps and their hosts is low and patchily distributed. Asexuals in...

  3. Premunition in Plasmodium falciparum malaria

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    STORAGESEVER

    2010-03-08

    Mar 8, 2010 ... antigenic polymorphism, shedding of parts of parasite proteins, cross-reactive epitopes of antigens of ... Due to the lack of HLA molecules on the surface of the .... Susceptibility and death rates in P. falciparum malaria are.

  4. Distinct patterns of blood-stage parasite antigens detected by plasma IgG subclasses from individuals with different level of exposure to Plasmodium falciparum infections

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olesen, Cathrine Holm; Brahimi, Karima; Vandahl, Brian

    2010-01-01

    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: In endemic regions naturally acquired immunity against Plasmodium falciparum develops as a function of age and exposure to parasite infections and is known to be mediated by IgG. The targets of protective antibodies remain to be fully defined. Several immunoepidemiological s...

  5. Mitotic evolution of Plasmodium falciparum shows a stable core genome but recombination in antigen families.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Selina E R Bopp

    Full Text Available Malaria parasites elude eradication attempts both within the human host and across nations. At the individual level, parasites evade the host immune responses through antigenic variation. At the global level, parasites escape drug pressure through single nucleotide variants and gene copy amplification events conferring drug resistance. Despite their importance to global health, the rates at which these genomic alterations emerge have not been determined. We studied the complete genomes of different Plasmodium falciparum clones that had been propagated asexually over one year in the presence and absence of drug pressure. A combination of whole-genome microarray analysis and next-generation deep resequencing (totaling 14 terabases revealed a stable core genome with only 38 novel single nucleotide variants appearing in seventeen evolved clones (avg. 5.4 per clone. In clones exposed to atovaquone, we found cytochrome b mutations as well as an amplification event encompassing the P. falciparum multidrug resistance associated protein (mrp1 on chromosome 1. We observed 18 large-scale (>1 kb on average deletions of telomere-proximal regions encoding multigene families, involved in immune evasion (9.5×10(-6 structural variants per base pair per generation. Six of these deletions were associated with chromosomal crossovers generated during mitosis. We found only minor differences in rates between genetically distinct strains and between parasites cultured in the presence or absence of drug. Using these derived mutation rates for P. falciparum (1.0-9.7×10(-9 mutations per base pair per generation, we can now model the frequency at which drug or immune resistance alleles will emerge under a well-defined set of assumptions. Further, the detection of mitotic recombination events in var gene families illustrates how multigene families can arise and change over time in P. falciparum. These results will help improve our understanding of how P. falciparum

  6. Mitotic Evolution of Plasmodium falciparum Shows a Stable Core Genome but Recombination in Antigen Families

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bopp, Selina E. R.; Manary, Micah J.; Bright, A. Taylor; Johnston, Geoffrey L.; Dharia, Neekesh V.; Luna, Fabio L.; McCormack, Susan; Plouffe, David; McNamara, Case W.; Walker, John R.; Fidock, David A.; Denchi, Eros Lazzerini; Winzeler, Elizabeth A.

    2013-01-01

    Malaria parasites elude eradication attempts both within the human host and across nations. At the individual level, parasites evade the host immune responses through antigenic variation. At the global level, parasites escape drug pressure through single nucleotide variants and gene copy amplification events conferring drug resistance. Despite their importance to global health, the rates at which these genomic alterations emerge have not been determined. We studied the complete genomes of different Plasmodium falciparum clones that had been propagated asexually over one year in the presence and absence of drug pressure. A combination of whole-genome microarray analysis and next-generation deep resequencing (totaling 14 terabases) revealed a stable core genome with only 38 novel single nucleotide variants appearing in seventeen evolved clones (avg. 5.4 per clone). In clones exposed to atovaquone, we found cytochrome b mutations as well as an amplification event encompassing the P. falciparum multidrug resistance associated protein (mrp1) on chromosome 1. We observed 18 large-scale (>1 kb on average) deletions of telomere-proximal regions encoding multigene families, involved in immune evasion (9.5×10−6 structural variants per base pair per generation). Six of these deletions were associated with chromosomal crossovers generated during mitosis. We found only minor differences in rates between genetically distinct strains and between parasites cultured in the presence or absence of drug. Using these derived mutation rates for P. falciparum (1.0–9.7×10−9 mutations per base pair per generation), we can now model the frequency at which drug or immune resistance alleles will emerge under a well-defined set of assumptions. Further, the detection of mitotic recombination events in var gene families illustrates how multigene families can arise and change over time in P. falciparum. These results will help improve our understanding of how P. falciparum evolves to

  7. Non-falciparum malaria infections in pregnant women in West Africa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Williams, John; Njie, Fanta; Cairns, Matthew

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Non-Plasmodium falciparum malaria infections are found in many parts of sub-Saharan Africa but little is known about their importance in pregnancy. METHODS: Blood samples were collected at first antenatal clinic attendance from 2526 women enrolled in a trial of intermittent screening...... and treatment of malaria in pregnancy (ISTp) versus intermittent preventive treatment (IPTp) conducted in Burkina Faso, The Gambia, Ghana and Mali. DNA was extracted from blood spots and tested for P. falciparum, Plasmodium vivax, Plasmodium malariae and Plasmodium ovale using a nested PCR test. Risk factors...... for a non-falciparum malaria infection were investigated and the influence of these infections on the outcome of pregnancy was determined. RESULTS: P. falciparum infection was detected frequently (overall prevalence by PCR: 38.8 %, [95 % CI 37.0, 40.8]), with a prevalence ranging from 10.8 % in The Gambia...

  8. A simple field kit for the determination of drug susceptibility in Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen-Dinh, P; Magloire, R; Chin, W

    1983-05-01

    A field kit has been developed which greatly simplifies the performance of the 48-hour in vitro test for drug resistance in Plasmodium falciparum. The kit uses an easily reconstituted lyophilized culture medium, and requires only a fingerprick blood sample. In parallel tests with 13 isolates of P. falciparum in Haiti, the new technique had a success rate equal to that of the previously described method, with comparable results in terms of parasite susceptibility in vitro to chloroquine and pyrimethamine.

  9. Hybrid asexuality as a primary postzygotic barrier between nascent species: On the interconnection between asexuality, hybridization and speciation

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Janko, Karel; Pačes, Jan; Wilkinson-Herbots, H.; Costa, R. J.; Roslein, Jan; Drozd, P.; Iakovenko, Nataliia; Rídl, J.; Hroudová, M.; Kočí, Jan; Reifová, R.; Šlechtová, Věra; Choleva, Lukáš

    2018-01-01

    Roč. 27, č. 1 (2018), s. 248-263 ISSN 0962-1083 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR KJB600450902; GA MŠk EF15_003/0000460; GA ČR GA13-12580S; GA ČR GA206/09/1298; GA ČR GAP506/10/1155; GA ČR GJ15-19947Y Institutional support: RVO:67985904 Keywords : balance hypothesis * coalescence * ecolution of asexuality * hybridization Subject RIV: EG - Zoology OBOR OECD: Zoology Impact factor: 6.086, year: 2016

  10. An interplay between 2 signaling pathways: Melatonin-cAMP and IP3–Ca2+ signaling pathways control intraerythrocytic development of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Furuyama, Wakako; Enomoto, Masahiro; Mossaad, Ehab; Kawai, Satoru; Mikoshiba, Katsuhiko; Kawazu, Shin-ichiro

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • A melatonin receptor antagonist blocked Ca 2+ oscillation in P. falciparum and inhibited parasite growth. • P. falciparum development is controlled by Ca 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 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 2+ imaging showed that LZ treatment completely abolished Ca 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 3 –Ca 2+ and cAMP signaling pathways is involved in intraerythrocytic development of P. falciparum

  11. Freedom, invisibility, and community: a qualitative study of self-identification with asexuality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacNeela, Pádraig; Murphy, Aisling

    2015-04-01

    A significant body of research is now emerging on the subjective meaning of asexuality. This study explored how self-identification as asexual is managed, both as a threat to the self-concept and a source of personal meaning. A total of 66 self-identified asexuals were recruited from an asexuality internet community and responded to open-ended questions on an online survey. Of these, 31 participants identified as female, 15 as male, 18 gave a different label such as genderqueer or androgynous, and two did not provide information on gender. A thematic analysis of the transcripts resulted in three themes. Socially, asexuality attracted denial and resistance due to incompatibility with heteronormative societal expectations. Despite the threat to self-integrity arising from asexuality being socially rejected, it was typically assimilated as a valued and meaningful orientation on an intra-personal level, aided by information and support from the online community. A second level of threat to self arose whereby other self-identifications, especially gender, had to be reconciled with a non-sexual persona. The accommodation made to other elements of the self was reflected in complex sub-identities. The findings were interpreted using identity process theory to understand how threats arising from self-identifying as asexual are managed. Although asexuality emerges as an orientation to sexuality that can be reconciled with the self, its invisibility or outright rejection in society constitute an on-going challenge.

  12. The exact distributions of F(IS under partial asexuality in small finite populations with mutation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Solenn Stoeckel

    Full Text Available Reproductive systems like partial asexuality participate to shape the evolution of genetic diversity within populations, which is often quantified by the inbreeding coefficient F IS. Understanding how those mating systems impact the possible distributions of F IS values in theoretical populations helps to unravel forces shaping the evolution of real populations. We proposed a population genetics model based on genotypic states in a finite population with mutation. For populations with less than 400 individuals, we assessed the impact of the rates of asexuality on the full exact distributions of F IS, the probabilities of positive and negative F IS, the probabilities of fixation and the probabilities to observe changes in the sign of F IS over one generation. After an infinite number of generations, we distinguished three main patterns of effects of the rates of asexuality on genetic diversity that also varied according to the interactions of mutation and genetic drift. Even rare asexual events in mainly sexual populations impacted the balance between negative and positive F IS and the occurrence of extreme values. It also drastically modified the probability to change the sign of F IS value at one locus over one generation. When mutation prevailed over genetic drift, increasing rates of asexuality continuously increased the variance of F IS that reached its highest value in fully asexual populations. In consequence, even ancient asexual populations showed the entire F IS spectrum, including strong positive F IS. The prevalence of heterozygous loci only occurred in full asexual populations when genetic drift dominated.

  13. Competitive endothelial adhesion between Plasmodium falciparum isolates under physiological flow conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Molyneux Malcolm

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Sequestration of parasitized red blood cells in the microvasculature of major organs involves a sequence of events that is believed to contribute to the pathogenesis of severe falciparum malaria. Plasmodium falciparum infections are commonly composed of multiple subpopulations of parasites with varied adhesive properties. A key question is: do these subpopulations compete for adhesion to endothelium? This study investigated whether, in a laboratory model of cytoadherence, there is competition in binding to endothelium between pRBC infected with P. falciparum of variant adhesive phenotypes, particularly under flow conditions. Methods Four different P. falciparum isolates, of known adherence phenotypes, were matched in pairs, mixed in different proportions and allowed to bind to cultured human endothelium. Using in vitro competitive static and flow-based adhesion assays, that allow simultaneous testing of the adhesive properties of two different parasite lines, adherence levels of paired P. falciparum isolates were quantified and analysed using either non-parametric Wilcoxon's paired signed rank test or Student paired test. Results Study findings show that P. falciparum parasite lines show marked differences in the efficiency of adhesion to endothelium. Conclusion Plasmodium falciparum variants will compete for adhesion to endothelia and variants can be ranked by their efficiency of binding. These findings suggest that variants from a mixed infection will not show uniform cytoadherence and so may vary in their ability to cause disease.

  14. Use of chloroquine in uncomplicated falciparum malaria ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Use of chloroquine in uncomplicated falciparum malaria chemotherapy: The past, the present and the future. ... regions. It was initially highly effective against the four Plasmodium species (P. falciparum, P. malaria, P. ovale and P. vivax) infecting human. It is also effective against gametocytes except those of P. falciparum.

  15. Sharing of antigens between Plasmodium falciparum and Anopheles albimanus Antígenos compartidos entre Plasmodium falciparum y Anopheles albimanus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Albina Wide

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available The presence of common antigens between Plasmodium falciparum and Anopheles albimanus was demonstrated. Different groups of rabbits were immunized with: crude extract from female An. albimanus (EAaF, red blood cells infected with Plasmodium falciparum (EPfs, and the SPf66 synthetic malaria vaccine. The rabbit's polyclonal antibodies were evaluated by ELISA, Multiple Antigen Blot Assay (MABA, and immunoblotting. All extracts were immunogenic in rabbits according to these three techniques, when they were evaluated against the homologous antigens. Ten molecules were identified in female mosquitoes and also in P. falciparum antigens by the autologous sera. The electrophoretic pattern by SDS-PAGE was different for the three antigens evaluated. Cross-reactions between An. albimanus and P. falciparum were found by ELISA, MABA, and immunoblotting. Anti-P. falciparum and anti-SPf66 antibodies recognized ten and five components in the EAaF crude extract, respectively. Likewise, immune sera against female An. albimanus identified four molecules in the P. falciparum extract antigen. As far as we know, this is the first work that demonstrates shared antigens between anophelines and malaria parasites. This finding could be useful for diagnosis, vaccines, and the study of physiology of the immune response to malaria.Epítopes de antígenos compartidos entre Plasmodium falciparum y Anopheles albimanus fueron identificados. Diferentes grupos de conejos fueron inmunizados con: extracto crudo de mosquito hembra de An. albimanus (EAaH, glóbulos rojos infectados con P. falciparum (EPfs y la vacuna antimalárica sintética SPf66. Los anticuerpos policlonales producidos en conejos fueron evaluados por ELISA, inmunoensayo simultáneo de múltiples antígenos (MABA e Immunoblotting. Todos los extractos resultaron inmunogénicos cuando se evaluaron por ELISA, MABA e Immunoblotting. Diez moléculas fueron identificadas en los mosquitos hembras y diez en los antígenos de

  16. More than just immune evasion: Hijacking complement by Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Christoph Q; Kennedy, Alexander T; Tham, Wai-Hong

    2015-09-01

    Malaria remains one of the world's deadliest diseases. Plasmodium falciparum is responsible for the most severe and lethal form of human malaria. P. falciparum's life cycle involves two obligate hosts: human and mosquito. From initial entry into these hosts, malaria parasites face the onslaught of the first line of host defence, the complement system. In this review, we discuss the complex interaction between complement and malaria infection in terms of hosts immune responses, parasite survival and pathogenesis of severe forms of malaria. We will focus on the role of complement receptor 1 and its associated polymorphisms in malaria immune complex clearance, as a mediator of parasite rosetting and as an entry receptor for P. falciparum invasion. Complement evasion strategies of P. falciparum parasites will also be highlighted. The sexual forms of the malaria parasites recruit the soluble human complement regulator Factor H to evade complement-mediated killing within the mosquito host. A novel evasion strategy is the deployment of parasite organelles to divert complement attack from infective blood stage parasites. Finally we outline the future challenge to understand the implications of these exploitation mechanisms in the interplay between successful infection of the host and pathogenesis observed in severe malaria. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. In vitro adaptation of Plasmodium falciparum reveal variations in cultivability

    OpenAIRE

    White, John; Mascarenhas, Anjali; Pereira, Ligia; Dash, Rashmi; Walke, Jayashri T.; Gawas, Pooja; Sharma, Ambika; Manoharan, Suresh Kumar; Guler, Jennifer L.; Maki, Jennifer N.; Kumar, Ashwani; Mahanta, Jagadish; Valecha, Neena; Dubhashi, Nagesh; Vaz, Marina

    2016-01-01

    Background Culture-adapted Plasmodium falciparum parasites can offer deeper understanding of geographic variations in drug resistance, pathogenesis and immune evasion. To help ground population-based calculations and inferences from culture-adapted parasites, the complete range of parasites from a study area must be well represented in any collection. To this end, standardized adaptation methods and determinants of successful in vitro adaption were sought. Methods Venous blood was collected f...

  18. Drug resistance associated genetic polymorphisms in Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax collected in Honduras, Central America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jovel, Irina T; Mejía, Rosa E; Banegas, Engels; Piedade, Rita; Alger, Jackeline; Fontecha, Gustavo; Ferreira, Pedro E; Veiga, Maria I; Enamorado, Irma G; Bjorkman, Anders; Ursing, Johan

    2011-12-19

    In Honduras, chloroquine and primaquine are recommended and still appear to be effective for treatment of Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax malaria. The aim of this study was to determine the proportion of resistance associated genetic polymorphisms in P. falciparum and P. vivax collected in Honduras. Blood samples were collected from patients seeking medical attention at the Hospital Escuela in Tegucigalpa from 2004 to 2006 as well as three regional hospitals, two health centres and one regional laboratory during 2009. Single nucleotide polymorphisms in P. falciparum chloroquine resistance transporter (pfcrt), multidrug resistance 1 (pfmdr1), dihydrofolate reductase (pfdhfr) and dihydropteroate synthase (pfdhps) genes and in P. vivax multidrug resistance 1 (pvmdr1) and dihydrofolate reductase (pvdhfr) genes were detected using PCR based methods. Thirty seven P. falciparum and 64 P. vivax samples were collected. All P. falciparum infections acquired in Honduras carried pfcrt, pfmdr1, pfdhps and pfdhfr alleles associated with chloroquine, amodiaquine and sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine sensitivity only. One patient with parasites acquired on a Pacific Island had pfcrt 76 T and pfmdr1 86Y alleles. That patient and a patient infected in West Africa had pfdhfr 51I, 59 R and 108 N alleles. Pvmdr1 976 F was found in 7/37 and two copies of pvmdr1 were found in 1/37 samples. Pvdhfr 57 L + 58 R was observed in 2/57 samples. The results indicate that P. falciparum from Honduras remain sensitive to chloroquine and sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine. This suggests that chloroquine and sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine should be efficacious for treatment of uncomplicated P. falciparum malaria, supporting current national treatment guidelines. However, genetic polymorphisms associated with chloroquine and sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine tolerance were detected in local P. vivax and imported P. falciparum infections. Continuous monitoring of the prevalence of drug resistant/tolerant P

  19. Efficacy and safety of dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine in Indonesian children infected with uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax

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    Emiliana Tjitra

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Background Dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine (DPQ has been used since 2006 in Papua, Indonesia and is planned as an alternative artemisinin-based combination therapy for wider use in Indonesia. Confirmation of the drug’s efficacy and safety in children outside Papua is needed. Objective To measure the day-42 clinical and parasitological efficacy of DPQ in children with uncomplicated falciparum and vivax malaria. Methods This cross-sectional and observational study was held in Kalimantan and Sulawesi in 2010. Seventy and sixty children under 15 years of age with uncomplicated falciparum and vivax malaria were selected according to the 2003 WHO protocol for monitoring therapeutic efficacy of antimalarial treatments and was confirmed by microscopy and PCR. All subjects were treated with DPQ based on a dosage regimen of dihydroartemisinin 2-4 mg/kg BW/dose and piperaquine 16-32 mg/kg BW/dose, in single daily doses for 3 days and closely observed for 42 days. Data was analyzed using intention-to-treat (ITT and per protocol (PP populations. Results The mean fever and asexual parasite clearance times were 1.0 day and 1.6 days, respectively, in children with uncomplicated falciparum malaria, and 1.1 days and 1.2 days, respectively, in children with uncomplicatedvivax malaria. Clinical symptoms reduced over 50% by day 7. Hemoglobin recoveries showed improvement on days 14, 28 and 42, at 70.6%, 83.8%and 89.1%, respectively, in the falciparum malaria group, and 60.3%, 65,5% and 83.6%, respectively, in thevivax malaria group. Adequate clinical and parasitological response to DPQ on day 42 in the ITT and PP populations were reported as 98.6% (95% CI 92.3 to 99.7% and 100% (95% CI 94.7 to 100%, respectively, in the falciparum group, and 91.7% (95% CI 81.9 to 96.4% and 96.5% (95% CI 88.1 to 99.0%, respectively, the vivax group. Mild adverse events commonly noted were cough, abdominal pain, diarrhea, anorexia, and vomiting. Conclusion DPQ was effective against

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

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    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.

  1. Plasmodium falciparum in the southeastern Atlantic forest: a challenge to the bromeliad-malaria paradigm?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laporta, Gabriel Zorello; Burattini, Marcelo Nascimento; Levy, Debora; Fukuya, Linah Akemi; de Oliveira, Tatiane Marques Porangaba; Maselli, Luciana Morganti Ferreira; Conn, Jan Evelyn; Massad, Eduardo; Bydlowski, Sergio Paulo; Sallum, Maria Anice Mureb

    2015-04-25

    Recently an unexpectedly high prevalence of Plasmodium falciparum was found in asymptomatic blood donors living in the southeastern Brazilian Atlantic forest. The bromeliad-malaria paradigm assumes that transmission of Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium malariae involves species of the subgenus Kerteszia of Anopheles and only a few cases of P. vivax malaria are reported annually in this region. The expectations of this paradigm are a low prevalence of P. vivax and a null prevalence of P. falciparum. Therefore, the aim of this study was to verify if P. falciparum is actively circulating in the southeastern Brazilian Atlantic forest remains. In this study, anophelines were collected with Shannon and CDC-light traps in seven distinct Atlantic forest landscapes over a 4-month period. Field-collected Anopheles mosquitoes were tested by real-time PCR assay in pools of ten, and then each mosquito from every positive pool, separately for P. falciparum and P. vivax. Genomic DNA of P. falciparum or P. vivax from positive anophelines was then amplified by traditional PCR for sequencing of the 18S ribosomal DNA to confirm Plasmodium species. Binomial probabilities were calculated to identify non-random results of the P. falciparum-infected anopheline findings. The overall proportion of anophelines naturally infected with P. falciparum was 4.4% (21/480) and only 0.8% (4/480) with P. vivax. All of the infected mosquitoes were found in intermixed natural and human-modified environments and most were Anopheles cruzii (22/25 = 88%, 18 P. falciparum plus 4 P. vivax). Plasmodium falciparum was confirmed by sequencing in 76% (16/21) of positive mosquitoes, whereas P. vivax was confirmed in only 25% (1/4). Binomial probabilities suggest that P. falciparum actively circulates throughout the region and that there may be a threshold of the forested over human-modified environment ratio upon which the proportion of P. falciparum-infected anophelines increases significantly. These results

  2. Hybrid asexuality as a primary postzygotic barrier between nascent species: On the interconnection between asexuality, hybridization and speciation

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Janko, K.; Pačes, Jan; Wilkinson-Herbots, H.; Costa, R. J.; Roslein, J.; Drozd, P.; Iakovenko, N.; Rídl, Jakub; Hroudová, Miluše; Kočí, J.; Reifová, R.; Šlechtová, V.; Choleva, L.

    2018-01-01

    Roč. 27, č. 1 (2018), s. 248-263 ISSN 0962-1083 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR KJB600450902; GA MŠk(CZ) LM2015047; GA ČR GA13-12580S; GA ČR GA206/09/1298; GA ČR GAP506/10/1155; GA ČR GJ15-19947Y; GA MŠk EF15_003/0000460 Institutional support: RVO:68378050 ; RVO:67985904 Keywords : balance hypothesis * coalescence * evolution of asexuality * hybridization * phylogeography * speciation Subject RIV: CE - Biochemistry OBOR OECD: Genetics and heredity (medical genetics to be 3) Impact factor: 6.086, year: 2016

  3. Expression of a type B RIFIN in Plasmodium falciparum merozoites and gametes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mwakalinga Steven B

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available 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 into A and B types based on the presence or absence of a 25 amino acid motif in the semi-conserved domain. A particular type B RIFIN, PF13_0006, has previously been shown to be strongly transcribed in the asexual and sexual stages of P. falciparum in vitro. Methods Antibodies to recombinant PF13_0006 RIFIN were used in immunofluorescence and confocal imaging of 3D7 parasites throughout the asexual reproduction and sexual development to examine the expression of PF13_0006. Furthermore, reactivity to recombinant PF13_0006 was measured in plasma samples collected from individuals from both East and West African endemic areas. Results The PF13_0006 RIFIN variant appeared expressed by both released merozoites and gametes after emergence. 7.4% and 12.1% of individuals from East and West African endemic areas, respectively, carry plasma antibodies that recognize recombinant PF13_0006, where the antibody responses were more common among older children. Conclusions The stage specificity of PF13_0006 suggests that the diversity of RIFIN variants has evolved to provide multiple specialized functions in different stages of the parasite life cycle. These data also suggest that RIFIN variants antigenically similar to PF13_0006 occur in African parasite populations.

  4. Potent Plasmodium falciparum gametocytocidal activity of diaminonaphthoquinones, lead antimalarial chemotypes identified in an antimalarial compound screen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, Takeshi Q; Guiguemde, W Armand; Barnett, David S; Maron, Maxim I; Min, Jaeki; Connelly, Michele C; Suryadevara, Praveen Kumar; Guy, R Kiplin; Williamson, Kim C

    2015-03-01

    Forty percent of the world's population is threatened by malaria, which is caused by Plasmodium parasites and results in an estimated 200 million clinical cases and 650,000 deaths each year. Drug resistance has been reported for all commonly used antimalarials and has prompted screens to identify new drug candidates. However, many of these new candidates have not been evaluated against the parasite stage responsible for transmission, gametocytes. If Plasmodium falciparum gametocytes are not eliminated, patients continue to spread malaria for weeks after asexual parasite clearance. Asymptomatic individuals can also harbor gametocyte burdens sufficient for transmission, and a safe, effective gametocytocidal agent could also be used in community-wide malaria control programs. Here, we identify 15 small molecules with nanomolar activity against late-stage gametocytes. Fourteen are diaminonaphthoquinones (DANQs), and one is a 2-imino-benzo[d]imidazole (IBI). One of the DANQs identified, SJ000030570, is a lead antimalarial candidate. In contrast, 94% of the 650 compounds tested are inactive against late-stage gametocytes. Consistent with the ineffectiveness of most approved antimalarials against gametocytes, of the 19 novel compounds with activity against known anti-asexual-stage targets, only 3 had any strong effect on gametocyte viability. These data demonstrate the distinct biology of the transmission stages and emphasize the importance of screening for gametocytocidal activity. The potent gametocytocidal activity of DANQ and IBI coupled with their efficacy against asexual parasites provides leads for the development of antimalarials with the potential to prevent both the symptoms and the spread of malaria. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  5. Biomarkers of Plasmodium falciparum infection during pregnancy in women living in northeastern Tanzania.

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    Stéphanie Boström

    Full Text Available In pregnant women, Plasmodium falciparum infections are an important cause of maternal morbidity as well as fetal and neonatal mortality. Erythrocytes infected by these malaria-causing parasites accumulate through adhesive interactions in placental intervillous spaces, thus evading detection in peripheral blood smears. Sequestered infected erythrocytes induce inflammation, offering the possibility of detecting inflammatory mediators in peripheral blood that could act as biomarkers of placental infection. In a longitudinal, prospective study in Tanzania, we quantified a range of different cytokines, chemokines and angiogenic factors in peripheral plasma samples, taken on multiple sequential occasions during pregnancy up to and including delivery, from P. falciparum-infected women and matched uninfected controls. The results show that during healthy, uninfected pregnancies the levels of most of the panel of molecules we measured were largely unchanged except at delivery. In women with P. falciparum, however, both comparative and longitudinal assessments consistently showed that the levels of IL-10 and IP-10 increased significantly whilst that of RANTES decreased significantly, regardless of gestational age at the time the infection was detected. ROC curve analysis indicated that a combination of increased IL-10 and IP-10 levels and decreased RANTES levels might be predictive of P. falciparum infections. In conclusion, our data suggest that host biomarkers in peripheral blood may represent useful diagnostic markers of P. falciparum infection during pregnancy, but placental histology results would need to be included to verify these findings.

  6. Aotus infulatus monkey is susceptible to Plasmodium falciparum infection and may constitute an alternative experimental model for malaria

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    Carvalho Leonardo JM

    2000-01-01

    Full Text Available Aotus is one of the WHO-recommended primate models for studies in malaria, and several species can be infected with Plasmodium falciparum or P. vivax. Here we describe the successful infection of the species A. infulatus from eastern Amazon with blood stages of P. falciparum. Both intact and splenectomized animals were susceptible to infection; the intact ones were able to keep parasitemias at lower levels for several days, but developed complications such as severe anemia; splenectomized monkeys developed higher parasitemias but no major complications. We conclude that A. infulatus is susceptible to P. falciparum infection and may represent an alternative model for studies in malaria.

  7. Natural epigenetic variation contributes to heritable flowering divergence in a widespread asexual dandelion lineage

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wilschut, R.A.; Oplaat, C.; Snoek, B.; Kirschner, J.; Verhoeven, K.J.F.

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetic variation has been proposed to contribute to the success of asexual plants, either as a contributor to phenotypic plasticity or by enabling transient adaptation via selection on transgenerationally stable, but reversible, epialleles. While recent studies in experimental plant populations

  8. Data from: Natural epigenetic variation contributes to heritable flowering divergence in a widespread asexual dandelion lineage

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wilschut, Rutger; Oplaat, C.; Snoek, L.B.; Kirschner, J.; Verhoeven, K.J.F.

    2015-01-01

    Epigenetic variation has been proposed to contribute to the success of asexual plants, either as a contributor to phenotypic plasticity or by enabling transient adaptation via selection on transgenerationally stable, but reversible, epialleles. While recent studies in experimental plant populations

  9. Sexual versus Asexual Reproduction: Distinct Outcomes in Relative Abundance of Parthenogenetic Mealybugs following Recent Colonization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tabata, Jun; Ichiki, Ryoko T; Tanaka, Hirotaka; Kageyama, Daisuke

    2016-01-01

    Asexual reproduction, including parthenogenesis in which embryos develop within a female without fertilization, is assumed to confer advantages over sexual reproduction, which includes a "cost of males." Sexual reproduction largely predominates in animals, however, indicating that this cost is outweighed by the genetic and/or ecological benefits of sexuality, including the acquisition of advantageous mutations occurring in different individuals and the elimination of deleterious mutations. But the evolution of sexual reproduction remains unclear, because we have limited examples that demonstrate the relative success of sexual lineages in the face of competition from asexual lineages in the same environment. Here we investigated a sympatric occurrence of sexual and asexual reproduction in the pineapple mealybug, Dysmicoccus brevipes. This pest invaded southwestern Japan, including Okinawa and Ishigaki Islands, in the 1930s in association with imported pineapple plants. Our recent censuses demonstrated that on Okinawa sexually reproducing individuals can coexist with and even dominate asexual individuals in the presence of habitat and resource competition, which is considered to be severe for this nearly immobile insect. Molecular phylogeny based on partial DNA sequences in the mitochondrial and nuclear genomes, as well as the endosymbiotic bacterial genome, revealed that the asexual lineage diverged from a common sexual ancestor in the relatively recent past. In contrast, only the asexual lineage exhibiting obligate apomictic thelytoky was discovered on Ishigaki. Co-existence of the two lineages cannot be explained by the results of laboratory experiments, which showed that the intrinsic rate of increase in the sexual lineage was not obviously superior to that of the asexual lineage. Differences in biotic and/or abiotic selective forces operating on the two islands might be the cause of this discrepancy. This biological system offers a unique opportunity to assess

  10. The dynamics of natural Plasmodium falciparum infections.

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    Ingrid Felger

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Natural immunity to Plasmodium falciparum has been widely studied, but its effects on parasite dynamics are poorly understood. Acquisition and clearance rates of untreated infections are key elements of the dynamics of malaria, but estimating these parameters is challenging because of frequent super-infection and imperfect detectability of parasites. Consequently, information on effects of host immune status or age on infection dynamics is fragmentary. METHODS: An age-stratified cohort of 347 individuals from Northern Ghana was sampled six times at 2 month intervals. High-throughput capillary electrophoresis was used to genotype the msp-2 locus of all P. falciparum infections detected by PCR. Force of infection (FOI and duration were estimated for each age group using an immigration-death model that allows for imperfect detection of circulating parasites. RESULTS: Allowing for imperfect detection substantially increased estimates of FOI and duration. Effects of naturally acquired immunity on the FOI and duration would be reflected in age dependence in these indices, but in our cohort data FOI tended to increase with age in children. Persistence of individual parasite clones was characteristic of all age-groups. Duration peaked in 5-9 year old children (average duration 319 days, 95% confidence interval 318;320. CONCLUSIONS: The main age-dependence is on parasite densities, with only small age-variations in the FOI and persistence of infections. This supports the hypothesis that acquired immunity controls transmission mainly by limiting blood-stage parasite densities rather than changing rates of acquisition or clearance of infections.

  11. Sexual conflict and the evolution of asexuality at low population densities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerber, Nina; Kokko, Hanna

    2016-10-26

    Theories for the evolution of sex rarely include facultatively sexual reproduction. Sexual harassment by males is an underappreciated factor: it should at first sight increase the relative advantage of asexual reproduction by increasing the cost of sex. However, if the same females can perform either sexual or asexual life cycles, then females trying to reproduce asexually may not escape harassment. If resisting male harassment is costly, it might be beneficial for a female to accept a mating and undertake a sexual life cycle rather than 'insist' on an asexual one. We investigate the effects of sexual harassment on the maintenance of sex under different population densities. Our model shows that resisting matings pays off at low population densities, which leads to the complete extinction of males, and thus to the evolution of completely asexual populations. Facultative sex persists in a narrow range of slightly higher densities. At high densities, selection favours giving up resisting male mating attempts and thus sexual reproduction takes over. These interactions between the outcomes of sexual conflict and population density suggest an explanation for the rarity of facultative sex and also patterns of geographical parthenogenesis, where marginal environments with potentially low densities are associated with asexuality. © 2016 The Author(s).

  12. Parasite density and the spectrum of clinical illness in falciparum malaria

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ali, H.; Mahmood, T.; Ahmed, N.

    2008-01-01

    To determine the impact of percentage parasitemia and clinical features on morbidity and mortality in patients with P. falciparum malaria. Seventy-six adult patients of smear positive P. falciparum malaria were selected for the study. Parasite density was estimated on thin blood film and expressed as percentage of red blood cells parasitized. Patients were divided into three groups on the basis of parasite density. The data was analyzed on SPSS version 12. Results were expressed as percentages, mean and standard deviations. P-value 10%. Comparative analysis of the groups showed that pallor, impaired consciousness, jaundice or malarial hepatitis, thrombocytopenia, acute renal failure, DIC, and mortality were all strongly associated with the density of Plasmodium falciparum malaria (p=0.001). Parasite density was not related to age, gender and hepatosplenomegaly. High parasite density was associated with severe clinical illness, complications and mortality. Parasite counts of > 5% may be considered as hyperparasitaemia in this population of the world. (author)

  13. PfeIK1, a eukaryotic initiation factor 2α kinase of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, regulates stress-response to amino-acid starvation

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    Ranford-Cartwright Lisa

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Post-transcriptional control of gene expression is suspected to play an important role in malaria parasites. In yeast and metazoans, part of the stress response is mediated through phosphorylation of eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2α (eIF2α, which results in the selective translation of mRNAs encoding stress-response proteins. Methods The impact of starvation on the phosphorylation state of PfeIF2α was examined. Bioinformatic methods were used to identify plasmodial eIF2α kinases. The activity of one of these, PfeIK1, was investigated using recombinant protein with non-physiological substrates and recombinant PfeIF2α. Reverse genetic techniques were used to disrupt the pfeik1 gene. Results The data demonstrate that the Plasmodium falciparum eIF2α orthologue is phosphorylated in response to starvation, and provide bioinformatic evidence for the presence of three eIF2α kinases in P. falciparum, only one of which (PfPK4 had been described previously. Evidence is provided that one of the novel eIF2α kinases, PfeIK1, is able to phosphorylate the P. falciparum eIF2α orthologue in vitro. PfeIK1 is not required for asexual or sexual development of the parasite, as shown by the ability of pfeik1- parasites to develop into sporozoites. However, eIF2α phosphorylation in response to starvation is abolished in pfeik1- asexual parasites Conclusion This study strongly suggests that a mechanism for versatile regulation of translation by several kinases with a similar catalytic domain but distinct regulatory domains, is conserved in P. falciparum.

  14. Gametocytogenesis Following Drug Treatment of Plasmodium Falciparum in an Area of Seasonal Transmission in Sudan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mackinnon, M. J.M; Walliker, D.; Babiker, A.; Ahmed, S.; Abdel-Muhsin, A.; Eltayeb, A.

    2007-01-01

    We monitored post-treatment Plasmodium falciparum among patients treated with chloroquine (CQ) and pyrimethamine-sulfadoxine (PS) in a village in eastern Sudan. Parasites were examined on day zero (pre-treatment), day 7, day 14 and day 21 (post-treatment) during the transmission season. A further sample was taken two months later (Day 80) at the start of the dry season. Asexual forms and gametocytes were detected by microscopy and reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) to detect expression of a gametocyte-specific protein pfg377. Gametocyte carriage, as revealed by microscopy, increased significantly following CQ and PS treatment reaching a maximum between days 7 and 14. When measured by RT-PCR, however, there was no significant difference in gametocyte rate between day 0 and day 7 or 14. RT-PCR gametocyte rates dropped dramatically by day 80 post-treatment but were still 33% and 8% in the CQ and PS treated group at this time. Alleles associated with drug resistance of P. falciparum to chloroquine (the chloroquine resistance transporter, pfcrt, and multi-drug resistance, pfmdr-1) and pyrimethamine (dihydrofolate reductase, dhfr) were at high frequency at the beginning of treatment and increased further through time under both drug treatments. Infections with drug-resistant parasites tended to have higher gametocyte prevalence than drug-sensitive infections.

  15. 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.

  16. Let us not be unfair to asexuals: their ephemerality may be explained by neutral models without invoking any evolutionary constraints of asexuality

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Janko, Karel

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 68, č. 2 (2014), s. 569-576 ISSN 0014-3820 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA13-12580S Institutional support: RVO:67985904 Keywords : age of clones * asexuality * clonal turnover Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 4.612, year: 2014

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

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    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.

  18. Monkey-derived monoclonal antibodies against Plasmodium falciparum

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stanley, H.A.; Reese, R.T.

    1985-01-01

    A system has been developed that allows efficient production of monkey monoclonal antibodies from owl monkeys. Splenocytes or peripheral blood lymphocytes from monkeys immune to the human malarial parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, were fused with P3X63 Ag8.653 mouse myelomas. The resulting hybridomas were screened by an indirect fluorescent antibody test for the production of monkey monoclonal antibodies (mAb) reactive with P. falciparum. Most of the mAb reacted with the P. falciparum merozoites and immunoprecipitated a parasite-derived glycoprotein having a relative molecular weight of 185,000. These mAb gave a minimum of five different immunoprecipitation patterns, thus demonstrating that a large number of polypeptides obtained when parasitized erythrocytes are solubilized share epitopes with this large glycoprotein. In addition, mAb were obtained that reacted with antigens associated with the infected erythrocyte membrane. One of these mAb bound a M/sub r/ 95,000 antigen. Radioimmunoprecipitation assays using 125 T-antibodies were done

  19. Horizontal transfer generates genetic variation in an asexual pathogen

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    Xiaoqiu Huang

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available There are major gaps in the understanding of how genetic variation is generated in the asexual pathogen Verticillium dahliae. On the one hand, V. dahliae is a haploid organism that reproduces clonally. On the other hand, single-nucleotide polymorphisms and chromosomal rearrangements were found between V. dahliae strains. Lineage-specific (LS regions comprising about 5% of the genome are highly variable between V. dahliae strains. Nonetheless, it is unknown whether horizontal gene transfer plays a major role in generating genetic variation in V. dahliae. Here, we analyzed a previously sequenced V. dahliae population of nine strains from various geographical locations and hosts. We found highly homologous elements in LS regions of each strain; LS regions of V. dahliae strain JR2 are much richer in highly homologous elements than the core genome. In addition, we discovered, in LS regions of JR2, several structural forms of nonhomologous recombination, and two or three homologous sequence types of each form, with almost each sequence type present in an LS region of another strain. A large section of one of the forms is known to be horizontally transferred between V. dahliae strains. We unexpectedly found that 350 kilobases of dynamic LS regions were much more conserved than the core genome between V. dahliae and a closely related species (V. albo-atrum, suggesting that these LS regions were horizontally transferred recently. Our results support the view that genetic variation in LS regions is generated by horizontal transfer between strains, and by chromosomal reshuffling reported previously.

  20. Sexual and asexual oogenesis require the expression of unique and shared sets of genes in the insect Acyrthosiphon pisum

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    Gallot Aurore

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Although sexual reproduction is dominant within eukaryotes, asexual reproduction is widespread and has evolved independently as a derived trait in almost all major taxa. How asexuality evolved in sexual organisms is unclear. Aphids, such as Acyrthosiphon pisum, alternate between asexual and sexual reproductive means, as the production of parthenogenetic viviparous females or sexual oviparous females and males varies in response to seasonal photoperiodism. Consequently, sexual and asexual development in aphids can be analyzed simultaneously in genetically identical individuals. Results We compared the transcriptomes of aphid embryos in the stages of development during which the trajectory of oogenesis is determined for producing sexual or asexual gametes. This study design aimed at identifying genes involved in the onset of the divergent mechanisms that result in the sexual or asexual phenotype. We detected 33 genes that were differentially transcribed in sexual and asexual embryos. Functional annotation by gene ontology (GO showed a biological signature of oogenesis, cell cycle regulation, epigenetic regulation and RNA maturation. In situ hybridizations demonstrated that 16 of the differentially-transcribed genes were specifically expressed in germ cells and/or oocytes of asexual and/or sexual ovaries, and therefore may contribute to aphid oogenesis. We categorized these 16 genes by their transcription patterns in the two types of ovaries; they were: i expressed during sexual and asexual oogenesis; ii expressed during sexual and asexual oogenesis but with different localizations; or iii expressed only during sexual or asexual oogenesis. Conclusions Our results show that asexual and sexual oogenesis in aphids share common genetic programs but diverge by adapting specificities in their respective gene expression profiles in germ cells and oocytes.

  1. Vaccines for preventing malaria (blood-stage).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graves, P; Gelband, H

    2006-10-18

    A malaria vaccine is needed because of the heavy burden of mortality and morbidity due to this disease. This review describes the results of trials of blood (asexual)-stage vaccines. Several are under development, but only one (MSP/RESA, also known as Combination B) has been tested in randomized controlled trials. To assess the effect of blood-stage malaria vaccines in preventing infection, disease, and death. In March 2006, we searched the Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group Specialized Register, CENTRAL (The Cochrane Library 2006, Issue 1), MEDLINE, EMBASE, LILACS, and the Science Citation Index. We also searched conference proceedings and reference lists of articles, and contacted organizations and researchers in the field. Randomized controlled trials comparing blood-stage vaccines (other than SPf66) against P. falciparum, P. vivax, P. malariae, or P. ovale with placebo, control vaccine, or routine antimalarial control measures in people of any age receiving a challenge malaria infection. Both authors independently assessed trial quality and extracted data. Results for dichotomous data were expressed as relative risks (RR) with 95% confidence intervals (CI). Five trials of MSP/RESA vaccine with 217 participants were included; all five reported on safety, and two on efficacy. No severe or systemic adverse effects were reported at doses of 13 to 15 microg of each antigen (39 to 45 microg total). One small efficacy trial with 17 non-immune participants with blood-stage parasites showed no reduction or delay in parasite growth rates after artificial challenge. In the second efficacy trial in 120 children aged five to nine years in Papua New Guinea, episodes of clinical malaria were not reduced, but MSP/RESA significantly reduced parasite density only in children who had not been pretreated with an antimalarial drug (sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine). Infections with the 3D7 parasite subtype of MSP2 (the variant included in the vaccine) were reduced (RR 0.38, 95% CI 0.26 to

  2. 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

  3. Direct whole-genome sequencing of Plasmodium falciparum specimens from dried erythrocyte spots

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nag, Sidsel; Kofoed, Poul Erik; Ursing, Johan

    2018-01-01

    -infected individuals living in rural areas, away from main infrastructure and the electrical grid. The aim of this study was to describe a low-tech procedure to sample P. falciparum specimens for direct whole genome sequencing (WGS), without use of electricity and cold-chain. Methods: Venous blood samples were...

  4. Blood stage malaria vaccine eliciting high antigen-specific antibody concentrations confers no protection to young children in Western Kenya.

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    Bernhards R Ogutu

    Full Text Available The antigen, falciparum malaria protein 1 (FMP1, represents the 42-kDa C-terminal fragment of merozoite surface protein-1 (MSP-1 of the 3D7 clone of P. falciparum. Formulated with AS02 (a proprietary Adjuvant System, it constitutes the FMP1/AS02 candidate malaria vaccine. We evaluated this vaccine's safety, immunogenicity, and efficacy in African children.A randomised, double-blind, Phase IIb, comparator-controlled trial.The trial was conducted in 13 field stations of one mile radii within Kombewa Division, Nyanza Province, Western Kenya, an area of holoendemic transmission of P. falciparum. We enrolled 400 children aged 12-47 months in general good health.Children were randomised in a 1ratio1 fashion to receive either FMP1/AS02 (50 microg or Rabipur(R rabies vaccine. Vaccinations were administered on a 0, 1, and 2 month schedule. The primary study endpoint was time to first clinical episode of P. falciparum malaria (temperature >/=37.5 degrees C with asexual parasitaemia of >/=50,000 parasites/microL of blood occurring between 14 days and six months after a third dose. Case detection was both active and passive. Safety and immunogenicity were evaluated for eight months after first immunisations; vaccine efficacy (VE was measured over a six-month period following third vaccinations.374 of 400 children received all three doses and completed six months of follow-up. FMP1/AS02 had a good safety profile and was well-tolerated but more reactogenic than the comparator. Geometric mean anti-MSP-1(42 antibody concentrations increased from1.3 microg/mL to 27.3 microg/mL in the FMP1/AS02 recipients, but were unchanged in controls. 97 children in the FMP1/AS02 group and 98 controls had a primary endpoint episode. Overall VE was 5.1% (95% CI: -26% to +28%; p-value = 0.7.FMP1/AS02 is not a promising candidate for further development as a monovalent malaria vaccine. Future MSP-1(42 vaccine development should focus on other formulations and antigen constructs

  5. Asexual sporulation facilitates adaptation: The emergence of azole resistance in Aspergillus fumigatus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jianhua; Debets, Alfons J M; Verweij, Paul E; Melchers, Willem J G; Zwaan, Bas J; Schoustra, Sijmen E

    2015-10-01

    Understanding the occurrence and spread of azole resistance in Aspergillus fumigatus is crucial for public health. It has been hypothesized that asexual sporulation, which is abundant in nature, is essential for phenotypic expression of azole resistance mutations in A. fumigatus facilitating subsequent spread through natural selection. Furthermore, the disease aspergilloma is associated with asexual sporulation within the lungs of patients and the emergence of azole resistance. This study assessed the evolutionary advantage of asexual sporulation by growing the fungus under pressure of one of five different azole fungicides over seven weeks and by comparing the rate of adaptation between scenarios of culturing with and without asexual sporulation. Results unequivocally show that asexual sporulation facilitates adaptation. This can be explained by the combination of more effective selection because of the transition from a multicellular to a unicellular stage, and by increased mutation supply due to the production of spores, which involves numerous mitotic divisions. Insights from this study are essential to unravel the resistance mechanisms of sporulating pathogens to chemical compounds and disease agents in general, and for designing strategies that prevent or overcome the emerging threat of azole resistance in particular. © 2015 The Author(s). Evolution © 2015 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  6. Adaptations to different habitats in sexual and asexual populations of parasitoid wasps: a meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amat, Isabelle; van Alphen, Jacques J M; Kacelnik, Alex; Desouhant, Emmanuel; Bernstein, Carlos

    2017-01-01

    Coexistence of sexual and asexual populations remains a key question in evolutionary ecology. We address the question how an asexual and a sexual form of the parasitoid Venturia canescens can coexist in southern Europe. We test the hypothesis that both forms are adapted to different habitats within their area of distribution. Sexuals inhabit natural environments that are highly unpredictable, and where density of wasps and their hosts is low and patchily distributed. Asexuals instead are common in anthropic environments (e.g., grain stores) where host outbreaks offer periods when egg-load is the main constraint on reproductive output. We present a meta-analysis of known adaptations to these habitats. Differences in behavior, physiology and life-history traits between sexual and asexual wasps were standardized in term of effect size (Cohen's d value; Cohen, 1988). Seeking consilience from the differences between multiple traits, we found that sexuals invest more in longevity at the expense of egg-load, are more mobile, and display higher plasticity in response to thermal variability than asexual counterparts. Thus, each form has consistent multiple adaptations to the ecological circumstances in the contrasting environments.

  7. Adaptations to different habitats in sexual and asexual populations of parasitoid wasps: a meta-analysis

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    Isabelle Amat

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Background Coexistence of sexual and asexual populations remains a key question in evolutionary ecology. We address the question how an asexual and a sexual form of the parasitoid Venturia canescens can coexist in southern Europe. We test the hypothesis that both forms are adapted to different habitats within their area of distribution. Sexuals inhabit natural environments that are highly unpredictable, and where density of wasps and their hosts is low and patchily distributed. Asexuals instead are common in anthropic environments (e.g., grain stores where host outbreaks offer periods when egg-load is the main constraint on reproductive output. Methods We present a meta-analysis of known adaptations to these habitats. Differences in behavior, physiology and life-history traits between sexual and asexual wasps were standardized in term of effect size (Cohen’s d value; Cohen, 1988. Results Seeking consilience from the differences between multiple traits, we found that sexuals invest more in longevity at the expense of egg-load, are more mobile, and display higher plasticity in response to thermal variability than asexual counterparts. Discussion Thus, each form has consistent multiple adaptations to the ecological circumstances in the contrasting environments.

  8. Blockage of spontaneous Ca2+ oscillation causes cell death in intraerythrocitic Plasmodium falciparum.

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    Masahiro Enomoto

    Full Text Available Malaria remains one of the world's most important infectious diseases and is responsible for enormous mortality and morbidity. Resistance to antimalarial drugs is a challenging problem in malaria control. Clinical malaria is associated with the proliferation and development of Plasmodium parasites in human erythrocytes. Especially, the development into the mature forms (trophozoite and schizont of Plasmodium falciparum (P. falciparum causes severe malaria symptoms due to a distinctive property, sequestration which is not shared by any other human malaria. Ca(2+ is well known to be a highly versatile intracellular messenger that regulates many different cellular processes. Cytosolic Ca(2+ increases evoked by extracellular stimuli are often observed in the form of oscillating Ca(2+ spikes (Ca(2+ oscillation in eukaryotic cells. However, in lower eukaryotic and plant cells the physiological roles and the molecular mechanisms of Ca(2+ oscillation are poorly understood. Here, we showed the observation of the inositol 1,4,5-trisphospate (IP(3-dependent spontaneous Ca(2+ oscillation in P. falciparum without any exogenous extracellular stimulation by using live cell fluorescence Ca(2+ imaging. Intraerythrocytic P. falciparum exhibited stage-specific Ca(2+ oscillations in ring form and trophozoite stages which were blocked by IP(3 receptor inhibitor, 2-aminoethyl diphenylborinate (2-APB. Analyses of parasitaemia and parasite size and electron micrograph of 2-APB-treated P. falciparum revealed that 2-APB severely obstructed the intraerythrocytic maturation, resulting in cell death of the parasites. Furthermore, we confirmed the similar lethal effect of 2-APB on the chloroquine-resistant strain of P. falciparum. To our best knowledge, we for the first time showed the existence of the spontaneous Ca(2+ oscillation in Plasmodium species and clearly demonstrated that IP(3-dependent spontaneous Ca(2+ oscillation in P. falciparum is critical for the development

  9. Antimalarial agents against both sexual and asexual parasites stages: structure-activity relationships and biological studies of the Malaria Box compound 1-[5-(4-bromo-2-chlorophenyl)furan-2-yl]-N-[(piperidin-4-yl)methyl]methanamine (MMV019918) and analogues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vallone, Alessandra; D'Alessandro, Sarah; Brogi, Simone; Brindisi, Margherita; Chemi, Giulia; Alfano, Gloria; Lamponi, Stefania; Lee, Soon Goo; Jez, Joseph M; Koolen, Karin J M; Dechering, Koen J; Saponara, Simona; Fusi, Fabio; Gorelli, Beatrice; Taramelli, Donatella; Parapini, Silvia; Caldelari, Reto; Campiani, Giuseppe; Gemma, Sandra; Butini, Stefania

    2018-04-25

    Therapies addressing multiple stages of Plasmodium falciparum life cycle are highly desirable for implementing malaria elimination strategies. MMV019918 (1, 1-[5-(4-bromo-2-chlorophenyl)furan-2-yl]-N-[(piperidin-4-yl)methyl]methanamine) was selected from the MMV Malaria Box for its dual activity against both asexual stages and gametocytes. In-depth structure-activity relationship studies and cytotoxicity evaluation led to the selection of 25 for further biological investigation. The potential transmission blocking activity of 25 versus P. falciparum was confirmed through the standard membrane-feeding assay. Both 1 and 25 significantly prolonged atrioventricular conduction time in Langendorff-isolated rat hearts, and showed inhibitory activity of Ba 2+ current through Ca v 1.2 channels. An in silico target-fishing study suggested the enzyme phosphoethanolamine methyltransferase (PfPMT) as a potential target. However, compound activity against PfPMT did not track with the antiplasmodial activity, suggesting the latter activity relies on a different molecular target. Nevertheless, 25 showed interesting activity against PfPMT, which could be an important starting point for the identification of more potent inhibitors active against both sexual and asexual stages of the parasite. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  10. Limonene Arrests Parasite Development and Inhibits Isoprenylation of Proteins in Plasmodium falciparum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moura, Ivan Cruz; Wunderlich, Gerhard; Uhrig, Maria L.; Couto, Alicia S.; Peres, Valnice J.; Katzin, Alejandro M.; Kimura, Emília A.

    2001-01-01

    Isoprenylation is an essential protein modification in eukaryotic cells. Herein, we report that in Plasmodium falciparum, a number of proteins were labeled upon incubation of intraerythrocytic forms with either [3H]farnesyl pyrophosphate or [3H]geranylgeranyl pyrophosphate. By thin-layer chromatography, we showed that attached isoprenoids are partially modified to dolichol and other, uncharacterized, residues, confirming active isoprenoid metabolism in this parasite. Incubation of blood-stage P. falciparum treated with the isoprenylation inhibitor limonene significantly decreased the parasites' progression from the ring stage to the trophozoite stage and at 1.22 mM, 50% of the parasites died after the first cycle. Using Ras- and Rap-specific monoclonal antibodies, putative Rap and Ras proteins of P. falciparum were immunoprecipitated. Upon treatment with 0.5 mM limonene, isoprenylation of these proteins was significantly decreased, possibly explaining the observed arrest of parasite development. PMID:11502528

  11. Absence of erythrocyte sequestration and lack of multicopy gene family expression in Plasmodium falciparum from a splenectomized malaria patient.

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    Anna Bachmann

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: To avoid spleen-dependent killing mechanisms parasite-infected erythrocytes (IE of Plasmodium falciparum malaria patients have the capacity to bind to endothelial receptors. This binding also known as sequestration, is mediated by parasite proteins, which are targeted to the erythrocyte surface. Candidate proteins are those encoded by P. falciparum multicopy gene families, such as var, rif, stevor or PfMC-2TM. However, a direct in vivo proof of IE sequestration and expression of multicopy gene families is still lacking. Here, we report on the analysis of IE from a black African immigrant, who received the diagnosis of a malignant lymphoproliferative disorder and subsequently underwent splenectomy. Three weeks after surgery, the patient experienced clinical falciparum malaria with high parasitemia and circulating developmental parasite stages usually sequestered to the vascular endothelium such as late trophozoites, schizonts or immature gametocytes. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Initially, when isolated from the patient, the infected erythrocytes were incapable to bind to various endothelial receptors in vitro. Moreover, the parasites failed to express the multicopy gene families var, A-type rif and stevor but expression of B-type rif and PfMC-2TM genes were detected. In the course of in vitro cultivation, the parasites started to express all investigated multicopy gene families and concomitantly developed the ability to adhere to endothelial receptors such as CD36 and ICAM-1, respectively. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: This case strongly supports the hypothesis that parasite surface proteins such as PfEMP1, A-type RIFIN or STEVOR are involved in interactions of infected erythrocytes with endothelial receptors mediating sequestration of mature asexual and immature sexual stages of P. falciparum. In contrast, multicopy gene families coding for B-type RIFIN and PfMC-2TM proteins may not be involved in sequestration, as these genes were

  12. The Key Role of Epigenetics in the Persistence of Asexual Lineages

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    Emilie Castonguay

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Asexual organisms, often perceived as evolutionary dead ends, can be long-lived and geographically widespread. We propose that epigenetic mechanisms could play a crucial role in the evolutionary persistence of these lineages. Genetically identical organisms could rely on phenotypic plasticity to face environmental variation. Epigenetic modifications could be the molecular mechanism enabling such phenotypic plasticity; they can be influenced by the environment and act at shorter timescales than mutation. Recent work on the asexual vertebrate Chrosomus eos-neogaeus (Pisces: Cyprinidae provides broad insights into the contribution of epigenetics in genetically identical individuals. We discuss the extension of these results to other asexual organisms, in particular those resulting from interspecific hybridizations. We finally develop on the evolutionary relevance of epigenetic variation in the context of heritability.

  13. Complete Plasmodium falciparum liver-stage development in liver-chimeric mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaughan, Ashley M.; Mikolajczak, Sebastian A.; Wilson, Elizabeth M.; Grompe, Markus; Kaushansky, Alexis; Camargo, Nelly; Bial, John; Ploss, Alexander; Kappe, Stefan H.I.

    2012-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum, which causes the most lethal form of human malaria, replicates in the host liver during the initial stage of infection. However, in vivo malaria liver-stage (LS) studies in humans are virtually impossible, and in vitro models of LS development do not reconstitute relevant parasite growth conditions. To overcome these obstacles, we have adopted a robust mouse model for the study of P. falciparum LS in vivo: the immunocompromised and fumarylacetoacetate hydrolase–deficient mouse (Fah–/–, Rag2–/–, Il2rg–/–, termed the FRG mouse) engrafted with human hepatocytes (FRG huHep). FRG huHep mice supported vigorous, quantifiable P. falciparum LS development that culminated in complete maturation of LS at approximately 7 days after infection, providing a relevant model for LS development in humans. The infections allowed observations of previously unknown expression of proteins in LS, including P. falciparum translocon of exported proteins 150 (PTEX150) and exported protein-2 (EXP-2), components of a known parasite protein export machinery. LS schizonts exhibited exoerythrocytic merozoite formation and merosome release. Furthermore, FRG mice backcrossed to the NOD background and repopulated with huHeps and human red blood cells supported reproducible transition from LS infection to blood-stage infection. Thus, these mice constitute reliable models to study human LS directly in vivo and demonstrate utility for studies of LS–to–blood-stage transition of a human malaria parasite. PMID:22996664

  14. Blood

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... a reduced production of red blood cells, including: Iron deficiency anemia. Iron deficiency anemia is the most common type of anemia and ... inflammatory bowel disease are especially likely to have iron deficiency anemia. Anemia due to chronic disease. People with chronic ...

  15. Plasmodium falciparum: attenuation by irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Waki, S.; Yonome, I.; Suzuki, M.

    1983-01-01

    The effect of irradiation on the in vitro growth of Plasmodium falciparum was investigated. The cultured malarial parasites at selected stages of development were exposed to gamma rays and the sensitivity of each stage was determined. The stages most sensitive to irradiation were the ring forms and the early trophozoites; late trophozoites were relatively insensitive. The greatest resistance was shown when parasites were irradiated at a time of transition from the late trophozoite and schizont stages to young ring forms. The characteristics of radiosensitive variation in the parasite cycle resembled that of mammalian cells. Growth curves of parasites exposed to doses of irradiation upto 150 gray had the same slope as nonirradiated controls but parasites which were exposed to 200 gray exhibited a growth curve which was less steep than that for parasites in other groups. Less than 10 organisms survived from the 10(6) parasites exposed to this high dose of irradiation; the possibility exists of obtaining radiation-attenuated P. falciparum

  16. Dibenzylideneacetone analogues as novel Plasmodium falciparum inhibitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aher, Rahul Balasaheb; Wanare, Gajanan; Kawathekar, Neha; Kumar, Ravi Ranjan; Kaushik, Naveen Kumar; Sahal, Dinkar; Chauhan, Virander Singh

    2011-05-15

    A series of dibenzylideneacetones (A1-A12) and some of their pyrazolines (B1-B4) were synthesized and evaluated in vitro for blood stage antiplasmodial properties in Plasmodium falciparum culture using SYBR-green-I fluorescence assay. The compound (1E, 4E)-1,5-bis(3,4-dimethoxyphenyl)penta-1,4-dien-3-one (A9) was found to be the most active with IC(50) of 1.97 μM against chloroquine-sensitive strain (3D7) and 1.69 μM against chloroquine-resistant field isolate (RKL9). The MTT based cytotoxicity assay on HeLa cell line has confirmed that A9 is selective in its action against malaria parasite (with a therapeutic index of 166). Our results revealed that these compounds exhibited promising antiplasmodial activities which can be further explored as potential leads for the development of cheaper, safe, effective and potent drugs against chloroquine-resistant malarial parasites. Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  17. In vitro adaptation of Plasmodium falciparum reveal variations in cultivability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, John; Mascarenhas, Anjali; Pereira, Ligia; Dash, Rashmi; Walke, Jayashri T; Gawas, Pooja; Sharma, Ambika; Manoharan, Suresh Kumar; Guler, Jennifer L; Maki, Jennifer N; Kumar, Ashwani; Mahanta, Jagadish; Valecha, Neena; Dubhashi, Nagesh; Vaz, Marina; Gomes, Edwin; Chery, Laura; Rathod, Pradipsinh K

    2016-01-22

    Culture-adapted Plasmodium falciparum parasites can offer deeper understanding of geographic variations in drug resistance, pathogenesis and immune evasion. To help ground population-based calculations and inferences from culture-adapted parasites, the complete range of parasites from a study area must be well represented in any collection. To this end, standardized adaptation methods and determinants of successful in vitro adaption were sought. Venous blood was collected from 33 P. falciparum-infected individuals at Goa Medical College and Hospital (Bambolim, Goa, India). Culture variables such as whole blood versus washed blood, heat-inactivated plasma versus Albumax, and different starting haematocrit levels were tested on fresh blood samples from patients. In vitro adaptation was considered successful when two four-fold or greater increases in parasitaemia were observed within, at most, 33 days of attempted culture. Subsequently, parasites from the same patients, which were originally cryopreserved following blood draw, were retested for adaptability for 45 days using identical host red blood cells (RBCs) and culture media. At a new endemic area research site, ~65% of tested patient samples, with varied patient history and clinical presentation, were successfully culture-adapted immediately after blood collection. Cultures set up at 1% haematocrit and 0.5% Albumax adapted most rapidly, but no single test condition was uniformly fatal to culture adaptation. Success was not limited by low patient parasitaemia nor by patient age. Some parasites emerged even after significant delays in sample processing and even after initiation of treatment with anti-malarials. When 'day 0' cryopreserved samples were retested in parallel many months later using identical host RBCs and media, speed to adaptation appeared to be an intrinsic property of the parasites collected from individual patients. Culture adaptation of P. falciparum in a field setting is formally shown to be

  18. Increased prevalence of Plasmodium falciparum malaria in Honduras, Central America Aumento de la prevalencia de malaria por Plasmodium falciparum en Honduras, Centroamerica

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    Carol J. Palmer

    1998-07-01

    Full Text Available We report on our investigation of a malaria outbreak in Honduras, Central America, in January 1997. We tested 202 patients with fever and chills using thin and thick blood film microscopy. Sixteen patients lived in the city and the rest lived in rural areas. A total of 95 samples (47% were positive for malaria parasites. Seventy-nine percent (63/80 of the rural patients were infected with Plasmodium vivax and 21% (17/80 were infected with P. falciparum. In the urban area, all 15 infected patients had P. vivax malaria and none showed evidence of P. falciparum. Since previous reports indicate that falciparum malaria accounts for only 2% of the overall malaria infections in Honduras, the results reported here suggest that there is a dramatic increase in falciparum malaria in the area of Honduras investigated in this study.Notificamos los resultados de un estudio de un brote de malaria que se produjo en Honduras, Centroamérica, en enero de 1997. Sometimos a examen microscópico frotis delgados y frotis gruesos de la sangre de 202 pacientes con fiebre y escalofríos. Dieciséis pacientes eran habitantes de la zona urbana y el resto de la zona rural. Un total de 95 especímenes (47% fueron positivos a parásitos de la malaria. Setenta y ocho por ciento (62/80 de los pacientes del área rural estaban infestados con Plasmodium vivax y 22% (17/80 con P. falciparum. En la zona urbana, todos los 15 pacientes que estaban infestados tenían P. vivax y en ninguno se detectó P. falciparum. Ya que según informes previos la malaria de tipo falciparum representa solamente 2% de todos los casos de malaria en Honduras, nuestros resultados sugieren que hay un gran incremento del número de casos de malaria falciparum en la zona de Honduras en que se llevó a cabo esta investigación.

  19. Prevalence of Dihydrofolate reductase gene mutations in Plasmodium falciparum isolate from pregnant women in Nigeria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olusola Ojurongbe

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available We assessed the prevalence of Plasmodium falciparum and the frequency of the dhfr triple mutation that is associated with antifolate drug resistance among P. falciparumisolates obtained from pregnant women in Ilorin, Nigeria. The study included 179 women in the second and third trimester of pregnancy who have been exposed to intermittent preventive treatment in pregnancy (IPTp with sulfadoxinepyrimethamine. Thick and thin blood films and PCR were used for malaria parasite detection. Blood group and hemoglobin concentration were also determined. Mutations in P. falciparum dhfr were analyzed by sequencing DNA obtained from blood spots on filter paper. Prevalence of P. falciparum in the population (PCR corrected was 44.1% (79/179 with 66.7% and 33.3% in the second and third trimester, respectively. Primigravide (51.3% were more infected than multigravide (48.7% but the difference was not statistically significant. Women in blood group A had the highest P. falciparum malaria infection (30.8%. The mean hemoglobin concentration was lower among those infected with malaria parasite. Also, more women with the malaria parasite (38.4% had anemia compare to those without (21.4%. The prevalence of the P. falciparum dhfr mutant alleles was 64.1%, 61.5%, 38.5%, and 12.8% for I51, R59, N108 and T108, respectively. None of the samples had the L164 mutation. The combined triple dhfr mutation (51 + 59 + 108 in the population was 17.9% (7 of 39. Also, the prevalence of the triple mutant alleles was not significantly associated to the number of doses of SP taken by the women. These findings highlight the need for a regular assessment of IPTp/SP efficacy, and evaluation of possible alternative drugs.

  20. Primaquine for reducing Plasmodium falciparum transmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graves, Patricia M; Gelband, Hellen; Garner, Paul

    2012-09-12

    Mosquitoes become infected with malaria when they ingest gametocyte stages of the parasite from the blood of a human host. Plasmodium falciparum gametocytes are sensitive to the drug primaquine (PQ). The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends giving a single dose or short course of PQ alongside primary treatment for people ill with P. falciparum infection to reduce malaria transmission. Gametocytes themselves cause no symptoms, so this intervention does not directly benefit individuals. PQ causes haemolysis in some people with glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency so may not be safe.   To assess whether a single dose or short course of PQ added to treatments for malaria caused by P. falciparum infection reduces malaria transmission and is safe. We searched the following databases up to 10 April 2012 for studies: the Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group Specialized Register; the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), published in The Cochrane Library; MEDLINE; EMBASE; LILACS; metaRegister of Controlled Trials (mRCT) and the WHO trials search portal using 'malaria*', 'falciparum', and 'primaquine' as search terms. In addition, we searched conference proceedings and reference lists of included studies, and we contacted likely researchers and organizations for relevant trials. Trials of mass treatment of whole populations (or actively detected fever or malaria cases within such populations) with antimalarial drugs, compared to treatment with the same drug plus PQ; or patients with clinical malaria being treated for malaria at health facilities randomized to short course/single dose PQ versus no PQ. Two authors (PMG and HG) independently screened all abstracts, applied inclusion criteria, and abstracted data. We sought data on the effect of PQ on malaria transmission intensity, participant infectiousness, the number of participants with gametocytes, and gametocyte density over time. We stratified results by primary treatment drug as

  1. Proliferation induced by Plasmodium falciparum antigen and interleukin-2 production by lymphocytes isolated from malaria-immune individuals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Theander, T G; Bygbjerg, I C; Jepsen, S

    1986-01-01

    Affinity-purified Plasmodium falciparum soluble antigens (SPAg) isolated from in vitro cultures of the parasite were shown to be relatively free of nonspecific polyclonal activators. To determine the presence of lymphocytes with specificity against SPAg in the peripheral blood of malaria-immune i......Affinity-purified Plasmodium falciparum soluble antigens (SPAg) isolated from in vitro cultures of the parasite were shown to be relatively free of nonspecific polyclonal activators. To determine the presence of lymphocytes with specificity against SPAg in the peripheral blood of malaria...

  2. A murine model of falciparum-malaria by in vivo selection of competent strains in non-myelodepleted mice engrafted with human erythrocytes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iñigo Angulo-Barturen

    Full Text Available To counter the global threat caused by Plasmodium falciparum malaria, new drugs and vaccines are urgently needed. However, there are no practical animal models because P. falciparum infects human erythrocytes almost exclusively. Here we describe a reliable falciparum murine model of malaria by generating strains of P. falciparum in vivo that can infect immunodeficient mice engrafted with human erythrocytes. We infected NOD(scid/beta2m-/- mice engrafted with human erythrocytes with P. falciparum obtained from in vitro cultures. After apparent clearance, we obtained isolates of P. falciparum able to grow in peripheral blood of engrafted NOD(scid/beta2m-/- mice. Of the isolates obtained, we expanded in vivo and established the isolate Pf3D7(0087/N9 as a reference strain for model development. Pf3D7(0087/N9 caused productive persistent infections in 100% of engrafted mice infected intravenously. The infection caused a relative anemia due to selective elimination of human erythrocytes by a mechanism dependent on parasite density in peripheral blood. Using this model, we implemented and validated a reproducible assay of antimalarial activity useful for drug discovery. Thus, our results demonstrate that P. falciparum contains clones able to grow reproducibly in mice engrafted with human erythrocytes without the use of myeloablative methods.

  3. Combinatorial gene regulation in Plasmodium falciparum.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Noort, V. van; Huynen, M.A.

    2006-01-01

    The malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum has a complicated life cycle with large variations in its gene expression pattern, but it contains relatively few specific transcriptional regulators. To elucidate this paradox, we identified regulatory sequences, using an approach that integrates the

  4. The prevalence and degree of resistance of Plasmodium falciparum to first-line antimalarial drugs: an in vitro study from a malaria endemic region in Yemen

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Al-Shamahy, H.; Al-Harazy, Abdulilah Hussein; Harmal, Nabil S.; Al-Kabsi, Abdulgudos N.

    2007-01-01

    Unpublished studies on antimalarial drug efficacy have found low levels of chloroquine resistance in Yemen. This study was carried out to determine the current prevalence of drug resistance in Plasmodium falciparum in Yemen to the main anti-malarial drugs and to determine the effective concentration (EC) values. The WHO standard protocol was used for the selection of subjects, collection of blood samples, culture techniques, examination of post-culture blood slides and interpretation of results. The in vitro micro-test Mark III was used for assessing susceptibility of P. falciparum isolates. The criteria for blood parasite density was met by 219 P. falciparum malaria patients. Chloroquine resistance was found in 47% of isolated P. falciparum schizonts. Mefloquine resistance was found in 5.2%. In addition, the EC50 and EC95 values in blood that inhibited schizont maturation in resistant isolates were higher than the normal therapeutic level for mefloquine. No resistance occurred against quinine or artemisinin, with no growth at the cut off level for quinine and inhibition at low concentrations of artemisinin. Our study confirmed the occurrence of chloroquine-resistant P. falciparum and a slow increase in the rate of this resistance will increase further and spread over all the foci of malaria in Yemen. The low rate of chloroquine-resistant P. falciparum was lower than that reported in Africa or Southeast Asia, but is the first report of the mefloquine resistance in Yemen. Finally, the isolates were sensitive to low concentrations of quinine and artemisinin. (author)

  5. Plasmodium falciparum associated with severe childhood malaria preferentially expresses PfEMP1 encoded by group A var genes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Anja T R; Magistrado, Pamela; Sharp, Sarah

    2004-01-01

    Parasite-encoded variant surface antigens (VSAs) like the var gene-encoded Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) family are responsible for antigenic variation and infected red blood cell (RBC) cytoadhesion in P. falciparum malaria. Parasites causing severe malaria in noni...... genes, such as PFD1235w/MAL7P1.1, appear to be involved in the pathogenesis of severe disease and are thus attractive candidates for a vaccine against life-threatening P. falciparum malaria....

  6. Molecular epidemiology of drug-resistant Plasmodium falciparum in Benguela province, Angola.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foumane Ngane, Vincent; Allico Djaman, Joseph; Culeux, Cécile; Piette, Nathalie; Carnevale, Pierre; Besnard, Patrick; Fortes, Filomeno; Basco, Leonardo K; Tahar, Rachida

    2015-03-14

    The malaria situation has been worsening in Angola, partly due to armed conflict until the recent past and drug-resistant Plasmodium falciparum. Malaria transmission is heterogeneous within the country, and data on drug-resistant malaria in different parts of the country are incomplete. The aim of the present study was to evaluate resistance to 4-aminoquinolines and antifolate drugs in P. falciparum isolates collected in Benguela province, central Angola, using molecular markers. Fingerprick capillary blood was collected from asymptomatic children aged less than 15 years old during a household survey in and around Balombo town in 2010-2011. Samples were screened for P. falciparum by nested PCR. Molecular markers (P. falciparum dihydrofolate reductase [pfdhfr], P. falciparum dihydropteroate synthase [pfdhps], P. falciparum chloroquine resistance transporter [pfcrt], and P. falciparum multidrug-resistance gene 1 [pfmdr1]) were sequenced to determine the key codons associated with drug resistance. A total of 60 blood samples were positive for P. falciparum. Most isolates with successful PCR amplification had mutant pfdhfr alleles, with either double mutant AICNI (69%) or triple mutant AIRNI (21%) haplotypes. A16V, S108T, and I164L substitutions were not found. Many of the isolates were carriers of either SGKAA (60%) or AGKAA (27%) pfdhps haplotype. K540E substitution was absent. There were only two pfcrt haplotypes: wild-type CVMNK (11%) and mutant CVIET (89%). Wild-type pfmdr1 NYSND haplotype was found in 19% of the isolates, whereas single mutant pfmdr1 YYSND and NFSND haplotypes occurred in 48% and 11%, respectively. Double mutant pfmdr1 haplotypes (YFSND and YYSNY) occurred rarely. The results suggest that the high prevalence of mutant pfcrt CVIET haplotype is in agreement with low clinical efficacy of chloroquine observed in earlier studies and that the double pfdhfr mutant AICNI and single pfdhps mutant SGKAA are currently the predominant haplotypes associated

  7. Rapid diagnostic tests for diagnosing uncomplicated non-falciparum or Plasmodium vivax malaria in endemic countries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abba, Katharine; Kirkham, Amanda J; Olliaro, Piero L; Deeks, Jonathan J; Donegan, Sarah; Garner, Paul; Takwoingi, Yemisi

    2014-01-01

    Background In settings where both Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium falciparum infection cause malaria, rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) need to distinguish which species is causing the patients' symptoms, as different treatments are required. Older RDTs incorporated two test lines to distinguish malaria due to P. falciparum, from malaria due to any other Plasmodium species (non-falciparum). These RDTs can be classified according to which antibodies they use: Type 2 RDTs use HRP-2 (for P. falciparum) and aldolase (all species); Type 3 RDTs use HRP-2 (for P. falciparum) and pLDH (all species); Type 4 use pLDH (fromP. falciparum) and pLDH (all species). More recently, RDTs have been developed to distinguish P. vivax parasitaemia by utilizing a pLDH antibody specific to P. vivax. Objectives To assess the diagnostic accuracy of RDTs for detecting non-falciparum or P. vivax parasitaemia in people living in malaria-endemic areas who present to ambulatory healthcare facilities with symptoms suggestive of malaria, and to identify which types and brands of commercial test best detect non-falciparum and P. vivax malaria. Search methods We undertook a comprehensive search of the following databases up to 31 December 2013: Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group Specialized Register; MEDLINE; EMBASE; MEDION; Science Citation Index; Web of Knowledge; African Index Medicus; LILACS; and IndMED. Selection criteria Studies comparing RDTs with a reference standard (microscopy or polymerase chain reaction) in blood samples from a random or consecutive series of patients attending ambulatory health facilities with symptoms suggestive of malaria in non-falciparum endemic areas. Data collection and analysis For each study, two review authors independently extracted a standard set of data using a tailored data extraction form. We grouped comparisons by type of RDT (defined by the combinations of antibodies used), and combined in meta-analysis where appropriate. Average sensitivities and

  8. Plasmodium falciparum-induced severe malaria with acute kidney injury and jaundice: a case report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baswin, A.; Siregar, M. L.; Jamil, K. F.

    2018-03-01

    P. falciparum-induced severe malaria with life-threatening complications like acute kidney injury (AKI), jaundice, cerebral malaria, severe anemia, acidosis, and acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). A 31-year-old soldier man who works in Aceh Singkil, Indonesia which is an endemic malaria area presented with a paroxysm of fever, shaking chills and sweats over four days, headache, arthralgia, abdominal pain, pale, jaundice, and oliguria. Urinalysis showed hemoglobinuria. Blood examination showed hemolytic anemia, thrombocytopenia, and hyperbilirubinemia. Falciparum malaria was then confirmed by peripheral blood smear, antimalarial medications were initiated, and hemodialysis was performed for eight times. The patient’s condition and laboratory results were quickly normalized. We report a case of P. falciparum-induced severe malaria with AKI and jaundice. The present case suggests that P. falciparum may induce severe malaria with life-threatening complications, early diagnosis and treatment is important to improve the quality of life of patients. Physicians must be alert for correct diagnosis and proper management of imported tropical malaria when patients have travel history in endemic areas.

  9. Changes in genomic methylation patterns during the formation of triploid asexual dandelion lineages

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verhoeven, K.J.F.; Van Dijk, P.J.; Biere, A.

    2010-01-01

    DNA methylation is an epigenetic mechanism that has the potential to affect plant phenotypes and that is responsive to environmental and genomic stresses such as hybridization and polyploidization. We explored de novo methylation variation that arises during the formation of triploid asexual

  10. Mating type gene analysis in apparently asexual Cercospora species is suggestive of cryptic sex

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Groenewald, M.; Groenewald, J.Z.; Harrington, T.C.; Abeln, E.C.A.; Crous, P.W.

    2006-01-01

    The genus Cercospora consists of numerous important, apparently asexual plant pathogens. We designed degenerate primers from homologous sequences in related species to amplify part of the C. apii, C. apiicola, C. beticola, C. zeae-maydis and C. zeina mating type genes. Chromosome walking was used to

  11. Is meiosis a fundamental cause of inviability among sexual and asexual plants and animals?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levitis, Daniel A; Zimmerman, Kolea; Pringle, Anne

    2017-08-16

    Differences in viability between asexually and sexually generated offspring strongly influence the selective advantage and therefore the prevalence of sexual reproduction (sex). However, no general principle predicts when sexual offspring will be more viable than asexual offspring. We hypothesize that when any kind of reproduction is based on a more complex cellular process, it will encompass more potential failure points, and therefore lower offspring viability. Asexual reproduction (asex) can be simpler than sex, when offspring are generated using only mitosis. However, when asex includes meiosis and meiotic restitution, gamete production is more complex than in sex. We test our hypothesis by comparing the viability of asexual and closely related sexual offspring across a wide range of plants and animals, and demonstrate that meiotic asex does result in lower viability than sex; without meiosis, asex is mechanistically simple and provides higher viability than sex. This phylogenetically robust pattern is supported in 42 of 44 comparisons drawn from diverse plants and animals, and is not explained by the other variables included in our model. Other mechanisms may impact viability, such as effects of reproductive mode on heterozygosity and subsequent viability, but we propose the complexity of cellular processes of reproduction, particularly meiosis, as a fundamental cause of early developmental failure and mortality. Meiosis, the leading cause of inviability in humans, emerges as a likely explanation of offspring inviability among diverse eukaryotes. © 2017 The Author(s).

  12. "Asexual propagation of a virulent clone complex in human and feline outbreak of sporotrichosis"

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Teixeira, Marcus de Melo; Rodrigues, Anderson Messias; Tsui, Clement K M; de Almeida, Luiz Gonzaga Paulo; Van Diepeningen, Anne D; Gerrits van den Ende, Bert; Fernandes, Geisa Ferreira; Kano, Rui; Hamelin, Richard C; Lopes-Bezerra, Leila Maria; Ribeiro Vasconcelos, Ana Tereza; de Hoog, Sybren; de Camargo, Zoilo Pires; Felipe, Maria Sueli Soares

    2014-01-01

    Sporotrichosis is one of the most frequent subcutaneous fungal infections to human and animals caused by members of the plant-associated, dimorphic genus Sporothrix. Three of the four medically important Sporothrix species found in Brazil have been considered asexual, as no sexual stage has ever

  13. Ontology for the asexual development and anatomy of the colonial chordate Botryllus schlosseri.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucia Manni

    Full Text Available Ontologies provide an important resource to integrate information. For developmental biology and comparative anatomy studies, ontologies of a species are used to formalize and annotate data that are related to anatomical structures, their lineage and timing of development. Here, we have constructed the first ontology for anatomy and asexual development (blastogenesis of a bilaterian, the colonial tunicate Botryllus schlosseri. Tunicates, like Botryllus schlosseri, are non-vertebrates and the only chordate taxon species that reproduce both sexually and asexually. Their tadpole larval stage possesses structures characteristic of all chordates, i.e. a notochord, a dorsal neural tube, and gill slits. Larvae settle and metamorphose into individuals that are either solitary or colonial. The latter reproduce both sexually and asexually and these two reproductive modes lead to essentially the same adult body plan. The Botryllus schlosseri Ontology of Development and Anatomy (BODA will facilitate the comparison between both types of development. BODA uses the rules defined by the Open Biomedical Ontologies Foundry. It is based on studies that investigate the anatomy, blastogenesis and regeneration of this organism. BODA features allow the users to easily search and identify anatomical structures in the colony, to define the developmental stage, and to follow the morphogenetic events of a tissue and/or organ of interest throughout asexual development. We invite the scientific community to use this resource as a reference for the anatomy and developmental ontology of B. schlosseri and encourage recommendations for updates and improvements.

  14. Potato (Solanum tuberosum) greenhouse tuber production as an assay for asexual reproduction effects from herbicides

    Science.gov (United States)

    The present study determined whether young potato plants can be used as an assay to indicate potential effects of pesticides on asexual reproduction. Solanum tuberosum (Russet Burbank) plants were grown from seed pieces in a mineral soil in pots under greenhouse conditions. Plant...

  15. Genetic diversity of the merozoite surface protein-3 gene in Plasmodium falciparum populations in Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pattaradilokrat, Sittiporn; Sawaswong, Vorthon; Simpalipan, Phumin; Kaewthamasorn, Morakot; Siripoon, Napaporn; Harnyuttanakorn, Pongchai

    2016-10-21

    An effective malaria vaccine is an urgently needed tool to fight against human malaria, the most deadly parasitic disease of humans. One promising candidate is the merozoite surface protein-3 (MSP-3) of Plasmodium falciparum. This antigenic protein, encoded by the merozoite surface protein (msp-3) gene, is polymorphic and classified according to size into the two allelic types of K1 and 3D7. A recent study revealed that both the K1 and 3D7 alleles co-circulated within P. falciparum populations in Thailand, but the extent of the sequence diversity and variation within each allelic type remains largely unknown. The msp-3 gene was sequenced from 59 P. falciparum samples collected from five endemic areas (Mae Hong Son, Kanchanaburi, Ranong, Trat and Ubon Ratchathani) in Thailand and analysed for nucleotide sequence diversity, haplotype diversity and deduced amino acid sequence diversity. The gene was also subject to population genetic analysis (F st ) and neutrality tests (Tajima's D, Fu and Li D* and Fu and Li' F* tests) to determine any signature of selection. The sequence analyses revealed eight unique DNA haplotypes and seven amino acid sequence variants, with a haplotype and nucleotide diversity of 0.828 and 0.049, respectively. Neutrality tests indicated that the polymorphism detected in the alanine heptad repeat region of MSP-3 was maintained by positive diversifying selection, suggesting its role as a potential target of protective immune responses and supporting its role as a vaccine candidate. Comparison of MSP-3 variants among parasite populations in Thailand, India and Nigeria also inferred a close genetic relationship between P. falciparum populations in Asia. This study revealed the extent of the msp-3 gene diversity in P. falciparum in Thailand, providing the fundamental basis for the better design of future blood stage malaria vaccines against P. falciparum.

  16. Humanized HLA-DR4.RagKO.IL2RγcKO.NOD (DRAG) mice sustain the complex vertebrate life cycle of Plasmodium falciparum malaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wijayalath, Wathsala; Majji, Sai; Villasante, Eileen F; Brumeanu, Teodor D; Richie, Thomas L; Casares, Sofia

    2014-09-30

    Malaria is a deadly infectious disease affecting millions of people in tropical and sub-tropical countries. Among the five species of Plasmodium parasites that infect humans, Plasmodium falciparum accounts for the highest morbidity and mortality associated with malaria. Since humans are the only natural hosts for P. falciparum, the lack of convenient animal models has hindered the understanding of disease pathogenesis and prompted the need of testing anti-malarial drugs and vaccines directly in human trials. Humanized mice hosting human cells represent new pre-clinical models for infectious diseases that affect only humans. In this study, the ability of human-immune-system humanized HLA-DR4.RagKO.IL2RγcKO.NOD (DRAG) mice to sustain infection with P. falciparum was explored. Four week-old DRAG mice were infused with HLA-matched human haematopoietic stem cells (HSC) and examined for reconstitution of human liver cells and erythrocytes. Upon challenge with infectious P. falciparum sporozoites (NF54 strain) humanized DRAG mice were examined for liver stage infection, blood stage infection, and transmission to Anopheles stephensi mosquitoes. Humanized DRAG mice reconstituted human hepatocytes, Kupffer cells, liver endothelial cells, and erythrocytes. Upon intravenous challenge with P. falciparum sporozoites, DRAG mice sustained liver to blood stage infection (average 3-5 parasites/microlitre blood) and allowed transmission to An. stephensi mosquitoes. Infected DRAG mice elicited antibody and cellular responses to the blood stage parasites and self-cured the infection by day 45 post-challenge. DRAG mice represent the first human-immune-system humanized mouse model that sustains the complex vertebrate life cycle of P. falciparum without the need of exogenous injection of human hepatocytes/erythrocytes or P. falciparum parasite adaptation. The ability of DRAG mice to elicit specific human immune responses to P. falciparum parasites may help deciphering immune correlates

  17. Cryptic sexual populations account for genetic diversity and ecological success in a widely distributed, asexual fungus-growing ant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabeling, Christian; Gonzales, Omar; Schultz, Ted R; Bacci, Maurício; Garcia, Marcos V B; Verhaagh, Manfred; Ishak, Heather D; Mueller, Ulrich G

    2011-07-26

    Sex and recombination are central processes in life generating genetic diversity. Organisms that rely on asexual propagation risk extinction due to the loss of genetic diversity and the inability to adapt to changing environmental conditions. The fungus-growing ant species Mycocepurus smithii was thought to be obligately asexual because only parthenogenetic populations have been collected from widely separated geographic localities. Nonetheless, M. smithii is ecologically successful, with the most extensive distribution and the highest population densities of any fungus-growing ant. Here we report that M. smithii actually consists of a mosaic of asexual and sexual populations that are nonrandomly distributed geographically. The sexual populations cluster along the Rio Amazonas and the Rio Negro and appear to be the source of independently evolved and widely distributed asexual lineages, or clones. Either apomixis or automixis with central fusion and low recombination rates is inferred to be the cytogenetic mechanism underlying parthenogenesis in M. smithii. Males appear to be entirely absent from asexual populations, but their existence in sexual populations is indicated by the presence of sperm in the reproductive tracts of queens. A phylogenetic analysis of the genus suggests that M. smithii is monophyletic, rendering a hybrid origin of asexuality unlikely. Instead, a mitochondrial phylogeny of sexual and asexual populations suggests multiple independent origins of asexual reproduction, and a divergence-dating analysis indicates that M. smithii evolved 0.5-1.65 million years ago. Understanding the evolutionary origin and maintenance of asexual reproduction in this species contributes to a general understanding of the adaptive significance of sex.

  18. In vivo seasonal assessment of Plasmodium falciparum sensitivity to chloroquine in two different malaria endemic communities in Southern Ghana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Afari, Edwin A.; Dunyo, Samuel; Appawu, Maxwell; Nkrumah, Francis K.

    1994-08-01

    A two year (1992 to 1993) in vivo assessment of Plasmodium falciparum sensitivity to chloroquine was conducted in two communities at Dodowa (hyperendemic) and Prampram (mesoendemic) in Southern Ghana. A slightly modified World Helath Organization standard field test (7 day test) for response of Plasmodium falciparum asexual parasites to chloroquine was used for the survey. In 1992, 16.2% (12/74) responses were classified as exhibiting chloroquine resistance at RI (14.8% ) and RII (1.4%) in the dry season and 8.2% (10/122) responses at RI in the wet season in the hyperendemic community. Only a single response (1/144; 0.7%) at RI showed resistance in the mesoendemic community. The rest of the responses in both communities were classified as sensitive to chloroquine. In the hyperendemic community, 8.4% (13/154) of responses in the dry season showed resistance at RI and 1.3% (82/150) at RI (0.7%) and RII (0.7%) in the wet season in 1993. In the mesoendemic community 1 (1.0%) response was resistant at RI in the wet season. The rest of the responses were classified as sensitive responses to chloroquine. No RIII response was encountered in any of the communities. The pattern of RI and RII responses did not show any seasonal variations in the mesoendemic community. However, they were generally higher in the dry season than in the wet season in the hyperendemic community.

  19. Computational identification of signalling pathways in Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oyelade, Jelili; Ewejobi, Itunu; Brors, Benedikt; Eils, Roland; Adebiyi, Ezekiel

    2011-06-01

    Malaria is one of the world's most common and serious diseases causing death of about 3 million people each year. Its most severe occurrence is caused by the protozoan Plasmodium falciparum. Reports have shown that the resistance of the parasite to existing drugs is increasing. Therefore, there is a huge and urgent need to discover and validate new drug or vaccine targets to enable the development of new treatments for malaria. The ability to discover these drug or vaccine targets can only be enhanced from our deep understanding of the detailed biology of the parasite, for example how cells function and how proteins organize into modules such as metabolic, regulatory and signal transduction pathways. It has been noted that the knowledge of signalling transduction pathways in Plasmodium is fundamental to aid the design of new strategies against malaria. This work uses a linear-time algorithm for finding paths in a network under modified biologically motivated constraints. We predicted several important signalling transduction pathways in Plasmodium falciparum. We have predicted a viable signalling pathway characterized in terms of the genes responsible that may be the PfPKB pathway recently elucidated in Plasmodium falciparum. We obtained from the FIKK family, a signal transduction pathway that ends up on a chloroquine resistance marker protein, which indicates that interference with FIKK proteins might reverse Plasmodium falciparum from resistant to sensitive phenotype. We also proposed a hypothesis that showed the FIKK proteins in this pathway as enabling the resistance parasite to have a mechanism for releasing chloroquine (via an efflux process). Furthermore, we also predicted a signalling pathway that may have been responsible for signalling the start of the invasion process of Red Blood Cell (RBC) by the merozoites. It has been noted that the understanding of this pathway will give insight into the parasite virulence and will facilitate rational vaccine design

  20. Cytokine balance in human malaria: does Plasmodium vivax elicit more inflammatory responses than Plasmodium falciparum?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raquel M Gonçalves

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The mechanisms by which humans regulate pro- and anti-inflammatory responses on exposure to different malaria parasites remains unclear. Although Plasmodium vivax usually causes a relatively benign disease, this parasite has been suggested to elicit more host inflammation per parasitized red blood cell than P. falciparum. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We measured plasma concentrations of seven cytokines and two soluble tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α receptors, and evaluated clinical and laboratory outcomes, in Brazilians with acute uncomplicated infections with P. vivax (n = 85, P. falciparum (n = 30, or both species (n = 12, and in 45 asymptomatic carriers of low-density P. vivax infection. Symptomatic vivax malaria patients, compared to those infected with P. falciparum or both species, had more intense paroxysms, but they had no clear association with a pro-inflammatory imbalance. To the contrary, these patients had higher levels of the regulatory cytokine interleukin (IL-10, which correlated positively with parasite density, and elevated IL-10/TNF-α, IL-10/interferon (IFN-γ, IL-10/IL-6 and sTNFRII/TNF-α ratios, compared to falciparum or mixed-species malaria patient groups. Vivax malaria patients had the highest levels of circulating soluble TNF-α receptor sTNFRII. Levels of regulatory cytokines returned to normal values 28 days after P. vivax clearance following chemotherapy. Finally, asymptomatic carriers of low P. vivax parasitemias had substantially lower levels of both inflammatory and regulatory cytokines than did patients with clinical malaria due to either species. CONCLUSIONS: Controlling fast-multiplying P. falciparum blood stages requires a strong inflammatory response to prevent fulminant infections, while reducing inflammation-related tissue damage with early regulatory cytokine responses may be a more cost-effective strategy in infections with the less virulent P. vivax parasite. The early induction

  1. Efficacy of Artemether in Unresolving Plasmodium Falciparum Malaria

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The emergence of possible resistant Plasmodium falciparum malaria to artemisinin known for its immense benefit in malaria chemotherapy is worrisome. We report a case of unresolving Plasmodium falciparum malaria to Artesunate treatment in a 29- year old man in Enugu Nigeria. Plasmodium falciparum count of Giemsa ...

  2. Artemisinin resistance in Plasmodium falciparum is associated with an altered temporal pattern of transcription

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Newton Paul N

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Artemisinin resistance in Plasmodium falciparum malaria has emerged in Western Cambodia. This is a major threat to global plans to control and eliminate malaria as the artemisinins are a key component of antimalarial treatment throughout the world. To identify key features associated with the delayed parasite clearance phenotype, we employed DNA microarrays to profile the physiological gene expression pattern of the resistant isolates. Results In the ring and trophozoite stages, we observed reduced expression of many basic metabolic and cellular pathways which suggests a slower growth and maturation of these parasites during the first half of the asexual intraerythrocytic developmental cycle (IDC. In the schizont stage, there is an increased expression of essentially all functionalities associated with protein metabolism which indicates the prolonged and thus increased capacity of protein synthesis during the second half of the resistant parasite IDC. This modulation of the P. falciparum intraerythrocytic transcriptome may result from differential expression of regulatory proteins such as transcription factors or chromatin remodeling associated proteins. In addition, there is a unique and uniform copy number variation pattern in the Cambodian parasites which may represent an underlying genetic background that contributes to the resistance phenotype. Conclusions The decreased metabolic activities in the ring stages are consistent with previous suggestions of higher resilience of the early developmental stages to artemisinin. Moreover, the increased capacity of protein synthesis and protein turnover in the schizont stage may contribute to artemisinin resistance by counteracting the protein damage caused by the oxidative stress and/or protein alkylation effect of this drug. This study reports the first global transcriptional survey of artemisinin resistant parasites and provides insight to the complexities of the molecular basis

  3. Characterization of mitochondrion-targeted GTPases in Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gupta, Kirti; Gupta, Ankit; Haider, Afreen; Habib, Saman

    2018-04-12

    Ribosome assembly is critical for translation and regulating the response to cellular events and requires a complex interplay of ribosomal RNA and proteins with assembly factors. We investigated putative participants in the biogenesis of the reduced organellar ribosomes of Plasmodium falciparum and identified homologues of two assembly GTPases - EngA and Obg that were found in mitochondria. Both are indispensable in bacteria and P. berghei EngA is among the 'essential' parasite blood stage proteins identified recently. PfEngA and PfObg1 interacted with parasite mitoribosomes in vivo. GTP stimulated PfEngA interaction with the 50S subunit of Escherichia coli surrogate ribosomes. Although PfObg1-ribosome interaction was independent of nucleotide binding, GTP hydrolysis by PfObg1 was enhanced upon ribosomal association. An additional function for PfObg1 in mitochondrial DNA transactions was suggested by its specific interaction with the parasite mitochondrial genome in vivo. Deletion analysis revealed that the positively-charged OBG (spoOB-associated GTP-binding protein) domain mediates DNA-binding. A role for PfEngA in mitochondrial genotoxic stress response was indicated by its over-expression upon methyl methanesulfonate-induced DNA damage. PfEngA had lower sensitivity to an E. coli EngA inhibitor suggesting differences with bacterial counterparts. Our results show the involvement of two important GTPases in P. falciparum mitochondrial function, with the first confirmed localization of an EngA homologue in eukaryotic mitochondria.

  4. PfSETvs methylation of histone H3K36 represses virulence genes in Plasmodium falciparum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jiang, Lubin; Mu, Jianbing; Zhang, Qingfeng

    2013-01-01

    The variant antigen Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1), which is expressed on the surface of P. falciparum-infected red blood cells, is a critical virulence factor for malaria. Each parasite has 60 antigenically distinct var genes that each code for a different PfEMP1...... parasite nuclei and their expression as proteins on the surface of individual infected red blood cells. PfSETvs-dependent H3K36me3 is present along the entire gene body, including the transcription start site, to silence var genes. With low occupancy of PfSETvs at both the transcription start site of var...... protein. During infection the clonal parasite population expresses only one gene at a time before switching to the expression of a new variant antigen as an immune-evasion mechanism to avoid the host antibody response. The mechanism by which 59 of the 60 var genes are silenced remains largely unknown...

  5. ION-EXCHANGE IMMUNOAFFINITY PURIFICATION OF A RECOMBINANT BACULOVIRUS PLASMODIUM-FALCIPARUM APICAL MEMBRANE ANTIGEN, PF83/AMA-1

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    NARUM, DL; WELLING, GW; THOMAS, AW

    1993-01-01

    A two-step purification regime has been developed for a quantitatively minor, putatively transmembrane, M(r) 83 000, apical membrane blood stage vaccine candidate antigen of Plasmodium falciparum (PF83/AMA-1), that has been expressed as a full-length baculovirus recombinant protein, PF83-FG8-1. The

  6. Persistent Epstein-Barr viral reactivation in young African children with a history of severe Plasmodium falciparum malaria.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Yone, C.L.; Kube, D.; Kremsner, P.G.; Luty, A.J.F.

    2006-01-01

    Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and Plasmodium falciparum have overlapping distributions and are thought to have causal interactions, particularly with regard to the aetiology of endemic Burkitt's lymphoma. Using real-time PCR, we quantified and compared EBV DNA levels in the blood before and after

  7. Neutrophil alterations in pregnancy-associated malaria and induction of neutrophil chemotaxis by Plasmodium falciparum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boström, S.; Schmiegelow, C; Abu Abed, U

    2017-01-01

    Pregnancy-associated malaria (PAM) is a severe form of the disease caused by sequestration of Plasmodium falciparum-infected red blood cells (iRBCs) in the developing placenta. Pathogenesis of PAM is partially based on immunopathology, with frequent monocyte infiltration into the placenta. Neutro...

  8. Parasites causing cerebral falciparum malaria bind multiple endothelial receptors and express EPCR and ICAM-1-binding PfEMP1

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tuikue Ndam, Nicaise; Moussiliou, Azizath; Lavstsen, Thomas

    2017-01-01

    Background: Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) mediates the binding and accumulation of infected erythrocytes (IE) to blood vessels and tissues. Specific interactions have been described between PfEMP1 and human endothelial proteins CD36, intercellular adhesion molecule-1...

  9. Five-year surveillance of molecular markers of Plasmodium falciparum antimalarial drug resistance in Korogwe District, Tanzania: accumulation of the 581G mutation in the P. falciparum dihydropteroate synthase gene

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alifrangis, Michael; Lusingu, John P; Mmbando, Bruno

    2009-01-01

    .001). In contrast, the chloroquine-sensitive P. falciparum chloroquine resistance transporter (Pfcrt) CVMNK haplotype increased from 6% to 30% (P use of SP for intermittent presumptive treatment of pregnant women......In January 2007, Tanzania replaced sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP) with artemether-lumefantrine for treatment of uncomplicated malaria. This study examined the impact of widespread SP use on molecular markers of Plasmodium falciparum drug resistance in blood samples from persons living in two...

  10. Analysis of Plasmodium falciparum diversity in natural infections by deep sequencing

    OpenAIRE

    Manske, Magnus; Miotto, Olivo; Campino, Susana; Auburn, Sarah; Almagro-Garcia, Jacob; Maslen, Gareth; O?Brien, Jack; Djimde, Abdoulaye; Doumbo, Ogobara; Zongo, Issaka; Ouedraogo, Jean-Bosco; Michon, Pascal; Mueller, Ivo; Siba, Peter; Nzila, Alexis

    2012-01-01

    : Malaria elimination strategies require surveillance of the parasite population for genetic changes that demand a public health response, such as new forms of drug resistance. Here we describe methods for the large-scale analysis of genetic variation in Plasmodium falciparum by deep sequencing of parasite DNA obtained from the blood of patients with malaria, either directly or after short-term culture. Analysis of 86,158 exonic single nucleotide polymorphisms that passed genotyping quality c...

  11. Malarone treatment failure and in vitro confirmation of resistance of Plasmodium falciparum isolate from Lagos, Nigeria

    OpenAIRE

    Fivelman, Quinton L; Butcher, Geoffrey A; Adagu, Ipemida S; Warhurst, David C; Pasvol, Geoffrey

    2002-01-01

    Abstract We report the first in vitro and genetic confirmation of Malarone® (GlaxoSmithKline; atovaquone and proguanil hydrochloride) resistance in Plasmodium falciparum acquired in Africa. On presenting with malaria two weeks after returning from a 4-week visit to Lagos, Nigeria without prophylaxis, a male patient was given a standard 3-day treatment course of Malarone®. Twenty-eight days later the parasitaemia recrudesced. Parasites were cultured from the blood and the isolate (NGATV01) was...

  12. Profiling the repertoire of phenotypes influenced by environmental cues that occur during asexual reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dombrovsky, Aviv; Arthaud, Laury; Ledger, Terence N; Tares, Sophie; Robichon, Alain

    2009-11-01

    The aphid Acyrthosiphon pisum population is composed of different morphs, such as winged and wingless parthenogens, males, and sexual females. The combined effect of reduced photoperiodicity and cold in fall triggers the apparition of sexual morphs. In contrast they reproduce asexually in spring and summer. In our current study, we provide evidence that clonal individuals display phenotypic variability within asexual morph categories. We describe that clones sharing the same morphological features, which arose from the same founder mother, constitute a repertoire of variants with distinct behavioral and physiological traits. Our results suggest that the prevailing environmental conditions influence the recruitment of adaptive phenotypes from a cohort of clonal individuals exhibiting considerable molecular diversity. However, we observed that the variability might be reduced or enhanced by external factors, but is never abolished in accordance with a model of stochastically produced phenotypes. This overall mechanism allows the renewal of colonies from a few adapted individuals that survive drastic episodic changes in a fluctuating environment.

  13. Asexual queen succession mediates an accelerated colony life cycle in the termite Silvestritermes minutus

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Fougeyrollas, R.; Křivánek, Jan; Roy, V.; Dolejšová, Klára; Frechault, S.; Roisin, Y.; Hanus, Robert; Sillam-Dusses, D.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 26, č. 12 (2017), s. 3295-3308 ISSN 0962-1083 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA14-12774S Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : asexual queen succession * breeding system * life history * parthenogenesis * Silvestritermes minutus * termites Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology OBOR OECD: Genetics and heredity (medical genetics to be 3) Impact factor: 6.086, year: 2016

  14. Evolutionary history of asexual hybrid loaches (Cobitis: Teleostei) inferred from phylogenetic analysis of mitochondrial DNA variation

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Janko, Karel; Kotlík, Petr; Ráb, Petr

    2003-01-01

    Roč. 16, - (2003), s. 1280-1287 ISSN 1010-061X R&D Projects: GA AV ČR KSK6005114; GA ČR GA206/00/0668; GA ČR GA206/01/0989; GA AV ČR IBS5045111 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z5045916 Keywords : asexual vertebrates * Cobitis * maternal ancestry Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 3.010, year: 2003

  15. Plant Growth-Promoting Rhizobacteria Stimulate Vegetative Growth and Asexual Reproduction of Kalanchoe daigremontiana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Yong-Soon; Park, Kyungseok; Kloepper, Joseph W; Ryu, Choong-Min

    2015-09-01

    Certain bacterial species associate with plant roots in soil. The plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) stimulate plant growth and yield in greenhouse and field. Here, we examined whether application of known bacilli PGPR strains stimulated growth and asexual reproduction in the succulent plant Kalanchoe daigremontiana. Four PGPR strains B. amyloliquefaciens IN937a, B. cereus BS107, B. pumilus INR7, and B. subtilis GB03 were applied to young plantlets by soil-drenching, and plant growth and development was monitored for three months. Aerial growth was significantly stimulated in PGPR-inoculated plants, which was observed as increases in plant height, shoot weight, and stem width. The stimulated growth influenced plant development by increasing the total number of leaves per plant. Treatment with bacilli also increased the total root biomass compared with that of control plants, and led to a 2-fold increase in asexual reproduction and plantlet formation on the leaf. Collectively, our results firstly demonstrate that Bacillus spp. promote vegetative development of K. daigremontiana, and the enhanced growth stimulates asexual reproduction and plantlet formation.

  16. Plant Growth-Promoting Rhizobacteria Stimulate Vegetative Growth and Asexual Reproduction of Kalanchoe daigremontiana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yong-Soon Park

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Certain bacterial species associate with plant roots in soil. The plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR stimulate plant growth and yield in greenhouse and field. Here, we examined whether application of known bacilli PGPR strains stimulated growth and asexual reproduction in the succulent plant Kalanchoe daigremontiana. Four PGPR strains B. amyloliquefaciens IN937a, B. cereus BS107, B. pumilus INR7, and B. subtilis GB03 were applied to young plantlets by soil-drenching, and plant growth and development was monitored for three months. Aerial growth was significantly stimulated in PGPR-inoculated plants, which was observed as increases in plant height, shoot weight, and stem width. The stimulated growth influenced plant development by increasing the total number of leaves per plant. Treatment with bacilli also increased the total root biomass compared with that of control plants, and led to a 2-fold increase in asexual reproduction and plantlet formation on the leaf. Collectively, our results firstly demonstrate that Bacillus spp. promote vegetative development of K. daigremontiana, and the enhanced growth stimulates asexual reproduction and plantlet formation.

  17. Differential evolution of asexual and sexual females in a benign culture environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snell, Terry W.

    2013-01-01

    Here we report one of the first investigations of evolvability of lifespan and reproduction in metazoans, examining both extrinsic and intrinsic factors. We tested effects on senescence of an environmental variable (simulated lake hydroperiod, the length of time an aquatic habitat is inundated), female reproductive physiology (asexual females that reproduce by ameiosis, versus sexual females reproducing by meiosis), and time in a benign culture environment (minimal, if any, external mortality factors). To do this we established chemostat cultures of the rotifer Brachionus plicatilis s.s., and maintained the cultures for 385 d. Hydroperiod alone or in interaction with the effects of time in the benign environment (season) or reproductive physiology had no significant effect on the net reproductive rate, generation time, or rate of aging. Yet combining animals from both ephemeral and permanent hydroperiods revealed a 26% increase in asexual female lifespan across seasons (23% decrease in the rate of aging) and a 56% increase in asexual fecundity, suggesting that maintenance in benign laboratory conditions leads to slower aging. The relative stasis of traits for sexual females implies an impact of reproductive physiology on evolvability. In addition we found a positive correlation between fecundity and lifespan, suggesting an absence of trade-offs in life history traits in the benign laboratory environment. PMID:24795527

  18. Evidence of parasexual activity in "asexual amoebae" Cochliopodium spp. (Amoebozoa): extensive cellular and nuclear fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tekle, Yonas I; Anderson, O Roger; Lecky, Ariel F

    2014-09-01

    The majority of microbial eukaryotes have long been considered asexual, though new evidence indicates sex, or sexual-like (parasexual) behaviors that deviate from the usual union of two gametes, among other variant aspects. Over a dozen amoebozoans are implicated to have sexual stages. However, the exact mechanism by which sex occurs in these lineages remains elusive. This is mainly due to the diverse quality and cryptic nature of their life cycle. In this study we present evidence of some previously unreported aspects of the life cycle of an amoeba, Cochliopodium, that undergoes unusual intraspecific interactions using light microscopy and immunocytochemistry. Similar to other amoebozoans, Cochliopodium, is considered asexual with no published reports of sex or parasexuality. We also investigated environmental conditions that govern the observed intraspecific interactions. Both light microscopic and immunocytochemistry evidence demonstrates Cochliopodium undergoes cellular fusion (plasmogamy) and nuclear fusion (karyogamy). Large plasmodia eventually undergo karyogamy and contain large fused, polyploid, nuclei. These are observed to fragment, subsequently, by karyotomy (nuclear fission) and cytoplasmic fission to yield uninucleated amoebae. This process could lead to a non-meiotic, parasexual exchange of chromosomes in Cochliopodium. These findings strongly suggest that Cochliopodium is involved in parasexual activity and should no longer be considered strictly asexual. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  19. Operational trial of ParaSight-F (dipstick) in the diagnosis of falciparum malaria at the primary health care level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banchongaksorn, T; Prajakwong, S; Rooney, W; Vickers, P

    1997-06-01

    The rapid manual ParaSight-F test of Plasmodium falciparum malaria, an antigen capture test for detecting trophozoite-derived histidine rich protein-2 (PF HRP-2), is simple to perform and provides a definite diagnosis within 10 minutes. During an operational trial at health centers and mobile malaria units where microscopical diagnosis is not available and using defined symptom screening criteria, 3,361 subjects were tested yielding 618 positives (18.4%) for PF-HRP-2 by ParaSight-F. Microscopic examination of the same subjects by thick blood film examined 7 days later at a malaria clinic showed 578 falciparum, and 349 vivax and mixed infection (F+V) 41. The technology proved highly effective in detecting falciparum malaria at the peripheral levels where access to malaria laboratory services are difficult, thus allowing immediate administration of a complete course of treatment in the absence of a microscopic examination.

  20. 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.

  1. The Relative Contribution of Symptomatic and Asymptomatic Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium falciparum Infections to the Infectious Reservoir in a Low-Endemic Setting in Ethiopia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tadesse, Fitsum G; Slater, Hannah C; Chali, Wakweya; Teelen, Karina; Lanke, Kjerstin; Belachew, Mulualem; Menberu, Temesgen; Shumie, Girma; Shitaye, Getasew; Okell, Lucy C; Graumans, Wouter; van Gemert, Geert-Jan; Kedir, Soriya; Tesfaye, Addisu; Belachew, Feleke; Abebe, Wake; Mamo, Hassen; Sauerwein, Robert; Balcha, Taye; Aseffa, Abraham; Yewhalaw, Delenasaw; Gadisa, Endalamaw; Drakeley, Chris; Bousema, Teun

    2018-06-01

    The majority of Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium falciparum infections in low-endemic settings are asymptomatic. The relative contribution to the infectious reservoir of these infections compared to clinical malaria cases is currently unknown. We assessed infectivity of passively recruited symptomatic malaria patients (n = 41) and community-recruited asymptomatic individuals with microscopy-detected (n = 41) and polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-detected infections (n = 82) using membrane feeding assays with Anopheles arabiensis mosquitoes in Adama, Ethiopia. Malaria incidence and prevalence data were used to estimate the contributions of these populations to the infectious reservoir. Overall, 34.9% (29/83) of P. vivax- and 15.1% (8/53) P. falciparum-infected individuals infected ≥1 mosquitoes. Mosquito infection rates were strongly correlated with asexual parasite density for P. vivax (ρ = 0.63; P < .001) but not for P. falciparum (ρ = 0.06; P = .770). Plasmodium vivax symptomatic infections were more infectious to mosquitoes (infecting 46.5% of mosquitoes, 307/660) compared to asymptomatic microscopy-detected (infecting 12.0% of mosquitoes, 80/667; P = .005) and PCR-detected infections (infecting 0.8% of mosquitoes, 6/744; P < .001). Adjusting for population prevalence, symptomatic, asymptomatic microscopy-detected, and PCR-detected infections were responsible for 8.0%, 76.2%, and 15.8% of the infectious reservoir for P. vivax, respectively. For P. falciparum, mosquito infections were sparser and also predominantly from asymptomatic infections. In this low-endemic setting aiming for malaria elimination, asymptomatic infections were highly prevalent and responsible for the majority of onward mosquito infections. The early identification and treatment of asymptomatic infections might accelerate elimination efforts.

  2. Phase 1 trial of the Plasmodium falciparum blood stage vaccine MSP1(42-C1/Alhydrogel with and without CPG 7909 in malaria naïve adults.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruth D Ellis

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Merozoite surface protein 1(42 (MSP1(42 is a leading blood stage malaria vaccine candidate. In order to induce immune responses that cover the major antigenic polymorphisms, FVO and 3D7 recombinant proteins of MSP1(42 were mixed (MSP1(42-C1. To improve the level of antibody response, MSP1(42-C1 was formulated with Alhydrogel plus the novel adjuvant CPG 7909.A Phase 1 clinical trial was conducted in healthy malaria-naïve adults at the Center for Immunization Research in Washington, D.C., to evaluate the safety and immunogenicity of MSP1(42-C1/Alhydrogel +/- CPG 7909. Sixty volunteers were enrolled in dose escalating cohorts and randomized to receive three vaccinations of either 40 or 160 microg protein adsorbed to Alhydrogel +/- 560 microg CPG 7909 at 0, 1 and 2 months.Vaccinations were well tolerated, with only one related adverse event graded as severe (Grade 3 injection site erythema and all other vaccine related adverse events graded as either mild or moderate. Local adverse events were more frequent and severe in the groups receiving CPG. The addition of CPG enhanced anti-MSP1(42 antibody responses following vaccination by up to 49-fold two weeks after second immunization and 8-fold two weeks after the third immunization when compared to MSP1(42-C1/Alhydrogel alone (p<0.0001. After the third immunization, functionality of the antibody was tested by an in vitro growth inhibition assay. Inhibition was a function of antibody titer, with an average of 3% (range -2 to 10% in the non CPG groups versus 14% (3 to 32% in the CPG groups.The favorable safety profile and high antibody responses induced with MSP1(42-C1/Alhydrogel + CPG 7909 are encouraging. MSP1(42-C1/Alhydrogel is being combined with other blood stage antigens and will be taken forward in a formulation adjuvanted with CPG 7909.ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00320658.

  3. Prevalence of Plasmodium falciparum infection in pregnant women in Gabon

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kendjo Eric

    2003-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In areas where malaria is endemic, pregnancy is associated with increased susceptibility to malaria. It is generally agreed that this risk ends with delivery and decreases with the number of pregnancies. Our study aimed to demonstrate relationships between malarial parasitaemia and age, gravidity and anaemia in pregnant women in Libreville, the capital city of Gabon. Methods Peripheral blood was collected from 311 primigravidae and women in their second pregnancy. Thick blood smears were checked, as were the results of haemoglobin electrophoresis. We also looked for the presence of anaemia, fever, and checked whether the volunteers had had chemoprophylaxis. The study was performed in Gabon where malaria transmission is intense and perennial. Results A total of 177 women (57% had microscopic parasitaemia; 139 (64%of them were primigravidae, 38 (40% in their second pregnancy and 180 (64% were teenagers. The parasites densities were also higher in primigravidae and teenagers. The prevalence of anaemia was 71% and was associated with microscopic Plasmodium falciparum parasitaemia: women with moderate or severe anaemia had higher parasite prevalences and densities. However, the sickle cell trait, fever and the use of chemoprophylaxis did not have a significant association with the presence of P. falciparum. Conclusions These results suggest that the prevalence of malaria and the prevalence of anaemia, whether associated with malaria or not, are higher in pregnant women in Gabon. Primigravidae and young pregnant women are the most susceptible to infection. It is, therefore, urgent to design an effective regimen of malaria prophylaxis for this high risk population.

  4. Plasmodium falciparum infection in febrile Congolese children: prevalence of clinical malaria 10 years after introduction of artemisinin-combination therapies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Etoka-Beka, Mandingha Kosso; Ntoumi, Francine; Kombo, Michael; Deibert, Julia; Poulain, Pierre; Vouvoungui, Christevy; Kobawila, Simon Charles; Koukouikila-Koussounda, Felix

    2016-12-01

    To investigate the proportion of malaria infection in febrile children consulting a paediatric hospital in Brazzaville, to determine the prevalence of submicroscopic malaria infection, to characterise Plasmodium falciparum infection and compare the prevalence of uncomplicated P. falciparum malaria according to haemoglobin profiles. Blood samples were collected from children aged <10 years with an axillary temperature ≥37.5 °C consulting the paediatric ward of Marien Ngouabi Hospital in Brazzaville. Parasite density was determined and all samples were screened for P. falciparum by nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR) using the P. falciparum msp-2 marker to detect submicroscopic infections and characterise P. falciparum infection. Sickle cell trait was screened by PCR. A total of 229 children with fever were recruited, of whom 10% were diagnosed with uncomplicated malaria and 21% with submicroscopic infection. The mean parasite density in children with uncomplicated malaria was 42 824 parasites/μl of blood. The multiplicity of infection (MOI) was 1.59 in children with uncomplicated malaria and 1.69 in children with submicroscopic infection. The mean haemoglobin level was 10.1 ± 1.7 for children with uncomplicated malaria and 12.0 ± 8.6 for children with submicroscopic infection. About 13% of the children harboured the sickle cell trait (HbAS); the rest had normal haemoglobin (HbAA). No difference in prevalence of uncomplicated malaria and submicroscopic infection, parasite density, haemoglobin level, MOI and P. falciparum genetic diversity was observed according to haemoglobin type. The low prevalence of uncomplicated malaria in febrile Congolese children indicates the necessity to investigate carefully other causes of fever. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  5. Piperaquine Resistance in Plasmodium falciparum, West Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inoue, Juliana; Silva, Miguel; Fofana, Bakary; Sanogo, Kassim; Mårtensson, Andreas; Sagara, Issaka; Björkman, Anders; Veiga, Maria Isabel; Ferreira, Pedro Eduardo; Djimde, Abdoulaye; Gil, José Pedro

    2018-08-17

    Dihydroartemisinin/piperaquine (DHA/PPQ) is increasingly deployed as antimalaria drug in Africa. We report the detection in Mali of Plasmodium falciparum infections carrying plasmepsin 2 duplications (associated with piperaquine resistance) in 7/65 recurrent infections within 2 months after DHA/PPQ treatment. These findings raise concerns about the long-term efficacy of DHA/PPQ treatment in Africa.

  6. 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 ...

  7. Selective and Specific Inhibition of the Plasmodium falciparum Lysyl-tRNA Synthetase by the Fungal Secondary Metabolite Cladosporin

    OpenAIRE

    Hoepfner, Dominic; McNamara, Case W.; Lim, Chek Shik; Studer, Christian; Riedl, Ralph; Aust, Thomas; McCormack, Susan L.; Plouffe, David M.; Meister, Stephan; Schuierer, Sven; Plikat, Uwe; Hartmann, Nicole; Staedtler, Frank; Cotesta, Simona; Schmitt, Esther K.

    2012-01-01

    Summary With renewed calls for malaria eradication, next-generation antimalarials need be active against drug-resistant parasites and efficacious against both liver- and blood-stage infections. We screened a natural product library to identify inhibitors of Plasmodium falciparum blood- and liver-stage proliferation. Cladosporin, a fungal secondary metabolite whose target and mechanism of action are not known for any species, was identified as having potent, nanomolar, antiparasitic activity a...

  8. Influence of the asexual parasite biomass on in vitro susceptibility of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    SERVER

    2008-04-17

    Apr 17, 2008 ... The in vitro activities of artemisinin, dihydroartemisinin (the biologically active metabolite of artemisinin derivatives), chloroquine and pyronaridine were assessed in 32 isolates of Plasmodium falciparum from. Abobo in the northern of Abidjan district (Côte d'Ivoire) using a test based on the standard.

  9. SAM domain-dependent activity of PfTKL3, an essential tyrosine kinase-like kinase of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdi, Abdirahman; Eschenlauer, Sylvain; Reininger, Luc; Doerig, Christian

    2010-10-01

    Over the last decade, several protein kinases inhibitors have reached the market for cancer chemotherapy. The kinomes of pathogens represent potentially attractive targets in infectious diseases. The functions of the majority of protein kinases of Plasmodium falciparum, the parasitic protist responsible for the most virulent form of human malaria, remain unknown. Here we present a thorough characterisation of PfTKL3 (PF13_0258), an enzyme that belongs to the tyrosine kinase-like kinase (TKL) group. We demonstrate by reverse genetics that PfTKL3 is essential for asexual parasite proliferation in human erythrocytes. PfTKL3 is expressed in both asexual and gametocytes stages, and in the latter the protein co-localises with cytoskeleton microtubules. Recombinant PfTKL3 displays in vitro autophosphorylation activity and is able to phosphorylate exogenous substrates, and both activities are dramatically dependent on the presence of an N-terminal "sterile alpha-motif" domain. This study identifies PfTKL3 as a validated drug target amenable to high-throughput screening.

  10. Analysis of Plasmodium falciparum diversity in natural infections by deep sequencing

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    Manske, Magnus; Miotto, Olivo; Campino, Susana; Auburn, Sarah; Almagro-Garcia, Jacob; Maslen, Gareth; O’Brien, Jack; Djimde, Abdoulaye; Doumbo, Ogobara; Zongo, Issaka; Ouedraogo, Jean-Bosco; Michon, Pascal; Mueller, Ivo; Siba, Peter; Nzila, Alexis; Borrmann, Steffen; Kiara, Steven M.; Marsh, Kevin; Jiang, Hongying; Su, Xin-Zhuan; Amaratunga, Chanaki; Fairhurst, Rick; Socheat, Duong; Nosten, Francois; Imwong, Mallika; White, Nicholas J.; Sanders, Mandy; Anastasi, Elisa; Alcock, Dan; Drury, Eleanor; Oyola, Samuel; Quail, Michael A.; Turner, Daniel J.; Rubio, Valentin Ruano; Jyothi, Dushyanth; Amenga-Etego, Lucas; Hubbart, Christina; Jeffreys, Anna; Rowlands, Kate; Sutherland, Colin; Roper, Cally; Mangano, Valentina; Modiano, David; Tan, John C.; Ferdig, Michael T.; Amambua-Ngwa, Alfred; Conway, David J.; Takala-Harrison, Shannon; Plowe, Christopher V.; Rayner, Julian C.; Rockett, Kirk A.; Clark, Taane G.; Newbold, Chris I.; Berriman, Matthew; MacInnis, Bronwyn; Kwiatkowski, Dominic P.

    2013-01-01

    Malaria elimination strategies require surveillance of the parasite population for genetic changes that demand a public health response, such as new forms of drug resistance. 1,2 Here we describe methods for large-scale analysis of genetic variation in Plasmodium falciparum by deep sequencing of parasite DNA obtained from the blood of patients with malaria, either directly or after short term culture. Analysis of 86,158 exonic SNPs that passed genotyping quality control in 227 samples from Africa, Asia and Oceania provides genome-wide estimates of allele frequency distribution, population structure and linkage disequilibrium. By comparing the genetic diversity of individual infections with that of the local parasite population, we derive a metric of within-host diversity that is related to the level of inbreeding in the population. An open-access web application has been established for exploration of regional differences in allele frequency and of highly differentiated loci in the P. falciparum genome. PMID:22722859

  11. The anthraquinone emodin inhibits the non-exported FIKK kinase from Plasmodium falciparum.

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    Lin, Benjamin C; Harris, Darcy R; Kirkman, Lucy M D; Perez, Astrid M; Qian, Yiwen; Schermerhorn, Janse T; Hong, Min Y; Winston, Dennis S; Xu, Lingyin; Lieber, Alexander M; Hamilton, Matthew; Brandt, Gabriel S

    2017-12-01

    The FIKK family of kinases is unique to parasites of the Apicomplexan order, which includes all malaria parasites. Plasmodium falciparum, the most virulent form of human malaria, has a family of 19 FIKK kinases, most of which are exported into the host red blood cell during malaria infection. Here, we confirm that FIKK 8 is a non-exported member of the FIKK kinase family. Through expression and purification of the recombinant kinase domain, we establish that emodin is a relatively high-affinity (IC 50 =2μM) inhibitor of PfFk8. Closely related anthraquinones do not inhibit PfFk8, suggesting that the particular substitution pattern of emodin is critical to the inhibitory pharmacophore. This first report of a P. falciparum FIKK kinase inhibitor lays the groundwork for developing specific inhibitors of the various members of the FIKK kinase family in order to probe their physiological function. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Mosquito Passage Dramatically Changes var Gene Expression in Controlled Human Plasmodium falciparum Infections.

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    Bachmann, Anna; Petter, Michaela; Krumkamp, Ralf; Esen, Meral; Held, Jana; Scholz, Judith A M; Li, Tao; Sim, B Kim Lee; Hoffman, Stephen L; Kremsner, Peter G; Mordmüller, Benjamin; Duffy, Michael F; Tannich, Egbert

    2016-04-01

    Virulence of the most deadly malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum is linked to the variant surface antigen PfEMP1, which is encoded by about 60 var genes per parasite genome. Although the expression of particular variants has been associated with different clinical outcomes, little is known about var gene expression at the onset of infection. By analyzing controlled human malaria infections via quantitative real-time PCR, we show that parasite populations from 18 volunteers expressed virtually identical transcript patterns that were dominated by the subtelomeric var gene group B and, to a lesser extent, group A. Furthermore, major changes in composition and frequency of var gene transcripts were detected between the parental parasite culture that was used to infect mosquitoes and Plasmodia recovered from infected volunteers, suggesting that P. falciparum resets its var gene expression during mosquito passage and starts with the broad expression of a specific subset of var genes when entering the human blood phase.

  13. Molecular characterization of Plasmodium falciparum in Arunachal Pradesh from Northeast India based on merozoite surface protein 1 & glutamate-rich protein.

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    Sarmah, Nilanju Pran; Sarma, Kishore; Bhattacharyya, Dibya Ranjan; Sultan, Ali; Bansal, Devendra; Singh, Neeru; Bharti, Praveen K; Kaur, Hargobinder; Sehgal, Rakesh; Mohapatra, Pradyumna Kishore; Mahanta, Jagadish

    2017-09-01

    Northeast (NE) India is one of the high endemic regions for malaria with a preponderance of Plasmodium falciparum, resulting in high morbidity and mortality. The P. falciparum parasite of this region showed high polymorphism in drug-resistant molecular biomarkers. However, there is a paucity of information related to merozoite surface protein 1 (msp-1) and glutamate-rich protein (glurp) which have been extensively studied in various parts of the world. The present study was, therefore, aimed at investigating the genetic diversity of P. falciparum based on msp-1 and glurp in Arunachal Pradesh, a State in NE India. Two hundred and forty nine patients with fever were screened for malaria, of whom 75 were positive for P. falciparum. Blood samples were collected from each microscopically confirmed patient. The DNA was extracted; nested polymerase chain reaction and sequencing were performed to study the genetic diversity of msp-1 (block 2) and glurp. The block 2 of msp-1 gene was found to be highly polymorphic, and overall allelic distribution showed that RO33 was the dominant allele (63%), followed by MAD20 (29%) and K1 (8%) alleles. However, an extensive diversity (9 alleles and 4 genotypes) and 6-10 repeat regions exclusively of R2 type were observed in glurp. The P. falciparum population of NE India was diverse which might be responsible for higher plasticity leading to the survival of the parasite and in turn to the higher endemicity of falciparum malaria of this region.

  14. Chromosome End Repair and Genome Stability in Plasmodium falciparum.

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    Calhoun, Susannah F; Reed, Jake; Alexander, Noah; Mason, Christopher E; Deitsch, Kirk W; Kirkman, Laura A

    2017-08-08

    The human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum replicates within circulating red blood cells, where it is subjected to conditions that frequently cause DNA damage. The repair of DNA double-stranded breaks (DSBs) is thought to rely almost exclusively on homologous recombination (HR), due to a lack of efficient nonhomologous end joining. However, given that the parasite is haploid during this stage of its life cycle, the mechanisms involved in maintaining genome stability are poorly understood. Of particular interest are the subtelomeric regions of the chromosomes, which contain the majority of the multicopy variant antigen-encoding genes responsible for virulence and disease severity. Here, we show that parasites utilize a competitive balance between de novo telomere addition, also called "telomere healing," and HR to stabilize chromosome ends. Products of both repair pathways were observed in response to DSBs that occurred spontaneously during routine in vitro culture or resulted from experimentally induced DSBs, demonstrating that both pathways are active in repairing DSBs within subtelomeric regions and that the pathway utilized was determined by the DNA sequences immediately surrounding the break. In combination, these two repair pathways enable parasites to efficiently maintain chromosome stability while also contributing to the generation of genetic diversity. IMPORTANCE Malaria is a major global health threat, causing approximately 430,000 deaths annually. This mosquito-transmitted disease is caused by Plasmodium parasites, with infection with the species Plasmodium falciparum being the most lethal. Mechanisms underlying DNA repair and maintenance of genome integrity in P. falciparum are not well understood and represent a gap in our understanding of how parasites survive the hostile environment of their vertebrate and insect hosts. Our work examines DNA repair in real time by using single-molecule real-time (SMRT) sequencing focused on the subtelomeric

  15. Protease-associated cellular networks in malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

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    Lilburn Timothy G

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Malaria continues to be one of the most severe global infectious diseases, responsible for 1-2 million deaths yearly. The rapid evolution and spread of drug resistance in parasites has led to an urgent need for the development of novel antimalarial targets. Proteases are a group of enzymes that play essential roles in parasite growth and invasion. The possibility of designing specific inhibitors for proteases makes them promising drug targets. Previously, combining a comparative genomics approach and a machine learning approach, we identified the complement of proteases (degradome in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum and its sibling species 123, providing a catalog of targets for functional characterization and rational inhibitor design. Network analysis represents another route to revealing the role of proteins in the biology of parasites and we use this approach here to expand our understanding of the systems involving the proteases of P. falciparum. Results We investigated the roles of proteases in the parasite life cycle by constructing a network using protein-protein association data from the STRING database 4, and analyzing these data, in conjunction with the data from protein-protein interaction assays using the yeast 2-hybrid (Y2H system 5, blood stage microarray experiments 678, proteomics 9101112, literature text mining, and sequence homology analysis. Seventy-seven (77 out of 124 predicted proteases were associated with at least one other protein, constituting 2,431 protein-protein interactions (PPIs. These proteases appear to play diverse roles in metabolism, cell cycle regulation, invasion and infection. Their degrees of connectivity (i.e., connections to other proteins, range from one to 143. The largest protease-associated sub-network is the ubiquitin-proteasome system which is crucial for protein recycling and stress response. Proteases are also implicated in heat shock response, signal peptide

  16. Mosquito Vectors and the Globalization of Plasmodium falciparum Malaria.

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    Molina-Cruz, Alvaro; Zilversmit, Martine M; Neafsey, Daniel E; Hartl, Daniel L; Barillas-Mury, Carolina

    2016-11-23

    Plasmodium falciparum malaria remains a devastating public health problem. Recent discoveries have shed light on the origin and evolution of Plasmodium parasites and their interactions with their vertebrate and mosquito hosts. P. falciparum malaria originated in Africa from a single horizontal transfer between an infected gorilla and a human, and became global as the result of human migration. Today, P. falciparum malaria is transmitted worldwide by more than 70 different anopheline mosquito species. Recent studies indicate that the mosquito immune system can be a barrier to malaria transmission and that the P. falciparum Pfs47 gene allows the parasite to evade mosquito immune detection. Here, we review the origin and globalization of P. falciparum and integrate this history with analysis of the biology, evolution, and dispersal of the main mosquito vectors. This new perspective broadens our understanding of P. falciparum population structure and the dispersal of important parasite genetic traits.

  17. Expression of P. falciparum var Genes Involves Exchange of the Histone Variant H2A.Z at the Promoter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petter, Michaela; Lee, Chin Chin; Byrne, Timothy J.; Boysen, Katja E.; Volz, Jennifer; Ralph, Stuart A.; Cowman, Alan F.; Brown, Graham V.; Duffy, Michael F.

    2011-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum employs antigenic variation to evade the human immune response by switching the expression of different variant surface antigens encoded by the var gene family. Epigenetic mechanisms including histone modifications and sub-nuclear compartmentalization contribute to transcriptional regulation in the malaria parasite, in particular to control antigenic variation. Another mechanism of epigenetic control is the exchange of canonical histones with alternative variants to generate functionally specialized chromatin domains. Here we demonstrate that the alternative histone PfH2A.Z is associated with the epigenetic regulation of var genes. In many eukaryotic organisms the histone variant H2A.Z mediates an open chromatin structure at promoters and facilitates diverse levels of regulation, including transcriptional activation. Throughout the asexual, intraerythrocytic lifecycle of P. falciparum we found that the P. falciparum ortholog of H2A.Z (PfH2A.Z) colocalizes with histone modifications that are characteristic of transcriptionally-permissive euchromatin, but not with markers of heterochromatin. Consistent with this finding, antibodies to PfH2A.Z co-precipitate the permissive modification H3K4me3. By chromatin-immunoprecipitation we show that PfH2A.Z is enriched in nucleosomes around the transcription start site (TSS) in both transcriptionally active and silent stage-specific genes. In var genes, however, PfH2A.Z is enriched at the TSS only during active transcription in ring stage parasites. Thus, in contrast to other genes, temporal var gene regulation involves histone variant exchange at promoter nucleosomes. Sir2 histone deacetylases are important for var gene silencing and their yeast ortholog antagonises H2A.Z function in subtelomeric yeast genes. In immature P. falciparum parasites lacking Sir2A or Sir2B high var transcription levels correlate with enrichment of PfH2A.Z at the TSS. As Sir2A knock out parasites mature the var genes are

  18. Evaluation of DNA Recombinant Methodologies for the Diagnosis of Plasmodium falciparum and their Comparison with the Microscopy Assay

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    L Urdaneta

    1998-09-01

    Full Text Available Since 1984, DNA tests based on the highly repeated subtelomeric sequences of Plasmodium falciparum (rep 20 have been frequently used in malaria diagnosis. Rep 20 is very specific for this parasite, and is made of 21 bp units, organized in repeated blocks with direct and inverted orientation. Based in this particular organization, we selected a unique consensus oligonucleotide (pf-21 to drive a PCR reaction coupled to hybridization to non-radioactive labeled probes. The pf-21 unique oligo PCR (pf-21-I assay produced DNA amplification fingerprints when was applied on purified P. falciparum DNA samples (Brazil and Colombia, as well as in patient's blood samples from a large area of Venezuela. The performance of the Pf-21-I assay was compared against Giemsa stained thick blood smears from samples collected at a malaria endemic area of the Bolívar State, Venezuela, at the field station of Malariología in Tumeremo. Coupled to non-radioactive hybridization the pf-21-I performed better than the traditional microscopic method with a r=1.7:1. In the case of mixed infections the r value of P. falciparum detection increased to 2.5:1. The increased diagnostic sensitivity of the test produced with this homologous oligonucleotide could provide an alternative to the epidemiological diagnosis of P. falciparum being currently used in Venezuela endemic areas, where low parasitemia levels and asymptomatic malaria are frequent. In addition, the DNA fingerprint could be tested in molecular population studies

  19. Enhancing blockade of Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte invasion: assessing combinations of antibodies against PfRH5 and other merozoite antigens.

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    Andrew R Williams

    Full Text Available No vaccine has yet proven effective against the blood-stages of Plasmodium falciparum, which cause the symptoms and severe manifestations of malaria. We recently found that PfRH5, a P. falciparum-specific protein expressed in merozoites, is efficiently targeted by broadly-neutralizing, vaccine-induced antibodies. Here we show that antibodies against PfRH5 efficiently inhibit the in vitro growth of short-term-adapted parasite isolates from Cambodia, and that the EC(50 values of antigen-specific antibodies against PfRH5 are lower than those against PfAMA1. Since antibody responses elicited by multiple antigens are speculated to improve the efficacy of blood-stage vaccines, we conducted detailed assessments of parasite growth inhibition by antibodies against PfRH5 in combination with antibodies against seven other merozoite antigens. We found that antibodies against PfRH5 act synergistically with antibodies against certain other merozoite antigens, most notably with antibodies against other erythrocyte-binding antigens such as PfRH4, to inhibit the growth of a homologous P. falciparum clone. A combination of antibodies against PfRH4 and basigin, the erythrocyte receptor for PfRH5, also potently inhibited parasite growth. This methodology provides the first quantitative evidence that polyclonal vaccine-induced antibodies can act synergistically against P. falciparum antigens and should help to guide the rational development of future multi-antigen vaccines.

  20. The roles of sexual and asexual reproduction in the origin and dissemination of strains causing fungal infectious disease outbreaks.

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    Ashu, Eta Ebasi; Xu, Jianping

    2015-12-01

    Sexual reproduction commonly refers to the reproductive process in which genomes from two sources are combined into a single cell through mating and then the zygote genomes are partitioned to progeny cells through meiosis. Reproduction in the absence of mating and meiosis is referred to as asexual or clonal reproduction. One major advantage of sexual reproduction is that it generates genetic variation among progeny which may allow for faster adaptation of the population to novel and/or stressful environments. However, adaptation to stressful or new environments can still occur through mutation, in the absence of sex. In this review, we analyzed the relative contributions of sexual and asexual reproduction in the origin and spread of strains causing fungal infectious diseases outbreaks. The necessity of sex and the ability of asexual fungi to initiate outbreaks are discussed. We propose a framework that relates the modes of reproduction to the origin and propagation of fungal disease outbreaks. Our analyses suggest that both sexual and asexual reproduction can play critical roles in the origin of outbreak strains and that the rapid spread of outbreak strains is often accomplished through asexual expansion. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Asymptomatic falciparum malaria and intestinal helminths co-infection among school children in Osogbo, Nigeria

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    Olusola Ojurongbe

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Malaria and intestinal helminths are parasitic diseases causing high morbidity and mortality in most tropical parts of the world, where climatic conditions and sanitation practices favor their prevalence. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence and possible impact of falciparum malaria and intestinal helminths co-infection among school children in Kajola, Osun state, Nigeria. Methods: Fresh stool and blood samples were collected from 117 primary school children age range 4-15 years. The stool samples were processed using both Kato-Katz and formol-ether concentration techniques and microscopically examined for intestinal parasitic infections. Blood was collected by finger prick to determine malaria parasitemia using thick film method; and packed cell volume (PCV was determined by hematocrit. Univariate analysis and chi-square statistical tests were used to analyze the data. Results: The prevalence of Plasmodium falciparum, intestinal helminth infections, and co-infection of malaria and helminth in the study were 25.6%, 40.2% and 4.3%, respectively. Five species of intestinal helminths were recovered from the stool samples and these were Ascaris lumbricoides (34.2%, hookworm (5.1%, Trichuris trichiura (2.6%, Diphyllobothrium latum (0.9% and Trichostrongylus species (0.9%. For the co-infection of both malaria and intestinal helminths, females (5.9% were more infected than males (2.0% but the difference was not statistically significant (p = 0.3978. Children who were infected with helminths were equally likely to be infected with malaria as children without intestinal helminths [Risk Ratio (RR = 0.7295]. Children with A. lumbricoides (RR = 1.359 were also likely to be infected with P. falciparum as compared with uninfected children. Conclusions: Asymptomatic falciparum malaria and intestinal helminth infections do co-exist without clinical symp-toms in school children in Nigeria.

  2. Lineage dynamics and mutation-selection balance in non-adapting asexual populations

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    Pénisson, Sophie; Sniegowski, Paul D.; Colato, Alexandre; Gerrish, Philip J.

    2013-02-01

    In classical population genetics, mutation-selection balance refers to the equilibrium frequency of a deleterious allele established and maintained under two opposing forces: recurrent mutation, which tends to increase the frequency of the allele; and selection, which tends to decrease its frequency. In a haploid population, if μ denotes the per capita rate of production of the deleterious allele by mutation and s denotes the selective disadvantage of carrying the allele, then the classical mutation-selection balance frequency of the allele is approximated by μ/s. This calculation assumes that lineages carrying the mutant allele in question—the ‘focal allele’—do not accumulate deleterious mutations linked to the focal allele. In principle, indirect selection against the focal allele caused by such additional mutations can decrease the frequency of the focal allele below the classical mutation-selection balance. This effect of indirect selection will be strongest in an asexual population, in which the entire genome is in linkage. Here, we use an approach based on a multitype branching process to investigate this effect, analyzing lineage dynamics under mutation, direct selection, and indirect selection in a non-adapting asexual population. We find that the equilibrium balance between recurrent mutation to the focal allele and the forces of direct and indirect selection against the focal allele is closely approximated by γμ/(s + U) (s = 0 if the focal allele is neutral), where γ ≈ eθθ-(ω+θ)(ω + θ)(Γ(ω + θ) - Γ(ω + θ,θ)), \\theta =U/\\tilde {s}, and \\omega =s/\\tilde {s}; U denotes the genomic deleterious mutation rate and \\tilde {s} denotes the geometric mean selective disadvantage of deleterious mutations elsewhere on the genome. This mutation-selection balance for asexual populations can remain surprisingly invariant over wide ranges of the mutation rate.

  3. Effects of functionally asexual reproduction on quantitative genetic variation in the evening primroses (Oenothera, Onagraceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godfrey, Ryan M; Johnson, Marc T J

    2014-11-01

    It has long been predicted that a loss of sexual reproduction leads to decreased heritable variation within populations and increased differentiation between populations. Despite an abundance of theory, there are few empirical tests of how sex affects genetic variation in phenotypic traits, especially for plants. Here we test whether repeated losses of two critical components of sex (recombination and segregation) in the evening primroses (Oenothera L., Onagraceae) affect quantitative genetic variation within and between populations. We sampled multiple genetic families from 3-5 populations from each of eight Oenothera species, which represented four independent transitions between sexual reproduction and a functionally asexual genetic system called "permanent translocation heterozygosity." We used quantitative genetics methods to partition genetic variation within and between populations for eight plant traits related to growth, leaf physiology, flowering, and resistance to herbivores. Heritability was, on average, 74% higher in sexual Oenothera populations than in functionally asexual populations, with plant growth rate, specific leaf area, and the percentage of leaf water content showing the strongest differences. By contrast, genetic differentiation among populations was 2.8× higher in functionally asexual vs. sexual Oenothera species. This difference was particularly strong for specific leaf area. Sexual populations tended to exhibit higher genetic correlations among traits, but this difference was weakly supported. These results support the prediction that sexual reproduction maintains higher genetic variation within populations, which may facilitate adaptive evolution. We also found partial support for the prediction that a loss of sex leads to greater population differentiation, which may elevate speciation rates. © 2014 Botanical Society of America, Inc.

  4. Spatial prediction of Plasmodium falciparum prevalence in Somalia.

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    Noor, Abdisalan M; Clements, Archie C A; Gething, Peter W; Moloney, Grainne; Borle, Mohammed; Shewchuk, Tanya; Hay, Simon I; Snow, Robert W

    2008-08-21

    Maps of malaria distribution are vital for optimal allocation of resources for anti-malarial activities. There is a lack of reliable contemporary malaria maps in endemic countries in sub-Saharan Africa. This problem is particularly acute in low malaria transmission countries such as those located in the horn of Africa. Data from a national malaria cluster sample survey in 2005 and routine cluster surveys in 2007 were assembled for Somalia. Rapid diagnostic tests were used to examine the presence of Plasmodium falciparum parasites in finger-prick blood samples obtained from individuals across all age-groups. Bayesian geostatistical models, with environmental and survey covariates, were used to predict continuous maps of malaria prevalence across Somalia and to define the uncertainty associated with the predictions. For analyses the country was divided into north and south. In the north, the month of survey, distance to water, precipitation and temperature had no significant association with P. falciparum prevalence when spatial correlation was taken into account. In contrast, all the covariates, except distance to water, were significantly associated with parasite prevalence in the south. The inclusion of covariates improved model fit for the south but not for the north. Model precision was highest in the south. The majority of the country had a predicted prevalence of or = 5% prevalence were predominantly in the south. The maps showed that malaria transmission in Somalia varied from hypo- to meso-endemic. However, even after including the selected covariates in the model, there still remained a considerable amount of unexplained spatial variation in parasite prevalence, indicating effects of other factors not captured in the study. Nonetheless the maps presented here provide the best contemporary information on malaria prevalence in Somalia.

  5. Spatial prediction of Plasmodium falciparum prevalence in Somalia

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    Shewchuk Tanya

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Maps of malaria distribution are vital for optimal allocation of resources for anti-malarial activities. There is a lack of reliable contemporary malaria maps in endemic countries in sub-Saharan Africa. This problem is particularly acute in low malaria transmission countries such as those located in the horn of Africa. Methods Data from a national malaria cluster sample survey in 2005 and routine cluster surveys in 2007 were assembled for Somalia. Rapid diagnostic tests were used to examine the presence of Plasmodium falciparum parasites in finger-prick blood samples obtained from individuals across all age-groups. Bayesian geostatistical models, with environmental and survey covariates, were used to predict continuous maps of malaria prevalence across Somalia and to define the uncertainty associated with the predictions. Results For analyses the country was divided into north and south. In the north, the month of survey, distance to water, precipitation and temperature had no significant association with P. falciparum prevalence when spatial correlation was taken into account. In contrast, all the covariates, except distance to water, were significantly associated with parasite prevalence in the south. The inclusion of covariates improved model fit for the south but not for the north. Model precision was highest in the south. The majority of the country had a predicted prevalence of Conclusion The maps showed that malaria transmission in Somalia varied from hypo- to meso-endemic. However, even after including the selected covariates in the model, there still remained a considerable amount of unexplained spatial variation in parasite prevalence, indicating effects of other factors not captured in the study. Nonetheless the maps presented here provide the best contemporary information on malaria prevalence in Somalia.

  6. PfMDR2 and PfMDR5 are dispensable for Plasmodium falciparum asexual parasite multiplication but change in vitro susceptibility to anti-malarial drugs

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Velden, M. van der; Rijpma, S.R.; Russel, F.G.M.; Sauerwein, R.W.; Koenderink, J.B.

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Membrane-associated ATP binding cassette (ABC) transport proteins hydrolyze ATP in order to translocate a broad spectrum of substrates, from single ions to macromolecules across membranes. In humans, members from this transport family have been linked to drug resistance phenotypes, e.g.,

  7. Lycosides, Unusual Carotenoid-Derived Terpenoid Glycosides from a Vegetable Juice, Inhibit Asexual Reproduction of the Plant Pathogen Phytophthora.

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    Iwai, Rika; Han, Chunguang; Govindam, Sudhakar V S; Ojika, Makoto

    2018-01-10

    Vegetable juices, typical culture media for the plant pathogen Phytophthora, effectively induce its asexual reproduction (zoosporangia formation). However, some chromatographic fractions from a vegetable juice were found to inhibit asexual reproduction. Bioassay-guided chromatographic steps led to the isolation of four novel compounds, named lycosides A-D, 1-4, that could be metabolic products from a carotenoid. They showed 50% inhibitory activity against the asexual reproduction of P. capsici at 2.1-7.6 μM. The structure-activity relationship and the universality of the inhibitory activity within the Phytophthora genus were also investigated. In addition, the quantitative analysis of lycosides in fresh vegetables and vegetable juices revealed that tomato is the source of these active substances. These food-derived chemicals could help provide safe agents to control the outbreak of the agricultural pest Phytophthora in fields.

  8. Plasma cytokines, chemokines and cellular immune responses in pre-school Nigerian children infected with Plasmodium falciparum

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    Noone Cariosa

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Malaria is a major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide with over one million deaths annually, particularly in children under five years. This study was the first to examine plasma cytokines, chemokines and cellular immune responses in pre-school Nigerian children infected with Plasmodium falciparum from four semi-urban villages near Ile-Ife, Osun State, Nigeria. Methods Blood was obtained from 231 children (aged 39–73 months who were classified according to mean P. falciparum density per μl of blood (uninfected (n = 89, low density (10,000, n = 22. IL-12p70, IL-10, Nitric oxide, IFN-γ, TNF, IL-17, IL-4 and TGF-β, C-C chemokine RANTES, MMP-8 and TIMP-1 were measured in plasma. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells were obtained and examined markers of innate immune cells (CD14, CD36, CD56, CD54, CD11c AND HLA-DR. T-cell sub-populations (CD4, CD3 and γδTCR were intracellularly stained for IL-10, IFN-γ and TNF following polyclonal stimulation or stimulated with malaria parasites. Ascaris lumbricoides was endemic in these villages and all data were analysed taking into account the potential impact of bystander helminth infection. All data were analysed using SPSS 15 for windows and in all tests, p Results The level of P. falciparum parasitaemia was positively associated with plasma IL-10 and negatively associated with IL-12p70. The percentage of monocytes was significantly decreased in malaria-infected individuals while malaria parasitaemia was positively associated with increasing percentages of CD54+, CD11c+ and CD56+ cell populations. No association was observed in cytokine expression in mitogen-activated T-cell populations between groups and no malaria specific immune responses were detected. Although A. lumbricoides is endemic in these villages, an analysis of the data showed no impact of this helminth infection on P. falciparum parasitaemia or on immune responses associated with P. falciparum infection

  9. Limited variation in vaccine candidate Plasmodium falciparum Merozoite Surface Protein-6 over multiple transmission seasons

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    Branch OraLee H

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plasmodium falciparum Merozoite Surface Protein-6 (PfMSP6 is a component of the complex proteinacious coat that surrounds P. falciparum merozoites. This location, and the presence of anti-PfMSP6 antibodies in P. falciparum-exposed individuals, makes PfMSP6 a potential blood stage vaccine target. However, genetic diversity has proven to be a major hurdle for vaccines targeting other blood stage P. falciparum antigens, and few endemic field studies assessing PfMSP6 gene diversity have been conducted. This study follows PfMSP6 diversity in the Peruvian Amazon from 2003 to 2006 and is the first longitudinal assessment of PfMSP6 sequence dynamics. Methods Parasite DNA was extracted from 506 distinct P. falciparum infections spanning the transmission seasons from 2003 to 2006 as part of the Malaria Immunology and Genetics in the Amazon (MIGIA cohort study near Iquitos, Peru. PfMSP6 was amplified from each sample using a nested PCR protocol, genotyped for allele class by agarose gel electrophoresis, and sequenced to detect diversity. Allele frequencies were analysed using JMP v.8.0.1.0 and correlated with clinical and epidemiological data collected as part of the MIGIA project. Results Both PfMSP6 allele classes, K1-like and 3D7-like, were detected at the study site, confirming that both are globally distributed. Allele frequencies varied significantly between transmission seasons, with 3D7-class alleles dominating and K1-class alleles nearly disappearing in 2005 and 2006. There was a significant association between allele class and village location (p-value = 0.0008, but no statistically significant association between allele class and age, sex, or symptom status. No intra-allele class sequence diversity was detected. Conclusions Both PfMSP6 allele classes are globally distributed, and this study shows that allele frequencies can fluctuate significantly between communities separated by only a few kilometres, and over time in the

  10. Characterization of leaf area of Agave fourcroydes Lem. plants obtained from asexual propagation

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    Maryla Sosa del Castillo

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The henequen (Agave fourcroydes Lem. is a crop of great economic importance. This study was aimed to characterize the leaf surface of henequen plants variety `Sac Ki' obtained by asexual propagation methods. In vitro plants, shoots of bulbils of in vitro plants, shoots of rhizomes of in vitro plants, shoots of bulbils of field plants and shoots of field rhizomes were used. At 7 and 15 months after planting in the nursery, the epidermis was characterized through the stomatal index and stomatal density. Moreover, the conductor vessels and fiber bundles in leaf mesophyll, were characterized. It was found that the leaf surface of henequen plants variety `Sac Ki' obtained by different methods of asexual propagation showed similar anatomical structures. However, it was observed that in vitro plants were different from the rest in terms of stomatal index and stomatal density in both time points. It was suggesting a accommodate response to environmental conditions. Key words: stomatic density, stomatic index, in vitro plants

  11. Memory and obesity affect the population dynamics of asexual freshwater planarians

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dunkel, Jörn; Talbot, Jared; Schötz, Eva-Maria

    2011-01-01

    Asexual reproduction in multicellular organisms is a complex biophysical process that is not yet well understood quantitatively. Here, we report a detailed population study for the asexual freshwater planarian Schmidtea mediterranea, which can reproduce via transverse fission due to a large stem cell contingent. Our long-term observations of isolated non-interacting planarian populations reveal that the characteristic fission waiting time distributions for head and tail fragments differ significantly from each other. The stochastic fission dynamics of tail fragments exhibits non-negligible memory effects, implying that an accurate mathematical description of future data should be based on non-Markovian tree models. By comparing the effective growth of non-interacting planarian populations with those of self-interacting populations, we are able to quantify the influence of interactions between flatworms and physical conditions on the population growth. A surprising result is the non-monotonic relationship between effective population growth rate and nutrient supply: planarians exhibit a tendency to become 'obese' if the feeding frequency exceeds a critical level, resulting in a decreased reproduction activity. This suggests that these flatworms, which possess many genes homologous to those of humans, could become a new model system for studying dietary effects on reproduction and regeneration in multicellular organisms

  12. STANDARDIZATION OF PROCEDURES OF Plasmodium falciparum ANTIGEN PREPARATION FOR SEROLOGIC TESTS

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    Sandra L.M. AVILA

    1998-09-01

    Full Text Available The objective of the present study is to standardize the technical variables for preparation and storage of Plasmodium falciparum and of antigen components extracted with the amphoteric detergent Zwittergent. P. falciparum obtained from in vitro culture was stored at different temperatures and for different periods of time. For each variable, antigen components of the parasite were extracted in the presence or absence of protease inhibitors and submitted or not to later dialysis. Products were stored for 15, 30 and 60 days at different temperatures and immunological activity of each extract was determined by SDS-PAGE and ELISA using positive or negative standard sera for the presence of IgG directed to blood stage antigens of P. falciparum. Antigen extracts obtained from parasites stored at -20oC up to 10 days or at -70oC for 2 months presented the best results, showing well-defined bands on SDS-PAGE and Western blots and presenting absorbance values in ELISA that permitted safe differentiation between positive and negative sera.O objetivo deste estudo foi padronizar variáveis técnicas para o armazenamento de Plasmodium falciparum e de seus componentes antigênicos. Sedimentos de parasitas foram obtidos do cultivo in vitro de P.falciparum e estocados em diferentes temperaturas por diferentes períodos de tempo. De cada variável, foram extraídos os componentes antigênicos com detergente anfótero Zwittergent na presença e na ausência de inibidores de proteases e submetidos ou não a posterior diálise. Os produtos foram estocados por 15, 30 e 60 dias em diferentes temperaturas e caracterizados por SDS-PAGE. A atividade antigênica de cada extrato foi determinada por ELISA e Western blotting usando soros positivos e negativos para anticorpos IgG anti-formas eritrocitárias de P.falciparum. Os extratos antigênicos obtidos de parasitas estocados até 10 dias a _20ºC ou por 2 meses a _70ºC e tratados com inibidores de proteases, sob as

  13. Interaction of Plasmodium falciparum knob-associated histidine-rich protein (KAHRP) with erythrocyte ankyrin R is required for its attachment to the erythrocyte membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weng, Haibo; Guo, Xinhua; Papoin, Julien; Wang, Jie; Coppel, Ross; Mohandas, Narla; An, Xiuli

    2014-01-01

    The malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum exports a large number of proteins into the erythrocyte cytoplasm during the asexual intraerythrocytic stage of its life cycle. A subset of these proteins interacts with erythrocyte membrane skeletal proteins and grossly alters the structure and function of the membrane. Several of the exported proteins, such as PfEMP1, PfEMP3, RESA and KAHRP, interact with the preponderant erythrocyte skeleton protein, spectrin. Here we have searched for possible interaction of these four malaria proteins with another major erythrocyte skeleton protein, ankyrin R. We have shown that KAHRP, but none of the other three, binds to ankyrin R. We have mapped the binding site for ankyrin R to a 79-residue segment of the KAHRP sequence, and the reciprocal binding site for KAHRP in ankyrin R to a subdomain (D3) of the 89kDa ankyrin R membrane-binding domain. Interaction of intact ankyrin R with KAHRP was inhibited by the free D3 subdomain. When, moreover, red cells loaded with the soluble D3 subdomain were infected with P. falciparum, KAHRP secreted by the intraerythrocytic parasite no longer migrated to the host cell membrane, but remained diffusely distributed throughout the cytosol. Our findings suggest a potentially important role for interaction of KAHRP with red cell membrane skeleton in promoting the adhesion of malaria-infected red cells to endothelial surfaces, a central element in the pathophysiology of malaria. © 2013.

  14. [Congenital malaria due to Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium malariae].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zenz, W; Trop, M; Kollaritsch, H; Reinthaler, F

    2000-05-19

    Increasing tourism and growing numbers of immigrants from malaria-endemic countries are leading to a higher importation rate of rare tropical disorders in European countries. We describe, to the best of our knowledge, the first case of connatal malaria in Austria. The patient is the first child of a 24 year old mother who was born in Ghana and immigrated to Austria one and a half years before delivery. She did not stay in an endemic region during this period and did not show fever or any other signs of malaria. The boy was healthy for the first six weeks of his life. In the 8th week of life he was admitted to our hospital due to persistent fever of unknown origin. On physical examination he showed only mild splenomegaly. Routine laboratory testing revealed mild hemolytic anemia with a hemoglobin value of 8.3 g/l. In the blood smear Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium malariae were detected. Oral therapy with quinine hydrochloride was successful and blood smears became negative for Plasmodia within 6 days. This case shows that congenital malaria can occur in children of clinically healthy women who were born in malaria-endemic areas even one and a half year after they have immigrated to non-endemic regions.

  15. 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.

  16. Artemether-lumefantrine treatment of uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum malaria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kofoed, Poul-Erik

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Achieving adequate antimalarial drug exposure is essential for curing malaria. Day 7 blood or plasma lumefantrine concentrations provide a simple measure of drug exposure that correlates well with artemether-lumefantrine efficacy. However, the 'therapeutic' day 7 lumefantrine concentr......BACKGROUND: Achieving adequate antimalarial drug exposure is essential for curing malaria. Day 7 blood or plasma lumefantrine concentrations provide a simple measure of drug exposure that correlates well with artemether-lumefantrine efficacy. However, the 'therapeutic' day 7 lumefantrine......-lumefantrine for uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum malaria, to define therapeutic day 7 lumefantrine concentrations and identify patient factors that substantially alter these concentrations. A systematic review of PubMed, Embase, Google Scholar, ClinicalTrials.gov and conference proceedings identified all relevant studies...... lumefantrine concentrations ≥200 ng/ml and high cure rates in most uncomplicated malaria patients. Three groups are at increased risk of treatment failure: very young children (particularly those underweight-for-age); patients with high parasitemias; and patients in very low transmission intensity areas...

  17. Host factors that modify Plasmodium falciparum adhesion to endothelial receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahamar, Almahamoudou; Attaher, Oumar; Swihart, Bruce; Barry, Amadou; Diarra, Bacary S; Kanoute, Moussa B; Cisse, Kadidia B; Dembele, Adama B; Keita, Sekouba; Gamain, Benoît; Gaoussou, Santara; Issiaka, Djibrilla; Dicko, Alassane; Duffy, Patrick E; Fried, Michal

    2017-10-24

    P. falciparum virulence is related to adhesion and sequestration of infected erythrocytes (IE) in deep vascular beds, but the endothelial receptors involved in severe malaria remain unclear. In the largest ever study of clinical isolates, we surveyed adhesion of freshly collected IE from children under 5 years of age in Mali to identify novel vascular receptors, and examined the effects of host age, hemoglobin type, blood group and severe malaria on levels of IE adhesion to a panel of endothelial receptors. Several novel molecules, including integrin α3β1, VE-cadherin, ICAM-2, junctional adhesion molecule-B (JAM-B), laminin, and cellular fibronectin, supported binding of IE from children. Severe malaria was not significantly associated with levels of IE adhesion to any of the 19 receptors. Hemoglobin AC, which reduces severe malaria risk, reduced IE binding to the receptors CD36 and integrin α5β1, while hemoglobin AS did not modify IE adhesion to any receptors. Blood groups A, AB and B significantly reduced IE binding to ICAM-1. Severe malaria risk varies with age, but age significantly impacted the level of IE binding to only a few receptors: IE binding to JAM-B decreased with age, while binding to CD36 and integrin α5β1 significantly increased with age.

  18. Paradoxical associations between soil-transmitted helminths and Plasmodium falciparum infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández-Niño, Julián A; Idrovo, Alvaro J; Cucunubá, Zulma M; Reyes-Harker, Patricia; Guerra, Ángela P; Moncada, Ligia I; López, Myriam C; Barrera, Sandra M; Cortés, Liliana J; Olivera, Mario; Nicholls, Rubén S

    2012-11-01

    Evidence on the comorbidity between soil-transmitted helminth infections and malaria is scarce and divergent. This study explored the interactions between soil-transmitted helminth infections and uncomplicated falciparum malaria in an endemic area of Colombia. A paired case-control study matched by sex, age and location in Tierralta, Cordoba, was done between January and September 2010. The incident cases were 68 patients with falciparum malaria and 178 asymptomatic controls. A questionnaire was used to gather information on sociodemographic variables. Additionally physical examinations were carried out, stool samples were analysed for intestinal parasites and blood samples for Ig E concentrations. We found associations between infection with hookworm (OR: 4.21; 95% CI: 1.68-11.31) and Ascaris lumbricoides (OR 0.43; 95% CI: 0.18-1.04) and the occurrence of falciparum malaria. The effects of soil-transmitted helminths on the occurrence of malaria were found to be paradoxical. While hookworm is a risk factor, A. lumbricoides has a protective effect. The findings suggest that, in addition to the comorbidity, the presence of common determinants of soil-transmitted helminth infections and malaria could also exist. While the biological mechanisms involved are not clear, public health policies aimed at the control of their common social and environmental determinants are suggested. Copyright © 2012 Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Enhanced detection of gametocytes by magnetic deposition microscopy predicts higher potential for Plasmodium falciparum transmission

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zborowski Maciej

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Aggregated haemozoin crystals within malaria-infected erythrocytes confer susceptibility of parasitized cells to a magnetic field. Here the utility of this method for diagnosis of human malaria is evaluated in a malaria-endemic region of Papua New Guinea (PNG. Methods and findings Individuals with Plasmodium falciparum malaria symptoms (n = 55 provided samples for conventional blood smear (CBS and magnetic deposition microscopy (MDM diagnosis. Standard Giemsa staining and light microscopy was performed to evaluate all preparations. Plasmodium falciparum parasitaemia observed on MDM slides was consistently higher than parasitaemia observed by (CBS for ring (CBS = 2.6 vs. MDM = 3.4%; t-test P-value = 0.13, trophozoite (CBS = 0.5 vs. MDM = 1.6%; t-test P-value = 0.01, schizont (CBS = 0.003 vs. MDM = 0.1%; t-test P-value = 0.08 and gametocyte (CBS = 0.001 vs. MDM = 0.4%; t-test P-value = 0.0002 parasitaemias. Gametocyte prevalence determined by CBS compared to MDM increased from 7.3% to 45%, respectively. Conclusion MDM increased detection sensitivity of P. falciparum-infected, haemozoin-containing erythrocytes from infected humans while maintaining detection of ring-stage parasites. Gametocyte prevalence five-fold higher than observed by CBS suggests higher malaria transmission potential in PNG endemic sites compared to previous estimates.

  20. Atovaquone and proguanil versus pyrimethamine/sulfadoxine for the treatment of acute falciparum malaria in Zambia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulenga, M; Sukwa, T Y; Canfield, C J; Hutchinson, D B

    1999-05-01

    Atovaquone and proguanil hydrochloride are blood schizonticides that demonstrate in vitro synergy against drug-resistant strains of Plasmodium falciparum. When coadministered, they may therefore be effective for the treatment of malaria in regions where there is known or suspected drug resistance. In an open-label, randomized, parallel-group, clinical trial conducted in Zambia, 163 patients (age range, 14 to 54 years) with acute P falciparum malaria were randomly assigned to receive treatment with atovaquone and proguanil hydrochloride (1000 and 400 mg, respectively, administered orally at 24-hour intervals for 3 doses; n = 82) or pyrimethamine/sulfadoxine (75/1500 mg administered orally as a single dose; n = 81). Efficacy was assessed by cure rate (the percentage of patients in whom parasitemia was eliminated and did not recur during 28 days of follow-up), parasite clearance time (PCT), and fever clearance time (FCT). Safety was determined by sequential clinical and laboratory assessments over 28 days. Cure rates did not differ significantly between patients treated with atovaquone and proguanil (100%) and those treated with pyrimethamine/sulfadoxine (98.8%). Patients in the atovaquone and proguanil group had a significantly shorter FCT than patients in the pyrimethamine/sulfadoxine group (mean, 30.4 vs 44.9 hours; P proguanil was equally effective and as well tolerated as pyrimethamine/sulfadoxine for the treatment of acute, uncomplicated, drug-resistant falciparum malaria in Zambia.

  1. Plasmodium falciparum Adhesins Play an Essential Role in Signalling and Activation of Invasion into Human Erythrocytes.

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    Wai-Hong Tham

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The most severe form of malaria in humans is caused by the protozoan parasite Plasmodium falciparum. The invasive form of malaria parasites is termed a merozoite and it employs an array of parasite proteins that bind to the host cell to mediate invasion. In Plasmodium falciparum, the erythrocyte binding-like (EBL and reticulocyte binding-like (Rh protein families are responsible for binding to specific erythrocyte receptors for invasion and mediating signalling events that initiate active entry of the malaria parasite. Here we have addressed the role of the cytoplasmic tails of these proteins in activating merozoite invasion after receptor engagement. We show that the cytoplasmic domains of these type 1 membrane proteins are phosphorylated in vitro. Depletion of PfCK2, a kinase implicated to phosphorylate these cytoplasmic tails, blocks P. falciparum invasion of red blood cells. We identify the crucial residues within the PfRh4 cytoplasmic domain that are required for successful parasite invasion. Live cell imaging of merozoites from these transgenic mutants show they attach but do not penetrate erythrocytes implying the PfRh4 cytoplasmic tail conveys signals important for the successful completion of the invasion process.

  2. 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.

  3. Ligasi dan Transformasi Gen MSP1 Plasmodium falciparum Penyebab Malaria di Kota Jayapura

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    Arsyam Mawardi

    2017-12-01

    MSP1 is the most antigenic and expressed protein on merozoite surface when it infects the erythrocytes of malaria patients which leads to its use for vaccine therapy design development. The ligation and transformation process of the MSP1 gene is a gene duplication attempt for producing  the same product during expression. This study aimed to clone P. falciparum MSP-1 gene from tropical malaria patients in Jayapura using pJET1.2/blunt vectors and E. coli DH5a competent cells, to get the recombinant plasmid propagation of MSP1 gene. Blood that was positive for P. falciparum was molecularly processed, starting with genomic DNA isolation and then followed by PCR amplification, ligation into pJET1.2/blunt vector, and transformation into E. coli DH5α using the heat shock transformation method. The process was ended with PCR confirmation to confirm MSP1 gene insertion. The results showed that the presence of the  MSP1 gene in pJET1.2/blunt was successfully confirmed through PCR. From a total of 10 positive colonies grown in liquid culture,  plasmid was isolated. Electropherogram result presented bands  of about 1049bp, indicating the presence of the MSP1 gene in plasmid. Hence, MSP1 gene cloning using pJET1.2/blunt cloning vector and competent cell E. coli DH5α has been successfully performed.  Key words: Heat shock, ligation, MSP-1, P. falciparum, transformation

  4. An FtsH protease is recruited to the mitochondrion of Plasmodium falciparum.

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    Aiman Tanveer

    Full Text Available The two organelles, apicoplast and mitochondrion, of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum have unique morphology in liver and blood stages; they undergo complex branching and looping prior to division and segregation into daughter merozoites. Little is known about the molecular processes and proteins involved in organelle biogenesis in the parasite. We report the identification of an AAA+/FtsH protease homolog (PfFtsH1 that exhibits ATP- and Zn(2+-dependent protease activity. PfFtsH1 undergoes processing, forms oligomeric assemblies, and is associated with the membrane fraction of the parasite cell. Generation of a transfectant parasite line with hemagglutinin-tagged PfFtsH1, and immunofluorescence assay with anti-PfFtsH1 Ab demonstrated that the protein localises to P. falciparum mitochondria. Phylogenetic analysis and the single transmembrane region identifiable in PfFtsH1 suggest that it is an i-AAA like inner mitochondrial membrane protein. Expression of PfFtsH1 in Escherichia coli converted a fraction of bacterial cells into division-defective filamentous forms implying a sequestering effect of the Plasmodium factor on the bacterial homolog, indicative of functional conservation with EcFtsH. These results identify a membrane-associated mitochondrial AAA+/FtsH protease as a candidate regulatory protein for organelle biogenesis in P. falciparum.

  5. A novel tetratricopeptide repeat (TPR containing PP5 serine/threonine protein phosphatase in the malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum

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    Adams Brian

    2001-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The malarial parasite, Plasmodium falciparum (Pf, is responsible for nearly 2 million deaths worldwide. However, the mechanisms of cellular signaling in the parasite remain largely unknown. Recent discovery of a few protein kinases and phosphatases point to a thriving reversible phosphorylation system in the parasite, although their function and regulation need to be determined. Results We provide biochemical and sequence evidence for a protein serine/threonine phosphatase type PP5 in Plasmodium falciparum, and named it PfPP5. The 594-amino acid polypeptide was encoded by a 1785 nucleotide long intronless gene in the parasite. The recombinant protein, expressed in bacteria, was indistinguishable from native PfPP5. Sequencing comparison indicated that the extra-long N-terminus of PfPP5 outside the catalytic core contained four tetratricopeptide repeats (TPRs, compared to three such repeats in other PP5 phosphatases. The PfPP5 N-terminus was required for stimulation of the phosphatase activity by polyunsaturated fatty acids. Co-immunoprecipitation demonstrated an interaction between native PfPP5 and Pf heat shock protein 90 (hsp90. PfPP5 was expressed in all the asexual erythrocytic stages of the parasite, and was moderately sensitive to okadaic acid. Conclusions This is the first example of a TPR-domain protein in the Apicomplexa family of parasites. Since TPR domains play important roles in protein-protein interaction, especially relevant to the regulation of PP5 phosphatases, PfPP5 is destined to have a definitive role in parasitic growth and signaling pathways. This is exemplified by the interaction between PfPP5 and the cognate chaperone hsp90.

  6. Interleukin-10 regulates hepcidin in Plasmodium falciparum malaria

    KAUST Repository

    Huang, Honglei; Lamikanra, Abigail A.; Alkaitis, Matthew S.; Thé zé nas, Marie L.; Ramaprasad, Abhinay; Moussa, Ehab; Roberts, David J.; Casals-Pascual, Climent

    2014-01-01

    . falciparum malaria. Methods: We have measured secretion of hepcidin by primary macrophages and the hepatoma cell line HepG2 stimulated with IL-10, IL-6 and Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes. Findings: We have observed that IL-10 and IL-6 production

  7. Immune evasion of Plasmodium falciparum by RIFIN via inhibitory receptors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Saito, Fumiji; Hirayasu, Kouyuki; Satoh, Takeshi

    2017-01-01

    , but the immune regulatory mechanisms used by P. falciparum remain largely unknown. Here we show that P. falciparum uses immune inhibitory receptors to achieve immune evasion. RIFIN proteins are products of a polymorphic multigene family comprising approximately 150-200 genes per parasite genome...

  8. Artemisinin resistance marker of Plasmodium falciparum in Osogbo ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Artemisinin derivatives constitute a key component of the present-day treatment for Plasmodium falciparum malaria. Resistance with artemisinins is generally associated with S769N point mutation in the sarco-endoplasmic reticulumdependant ATPase6 (SERCA ATPase6) gene of Plasmodium falciparum, few studies have ...

  9. 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 ...

  10. Impact of child malnutrition on the specific anti-Plasmodium falciparum antibody response

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    Fillol Florie

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In sub-Saharan Africa, preschool children represent the population most vulnerable to malaria and malnutrition. It is widely recognized that malnutrition compromises the immune function, resulting in higher risk of infection. However, very few studies have investigated the relationship between malaria, malnutrition and specific immunity. In the present study, the anti-Plasmodium falciparum IgG antibody (Ab response was evaluated in children according to the type of malnutrition. Methods Anthropometric assessment and blood sample collection were carried out during a cross-sectional survey including rural Senegalese preschool children. This cross-sectional survey was conducted in July 2003 at the onset of the rainy season. Malnutrition was defined as stunting (height-for-age P. falciparum whole extracts (schizont antigens was assessed by ELISA in sera of the included children. Results Both the prevalence of anti-malarial immune responders and specific IgG Ab levels were significantly lower in malnourished children than in controls. Depending on the type of malnutrition, wasted children and stunted children presented a lower specific IgG Ab response than their respective controls, but this difference was significant only in stunted children (P = 0.026. This down-regulation of the specific Ab response seemed to be explained by severely stunted children (HAZ ≤ -2.5 compared to their controls (P = 0.03, while no significant difference was observed in mildly stunted children (-2.5 P. falciparum Ab response appeared to be independent of the intensity of infection. Conclusion Child malnutrition, and particularly stunting, may down-regulate the anti-P. falciparum Ab response, both in terms of prevalence of immune responders and specific IgG Ab levels. This study provides further evidence for the influence of malnutrition on the specific anti-malarial immune response and points to the importance of taking into account child

  11. Cytoadhesion of Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes and the infected placenta: a two-way pathway

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    F.T.M. Costa

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Malaria is undoubtedly the world's most devastating parasitic disease, affecting 300 to 500 million people every year. Some cases of Plasmodium falciparum infection progress to the deadly forms of the disease responsible for 1 to 3 million deaths annually. P. falciparum-infected erythrocytes adhere to host receptors in the deep microvasculature of several organs. The cytoadhesion of infected erythrocytes to placental syncytiotrophoblast receptors leads to pregnancy-associated malaria (PAM. This specific maternal-fetal syndrome causes maternal anemia, low birth weight and the death of 62,000 to 363,000 infants per year in sub-Saharan Africa, and thus has a poor outcome for both mother and fetus. However, PAM and non-PAM parasites have been shown to differ antigenically and genetically. After multiple pregnancies, women from different geographical areas develop adhesion-blocking antibodies that protect against placental parasitemia and clinical symptoms of PAM. The recent description of a new parasite ligand encoded by the var2CSA gene as the only gene up-regulated in PAM parasites renders the development of an anti-PAM vaccine more feasible. The search for a vaccine to prevent P. falciparum sequestration in the placenta by eliciting adhesion-blocking antibodies and a cellular immune response, and the development of new methods for evaluating such antibodies should be key priorities in mother-child health programs in areas of endemic malaria. This review summarizes the main molecular, immunological and physiopathological aspects of PAM, including findings related to new targets in the P. falciparum var gene family. Finally, we focus on a new methodology for mimicking cytoadhesion under blood flow conditions in human placental tissue.

  12. Antimalarial activity of potential inhibitors of Plasmodium falciparum lactate dehydrogenase enzyme selected by docking studies.

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    Julia Penna-Coutinho

    Full Text Available The Plasmodium falciparum lactate dehydrogenase enzyme (PfLDH has been considered as a potential molecular target for antimalarials due to this parasite's dependence on glycolysis for energy production. Because the LDH enzymes found in P. vivax, P. malariae and P. ovale (pLDH all exhibit ∼90% identity to PfLDH, it would be desirable to have new anti-pLDH drugs, particularly ones that are effective against P. falciparum, the most virulent species of human malaria. Our present work used docking studies to select potential inhibitors of pLDH, which were then tested for antimalarial activity against P. falciparum in vitro and P. berghei malaria in mice. A virtual screening in DrugBank for analogs of NADH (an essential cofactor to pLDH and computational studies were undertaken, and the potential binding of the selected compounds to the PfLDH active site was analyzed using Molegro Virtual Docker software. Fifty compounds were selected based on their similarity to NADH. The compounds with the best binding energies (itraconazole, atorvastatin and posaconazole were tested against P. falciparum chloroquine-resistant blood parasites. All three compounds proved to be active in two immunoenzymatic assays performed in parallel using monoclonals specific to PfLDH or a histidine rich protein (HRP2. The IC(50 values for each drug in both tests were similar, were lowest for posaconazole (<5 µM and were 40- and 100-fold less active than chloroquine. The compounds reduced P. berghei parasitemia in treated mice, in comparison to untreated controls; itraconazole was the least active compound. The results of these activity trials confirmed that molecular docking studies are an important strategy for discovering new antimalarial drugs. This approach is more practical and less expensive than discovering novel compounds that require studies on human toxicology, since these compounds are already commercially available and thus approved for human use.

  13. Tracing the origins and signatures of selection of antifolate resistance in island populations of Plasmodium falciparum

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    Pinto João

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Resistance of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum to sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP has evolved worldwide. In the archipelago of São Tomé and Principe (STP, West Africa, although SP resistance is highly prevalent the drug is still in use in particular circumstances. To address the evolutionary origins of SP resistance in these islands, we genotyped point mutations at P. falciparum dhfr and dhps genes and analysed microsatellites flanking those genes. Methods Blood samples were collected in July and December 2004 in three localities of São Tomé Island and one in Principe Island. Species-specific nested-PCR was used to identify P. falciparum infected samples. Subsequently, SNPs at the dhfr and dhps genes were identified through PCR-RFLP. Isolates were also analysed for three microsatellite loci flanking the dhfr gene, three loci flanking dhps and four loci located at putative neutral genomic regions. Results An increase of resistance-associated mutations at dhfr and dhps was observed, in particular for the dhfr/dhps quintuple mutant, associated with clinical SP failure. Analysis of flanking microsatellites suggests multiple independent introductions for dhfr and dhps mutant haplotypes, possibly from West Africa. A reduced genetic diversity and increased differentiation at flanking microsatellites when compared to neutral loci is consistent with a selective sweep for resistant alleles at both loci. Conclusions This study provides additional evidence for the crucial role of gene flow and drug selective pressures in the rapid spread of SP resistance in P. falciparum populations, from only a few mutation events giving rise to resistance-associated mutants. It also highlights the importance of human migration in the spread of drug resistant malaria parasites, as the distance between the islands and mainland is not consistent with mosquito-mediated parasite dispersal.

  14. Plasmodium falciparum isolates from Angola show the StctVMNT haplotype in the pfcrt gene

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Background Effective treatment remains a mainstay of malaria control, but it is unfortunately strongly compromised by drug resistance, particularly in Plasmodium falciparum, the most important human malaria parasite. Although P. falciparum chemoresistance is well recognized all over the world, limited data are available on the distribution and prevalence of pfcrt and pfmdr1 haplotypes that mediate resistance to commonly used drugs and that show distinct geographic differences. Methods Plasmodium falciparum-infected blood samples collected in 2007 at four municipalities of Luanda, Angola, were genotyped using PCR and direct DNA sequencing. Single nucleotide polymorphisms in the P. falciparum pfcrt and pfmdr1 genes were assessed and haplotype prevalences were determined. Results and Discussion The most prevalent pfcrt haplotype was StctVMNT (representing amino acids at codons 72-76). This result was unexpected, since the StctVMNT haplotype has previously been seen mainly in parasites from South America and India. The CVIET, CVMNT and CVINT drug-resistance haplotypes were also found, and one previously undescribed haplotype (CVMDT) was detected. Regarding pfmdr1, the most prevalent haplotype was YEYSNVD (representing amino acids at codons 86, 130, 184, 1034, 1042, 1109 and 1246). Wild haplotypes for pfcrt and pfmdr1 were uncommon; 3% of field isolates harbored wild type pfcrt (CVMNK), whereas 21% had wild type pfmdr1 (NEYSNVD). The observed predominance of the StctVMNT haplotype in Angola could be a result of frequent travel between Brazil and Angola citizens in the context of selective pressure of heavy CQ use. Conclusions The high prevalence of the pfcrt SVMNT haplotype and the pfmdr1 86Y mutation confirm high-level chloroquine resistance and might suggest reduced efficacy of amodiaquine in Angola. Further studies must be encouraged to examine the in vitro sensitivity of pfcrt SVMNT parasites to artesunate and amodiaquine for better conclusive data. PMID:20565881

  15. Antibodies against PfEMP1, RIFIN, MSP3 and GLURP are acquired during controlled Plasmodium falciparum malaria infections in naïve volunteers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Turner, Louise; Wang, Christian W; Lavstsen, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    Antibodies to polymorphic antigens expressed during the parasites erythrocytic stages are important mediators of protective immunity against P. falciparum malaria. Therefore, polymorphic blood stage antigens like MSP3, EBA-175 and GLURP and variant surface antigens PfEMP1 and RIFIN are considered...

  16. Effectiveness of quinine monotherapy for the treatment of Plasmodium falciparum infection in pregnant women in Lambaréné, Gabon

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Adegnika, Ayôla A.; Breitling, Lutz Ph; Agnandji, Selidji T.; Chai, Sanders K.; Schütte, Daniela; Oyakhirome, Sunny; Schwarz, Norbert G.; Grobusch, Martin P.; Missinou, Michel A.; Ramharter, Michael; Issifou, Saadou; Kremsner, Peter G.

    2005-01-01

    Pregnant women participating in a longitudinal immuno-epidemiologic survey in Lambaréné, Gabon, and presenting with Plasmodium falciparum parasitemia at monthly blood smear examinations were offered treatment with oral 7-day quinine monotherapy according to national health guidelines. A total of 50

  17. Investigation of a potential mechanism for the inhibition of SmTGR by Auranofin and its implications for Plasmodium falciparum inhibition

    KAUST Repository

    Caroli, Antonia; Simeoni, Silvia; Lepore, Rosalba; Tramontano, Anna; Via, Allegra

    2012-01-01

    Schistosoma mansoni and Plasmodium falciparum are pathogen parasites that spend part of their lives in the blood stream of the human host and are therefore heavily exposed to fluxes of toxic reactive oxygen species (ROS). SmTGR, an essential enzyme

  18. Optical force on diseased blood cells: Towards the optical sorting of biological matter

    KAUST Repository

    Gongora, J. S. Totero; Fratalocchi, Andrea

    2015-01-01

    By employing a series of massively parallel ab-initio simulations, we study how optical forces act on biological matter subject to morphological disease. As a representative case study, we here consider the case of Plasmodium falciparum on red blood

  19. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, dose-ranging trial of tafenoquine for weekly prophylaxis against Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hale, Braden R; Owusu-Agyei, Seth; Fryauff, David J; Koram, Kwadwo A; Adjuik, Martin; Oduro, Abraham R; Prescott, W Roy; Baird, J Kevin; Nkrumah, Francis; Ritchie, Thomas L; Franke, Eileen D; Binka, Fred N; Horton, John; Hoffman, Stephen L

    2003-03-01

    Tafenoquine is a promising new 8-aminoquinoline drug that may be useful for malaria prophylaxis in nonpregnant persons with normal glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) function. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled chemoprophylaxis trial was conducted with adult residents of northern Ghana to determine the minimum effective weekly dose of tafenoquine for the prevention of infection by Plasmodium falciparum. The primary end point was a positive malaria blood smear result during the 13 weeks of study drug coverage. Relative to the placebo, all 4 tafenoquine dosages demonstrated significant protection against P. falciparum infection: for 25 mg/week, protective efficacy was 32% (95% confidence interval [CI], 20%-43%); for 50 mg/week, 84% (95% CI, 75%-91%); for 100 mg/week, 87% (95% CI, 78%-93%); and for 200 mg/week, 86% (95% CI, 76%-92%). The mefloquine dosage of 250 mg/week also demonstrated significant protection against P. falciparum infection (protective efficacy, 86%; 95% CI, 72%-93%). There was little difference between study groups in the adverse events reported, and there was no evidence of a relationship between tafenoquine dosage and reports of physical complaints or the occurrence of abnormal laboratory parameters. Tafenoquine dosages of 50, 100, and 200 mg/week were safe, well tolerated, and effective against P. falciparum infection in this study population.

  20. High efficacy of two artemisinin-based combinations: artesunate + sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine and artemether-lumefantrine for falciparum malaria in Yemen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adeel, Ahmed A; Saeed, Niaz Abdo; Aljasari, Adel; Almohager, Amar M; Galab, Mohamed H; AlMahdi, Amar; Mahammed, Mansor H; AlDarsi, Mohammed; Salaeah, Yahiya A; Atta, Hoda; Zamani, Ghasem; Warsame, Marian; Barrette, Amy; Mohammady, Hanan El; Nada, Rania A

    2015-11-14

    Artesunate + sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine (AS + SP) has been the first-line treatment and artemether-lumefantrine (AL) the second-line treatment for uncomplicated falciparum malaria in Yemen since 2005. This paper reports the results of studies conducted to monitor therapeutic efficacy of these two drugs in sentinel sites in Yemen. Eight therapeutic efficacy studies were conducted in six sentinel sites during the period 2009-2013 in Yemen. Five studies were for the evaluation of AS + SP (total of 465 patients) and three studies (total of 268 patients) for the evaluation of AL. The studies were done according to standard WHO protocol 2009 with 28-day follow-up. In the evaluation of AS + SP, the PCR-corrected cure rate was 98 % (95 % CI 92.2-99.5 %) in one site and 100 % in all of the other four sites. In the sites where AL was evaluated, the PCR-corrected cure rate was 100 % in all the sites. All patients were negative for asexual parasitaemia on day 3 in both the AS + SP and the AL groups. There was a higher rate of clearance of gametocytaemia in the AL-treated group when compared with the AS + SP groups from day 7 onwards. AS + SP remains the effective drug for uncomplicated falciparum malaria in Yemen. AL is also highly effective and can be an appropriate alternative to AS + SP for the treatment of falciparum malaria. AL demonstrated a higher efficacy in clearing microscopic gametocytaemia than AS + SP. Trial registration number ACTRN12610000696099.

  1. CONTRIBUTIONS OF SEXUAL AND ASEXUAL REPRODUCTION TO POPULATION STRUCTURE IN THE CLONAL SOFT CORAL, ALCYONIUM RUDYI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McFadden, Catherine S

    1997-02-01

    Numerous studies of population structure in sessile clonal marine invertebrates have demonstrated low genotypic diversity and nonequilibrium genotype frequencies within local populations that are monopolized by relatively few, highly replicated genets. All of the species studied to date produce planktonic sexual propagules capable of dispersing long distances; despite local genotypic disequilibria, populations are often panmictic over large geographic areas. The population structure paradigm these species represent may not be typical of the majority of clonal invertebrate groups, however, which are believed to produce highly philopatric sexual propagules. I used allozyme variation to examine the population structure of the temperate soft coral, Alcyonium rudyi, a typical clonal species whose sexually produced larvae and asexually produced ramets both have very low dispersal capabilities. Like other clonal plants and invertebrates, the local population dynamics of A. rudyi are dominated by asexual reproduction, and recruitment of new sexually produced genets occurs infrequently. As expected from its philopatric larval stage, estimates of genetic differentiation among populations of A. rudyi were highly significant at all spatial scales examined (mean θ = 0.300 among 20 populations spanning a 1100-km range), suggesting that genetic exchange seldom occurs among populations separated by as little as a few hundred meters. Mapping of multilocus allozyme genotypes within a dense aggregation of A. rudyi ramets confirmed that dispersal of asexual propagules is also very limited: members of the same genet usually remain within invertebrates, populations of A. rudyi do not appear to be dominated by a few widespread genets: estimates of genotypic diversity (G o ) within 20 geographically distinct populations did not differ from expectations for outcrossing, sexual populations. Despite theoretical suggestions that philopatric dispersal combined with typically small effective

  2. Protein Kinase A subunits of the ascomycete pathogen Mycosphaerella graminicola regulate asexual fructification, filamentation, melanization and osmosensing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mehrabi, R.; Kema, G.H.J.

    2006-01-01

    As in many fungi, asexual reproduction of Mycosphaerella graminicola in planta is a complex process that requires proper differentiation of the infectious hyphae in the substomatal cavities of foliar tissue before pycnidia with conidia can be formed. In this study, we have investigated the role of

  3. Asexual propagation in the coral reef macroalga Halimeda (Chlorophyta, Bryopsidales) : production, dispersal and attachment of small fragments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Walters, LJ; Coyer, JA; Hunter, CL; Beach, KS; Vroom, PS

    2002-01-01

    Siphonous, green macroalgae of the genus Halimeda are ubiquitous and ecologically important in tropical and subtropical marine environments. It has been hypothesized that the abundance of Halimeda on coral reefs is in part due to the ability of this genus to propagate asexually via vegetative

  4. Discourses Governing Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, and Asexual Teachers' Disclosure of Sexual Orientation and Gender History

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bower-Phipps, Laura

    2017-01-01

    Significant progress has been made in equal rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, and asexual (LGBTQIA) individuals, yet schools remain institutions where sexual and gender diversity are marginalized and/or silenced. Queer theory, a non-linear theory that disrupts dominant beliefs about gender and sexuality and what…

  5. Population genetics of GYPB and association study between GYPB*S/s polymorphism and susceptibility to P. falciparum infection in the Brazilian Amazon.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eduardo Tarazona-Santos

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Merozoites of Plasmodium falciparum invade through several pathways using different RBC receptors. Field isolates appear to use a greater variability of these receptors than laboratory isolates. Brazilian field isolates were shown to mostly utilize glycophorin A-independent invasion pathways via glycophorin B (GPB and/or other receptors. The Brazilian population exhibits extensive polymorphism in blood group antigens, however, no studies have been done to relate the prevalence of the antigens that function as receptors for P. falciparum and the ability of the parasite to invade. Our study aimed to establish whether variation in the GYPB*S/s alleles influences susceptibility to infection with P. falciparum in the admixed population of Brazil.Two groups of Brazilian Amazonians from Porto Velho were studied: P. falciparum infected individuals (cases; and uninfected individuals who were born and/or have lived in the same endemic region for over ten years, were exposed to infection but have not had malaria over the study period (controls. The GPB Ss phenotype and GYPB*S/s alleles were determined by standard methods. Sixty two Ancestry Informative Markers were genotyped on each individual to estimate admixture and control its potential effect on the association between frequency of GYPB*S and malaria infection.GYPB*S is associated with host susceptibility to infection with P. falciparum; GYPB*S/GYPB*S and GYPB*S/GYPB*s were significantly more prevalent in the in the P. falciparum infected individuals than in the controls (69.87% vs. 49.75%; P<0.02. Moreover, population genetics tests applied on the GYPB exon sequencing data suggest that natural selection shaped the observed pattern of nucleotide diversity.Epidemiological and evolutionary approaches suggest an important role for the GPB receptor in RBC invasion by P. falciparum in Brazilian Amazons. Moreover, an increased susceptibility to infection by this parasite is associated with the GPB S

  6. Various pfcrt and pfmdr1 Genotypes of Plasmodium falciparum Cocirculate with P. malariae, P. ovale spp., and P. vivax in Northern Angola

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fançony, Cláudia; Gamboa, Dina; Sebastião, Yuri; Hallett, Rachel; Sutherland, Colin; Sousa-Figueiredo, José Carlos

    2012-01-01

    Artemisinin-based combination therapy for malaria has become widely available across Africa. Populations of Plasmodium falciparum that were previously dominated by chloroquine (CQ)-resistant genotypes are now under different drug selection pressures. P. malariae, P. ovale curtisi, and P. ovale wallikeri are sympatric with P. falciparum across the continent and are frequently present as coinfections. The prevalence of human Plasmodium species was determined by PCR using DNA from blood spots collected during a cross-sectional survey in northern Angola. P. falciparum was genotyped at resistance-associated loci in pfcrt and pfmdr1 by real-time PCR or by direct sequencing of amplicons. Of the 3,316 samples collected, 541 (16.3%) contained Plasmodium species infections; 477 (88.2%) of these were P. falciparum alone, 6.5% were P. falciparum and P. malariae together, and 1.1% were P. vivax alone. The majority of the remainder (3.7%) harbored P. ovale curtisi or P. ovale wallikeri alone or in combination with other species. Of 430 P. falciparum isolates genotyped for pfcrt, 61.6% carried the wild-type allele CVMNK at codons 72 to 76, either alone or in combination with the resistant allele CVIET. No other pfcrt allele was found. Wild-type alleles dominated at codons 86, 184, 1034, 1042, and 1246 of the pfmdr1 locus among the sequenced isolates. In contrast to previous studies, P. falciparum in the study area comprises an approximately equal mix of genotypes associated with CQ sensitivity and with CQ resistance, suggesting either lower drug pressure due to poor access to treatment in rural areas or a rapid impact of the policy change away from the use of standard monotherapies. PMID:22850519

  7. Generation of an antibody that recognizes Plasmodium chabaudi cysteine protease (chabaupain-1) in both sexual and asexual parasite life cycle and evaluation of chabaupain-1 vaccine potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armada, Ana; Gazarini, Marcos L; Gonçalves, Lídia M; Antunes, Sandra; Custódio, Ana; Rodrigues, Armanda; Almeida, António J; Silveira, Henrique; Rosário, Virgílio do; Santos-Gomes, Gabriela; Domingos, Ana

    2013-09-01

    Malaria cysteine proteases have been shown to be immunogenic and are being exploited as serodiagnostic markers, drug and vaccine targets. Several Plasmodium spp. cysteine proteases have been described and the best characterized of these are the falcipains, a family of papain-family enzymes. Falcipain-2 and falcipain-3 act in concert with other proteases to hydrolyze host erythrocyte hemoglobin in the parasite food vacuole. Falcipain-1 has less similarity to the other falcipains and its physiological role in parasite asexual blood stage still remains uncertain. Immunolocalization studies using an antibody developed against the Plasmodium chabaudi recombinant chabaupain-1, the falcipain-1 ortholog, were performed confirming its cellular localization in both erythrocyte and mosquito ookinete stage. Immunostaining of chabaupain-1 preferentially in apical portion of parasite ookinete suggests that this protease may be related with parasite egression from mosquito midgut. Immune responses to chabaupain-1 were evaluated using two different adjuvants, chitosan nanoparticles and hydroxide aluminum. Mice immunized with the recombinant protein alone or in association with nanoparticles were challenged with P. chabaudi showing that immunization with the recombinant protein confers partial protection to blood stage infection in BALB/c animal model. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Characterization of the autophagy marker protein Atg8 reveals atypical features of autophagy in Plasmodium falciparum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rahul Navale

    Full Text Available Conventional autophagy is a lysosome-dependent degradation process that has crucial homeostatic and regulatory functions in eukaryotic organisms. As malaria parasites must dispose a number of self and host cellular contents, we investigated if autophagy in malaria parasites is similar to the conventional autophagy. Genome wide analysis revealed a partial autophagy repertoire in Plasmodium, as homologs for only 15 of the 33 yeast autophagy proteins could be identified, including the autophagy marker Atg8. To gain insights into autophagy in malaria parasites, we investigated Plasmodium falciparum Atg8 (PfAtg8 employing techniques and conditions that are routinely used to study autophagy. Atg8 was similarly expressed and showed punctate localization throughout the parasite in both asexual and sexual stages; it was exclusively found in the pellet fraction as an integral membrane protein, which is in contrast to the yeast or mammalian Atg8 that is distributed among cytosolic and membrane fractions, and suggests for a constitutive autophagy. Starvation, the best known autophagy inducer, decreased PfAtg8 level by almost 3-fold compared to the normally growing parasites. Neither the Atg8-associated puncta nor the Atg8 expression level was significantly altered by treatment of parasites with routinely used autophagy inhibitors (cysteine (E64 and aspartic (pepstatin protease inhibitors, the kinase inhibitor 3-methyladenine, and the lysosomotropic agent chloroquine, indicating an atypical feature of autophagy. Furthermore, prolonged inhibition of the major food vacuole protease activity by E64 and pepstatin did not cause accumulation of the Atg8-associated puncta in the food vacuole, suggesting that autophagy is primarily not meant for degradative function in malaria parasites. Atg8 showed partial colocalization with the apicoplast; doxycycline treatment, which disrupts apicoplast, did not affect Atg8 localization, suggesting a role, but not exclusive, in

  9. Mating type gene analysis in apparently asexual Cercospora species is suggestive of cryptic sex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groenewald, Marizeth; Groenewald, Johannes Z; Harrington, Thomas C; Abeln, Edwin C A; Crous, Pedro W

    2006-12-01

    The genus Cercospora consists of numerous important, apparently asexual plant pathogens. We designed degenerate primers from homologous sequences in related species to amplify part of the C. apii, C. apiicola, C. beticola, C. zeae-maydis and C. zeina mating type genes. Chromosome walking was used to determine the full length mating type genes of these species. Primers were developed to amplify and sequence homologous portions of the mating type genes of additional species. Phylogenetic analyses of these sequences revealed little variation among members of the C. apii complex, whereas C. zeae-maydis and C. zeina were found to be dissimilar. The presence of both mating types in approximately even proportions in C. beticola, C. zeae-maydis and C. zeina populations, in contrast to single mating types in C. apii (MAT1) and C. apiicola (MAT2), suggests that a sexual cycle may be active in some of these species.

  10. Transmission of a heterologous clade C Symbiodinium in a model anemone infection system via asexual reproduction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wan-Nan U. Chen

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Anemones of genus Exaiptasia are used as model organisms for the study of cnidarian-dinoflagellate (genus Symbiodinium endosymbiosis. However, while most reef-building corals harbor Symbiodinium of clade C, Exaiptasia spp. anemones mainly harbor clade B Symbiodinium (ITS2 type B1 populations. In this study, we reveal for the first time that bleached Exaiptasia pallida anemones can establish a symbiotic relationship with a clade C Symbiodinium (ITS2 type C1. We further found that anemones can transmit the exogenously supplied clade C Symbiodinium cells to their offspring by asexual reproduction (pedal laceration. In order to corroborate the establishment of stable symbiosis, we used microscopic techniques and genetic analyses to examine several generations of anemones, and the results of these endeavors confirmed the sustainability of the system. These findings provide a framework for understanding the differences in infection dynamics between homologous and heterologous dinoflagellate types using a model anemone infection system.

  11. Morphology offers no clues to asexual vs. sexual origin of small Acropora cervicornis (Scleractinia: Acroporidae colonies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. E Williams

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Sexual recruitment of the staghorn coral, Acropora cervicornis, is accepted to be very rare. Instead, these branching corals proliferate through fragmentation leading to dense mono-specific and possibly monoclonal stands. For acroporid corals, which have suffered drastic population declines, dominance of asexual reproduction results in low levels of genotypic diversity and limited ability to re-colonize extirpated areas. Small colonies with a single encrusting, symmetrical base, and few incipient branches are frequently presumed to be the result of a settled planula (i.e. sexual reproduction. Here, we show that colonies fitting this description (i.e., presumed sexual recruits can result from asexual fragmentation. Acropora cervicornis colonies (~20 cm diameter were tagged and observed over eighteen months. In several cases, colony offshoots fused with the adjacent substrate forming secondary disc-like attachment points. Following natural fragmentation, these discs of tissue became separated from the original colony, and were observed to heal and give rise to smaller colonies with striking similarity to the expected morphology of a sexual recruit. Thus, presuming a colony is a sexual recruit based on appearance is unreliable and may lead to inflated expectations of genetic diversity among populations. The accurate assessment of recruitment and genetic diversity is crucial to predicting the recovery potential of these imperiled and ecologically irreplaceable reef corals. Rev. Biol. Trop. 54 (Suppl. 3: 145-151. Epub 2007 Jan. 15.Se ha aceptado que el reclutamiento sexual del coral asta de venado, Acropora cervicornis, es muy raro. Por el contrario, estos corales ramificados proliferan a través de fragmentación, generando densas bases monoespecíficas e incluso monoclonales. Para corales acropóridos, los cuales han sufrido disminuciones de población drásticas, la dominancia de reproducción asexual resulta en bajos niveles de diversidad genot

  12. Fixation probability of a nonmutator in a large population of asexual mutators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, Kavita; James, Ananthu

    2017-11-21

    In an adapted population of mutators in which most mutations are deleterious, a nonmutator that lowers the mutation rate is under indirect selection and can sweep to fixation. Using a multitype branching process, we calculate the fixation probability of a rare nonmutator in a large population of asexual mutators. We show that when beneficial mutations are absent, the fixation probability is a nonmonotonic function of the mutation rate of the mutator: it first increases sublinearly and then decreases exponentially. We also find that beneficial mutations can enhance the fixation probability of a nonmutator. Our analysis is relevant to an understanding of recent experiments in which a reduction in the mutation rates has been observed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Soluble haemoglobin is a marker of recent Plasmodium falciparum infections

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jakobsen, P H; Bygbjerg, I C; Theander, T G

    1997-01-01

    Monoclonal antibodies (Mab) were raised against haemoglobin (Hb) associated with Plasmodium falciparum protein and used to develop an ELISA, measuring circulating levels of released Hb. This assay was evaluated in different malaria patients in parallel with ELISA assays for C-reactive protein (CR...... after treatment. Soluble Hb levels were associated with malariometric parameters in a similar fashion to haptoglobin. The new Mab-based assay for measuring soluble Hb in the peripheral blood of malaria patients may be useful for future epidemiological studies of malaria....

  14. 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

    falciparum positive dried blood spots on filter paper and rapid diagnostic test strips collected by finger pricks from patients attending health facilities in six regions of Tanzania mainland between June 2010 and August 2011 were used. Polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR...... of common Pfmdr1 haplotypes reflecting strict implementation of ALu policy in Tanzania with overall prevalence of NFD haplotype ranging from 17 to 26% among other haplotypes. With continuation of ALu as first-line drug this haplotype is expected to keep rising, thus there is need for continued...

  15. Malarone treatment failure and in vitro confirmation of resistance of Plasmodium falciparum isolate from Lagos, Nigeria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fivelman, Quinton L; Butcher, Geoffrey A; Adagu, Ipemida S; Warhurst, David C; Pasvol, Geoffrey

    2002-02-08

    We report the first in vitro and genetic confirmation of Malarone (GlaxoSmithKline; atovaquone and proguanil hydrochloride) resistance in Plasmodium falciparum acquired in Africa. On presenting with malaria two weeks after returning from a 4-week visit to Lagos, Nigeria without prophylaxis, a male patient was given a standard 3-day treatment course of Malarone. Twenty-eight days later the parasitaemia recrudesced. Parasites were cultured from the blood and the isolate (NGATV01) was shown to be resistant to atovaquone and the antifolate pyrimethamine. The cytochrome b gene of isolate NGATV01 showed a single mutation, Tyr268Asn which has not been seen previously.

  16. Quinine-resistant severe falciparum malaria effectively treated with atovaquone and proguanil hydrochloride combination therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uchiyama, Hitoji; Okamoto, Akio; Sato, Katsuaki; Yamada, Tomohiro; Murakami, Sadatsugu; Yoneda, Seiichi; Kajita, Yoshihiro; Tegoshi, Tatsuya; Arizono, Naoki

    2004-07-01

    A 22-year-old Japanese man noticed pyrexia and diarrhea after travel to Guinea. Notable physical findings included hepatosplenomegaly. Treatment with oral quinine and minocycline was started after definitive diagnosis of falciparum malaria by blood smear. Initially, parasitemia and body temperature decreased but by the third night of therapy his temperature increased to 40 degrees C with a slight increase of parasite count. When quinine treatment was changed to atovaquone/proguanil, his temperature dropped immediately and complete plasmodial elimination was confirmed on microscopic examination. Subsequent recrudescence of the disease was not observed. It was concluded that the antimalarial treatment with atovaquone/proguanil might become invaluable in Japan.

  17. Investigation of a potential mechanism for the inhibition of SmTGR by Auranofin and its implications for Plasmodium falciparum inhibition

    KAUST Repository

    Caroli, Antonia

    2012-01-01

    Schistosoma mansoni and Plasmodium falciparum are pathogen parasites that spend part of their lives in the blood stream of the human host and are therefore heavily exposed to fluxes of toxic reactive oxygen species (ROS). SmTGR, an essential enzyme of the S. mansoni ROS detoxification machinery, is known to be inhibited by Auranofin although the inhibition mechanism has not been completely clarified. Auranofin also kills P. falciparum, even if its molecular targets are unknown. Here, we used computational and docking techniques to investigate the molecular mechanism of interaction between SmTGR and Auranofin. Furthermore, we took advantage of the homology relationship and of docking studies to assess if PfTR, the SmTGR malaria parasite homologue, can be a putative target for Auranofin. Our findings support a recently hypothesized molecular mechanism of inhibition for SmTGR and suggest that PfTR is indeed a possible and attractive drug target in P. falciparum. © 2011 Elsevier Inc.

  18. 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

    -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...... acid (EPA, 20:5n-3) of 3.5g/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...

  19. Proteomics methods applied to malaria: Plasmodium falciparum

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cuesta Astroz, Yesid; Segura Latorre, Cesar

    2012-01-01

    Malaria is a parasitic disease that has a high impact on public health in developing countries. The sequencing of the plasmodium falciparum genome and the development of proteomics have enabled a breakthrough in understanding the biology of the parasite. Proteomics have allowed to characterize qualitatively and quantitatively the parasite s expression of proteins and has provided information on protein expression under conditions of stress induced by antimalarial. Given the complexity of their life cycle, this takes place in the vertebrate host and mosquito vector. It has proven difficult to characterize the protein expression during each stage throughout the infection process in order to determine the proteome that mediates several metabolic, physiological and energetic processes. Two dimensional electrophoresis, liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry have been useful to assess the effects of antimalarial on parasite protein expression and to characterize the proteomic profile of different p. falciparum stages and organelles. The purpose of this review is to present state of the art tools and advances in proteomics applied to the study of malaria, and to present different experimental strategies used to study the parasite's proteome in order to show the advantages and disadvantages of each one.

  20. Chromosome End Repair and Genome Stability in Plasmodium falciparum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susannah F. Calhoun

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available The human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum replicates within circulating red blood cells, where it is subjected to conditions that frequently cause DNA damage. The repair of DNA double-stranded breaks (DSBs is thought to rely almost exclusively on homologous recombination (HR, due to a lack of efficient nonhomologous end joining. However, given that the parasite is haploid during this stage of its life cycle, the mechanisms involved in maintaining genome stability are poorly understood. Of particular interest are the subtelomeric regions of the chromosomes, which contain the majority of the multicopy variant antigen-encoding genes responsible for virulence and disease severity. Here, we show that parasites utilize a competitive balance between de novo telomere addition, also called “telomere healing,” and HR to stabilize chromosome ends. Products of both repair pathways were observed in response to DSBs that occurred spontaneously during routine in vitro culture or resulted from experimentally induced DSBs, demonstrating that both pathways are active in repairing DSBs within subtelomeric regions and that the pathway utilized was determined by the DNA sequences immediately surrounding the break. In combination, these two repair pathways enable parasites to efficiently maintain chromosome stability while also contributing to the generation of genetic diversity.

  1. The dynamics of naturally acquired immunity to Plasmodium falciparum infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mykola Pinkevych

    Full Text Available Severe malaria occurs predominantly in young children and immunity to clinical disease is associated with cumulative exposure in holoendemic settings. The relative contribution of immunity against various stages of the parasite life cycle that results in controlling infection and limiting disease is not well understood. Here we analyse the dynamics of Plasmodium falciparum malaria infection after treatment in a cohort of 197 healthy study participants of different ages in order to model naturally acquired immunity. We find that both delayed time-to-infection and reductions in asymptomatic parasitaemias in older age groups can be explained by immunity that reduces the growth of blood stage as opposed to liver stage parasites. We found that this mechanism would require at least two components - a rapidly acting strain-specific component, as well as a slowly acquired cross-reactive or general immunity to all strains. Analysis and modelling of malaria infection dynamics and naturally acquired immunity with age provides important insights into what mechanisms of immune control may be harnessed by malaria vaccine strategists.

  2. Adaptation of Plasmodium falciparum to its transmission environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rono, Martin K; Nyonda, Mary A; Simam, Joan J; Ngoi, Joyce M; Mok, Sachel; Kortok, Moses M; Abdullah, Abdullah S; Elfaki, Mohammed M; Waitumbi, John N; El-Hassan, Ibrahim M; Marsh, Kevin; Bozdech, Zbynek; Mackinnon, Margaret J

    2018-02-01

    Success in eliminating malaria will depend on whether parasite evolution outpaces control efforts. Here, we show that Plasmodium falciparum parasites (the deadliest of the species causing human malaria) found in low-transmission-intensity areas have evolved to invest more in transmission to new hosts (reproduction) and less in within-host replication (growth) than parasites found in high-transmission areas. At the cellular level, this adaptation manifests as increased production of reproductive forms (gametocytes) early in the infection at the expense of processes associated with multiplication inside red blood cells, especially membrane transport and protein trafficking. At the molecular level, this manifests as changes in the expression levels of genes encoding epigenetic and translational machinery. Specifically, expression levels of the gene encoding AP2-G-the transcription factor that initiates reproduction-increase as transmission intensity decreases. This is accompanied by downregulation and upregulation of genes encoding HDAC1 and HDA1-two histone deacetylases that epigenetically regulate the parasite's replicative and reproductive life-stage programmes, respectively. Parasites in reproductive mode show increased reliance on the prokaryotic translation machinery found inside the plastid-derived organelles. Thus, our dissection of the parasite's adaptive regulatory architecture has identified new potential molecular targets for malaria control.

  3. The shape of the iceberg: quantification of submicroscopic Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax parasitaemia and gametocytaemia in five low endemic settings in Ethiopia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tadesse, Fitsum G; van den Hoogen, Lotus; Lanke, Kjerstin; Schildkraut, Jodie; Tetteh, Kevin; Aseffa, Abraham; Mamo, Hassen; Sauerwein, Robert; Felger, Ingrid; Drakeley, Chris; Gadissa, Endalamaw; Bousema, Teun

    2017-03-03

    The widespread presence of low-density asymptomatic infections with concurrent gametocytes may be a stumbling block for malaria elimination. This study investigated the asymptomatic reservoir of Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax infections in schoolchildren from five settings in northwest Ethiopia. Two cross-sectional surveys were conducted in June and November 2015, enrolling 551 students from five schools and 294 students from three schools, respectively. Finger prick whole blood and plasma samples were collected. The prevalence and density of P. falciparum and P. vivax parasitaemia and gametocytaemia were determined by 18S rRNA quantitative PCR (qPCR) and pfs25 and pvs25 reverse transcriptase qPCR. Antibodies against blood stage antigens apical membrane antigen-1 (AMA-1) and merozoite surface protein-1 (MSP-1 19 ) were measured for both species. Whilst only 6 infections were detected by microscopy in 881 slides (0.7%), 107 of 845 blood samples (12.7%) were parasite positive by (DNA-based) qPCR. qPCR parasite prevalence between sites and surveys ranged from 3.8 to 19.0% for P. falciparum and 0.0 to 9.0% for P. vivax. The median density of P. falciparum infections (n = 85) was 24.4 parasites/µL (IQR 18.0-34.0) and the median density of P. vivax infections (n = 28) was 16.4 parasites/µL (IQR 8.8-55.1). Gametocyte densities by (mRNA-based) qRT-PCR were strongly associated with total parasite densities for both P. falciparum (correlation coefficient = 0.83, p = 0.010) and P. vivax (correlation coefficient = 0.58, p = 0.010). Antibody titers against P. falciparum AMA-1 and MSP-1 19 were higher in individuals who were P. falciparum parasite positive in both surveys (p < 0.001 for both comparisons). This study adds to the available evidence on the wide-scale presence of submicroscopic parasitaemia by quantifying submicroscopic parasite densities and concurrent gametocyte densities. There was considerable heterogeneity in the occurrence of P

  4. Genetic Diversity of Plasmodium falciparum Populations in Malaria Declining Areas of Sabah, East Malaysia.

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    Mohd Ridzuan Mohd Abd Razak

    Full Text Available Malaysia has a national goal to eliminate malaria by 2020. Understanding the genetic diversity of malaria parasites in residual transmission foci can provide invaluable information which may inform the intervention strategies used to reach elimination targets. This study was conducted to determine the genetic diversity level of P. falciparum isolates in malaria residual foci areas of Sabah. Malaria active case detection was conducted in Kalabakan and Kota Marudu. All individuals in the study sites were screened for malaria infection by rapid diagnostic test. Blood from P. falciparum-infected individuals were collected on filter paper prior to DNA extraction. Genotyping was performed using merozoite surface protein-1 (MSP-1, merozoite surface protein-2 (MSP-2, glutamate rich protein (GLURP and 10 neutral microsatellite loci markers. The size of alleles, multiplicity of infection (MOI, mean number of alleles (Na, expected heterozygosity (He, linkage disequilibrium (LD and genetic differentiation (FST were determined. In Kalabakan, the MSP-1 and MSP-2 alleles were predominantly K1 and FC27 family types, respectively. The GLURP genotype VI (751-800 bp was predominant. The MOI for MSP-1 and MSP-2 were 1.65 and 1.20, respectively. The Na per microsatellite locus was 1.70. The He values for MSP-1, MSP-2, GLURP and neutral microsatellites were 0.17, 0.37, 0.70 and 0.33, respectively. In Kota Marudu, the MSP-1 and MSP-2 alleles were predominantly MAD20 and 3D7 family types, respectively. The GLURP genotype IV (651-700 bp was predominant. The MOI for both MSP-1 and MSP-2 was 1.05. The Na per microsatellite locus was 3.60. The He values for MSP-1, MSP-2, GLURP and neutral microsatellites were 0.24, 0.25, 0.69 and 0.30, respectively. A significant LD was observed in Kalabakan (0.495, p<0.01 and Kota Marudu P. falciparum populations (0.601, p<0.01. High genetic differentiation between Kalabakan and Kota Marudu P. falciparum populations was observed (FST = 0

  5. Sustained activation of Akt elicits mitochondrial dysfunction to block Plasmodium falciparum infection in the mosquito host.

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    Shirley Luckhart

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available The overexpression of activated, myristoylated Akt in the midgut of female transgenic Anopheles stephensi results in resistance to infection with the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum but also decreased lifespan. In the present study, the understanding of mitochondria-dependent midgut homeostasis has been expanded to explain this apparent paradox in an insect of major medical importance. Given that Akt signaling is essential for cell growth and survival, we hypothesized that sustained Akt activation in the mosquito midgut would alter the balance of critical pathways that control mitochondrial dynamics to enhance parasite killing at some cost to survivorship. Toxic reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (RNOS rise to high levels in the midgut after blood feeding, due to a combination of high NO production and a decline in FOXO-dependent antioxidants. Despite an apparent increase in mitochondrial biogenesis in young females (3 d, energy deficiencies were apparent as decreased oxidative phosphorylation and increased [AMP]/[ATP] ratios. In addition, mitochondrial mass was lower and accompanied by the presence of stalled autophagosomes in the posterior midgut, a critical site for blood digestion and stem cell-mediated epithelial maintenance and repair, and by functional degradation of the epithelial barrier. By 18 d, the age at which An. stephensi would transmit P. falciparum to human hosts, mitochondrial dysfunction coupled to Akt-mediated repression of autophagy/mitophagy was more evident and midgut epithelial structure was markedly compromised. Inhibition of RNOS by co-feeding of the nitric-oxide synthase inhibitor L-NAME at infection abrogated Akt-dependent killing of P. falciparum that begins within 18 h of infection in 3-5 d old mosquitoes. Hence, Akt-induced changes in mitochondrial dynamics perturb midgut homeostasis to enhance parasite resistance and decrease mosquito infective lifespan. Further, quality control of mitochondrial

  6. Activity of clinically relevant antimalarial drugs on Plasmodium falciparum mature gametocytes in an ATP bioluminescence "transmission blocking" assay.

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    Joël Lelièvre

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Current anti-malarial drugs have been selected on the basis of their activity against the symptom-causing asexual blood stage of the parasite. Which of these drugs also target gametocytes, in the sexual stage responsible for disease transmission, remains unknown. Blocking transmission is one of the main strategies in the eradication agenda and requires the identification of new molecules that are active against gametocytes. However, to date, the main limitation for measuring the effect of molecules against mature gametocytes on a large scale is the lack of a standardized and reliable method. Here we provide an efficient method to produce and purify mature gametocytes in vitro. Based on this new procedure, we developed a robust, affordable, and sensitive ATP bioluminescence-based assay. We then assessed the activity of 17 gold-standard anti-malarial drugs on Plasmodium late stage gametocytes. METHODS AND FINDINGS: Difficulties in producing large amounts of gametocytes have limited progress in the development of malaria transmission blocking assays. We improved the method established by Ifediba and Vanderberg to obtain viable, mature gametocytes en masse, whatever the strain used. We designed an assay to determine the activity of antimalarial drugs based on the intracellular ATP content of purified stage IV-V gametocytes after 48 h of drug exposure in 96/384-well microplates. Measurements of drug activity on asexual stages and cytotoxicity on HepG2 cells were also obtained to estimate the specificity of the active drugs. CONCLUSIONS: The work described here represents another significant step towards determination of the activity of new molecules on mature gametocytes of any strain with an automated assay suitable for medium/high-throughput screening. Considering that the biology of the forms involved in the sexual and asexual stages is very different, a screen of our 2 million-compound library may allow us to discover novel anti

  7. Defining childhood severe falciparum malaria for intervention studies.

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    Philip Bejon

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Clinical trials of interventions designed to prevent severe falciparum malaria in children require a clear endpoint. The internationally accepted definition of severe malaria is sensitive, and appropriate for clinical purposes. However, this definition includes individuals with severe nonmalarial disease and coincident parasitaemia, so may lack specificity in vaccine trials. Although there is no "gold standard" individual test for severe malaria, malaria-attributable fractions (MAFs can be estimated among groups of children using a logistic model, which we use to test the suitability of various case definitions as trial endpoints.A total of 4,583 blood samples were taken from well children in cross-sectional surveys and from 1,361 children admitted to a Kenyan District hospital with severe disease. Among children under 2 y old with severe disease and over 2,500 parasites per microliter of blood, the MAFs were above 85% in moderate- and low-transmission areas, but only 61% in a high-transmission area. HIV and malnutrition were not associated with reduced MAFs, but gastroenteritis with severe dehydration (defined by reduced skin turgor, lower respiratory tract infection (clinician's final diagnosis, meningitis (on cerebrospinal fluid [CSF] examination, and bacteraemia were associated with reduced MAFs. The overall MAF was 85% (95% confidence interval [CI] 83.8%-86.1% without excluding these conditions, 89% (95% CI 88.4%-90.2% after exclusions, and 95% (95% CI 94.0%-95.5% when a threshold of 2,500 parasites/mul was also applied. Applying a threshold and exclusion criteria reduced sensitivity to 80% (95% CI 77%-83%.The specificity of a case definition for severe malaria is improved by applying a parasite density threshold and by excluding children with meningitis, lower respiratory tract infection (clinician's diagnosis, bacteraemia, and gastroenteritis with severe dehydration, but not by excluding children with HIV or malnutrition.

  8. Simultaneous detection of Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium falciparum gametocytes in clinical isolates by multiplex-nested RT-PCR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuamsab, Napaporn; Putaporntip, Chaturong; Pattanawong, Urassaya; Jongwutiwes, Somchai

    2012-06-10

    Gametocyte carriage is essential for malaria transmission and endemicity of disease; thereby it is a target for malaria control strategies. Malaria-infected individuals may harbour gametocytes below the microscopic detection threshold that can be detected by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) targeting gametocyte-specific mRNA. To date, RT-PCR has mainly been applied to the diagnosis of Plasmodium falciparum gametocytes but very limited for that of Plasmodium vivax. A multiplex-nested RT-PCR targeting Pfs25 and Pvs25 mRNA specific to mature gametocytes of P. falciparum and P. vivax, respectively, was developed. The assay was evaluated using blood samples collected in rainy and dry seasons from febrile patients,in a malaria-endemic area in Thailand. Malaria diagnosis was performed by Giemsa-stained blood smears and 18S rRNA PCR. The multiplex-nested RT-PCR detected Pfs25 mRNA in 75 of 86 (87.2%) P. falciparum-infected individuals and Pvs25 mRNA in 82 of 90 (91.1%) P. vivax malaria patients diagnosed by 18S rRNA PCR. Gametocytes were detected in 38 (eight P. falciparum and 30 P. vivax) of 157 microscopy positive samples, implying that a large number of patients harbour sub-microscopic gametocytaemia. No seasonal differences in gametocyte carriage were observed for both malaria species diagnosed by multiplex-nested RT-PCR. With single-nested RT-PCR targeting Pfs25 or Pvs25 mRNA as standard, the multiplex-nested RT-PCR offered sensitivities of 97.4% and 98.9% and specificities of 100% and 98.8% for diagnosing mature gametocytes of P. falciparum and P. vivax, respectively. The minimum detection limit of the multiplex-nested PCR was 10 copies of templates. The multiplex-nested RT-PCR developed herein is useful for simultaneous assessment of both P. falciparum and P. vivax gametocyte carriage that is prevalent and generally sympatric in several malaria-endemic areas outside Africa.

  9. On Programmed Cell Death in Plasmodium falciparum: Status Quo

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    Dewaldt Engelbrecht

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Conflicting arguments and results exist regarding the occurrence and phenotype of programmed cell death (PCD in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Inconsistencies relate mainly to the number and type of PCD markers assessed and the different methodologies used in the studies. In this paper, we provide a comprehensive overview of the current state of knowledge and empirical evidence for PCD in the intraerythrocytic stages of P. falciparum. We consider possible reasons for discrepancies in the data and offer suggestions towards more standardised investigation methods in this field. Furthermore, we present genomic evidence for PCD machinery in P. falciparum. We discuss the potential adaptive or nonadaptive role of PCD in the parasite life cycle and its possible exploitation in the development of novel drug targets. Lastly, we pose pertinent unanswered questions concerning the PCD phenomenon in P. falciparum to provide future direction.

  10. On Programmed Cell Death in Plasmodium falciparum: Status Quo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engelbrecht, Dewaldt; Durand, Pierre Marcel; Coetzer, Thérèsa Louise

    2012-01-01

    Conflicting arguments and results exist regarding the occurrence and phenotype of programmed cell death (PCD) in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Inconsistencies relate mainly to the number and type of PCD markers assessed and the different methodologies used in the studies. In this paper, we provide a comprehensive overview of the current state of knowledge and empirical evidence for PCD in the intraerythrocytic stages of P. falciparum. We consider possible reasons for discrepancies in the data and offer suggestions towards more standardised investigation methods in this field. Furthermore, we present genomic evidence for PCD machinery in P. falciparum. We discuss the potential adaptive or nonadaptive role of PCD in the parasite life cycle and its possible exploitation in the development of novel drug targets. Lastly, we pose pertinent unanswered questions concerning the PCD phenomenon in P. falciparum to provide future direction. PMID:22287973

  11. 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...

  12. Impact of Plasmodium falciparum and hookworm infections on the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    abp

    2013-01-18

    Saharan Africa and they increase the prevalence of anaemia in pregnancy with resultant poor pregnancy outcomes. This study was carried out to assess the impact of Plasmodium falciparum and hookworm infections on.

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

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    RESEARCH ARTICLE. Fine-scale genetic characterization of Plasmodium falciparum .... Materials and methods. The DNA ... the order and location of genes (as per the PlasmoDB data resources, available at ... There is currently an. Figure 5.

  14. Sequence analysis of DBL2β domain of vargene of Indonesian Plasmodium falciparum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sulistyaningsih, E.; Romadhon, B. D.; Palupi, I.; Hidayah, F.; Dewi, R.; Prasetyo, A.

    2018-03-01

    Malaria is a major health problem in tropical countries including Indonesia. The most deadly agent is Plasmodium falciparum. In P. falciparum infection, PfEMP1 is supposed to play an important role in the pathogenesis of malaria. PfEMP1 is encoded by var gene family, it is a polymorphic protein where the extra-cellular portion contains of three distinct binding domains: Duffy binding-like (DBL), Cysteine-rich interdomain regions (CIDR) and C2. PfEMP1 varies in domain composition and binding specificity. The study explored the characteristic of Indonesian DBL2β-var genes and investigated its role to the malaria outcome. Twenty blood samples from clinically mild to severe malaria patients in Jember, East Java were collected for DNA extraction. Diagnosis was confirmed by Giemsa-stained thick blood smear. PCR was conducted using specific primer targeting on the full-length of DBL2ß and resulted approximately single band of 1,7 kb in a sample. This band was observed only from severe malaria sample. Sequence analysis directly from PCR product showed 74-99% similarities with previous sequences in Gene Bank. In conclusion, the DBL2β domain of vargene of Indonesian isolates was 1603 nucleotides in length and there was a possible association of the existence of DBL2β domain with the severity of malaria outcome.

  15. Spatial and temporal distribution of falciparum malaria in China

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    Lin Hualiang

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Falciparum malaria is the most deadly among the four main types of human malaria. Although great success has been achieved since the launch of the National Malaria Control Programme in 1955, malaria remains a serious public health problem in China. This paper aimed to analyse the geographic distribution, demographic patterns and time trends of falciparum malaria in China. Methods The annual numbers of falciparum malaria cases during 1992–2003 and the individual case reports of each clinical falciparum malaria during 2004–2005 were extracted from communicable disease information systems in China Center for Diseases Control and Prevention. The annual number of cases and the annual incidence were mapped by matching them to corresponding province- and county-level administrative units in a geographic information system. The distribution of falciparum malaria by age, gender and origin of infection was analysed. Time-series analysis was conducted to investigate the relationship between the falciparum malaria in the endemic provinces and the imported falciparum malaria in non-endemic provinces. Results Falciparum malaria was endemic in two provinces of China during 2004–05. Imported malaria was reported in 26 non-endemic provinces. Annual incidence of falciparum malaria was mapped at county level in the two endemic provinces of China: Yunnan and Hainan. The sex ratio (male vs. female for the number of cases in Yunnan was 1.6 in the children of 0–15 years and it reached 5.7 in the adults over 15 years of age. The number of malaria cases in Yunnan was positively correlated with the imported malaria of concurrent months in the non-endemic provinces. Conclusion The endemic area of falciparum malaria in China has remained restricted to two provinces, Yunnan and Hainan. Stable transmission occurs in the bordering region of Yunnan and the hilly-forested south of Hainan. The age and gender distribution in the endemic area is

  16. Assessment of the molecular marker of Plasmodium falciparum chloroquine resistance (Pfcrt) in Senegal after several years of chloroquine withdrawal

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ndiaye, Magatte; Faye, Babacar; Tine, Roger

    2012-01-01

    Abstract. As a result of widespread antimalarial drug resistance, all African countries with endemic malaria have, in recent years, changed their malaria treatment policy. In Senegal, the health authorities changed from chloroquine (CQ) to a combination of sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP) plus...... at the molecular level in selected sites in Senegal, because the scientific community is interested in using CQ again. Finger prick blood samples were collected from Plasmodium falciparum-positive children below the age of 10 years (N = 474) during cross-sectional surveys conducted in two study sites in Senegal...... with different malaria transmission levels. One site is in central Senegal, and the other site is in the southern part of the country. All samples were analyzed for single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the P. falciparum CQ resistance transporter gene (Pfcrt; codons 72-76) using polymerase chain reaction...

  17. Hierarchical, domain type-specific acquisition of antibodies to Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 in Tanzanian children

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cham, Gerald K K; Turner, Louise; Kurtis, Jonathan D

    2010-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) is a variant antigen expressed on the surface of malaria-infected erythrocytes. PfEMP1 attaches to the vascular lining and allows infected erythrocytes to avoid filtration through the spleen. Each parasite genome encodes about 60 diffe...... and play a major role in limiting parasite multiplication in the blood.......Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) is a variant antigen expressed on the surface of malaria-infected erythrocytes. PfEMP1 attaches to the vascular lining and allows infected erythrocytes to avoid filtration through the spleen. Each parasite genome encodes about 60...... different PfEMP1 variants, each PfEMP1 comprises several domains in its extracellular region, and the PfEMP1 repertoire in different parasites contains domain types that are serologically cross-reactive. In this longitudinal study, we followed 672 children living in an area of high malaria transmission...

  18. Plasmodium falciparum uses vitamin E to avoid oxidative stress

    OpenAIRE

    Sussmann, Rodrigo A. C.; Fotoran, Wesley L.; Kimura, Emilia A.; Katzin, Alejandro M.

    2017-01-01

    Background Plasmodium falciparum is sensitive to oxidative stress in vitro and in vivo, and many drugs such as artemisinin, chloroquine and cercosporin interfere in the parasite’s redox system. To minimize the damage caused by reactive radicals, antioxidant enzymes and their substrates found in parasites and in erythrocytes must be functionally active. It was shown that P. falciparum synthesizes vitamin E and that usnic acid acts as an inhibitor of its biosynthesis. Vitamin E is a potent anti...

  19. Co-endemicity of Plasmodium falciparum and Intestinal Helminths Infection in School Age Children in Rural Communities of Kwara State Nigeria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adedoja, Ayodele; Tijani, Bukola Deborah; Akanbi, Ajibola A.; Ojurongbe, Taiwo A.; Adeyeba, Oluwaseyi A.; Ojurongbe, Olusola

    2015-01-01

    Background Malaria and intestinal helminths co-infection are major public health problems particularly among school age children in Nigeria. However the magnitude and possible interactions of these infections remain poorly understood. This study determined the prevalence, impact and possible interaction of Plasmodium falciparum and intestinal helminths co-infection among school children in rural communities of Kwara State, Nigeria. Methods Blood, urine and stool samples were collected from 1017 primary school pupils of ages 4–15 years. Stool samples were processed using both Kato-Katz and formol-ether concentration techniques and microscopically examined for intestinal helminths infection. Urine samples were analyzed using sedimentation method for Schistosoma haematobium. Plasmodium falciparum was confirmed by microscopy using thick and thin blood films methods and packed cell volume (PCV) was determined using hematocrit reader. Univariate analysis and chi-square statistical tests were used to analyze the data. Results Overall, 61.2% of all school children had at least an infection of either P. falciparum, S. haematobium, or intestinal helminth. S. haematobium accounted for the largest proportion (44.4%) of a single infection followed by P. falciparum (20.6%). The prevalence of malaria and helminth co-infection in the study was 14.4%. Four species of intestinal helminths were recovered from the stool samples and these were hookworm (22.5%), Hymenolepis species (9.8%), Schistosoma mansoni (2.9%) and Enterobius vermicularis (0.6%). The mean densities of P. falciparum in children co-infected with S. haematobium and hookworm were higher compared to those infected with P. falciparum only though not statistically significant (p = 0.062). The age distribution of both S. haematobium (p = 0.049) and hookworm (p = 0.034) infected children were statistically significant with the older age group (10–15 years) recording the highest prevalence of 47.2% and 25% respectively

  20. “I am no male or female or any other, I have no sex”: a case report on asexuality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Niranjan Hebbar YR

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available A rather less investigated field of sexual orientation, “asexuality” is spread out within the dimensions on lack of sexual attraction or interest on sexual behaviour, and on self-identification issues, or in combination of these. As sex is considered to be one of the basic instincts of human beings which has been followed since centuries, growing reports of asexuality is a concern against the evolution theory. There is lack of studies to assess the exact prevalence of asexuality in Indian setup. Here we are presenting a case of a 20-year-old male, who presented with self-identity issues with no preference for any particular sexual identity.

  1. speciation through asexuality in fish: postzygotic reproductive isolation may be completed in spite of fertility of hybrids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karel Janko

    2015-12-01

    Altogether, it appears that initiation of hybrid asexuality and the completion of speciation process through formation of postRIMs are interconnected phenomena. Both processes are linked to the genetic divergence of hybridizing taxa: initially, hybridization between little diverged species leads to recombinant and fertile hybrids allowing intensive gene flow. As the hybridizing taxa continue to diverge, clonally reproducing hybrid females and sterile males become dominant and the gene flow ceases. The speciation may therefore be completed through asexuality of hybrids The work was supported by grant no. 13-12580S provided by the Czech Science Foundation (www.gacr.cz. Further support was provided by the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic (www.cas.cz by the grant no. RVO 67985904

  2. Five-year tracking of Plasmodium falciparum allele frequencies in a holoendemic area with indistinct seasonal transitions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akala HM

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Hoseah M Akala, Angela O Achieng, Fredrick L Eyase, Dennis W Juma, Luiser Ingasia, Agnes C Cheruiyot, Charles Okello, Duke Omariba, Eunice A Owiti, Catherine Muriuki, Redemptah Yeda, Ben Andagalu, Jacob D Johnson, Edwin Kamau Global Emerging Infections Surveillance Program, United States Army Medical Research Unit-Kenya, Kenya Medical Research Institute, Walter Reed Project, Kisumu and Nairobi, Kenya Background: The renewed malaria eradication efforts require an understanding of the seasonal patterns of frequency of polymorphic variants in order to focus limited funds productively. Although cross-sectional studies in holoendemic areas spanning a single year could be useful in describing parasite genotype status at a given point, such information is inadequate in describing temporal trends in genotype polymorphisms. For Plasmodium falciparum isolates from Kisumu District Hospital, Plasmodium falciparum chloroquine-resistance transporter gene (Pfcrt-K76T and P. falciparum multidrug resistance gene 1 (PfMDR1-N86Y, were analyzed for polymorphisms and parasitemia changes in the 53 months from March 2008 to August 2012. Observations were compared with prevailing climatic factors, including humidity, rainfall, and temperature. Methods: Parasitemia (the percentage of infected red blood cells per total red blood cells was established by microscopy for P. falciparum malaria-positive samples. P. falciparum DNA was extracted from whole blood using a Qiagen DNA Blood Mini Kit. Single nucleotide polymorphism identification at positions Pfcrt-K76T and PfMDR1-N86Y was performed using real-time polymerase chain reaction and/or sequencing. Data on climatic variables were obtained from http://www.tutiempo.net/en/. Results: A total of 895 field isolates from 2008 (n=169, 2009 (n=161, 2010 (n=216, 2011 (n=223, and 2012 (n=126 showed large variations in monthly frequency of PfMDR1-N86Y and Pfcrt-K76T as the mutant genotypes decreased from 68.4%±15% and 38.1%±13% to

  3. Comparison between microscopic examination, ELISA and quantitative buffy coat analysis in the diagnosis of falciparum malaria in an endemic population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanpradist, S; Tharavanij, S; Yamokgul, P; Bualombai, P; Wongchotigul, V; Singhasivanon, P; Patarapotikul, J; Thammapalerd, N; Prasittisuk, C; Tantanasrikul, S

    1995-03-01

    Monoclonal antibody-based ELISA and QBC (quantitative buffy coat analysis) were tested in two endemic areas with low and high incidence of malaria in Kanchanaburi Province, West Thailand with annual parasite incidence in 1992 of 119 and 5 per 1,000 population, respectively. The numbers of individuals positive by thick blood film examination (TBF) for P. falciparum with or without P. vivax, and P. vivax only were 82 and 69, respectively. The detection limit of ELISA was 10 parasites/10(6) red blood cells (RBC) (0.001% parasitemia). Of 1,095 individuals involved in the study at the beginning of the study, ELISA showed sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value and negative predictive value of 78.1%, 94.9%, 72% and 98.1%, respectively. Nine of 18 (50%) TBF-positive but ELISA-positive individuals had parasitemia of less than 10 parasites/10(6) RBC. High and low incidence areas did not affect the validity of our result. Regression analysis showed good correlation between log parasitemia and ELISA percent OD increase (Y = 0 + 64.9*logX, r = 0.65), and agreement between TBF and ELISA results was 95.9%. In a fortnightly follow-up, in 82 TBF-positive individuals, both ELISA and TBF positive rates correlatively declined with agreement of 96.3%. With samples taken on the first day of the study, the TBF and QBC results were also correlated with agreement of 95.8% for P. falciparum, 95.6% for P. vivax. During 8 week follow-up involving altogether 191 samples, agreement between TBF and QBC results were 87.4% for P. falciparum. QBC detected more cases with P. falciparum infections but detected smaller number of cases with P. vivax infections.

  4. Decreased level of 2,3-diphosphoglycerate and alteration of structural integrity in erythrocytes infected with Plasmodium falciparum in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dubey, M L; Hegde, Ramakrishna; Ganguly, N K; Mahajan, R C

    2003-04-01

    2,3-Diphosphoglycerate (2,3-DPG), an intracellular metabolite of glycolytic pathway is known to affect the oxygen binding capacity of haemoglobin and mechanical properties of the red blood cells. 2,3-DPG levels have been reported to be elevated during anaemic conditions including visceral leishmaniasis. 2,3-DPG activity in P. falciparum infected red blood cells, particularly in cells infected with different stages of the parasite and its relationship with structural integrity of the cells is not known. Chloroquine sensitive and resistant strains of P. falciparum were cultured in vitro and synchronized cultures of ring, trophozoite and schizont stage rich cells along with the uninfected control erythrocytes were assayed for 2,3-DPG activity and osmotic fragility. It was observed that in both the strains, in infected erythrocytes the 2,3-DPG activity gradually decreased and osmotic fragility gradually increased as the parasite matured from ring to schizont stage. The decrease in 2,3-DPG may probably be due to increased pyruvate kinase activity of parasite origin, which has been shown in erythrocytes infected with several species of Plasmodium. The absence of compensatory increase in 2,3-DPG in P. falciparum infected erythrocytes may aggravate hypoxia due to anaemia in malaria and probably may contribute to hypoxia in cerebral malaria. As 2,3-DPG was not found to be increased in erythrocytes parasitized with P. falciparum, the increased osmotic fragility observed in these cells is not due to increased 2,3-DPG as has been suggested in visceral leishmaniasis.

  5. Population genetic structure and natural selection of Plasmodium falciparum apical membrane antigen-1 in Myanmar isolates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Jung-Mi; Lee, Jinyoung; Moe, Mya; Jun, Hojong; Lê, Hương Giang; Kim, Tae Im; Thái, Thị Lam; Sohn, Woon-Mok; Myint, Moe Kyaw; Lin, Khin; Shin, Ho-Joon; Kim, Tong-Soo; Na, Byoung-Kuk

    2018-02-07

    Plasmodium falciparum apical membrane antigen-1 (PfAMA-1) is one of leading blood stage malaria vaccine candidates. However, genetic variation and antigenic diversity identified in global PfAMA-1 are major hurdles in the development of an effective vaccine based on this antigen. In this study, genetic structure and the effect of natural selection of PfAMA-1 among Myanmar P. falciparum isolates were analysed. Blood samples were collected from 58 Myanmar patients with falciparum malaria. Full-length PfAMA-1 gene was amplified by polymerase chain reaction and cloned into a TA cloning vector. PfAMA-1 sequence of each isolate was sequenced. Polymorphic characteristics and effect of natural selection were analysed with using DNASTAR, MEGA4, and DnaSP programs. Polymorphic nature and natural selection in 459 global PfAMA-1 were also analysed. Thirty-seven different haplotypes of PfAMA-1 were identified in 58 Myanmar P. falciparum isolates. Most amino acid changes identified in Myanmar PfAMA-1 were found in domains I and III. Overall patterns of amino acid changes in Myanmar PfAMA-1 were similar to those in global PfAMA-1. However, frequencies of amino acid changes differed by country. Novel amino acid changes in Myanmar PfAMA-1 were also identified. Evidences for natural selection and recombination event were observed in global PfAMA-1. Among 51 commonly identified amino acid changes in global PfAMA-1 sequences, 43 were found in predicted RBC-binding sites, B-cell epitopes, or IUR regions. Myanmar PfAMA-1 showed similar patterns of nucleotide diversity and amino acid polymorphisms compared to those of global PfAMA-1. Balancing natural selection and intragenic recombination across PfAMA-1 are likely to play major roles in generating genetic diversity in global PfAMA-1. Most common amino acid changes in global PfAMA-1 were located in predicted B-cell epitopes where high levels of nucleotide diversity and balancing natural selection were found. These results highlight the

  6. Dynamic formation of asexual diploid and polyploid lineages: multilocus analysis of Cobitis reveals the mechanisms maintaining the diversity of clones.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karel Janko

    Full Text Available Given the hybrid genomic constitutions and increased ploidy of many asexual animals, the identification of processes governing the origin and maintenance of clonal diversity provides useful information about the evolutionary consequences of interspecific hybridization, asexuality and polyploidy. In order to understand the processes driving observed diversity of biotypes and clones in the Cobitis taenia hybrid complex, we performed fine-scale genetic analysis of Central European hybrid zone between two sexual species using microsatellite genotyping and mtDNA sequencing. We found that the hybrid zone is populated by an assemblage of clonally (gynogenetically reproducing di-, tri- and tetraploid hybrid lineages and that successful clones, which are able of spatial expansion, recruit from two ploidy levels, i.e. diploid and triploid. We further compared the distribution of observed estimates of clonal ages to theoretical distributions simulated under various assumptions and showed that new clones are most likely continuously recruited from ancestral populations. This suggests that the clonal diversity is maintained by dynamic equilibrium between origination and extinction of clonal lineages. On the other hand, an interclonal selection is implied by nonrandom spatial distribution of individual clones with respect to the coexisting sexual species. Importantly, there was no evidence for sexually reproducing hybrids or clonally reproducing non-hybrid forms. Together with previous successful laboratory synthesis of clonal Cobitis hybrids, our data thus provide the most compelling evidence that 1 the origin of asexuality is causally linked to interspecific hybridization; 2 successful establishment of clones is not restricted to one specific ploidy level and 3 the initiation of clonality and polyploidy may be dynamic and continuous in asexual complexes.

  7. Dynamic Formation of Asexual Diploid and Polyploid Lineages: Multilocus Analysis of Cobitis Reveals the Mechanisms Maintaining the Diversity of Clones

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Janko, Karel; Kotusz, J.; de Gelas, K.; Šlechtová, Věra; Opoldusová, Zuzana; Drozd, P.; Choleva, Lukáš; Popiolek, M.; Baláž, M.

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 7, č. 9 (2012), s. 1-14 E-ISSN 1932-6203 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA206/09/1298 Grant - others:University of Wroclav(PL) 10/19/S/MP Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50450515 Keywords : asexual lineages Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 3.730, year: 2012

  8. Comparative Transcriptomic and Proteomic Analyses Reveal a FluG-Mediated Signaling Pathway Relating to Asexual Sporulation of Antrodia camphorata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Hua-Xiang; Lu, Zhen-Ming; Zhu, Qing; Gong, Jin-Song; Geng, Yan; Shi, Jin-Song; Xu, Zheng-Hong; Ma, Yan-He

    2017-09-01

    Medicinal mushroom Antrodia camphorata sporulate large numbers of arthroconidia in submerged fermentation, which is rarely reported in basidiomycetous fungi. Nevertheless, the molecular mechanisms underlying this asexual sporulation (conidiation) remain unclear. Here, we used comparative transcriptomic and proteomic approaches to elucidate possible signaling pathway relating to the asexual sporulation of A. camphorata. First, 104 differentially expressed proteins and 2586 differential cDNA sequences during the culture process of A. camphorata were identified by 2DE and RNA-seq, respectively. By applying bioinformatics analysis, a total of 67 genes which might play roles in the sporulation were obtained, and 18 of these genes, including fluG, sfgA, SfaD, flbA, flbB, flbC, flbD, nsdD, brlA, abaA, wetA, ganB, fadA, PkaA, veA, velB, vosA, and stuA might be involved in a potential FluG-mediated signaling pathway. Furthermore, the mRNA expression levels of the 18 genes in the proposed FluG-mediated signaling pathway were analyzed by quantitative real-time PCR. In summary, our study helps elucidate the molecular mechanisms underlying the asexual sporulation of A. camphorata, and provides also useful transcripts and proteome for further bioinformatics study of this valuable medicinal mushroom. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  9. Distribution of Phoxinus eos, Phoxinus neogaeus, and their asexually-reproducing hybrids (Pisces: Cyprinidae in Algonquin Provincial Park, Ontario.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan A Mee

    Full Text Available Hybrid Phoxinus are one of the few asexually reproducing vertebrates species. The distribution of hybrid Phoxinus among lakes in Algonquin Park, Ontario, was evaluated relative to the distribution of parental species and relative to physiochemical lake characteristics. No association between the distribution of hybrids and the distribution of parental species was found, suggesting that the hybrids can successfully coexist with either parental species. In addition, we found no association between hybrid distribution and the physiochemical characteristics of lakes, suggesting that the hybrids are generalists with respect to the ecological niches available in Algonquin Park. There was a difference between the physiochemical characteristics of lakes with and without the parental species P. neogaeus. The lakes containing P. neogaeus were lower elevation than the lakes containing the other parental species, P. eos. The difference in distribution between the parental species may therefore be due to different dispersal abilities, to later arrival following post-glacial dispersal, or to differences in ecology. These results suggest that asexual reproduction is a successful strategy for hybrid Phoxinus in Algonquin Park because these sperm-dependent asexual hybrids are able to survive and persist regardless of which parental species is present, and regardless of the physiochemical characteristics of their habitat.

  10. Asexual sporulation signalling regulates autolysis of Aspergillus nidulans via modulating the chitinase ChiB production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pócsi, I; Leiter, E; Kwon, N-J; Shin, K-S; Kwon, G-S; Pusztahelyi, T; Emri, T; Abuknesha, R A; Price, R G; Yu, J-H

    2009-08-01

    Elucidation of the regulation of ChiB production in Aspergillus nidulans. Mutational inactivation of the A. nidulans chiB gene resulted in a nonautolytic phenotype. To better understand the mechanisms controlling both developmental progression and fungal autolysis, we examined a range of autolysis-associated parameters in A. nidulans developmental and/or autolytic mutants. Investigation of disorganization of mycelial pellets, loss of biomass, extra-/intracellular chitinase activities, ChiB production and chiB mRNA levels in various cultures revealed that, in submerged cultures, initialization of autolysis and stationary phase-induced ChiB production are intimately coupled, and that both processes are controlled by the FluG-BrlA asexual sporulation regulatory pathway. ChiB production does not affect the progression of apoptotic cell death in the aging A. nidulans cultures. The endochitinase ChiB plays an important role in autolysis of A. nidulans, and its production is initiated by FluG-BrlA signalling. Despite the fact that apoptosis is an inseparable part of fungal autolysis, its regulation is independent to FluG-initiated sporulation signalling. Deletion of chiB and fluG homologues in industrial filamentous fungal strains may stabilize the hyphal structures in the autolytic phase of growth and limit the release of autolytic hydrolases into the culture medium.

  11. OncoSimulR: genetic simulation with arbitrary epistasis and mutator genes in asexual populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diaz-Uriarte, Ramon

    2017-06-15

    OncoSimulR implements forward-time genetic simulations of biallelic loci in asexual populations with special focus on cancer progression. Fitness can be defined as an arbitrary function of genetic interactions between multiple genes or modules of genes, including epistasis, restrictions in the order of accumulation of mutations, and order effects. Mutation rates can differ among genes, and can be affected by (anti)mutator genes. Also available are sampling from simulations (including single-cell sampling), plotting the genealogical relationships of clones and generating and plotting fitness landscapes. Implemented in R and C ++, freely available from BioConductor for Linux, Mac and Windows under the GNU GPL license. Version 2.5.9 or higher available from: http://www.bioconductor.org/packages/devel/bioc/html/OncoSimulR.html . GitHub repository at: https://github.com/rdiaz02/OncoSimul. ramon.diaz@iib.uam.es. Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press.

  12. Boxer crabs induce asexual reproduction of their associated sea anemones by splitting and intraspecific theft

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    Yisrael Schnytzer

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Crabs of the genus Lybia have the remarkable habit of holding a sea anemone in each of their claws. This partnership appears to be obligate, at least on the part of the crab. The present study focuses on Lybia leptochelis from the Red Sea holding anemones of the genus Alicia (family Aliciidae. These anemones have not been found free living, only in association with L. leptochelis. In an attempt to understand how the crabs acquire them, we conducted a series of behavioral experiments and molecular analyses. Laboratory observations showed that the removal of one anemone from a crab induces a “splitting” behavior, whereby the crab tears the remaining anemone into two similar parts, resulting in a complete anemone in each claw after regeneration. Furthermore, when two crabs, one holding anemones and one lacking them, are confronted, the crabs fight, almost always leading to the “theft” of a complete anemone or anemone fragment by the crab without them. Following this, crabs “split” their lone anemone into two. Individuals of Alicia sp. removed from freshly collected L. leptochelis were used for DNA analysis. By employing AFLP (Fluorescence Amplified Fragments Length Polymorphism it was shown that each pair of anemones from a given crab is genetically identical. Furthermore, there is genetic identity between most pairs of anemone held by different crabs, with the others showing slight genetic differences. This is a unique case in which one animal induces asexual reproduction of another, consequently also affecting its genetic diversity.

  13. Epidemiology of asexuality induced by the endosymbiotic Wolbachia across phytophagous wasp species: host plant specialization matters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boivin, T; Henri, H; Vavre, F; Gidoin, C; Veber, P; Candau, J-N; Magnoux, E; Roques, A; Auger-Rozenberg, M-A

    2014-05-01

    Among eukaryotes, sexual reproduction is by far the most predominant mode of reproduction. However, some systems maintaining sexuality appear particularly labile and raise intriguing questions on the evolutionary routes to asexuality. Thelytokous parthenogenesis is a form of spontaneous loss of sexuality leading to strong distortion of sex ratio towards females and resulting from mutation, hybridization or infection by bacterial endosymbionts. We investigated whether ecological specialization is a likely mechanism of spread of thelytoky within insect communities. Focusing on the highly specialized genus Megastigmus (Hymenoptera: Torymidae), we first performed a large literature survey to examine the distribution of thelytoky in these wasps across their respective obligate host plant families. Second, we tested for thelytoky caused by endosymbionts by screening in 15 arrhenotokous and 10 thelytokous species for Wolbachia, Cardinium, Arsenophonus and Rickettsia endosymbionts and by performing antibiotic treatments. Finally, we performed phylogenetic reconstructions using multilocus sequence typing (MLST) to examine the evolution of endosymbiont-mediated thelytoky in Megastigmus and its possible connections to host plant specialization. We demonstrate that thelytoky evolved from ancestral arrhenotoky through the horizontal transmission and the fixation of the parthenogenesis-inducing Wolbachia. We find that ecological specialization in Wolbachia's hosts was probably a critical driving force for Wolbachia infection and spread of thelytoky, but also a constraint. Our work further reinforces the hypothesis that community structure of insects is a major driver of the epidemiology of endosymbionts and that competitive interactions among closely related species may facilitate their horizontal transmission. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  14. Quantitative non-invasive intracellular imaging of Plasmodium falciparum infected human erythrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Edward, Kert; Farahi, Faramarz

    2014-01-01

    Malaria is a virulent pathological condition which results in over a million annual deaths. The parasitic agent Plasmodium falciparum has been extensively studied in connection with this epidemic but much remains unknown about its development inside the red blood cell host. Optical and fluorescence imaging are among the two most common procedures for investigating infected erythrocytes but both require the introduction of exogenous contrast agents. In this letter, we present a procedure for the non-invasive in situ imaging of malaria infected red blood cells. The procedure is based on the utilization of simultaneously acquired quantitative phase and independent topography data to extract intracellular information. Our method allows for the identification of the developmental stages of the parasite and facilitates in situ analysis of the morphological changes associated with the progression of this disease. This information may assist in the development of efficacious treatment therapies for this condition. (letters)

  15. Investigation of volatile organic biomarkers derived from Plasmodium falciparum in vitro

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wong Rina PM

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background There remains a need for techniques that improve the sensitive detection of viable Plasmodium falciparum as part of diagnosis and therapeutic monitoring in clinical studies and usual-care management of malaria infections. A non-invasive breath test based on P. falciparum-associated specific volatile organic compounds (VOCs could fill this gap and provide insights into parasite metabolism and pathogenicity. The aim of this study was to determine whether VOCs are present in the headspace above in vitro P. falciparum cultures. Methods A novel, custom-designed apparatus was developed to enable efficient headspace sampling of infected and non-infected cultures. Conditions were optimized to support cultures of high parasitaemia (>20% to improve the potential detection of parasite-specific VOCs. A number of techniques for VOC analysis were investigated including solid phase micro-extraction using two different polarity fibres, and purge and trap/thermal desorption, each coupled to gas chromatography–mass spectrometry. Each experiment and analysis method was performed at least on two occasions. VOCs were identified by comparing their mass spectra against commercial mass spectral libraries. Results No unique malarial-specific VOCs could be detected relative to those in the control red blood cell cultures. This could reflect sequestration of VOCs into cell membranes and/or culture media but solvent extractions of supernatants and cell lysates using hexane, dichloromethane and ethyl acetate also showed no obvious difference compared to control non-parasitized cultures. Conclusions Future in vivo studies analysing the breath of patients with severe malaria who are harbouring a parasite biomass that is significantly greater than achievable in vitro may yet reveal specific clinically-useful volatile chemical biomarkers.

  16. Assessment of the therapeutic efficacy of artemether-lumefantrine in the treatment of uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum malaria in northern KwaZulu-Natal: an observational cohort study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaughan-Williams, Charles H; Raman, Jaishree; Raswiswi, Eric; Immelman, Etienne; Reichel, Holger; Gate, Kelly; Knight, Steve

    2012-12-28

    Recent malaria epidemics in KwaZulu-Natal indicate that effective anti-malarial therapy is essential for malaria control. Although artemether-lumefantrine has been used as first-line treatment for uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum malaria in northern KwaZulu-Natal since 2001, its efficacy has not been assessed since 2002. The objectives of this study were to quantify the proportion of patients treated for uncomplicated P. falciparum malaria with artemether-lumefantrine who failed treatment after 28 days, and to determine the prevalence of molecular markers associated with artemether-lumefantrine and chloroquine resistance. An observational cohort of 49 symptomatic patients, diagnosed with uncomplicated P. falciparum malaria by rapid diagnostic test, had blood taken for malaria blood films and P. falciparum DNA polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Following diagnosis, patients were treated with artemether-lumefantrine (Coartem®) and invited to return to the health facility after 28 days for repeat blood film and PCR. All PCR P. falciparum positive samples were analysed for molecular markers of lumefantrine and chloroquine resistance. Of 49 patients recruited on the basis of a positive rapid diagnostic test, only 16 were confirmed to have P. falciparum by PCR. At follow-up, 14 were PCR-negative for malaria, one was lost to follow-up and one blood specimen had insufficient blood for a PCR analysis. All 16 with PCR-confirmed malaria carried a single copy of the multi-drug resistant (mdr1) gene, and the wild type asparagine allele mdr1 codon 86 (mdr1 86N). Ten of the 16 samples carried the wild type haplotype (CVMNK) at codons 72-76 of the chloroquine resistance transporter gene (pfcrt); three samples carried the resistant CVIET allele; one carried both the resistant and wild type, and in two samples the allele could not be analysed. The absence of mdr1 gene copy number variation detected in this study suggests lumefantrine resistance has yet to emerge in Kwa

  17. Assessment of the therapeutic efficacy of artemether-lumefantrine in the treatment of uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum malaria in northern KwaZulu-Natal: an observational cohort study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vaughan-Williams Charles H

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Recent malaria epidemics in KwaZulu-Natal indicate that effective anti-malarial therapy is essential for malaria control. Although artemether-lumefantrine has been used as first-line treatment for uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum malaria in northern KwaZulu-Natal since 2001, its efficacy has not been assessed since 2002. The objectives of this study were to quantify the proportion of patients treated for uncomplicated P. falciparum malaria with artemether-lumefantrine who failed treatment after 28 days, and to determine the prevalence of molecular markers associated with artemether-lumefantrine and chloroquine resistance. Methods An observational cohort of 49 symptomatic patients, diagnosed with uncomplicated P. falciparum malaria by rapid diagnostic test, had blood taken for malaria blood films and P. falciparum DNA polymerase chain reaction (PCR. Following diagnosis, patients were treated with artemether-lumefantrine (Coartem® and invited to return to the health facility after 28 days for repeat blood film and PCR. All PCR P. falciparum positive samples were analysed for molecular markers of lumefantrine and chloroquine resistance. Results Of 49 patients recruited on the basis of a positive rapid diagnostic test, only 16 were confirmed to have P. falciparum by PCR. At follow-up, 14 were PCR-negative for malaria, one was lost to follow-up and one blood specimen had insufficient blood for a PCR analysis. All 16 with PCR-confirmed malaria carried a single copy of the multi-drug resistant (mdr1 gene, and the wild type asparagine allele mdr1 codon 86 (mdr1 86N. Ten of the 16 samples carried the wild type haplotype (CVMNK at codons 72-76 of the chloroquine resistance transporter gene (pfcrt; three samples carried the resistant CVIET allele; one carried both the resistant and wild type, and in two samples the allele could not be analysed. Conclusions The absence of mdr1 gene copy number variation detected in this study

  18. Frequencies distribution of dihydrofolate reductase and dihydropteroate synthetase mutant alleles associated with sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine resistance in Plasmodium falciparum population from Hadhramout Governorate, Yemen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bamaga, Omar A A; Mahdy, Mohammed A K; Lim, Yvonne A L

    2015-12-22

    Malaria in Yemen is mainly caused by Plasmodium falciparum and 25% of the population is at high risk. Sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP) had been used as monotherapy against P. falciparum. Emergence of chloroquine resistance led to the shift in anti-malarial treatment policy in Yemen to artemisinin-based combination therapy, that is artesunate (AS) plus SP as first-line therapy for uncomplicated malaria and artemether-lumefantrine as second-line treatment. This study aimed to screen mutations in the dihydrofolate reductase (dhfr) and dihydropteroate synthetase (dhps) genes associated with SP resistance among P. falciparum population in Hadhramout governorate, Yemen. Genomic DNA was extracted from dried blood spots of 137 P. falciparum isolates collected from a community-based study. DNA was amplified using nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and subsequently sequenced for Pfdhfr and Pfdhps genes. Sequences were analysed for mutations in Pfdhfr gene codons 51, 59, 108, and 164 and in Pfdhps gene codons 436, 437, and 540. A total of 128 and 114 P. falciparum isolates were successfully sequenced for Pfdhfr and Pfdhps genes, respectively. Each Pfdhfr mutant allele (I51 and N108) in P. falciparum population had a frequency of 84%. Pfdhfr R59 mutant allele was detected in one isolate. Mutation at codon 437 (G437) in the Pfdhps gene was detected in 44.7% of falciparum malaria isolates. Frequencies of Pfdhfr double mutant genotype (I51C59N108I164) and Pfdhfr/Pfdhps triple mutant genotype (I51C59N108I164-S436G437K540) were 82.8 and 39.3%, respectively. One isolate harboured Pfdhfr triple mutant genotype (I51, R59, N108, I164) and Pfdhfr/Pfdhps quadruple mutant genotype (I51R59N108I164-S436G437K540). High frequencies of Pfdhfr and Pfdhps mutant alleles and genotypes in P. falciparum population in Hadhramout, Yemen, highlight the risk of developing resistance for SP, the partner drug of AS, which subsequently will expose the parasite to AS monotherapy increasing then the

  19. A combined strategy for screening a clustered mobile population returning from highly endemic areas for Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Mei; Li, Jun; Xia, Zhigui; Xiao, Ning; Jiang, Weikang; Wen, Yongkang

    2017-04-30

    Early and accurate diagnosis of imported malaria cases in clusters is crucial for protecting the health of patients and local populations, especially confirmed parasitic persons who are asymptomatic. A total of 226 gold miners who had stayed in highly endemic areas of Ghana for more than six months and returned in clusters were selected randomly. Blood samples from them were tested with microscopy, nest polymerase chain reaction, and rapid diagnostic test (RDT). The sensitivity, specificity, predictive values, agreement rate, and Youden's index of each of three diagnostic methods were calculated and compared with the defined gold standard. A quick and efficient way to respond to screening such a clustered mobile population was predicted and analyzed by evaluating two assumed results of combining microscopy and RDT with or without symptoms of illness. The rate of the carriers of malaria parasites in the populations of gold miners was 19.47%, including 39 P. falciparum. Among the three diagnostic methods, the microscopy method showed the highest specificity, while the RDT method showed the highest sensitivity but the lowest specificity in detecting P. falciparum. The assumed results of combining RDT and microscopy with symptoms showed the best results among all the test results in screening P. falciparum. It was too complex and difficult to catch all parasite carriers in a short period of time among populations with such a complicated situation as that in Shanglin County. A strategy of combing microscopy and RDT for diagnosis is highly recommended.

  20. In vivo testing of the therapeutic efficacy of chloroquine on falciparum malaria infections in Chirundu, Mashonaland West, Zimbabwe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barduagni, P; Schwartz, U; Nyamayaro, W; Chauke, T L

    1998-10-01

    To detect the level of the in vivo chloroquine efficacy in falciparum malaria infections, in order to assess the need for change in the management and treatment of uncomplicated malaria. Prospective descriptive study. Chirundu Rural Clinic, Mashonaland West Province. 63 patients confirmed by a positive blood slide for P. falciparum who attended Chirundu clinic, who were eligible for the study and, who also agreed to participate. Frequency of treatment success, early treatment failure and late treatment failure in uncomplicated patients treated with chloroquine. Out of 63 cases enrolled and completely followed up, chloroquine treatment was effective in 54 cases (85.7%) and was not effective in nine cases (14.3%). All treatment failures were successfully treated with sulphadoxine + pyrimethamine (Fansidar) or quinine following the approved guidelines. Chloroquine remains highly effective in the treatment of malaria due to P. falciparum in the Zambezi Valley of Hurungwe district and therefore, has to remain the first line drug. Likewise, guidelines for the use of sulphadoxine + pyrimethamine (Fansidar) or quinine as second line drugs, are adequate to the local situation. Health workers directly supervised the patients when they were swallowing the tablets during the whole course, and this without doubt, indirectly increased the efficacy of chloroquine. It is vital to confirm the malaria diagnosis on the spot appointing microscopists or distributing a limited stock of Parasight-F test.

  1. Genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum populations in southeast and western Myanmar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soe, Than Naing; Wu, Yanrui; Tun, Myo Win; Xu, Xin; Hu, Yue; Ruan, Yonghua; Win, Aung Ye Naung; Nyunt, Myat Htut; Mon, Nan Cho Nwe; Han, Kay Thwe; Aye, Khin Myo; Morris, James; Su, Pincan; Yang, Zhaoqing; Kyaw, Myat Phone; Cui, Liwang

    2017-07-04

    The genetic diversity of malaria parasites reflects the complexity and size of the parasite populations. This study was designed to explore the genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum populations collected from two southeastern areas (Shwekyin and Myawaddy bordering Thailand) and one western area (Kyauktaw bordering Bangladesh) of Myanmar. A total of 267 blood samples collected from patients with acute P. falciparum infections during 2009 and 2010 were used for genotyping at the merozoite surface protein 1 (Msp1), Msp2 and glutamate-rich protein (Glurp) loci. One hundred and eighty four samples were successfully genotyped at three genes. The allelic distributions of the three genes were all significantly different among three areas. MAD20 and 3D7 were the most prevalent alleles in three areas for Msp1 and Msp2, respectively. The Glurp allele with a bin size of 700-750 bp was the most prevalent both in Shwekyin and Myawaddy, whereas two alleles with bin sizes of 800-850 bp and 900-1000 bp were the most prevalent in the western site Kyauktaw. Overall, 73.91% of samples contained multiclonal infections, resulting in a mean multiplicity of infection (MOI) of 1.94. Interestingly, the MOI level presented a rising trend with the order of Myawaddy, Kyauktaw and Shwekyin, which also paralleled with the increasing frequencies of Msp1 RO33 and Msp2 FC27 200-250 bp alleles. Msp1 and Msp2 genes displayed higher levels of diversity and higher MOI rates than Glurp. PCR revealed four samples (two from Shwekyin and two from Myawaddy) with mixed infections of P. falciparum and P. vivax. This study genotyped parasite clinical samples from two southeast regions and one western state of Myanmar at the Msp1, Msp2 and Glurp loci, which revealed high levels of genetic diversity and mixed-strain infections of P. falciparum populations at these sites. The results indicated that malaria transmission intensity in these regions remained high and more strengthened control efforts are

  2. Low-grade sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine resistance in Plasmodium falciparum parasites from Lubango, Angola.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaingona-Daniel, Elsa P S; Gomes, Larissa Rodrigues; Gama, Bianca E; Almeida-de-Oliveira, Natália K; Fortes, Filomeno; Ménard, Didier; Daniel-Ribeiro, Cláudio Tadeu; Ferreira-da-Cruz, Maria de Fátima

    2016-06-07

    Malaria is a major parasitic disease, affecting millions of people in endemic areas. Plasmodium falciparum parasites are responsible for the most severe cases and its resistance to anti-malarial drugs is notorious. This is a possible obstacle to the effectiveness of intermittent preventive treatment (IPT) based on sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP) cures administrated to pregnant women (IPTp) during their pregnancy. As this intervention is recommended in Angola since 2006, it has assessed, in this country, the molecular profiles in P. falciparum dhfr and dhps, two polymorphic genes associated to pyrimethamine and sulfadoxine resistance, respectively. Blood samples from 52 falciparum patients were collected in Lubango, Angola and pfdhfr and pfdhps polymorphisms were analysed using nested-PCR and DNA sequencing. In the pfdhfr gene, the 108N mutation was almost fixed (98 %), followed by 59R (63 %), 51I (46 %), 50R and 164L (2 %, respectively). No 16V/S mutations were found. The most common double mutant genotype was CNRN (59 + 108; 46 %), followed by CICN (51 + 108; 29 %) whereas IRN (51 + 59 + 108; 15 %), CNRNVL (59 + 108 + 164; 2 %) and RICN (50 + 51 + 108; 2 %) triple mutant genotypes were detected. Investigations of the pfdhps gene showed that the 437G mutation was the most prevalent (97 %). Only two and one samples disclosed the 540E (7 %) and the 436A (3 %), respectively. Single mutant SGKAA (437; 86 %) was higher than SGEAA (437 + 540; 7 %) or AGKAA (436 + 437; 3 %) double mutants genotypes. No polymorphism was detected at codons 581G and 613T/S. Combining pfdhfr and pfdhps alleles two triple mutant haplotypes (double mutant in dhfr and single mutant in dhps) were observed: the ACICNVI/SGKAA in 14 (56 %) samples and the ACNRNVI/SGKAA in five (20 %) samples. One quadruple mutant haplotype was detected (ACIRNVI/SGKAA) in six (24 %) P. falciparum samples. No quintuple pfdhfr-pfdhps mutant was noted. pfdhfr and pfdhps gene

  3. Hidden Genetic Diversity in an Asexually Reproducing Lichen Forming Fungal Group.

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    Ruth Del-Prado

    Full Text Available Asexual species with vegetative propagation of both symbiont partners (soredia in lichens may harbor lower species diversity because they may indeed represent evolutionary dead ends or clones. In this study we aim to critically examine species boundaries in the sorediate lichen forming fungi Parmotrema reticulatum-Parmotrema pseudoreticulatum complex applying coalescent-based approaches and other recently developed DNA-based methods. To this end, we gathered 180 samples from Africa, Asia, Australasia, Europe, North and South America and generated sequences of internal transcribed spacer of nuclear ribosomal DNA (ITS and DNA replication licensing factor MCM7 (MCM7. The dataset was analysed using different approaches such as traditional phylogeny-maximum likelihood and Bayesian-genetic distances, automatic barcode gap discovery and coalescent-based methods-PTP, GMYC, spedeSTEM and *Beast-in order to test congruence among results. Additionally, the divergence times were also estimated to elucidate diversification events. Delimitations inferred from the different analyses are comparable with only minor differences, and following a conservative approach we propose that the sampled specimens of the P. reticulatum-P. pseudoreticulatum complex belong to at least eight distinct species-level lineages. Seven are currently classified under P. reticulatum and one as P. pseudoreticulatum. In this work we discuss one of only few examples of cryptic species that have so far been found in sorediate reproducing lichen forming fungi. Additionally our estimates suggest a recent origin of the species complex-during the Miocene. Consequently, the wide distribution of several of the cryptic species has to be explained by intercontinental long-distance dispersal events.

  4. Sexual dimorphism in white campion: deletion on the Y chromosome results in a floral asexual phenotype

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Farbos, I.; Veuskens, J.; Vyskot, B.; Oliveira, M.; Hinnisdaels, S.; Aghmir, A.; Mouras, A.; Negrutiu, I.

    1999-01-01

    White campion is a dioecious plant with heteromorphic X and Y sex chromosomes. In male plants, a filamentous structure replaces the pistil, while in female plants the stamens degenerate early in flower development. Asexual (asx) mutants, cumulating the two developmental defects that characterize the sexual dimorphism in this species, were produced by gamma ray irradiation of pollen and screening in the M1 generation. The mutants harbor a novel type of mutation affecting an early function in sporogenous/parietal cell differentiation within the anther. The function is called stamen-promoting function (SPF). The mutants are shown to result from interstitial deletions on the Y chromosome. We present evidence that such deletions tentatively cover the central domain on the (p)-arm of the Y chromosome (Y2 region). By comparing stamen development in wild-type female and asx mutant flowers we show that they share the same block in anther development, which results in the production of vestigial anthers. The data suggest that the SPF, a key function(s) controlling the sporogenous/parietal specialization in premeiotic anthers, is genuinely missing in females (XX constitution). We argue that this is the earliest function in the male program that is Y-linked and is likely responsible for ''male dimorphism'' (sexual dimorphism in the third floral whorl) in white campion. More generally, the reported results improve our knowledge of the structural and functional organization of the Y chromosome and favor the view that sex determination in this species results primarily from a trigger signal on the Y chromosome (Y1 region) that suppresses female development. The default state is therefore the ancestral hermaphroditic state

  5. Asexual propagation of a virulent clone complex in a human and feline outbreak of sporotrichosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teixeira, Marcus de Melo; Rodrigues, Anderson Messias; Tsui, Clement K M; de Almeida, Luiz Gonzaga Paulo; Van Diepeningen, Anne D; van den Ende, Bert Gerrits; Fernandes, Geisa Ferreira; Kano, Rui; Hamelin, Richard C; Lopes-Bezerra, Leila Maria; Vasconcelos, Ana Tereza Ribeiro; de Hoog, Sybren; de Camargo, Zoilo Pires; Felipe, Maria Sueli Soares

    2015-02-01

    Sporotrichosis is one of the most frequent subcutaneous fungal infections in humans and animals caused by members of the plant-associated, dimorphic genus Sporothrix. Three of the four medically important Sporothrix species found in Brazil have been considered asexual as no sexual stage has ever been reported in Sporothrix schenckii, Sporothrix brasiliensis, or Sporothrix globosa. We have identified the mating type (MAT) loci in the S. schenckii (strain 1099-18/ATCC MYA-4821) and S. brasiliensis (strain 5110/ATCC MYA-4823) genomes by using comparative genomic approaches to determine the mating type ratio in these pathogen populations. Our analysis revealed the presence of a MAT1-1 locus in S. schenckii while a MAT1-2 locus was found in S. brasiliensis representing genomic synteny to other Sordariomycetes. Furthermore, the components of the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK)-pheromone pathway, pheromone processing enzymes, and meiotic regulators have also been identified in the two pathogens, suggesting the potential for sexual reproduction. The ratio of MAT1-1 to MAT1-2 was not significantly different from 1:1 for all three Sporothrix species, but the population of S. brasiliensis in the outbreaks originated from a single mating type. We also explored the population genetic structure of these pathogens using sequence data of two loci to improve our knowledge of the pattern of geographic distribution, genetic variation, and virulence phenotypes. Population genetics data showed significant population differentiation and clonality with a low level of haplotype diversity in S. brasiliensis isolates from different regions of sporotrichosis outbreaks in Brazil. In contrast, S. schenckii isolates demonstrated a high degree of genetic variability without significant geographic differentiation, indicating the presence of recombination. This study demonstrated that two species causing the same disease have contrasting reproductive strategies and genetic variability

  6. Mn(II) oxidation by an ascomycete fungus is linked to superoxide production during asexual reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansel, Colleen M; Zeiner, Carolyn A; Santelli, Cara M; Webb, Samuel M

    2012-07-31

    Manganese (Mn) oxides are among the most reactive minerals within the environment, where they control the bioavailability of carbon, nutrients, and numerous metals. Although the ability of microorganisms to oxidize Mn(II) to Mn(III/IV) oxides is scattered throughout the bacterial and fungal domains of life, the mechanism and physiological basis for Mn(II) oxidation remains an enigma. Here, we use a combination of compound-specific chemical assays, microspectroscopy, and electron microscopy to show that a common Ascomycete filamentous fungus, Stilbella aciculosa, oxidizes Mn(II) to Mn oxides by producing extracellular superoxide during cell differentiation. The reactive Mn oxide phase birnessite and the reactive oxygen species superoxide and hydrogen peroxide are colocalized at the base of asexual reproductive structures. Mn oxide formation is not observed in the presence of superoxide scavengers (e.g., Cu) and inhibitors of NADPH oxidases (e.g., diphenylene iodonium chloride), enzymes responsible for superoxide production and cell differentiation in fungi. Considering the recent identification of Mn(II) oxidation by NADH oxidase-based superoxide production by a common marine bacterium (Roseobacter sp.), these results introduce a surprising homology between some prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms in the mechanisms responsible for Mn(II) oxidation, where oxidation appears to be a side reaction of extracellular superoxide production. Given the versatility of superoxide as a redox reactant and the widespread ability of fungi to produce superoxide, this microbial extracellular superoxide production may play a central role in the cycling and bioavailability of metals (e.g., Hg, Fe, Mn) and carbon in natural systems.

  7. Dieback Disease Predictive Model for Sexually and Asexually Propagated Dalbergia Sissoo (Shisham)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ahmad, I.; Siddiqui, M. T.; Nawaz, M. F.; Asif, M.; Atiq, M.; Gul, S.

    2016-01-01

    Dieback disease is a potential threat to Dalbergia sissoo (Shisham) which is a multipurpose tree of the Indian subcontinent. Different factors have been found associated with inciting shisham dieback. Fungal pathogens have been recognized as the major causal organism but changing climate is a main threat to forest dieback. Sexually (seedlings) and asexually (cuttings) propagated shisham were inoculated with the different fungi (Fusarium solani, Botryodiplodia theobromae, Curvularia lunata and Ganoderma lucidum). As environmental factors play critical role in the development of the disease, so the present study was designed to observe the impact of rainfall, temperature, relative humidity and wind velocity on the disease and for the management of disease predictive model was developed. A significant negative correlation was observed between disease and relative humidity both for seedlings (r = - 0.97) and cuttings (r = -0.487), respectively while maximum temperature expressed significant positive correlation with seedlings and cuttings with coefficient of correlation r = 0.734 and r = 0.629, respectively. Path analysis expressed that with one unit increase in rainfall the disease would rise by 7.58 and 15.04 and for maximum temperature it was 2.47 and 5.27 units in seedlings and cuttings, respectively. Multiple regression analysis showed that coefficient of determination (R/sup 2/) value was 0.62 and 0.48 for cuttings and seedlings, respectively. Normed fit index (NFI) and comparative fit index (CFI) values indicate that model is quite a good fit. Similarly comparison of observed and predicted data also validated the model for forecasting the disease. (author)

  8. Presence and Functionality of Mating Type Genes in the Supposedly Asexual Filamentous Fungus Aspergillus oryzae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wada, Ryuta; Maruyama, Jun-ichi; Yamaguchi, Haruka; Yamamoto, Nanase; Wagu, Yutaka; Paoletti, Mathieu; Archer, David B.; Dyer, Paul S.

    2012-01-01

    The potential for sexual reproduction in Aspergillus oryzae was assessed by investigating the presence and functionality of MAT genes. Previous genome studies had identified a MAT1-1 gene in the reference strain RIB40. We now report the existence of a complementary MAT1-2 gene and the sequencing of an idiomorphic region from A. oryzae strain AO6. This allowed the development of a PCR diagnostic assay, which detected isolates of the MAT1-1 and MAT1-2 genotypes among 180 strains assayed, including industrial tane-koji isolates. Strains used for sake and miso production showed a near-1:1 ratio of the MAT1-1 and MAT1-2 mating types, whereas strains used for soy sauce production showed a significant bias toward the MAT1-2 mating type. MAT1-1 and MAT1-2 isogenic strains were then created by genetic manipulation of the resident idiomorph, and gene expression was compared by DNA microarray and quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) methodologies under conditions in which MAT genes were expressed. Thirty-three genes were found to be upregulated more than 10-fold in either the MAT1-1 host strain or the MAT1-2 gene replacement strain relative to each other, showing that both the MAT1-1 and MAT1-2 genes functionally regulate gene expression in A. oryzae in a mating type-dependent manner, the first such report for a supposedly asexual fungus. MAT1-1 expression specifically upregulated an α-pheromone precursor gene, but the functions of most of the genes affected were unknown. The results are consistent with a heterothallic breeding system in A. oryzae, and prospects for the discovery of a sexual cycle are discussed. PMID:22327593

  9. Asexual Reproduction Does Not Apparently Increase the Rate of Chromosomal Evolution: Karyotype Stability in Diploid and Triploid Clonal Hybrid Fish (Cobitis, Cypriniformes, Teleostei).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Majtánová, Zuzana; Choleva, Lukáš; Symonová, Radka; Ráb, Petr; Kotusz, Jan; Pekárik, Ladislav; Janko, Karel

    2016-01-01

    Interspecific hybridization, polyploidization and transitions from sexuality to asexuality considerably affect organismal genomes. Especially the last mentioned process has been assumed to play a significant role in the initiation of chromosomal rearrangements, causing increased rates of karyotype evolution. We used cytogenetic analysis and molecular dating of cladogenetic events to compare the rate of changes of chromosome morphology and karyotype in asexually and sexually reproducing counterparts in European spined loach fish (Cobitis). We studied metaphases of three sexually reproducing species and their diploid and polyploid hybrid clones of different age of origin. The material includes artificial F1 hybrid strains, representatives of lineage originated in Holocene epoch, and also individuals of an oldest known age to date (roughly 0.37 MYA). Thereafter we applied GISH technique as a marker to differentiate parental chromosomal sets in hybrids. Although the sexual species accumulated remarkable chromosomal rearrangements after their speciation, we observed no differences in chromosome numbers and/or morphology among karyotypes of asexual hybrids. These hybrids possess chromosome sets originating from respective parental species with no cytogenetically detectable recombinations, suggesting their integrity even in a long term. The switch to asexual reproduction thus did not provoke any significant acceleration of the rate of chromosomal evolution in Cobitis. Asexual animals described in other case studies reproduce ameiotically, while Cobitis hybrids described here produce eggs likely through modified meiosis. Therefore, our findings indicate that the effect of asexuality on the rate of chromosomal change may be context-dependent rather than universal and related to particular type of asexual reproduction.

  10. Asexual Reproduction Does Not Apparently Increase the Rate of Chromosomal Evolution: Karyotype Stability in Diploid and Triploid Clonal Hybrid Fish (Cobitis, Cypriniformes, Teleostei.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zuzana Majtánová

    Full Text Available Interspecific hybridization, polyploidization and transitions from sexuality to asexuality considerably affect organismal genomes. Especially the last mentioned process has been assumed to play a significant role in the initiation of chromosomal rearrangements, causing increased rates of karyotype evolution. We used cytogenetic analysis and molecular dating of cladogenetic events to compare the rate of changes of chromosome morphology and karyotype in asexually and sexually reproducing counterparts in European spined loach fish (Cobitis. We studied metaphases of three sexually reproducing species and their diploid and polyploid hybrid clones of different age of origin. The material includes artificial F1 hybrid strains, representatives of lineage originated in Holocene epoch, and also individuals of an oldest known age to date (roughly 0.37 MYA. Thereafter we applied GISH technique as a marker to differentiate parental chromosomal sets in hybrids. Although the sexual species accumulated remarkable chromosomal rearrangements after their speciation, we observed no differences in chromosome numbers and/or morphology among karyotypes of asexual hybrids. These hybrids possess chromosome sets originating from respective parental species with no cytogenetically detectable recombinations, suggesting their integrity even in a long term. The switch to asexual reproduction thus did not provoke any significant acceleration of the rate of chromosomal evolution in Cobitis. Asexual animals described in other case studies reproduce ameiotically, while Cobitis hybrids described here produce eggs likely through modified meiosis. Therefore, our findings indicate that the effect of asexuality on the rate of chromosomal change may be context-dependent rather than universal and related to particular type of asexual reproduction.

  11. Does the silver moss Bryum argenteum exhibit sex-specific patterns in vegetative growth rate, asexual fitness or prezygotic reproductive investment?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horsley, Kimberly; Stark, Lloyd R; McLetchie, D Nicholas

    2011-05-01

    Expected life history trade-offs associated with sex differences in reproductive investment are often undetected in seed plants, with the difficulty arising from logistical issues of conducting controlled experiments. By controlling genotype, age and resource status of individuals, a bryophyte was assessed for sex-specific and location-specific patterns of vegetative, asexual and sexual growth/reproduction across a regional scale. Twelve genotypes (six male, six female) of the dioecious bryophyte Bryum argenteum were subcultured to remove environmental effects, regenerated asexually to replicate each genotype 16 times, and grown over a period of 92 d. Plants were assessed for growth rates, asexual and sexual reproductive traits, and allocation to above- and below-ground regenerative biomass. The degree of sexual versus asexual reproductive investment appears to be under genetic control, with three distinct ecotypes found in this study. Protonemal growth rate was positively correlated with asexual reproduction and sexual reproduction, whereas asexual reproduction was negatively correlated (appeared to trade-off) with vegetative growth (shoot production). No sex-specific trade-offs were detected. Female sex-expressing shoots were longer than males, but the sexes did not differ in growth traits, asexual traits, sexual induction times, or above- and below-ground biomass. Males, however, had much higher rates of inflorescence production than females, which translated into a significantly higher (24x) prezygotic investment for males relative to females. Evidence for three distinct ecotypes is presented for a bryophyte based on regeneration traits. Prior to zygote production, the sexes of this bryophyte did not differ in vegetative growth traits but significantly differed in reproductive investment, with the latter differences potentially implicated in the strongly biased female sex ratio. The disparity between males and females for prezygotic reproductive investment is

  12. Primaquine or other 8-aminoquinolines for reducing Plasmodium falciparum transmission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graves, Patricia M; Choi, Leslie; Gelband, Hellen; Garner, Paul

    2018-01-01

    infectiousness precedes the effect of PQ on gametocyte prevalence. We do not know whether single dose PQ could reduce malaria transmission at community level. What is the aim of this review? To assess the effects of adding a single dose of primaquine (PQ) to treatment for falciparum malaria to reduce disease transmission. This Cochrane Review update includes 25 controlled trials. The date of latest search was 21 July 2017. Key messages A single low dose of PQ, at 0.25 mg/kg, which the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends adding to artemisinin-based combination therapy for malaria, reduces infectiousness (transmission from people to mosquitoes). In the trials, the percentage of people who infected mosquitoes three to four days after treatment was reduced from 14% to 2%, with a smaller effect at day 8, from 4% to 1%, with no evidence of harm. What was studied in the review PQ kills gametocytes (malaria transmission stages) of the falciparum malaria parasite. Gametocytes infect mosquitoes during a bite, thus perpetuating transmission. There is concern that PQ may cause red blood cells to burst (haemolysis) in people with glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency, a genetically-determined condition common in many malaria-endemic settings, which can lead to anaemia. Recognizing concerns about the risk of haemolysis, the WHO reduced the recommended PQ dose from 0.75 mg/kg to 0.25 mg/kg in 2012. Ideally, this approach would be tested by randomly assigning villages to standard malaria treatment, or standard treatment plus a low dose of PQ, then measuring the effect on malaria over time but this would be difficult and expensive. So, indirect indicators are used to shed light on effectiveness, including feeding studies, in which mosquitoes are allowed to feed on people (or their blood), comparing those who were assigned PQ with those who were not. Alternatively, researchers may simply monitor the presence (prevalence), number (density), and duration (time of persistence

  13. Gametocitemia de Plasmodium falciparum según la respuesta terapéutica a sulfadoxina-pirimetamina y cloroquina en dos municipios de Antioquia, Colombia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eliana Arango

    2004-03-01

    Full Text Available Se ha informado que el número de gametocitos circulantes de Plasmodium falciparum está influenciado por aspectos como el nivel de endemicidad de la zona, la clase de esquizonticidas sanguíneos usados y la respuesta terapéutica a ellos. En Colombia son muy pocos los trabajos que han evaluado estas relaciones. Mediante un diseño experimental, se evaluó la gametocitemia (variable efecto en función del nivel endémico de dos municipios de Antioquia, del tratamiento (sulfadoxina-pirimetamina y sulfadoxina-pirimetamina más cloroquina y de la respuesta terapéutica (adecuada y fallida. Se estudiaron 148 pacientes con malaria por P. falciparum no complicada. La gametocitemia varía en función del tiempo de padecimiento de la malaria actual (mayor en Turbo que en Zaragoza y esta variable debe controlarse para eliminar la aparente diferencia en las gametocitemias por municipio. No se hallaron diferencias estadísticamente significativas en la gametocitemia (porcentaje de pacientes con gametocitos circulantes y cantidad de ellos por microlitro según el tratamiento y la respuesta terapéutica, aunque los niveles de gametocitos son mayores en los pacientes tratados sólo con sulfadoxinapirimetamina, respecto a quienes recibieron sulfadoxina-pirimetamina más cloroquina. Tampoco hubo diferencias en la gametocitemia según el sexo ni la edad de los pacientes, ni se halló correlación de ella con la parasitemia asexual. La diferencia en el nivel de gametocitemia encontrada entre los municiios de Turbo y Zaragoza parece estar influida por el tiempo transcurrido entre el inicio de los síntomas y la instauración del tratamiento.

  14. No Evidence of Delayed Parasite Clearance after Oral Artesunate Treatment of Uncomplicated Falciparum Malaria in Mali

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maiga, Amelia W.; Fofana, Bakary; Sagara, Issaka; Dembele, Demba; Dara, Antoine; Traore, Oumar Bila; Toure, Sekou; Sanogo, Kassim; Dama, Souleymane; Sidibe, Bakary; Kone, Aminatou; Thera, Mahamadou A.; Plowe, Christopher V.; Doumbo, Ogobara K.; Djimde, Abdoulaye A.

    2012-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum resistance to artemisinins by delayed parasite clearance is present in Southeast Asia. Scant data on parasite clearance after artemisinins are available from Africa, where transmission is high, burden is greatest, and artemisinin use is being scaled up. Children 1–10 years of age with uncomplicated malaria were treated with 7 days of artesunate and followed for 28 days. Blood smears were done every 8 hours until negative by light microscopy. Results were compared with a similar study conducted in the same village in 2002–2004. The polymerase chain reaction-corrected cure rate was 100%, identical to 2002–2004. By 24 hours after treatment initiation, 37.0% of participants had cleared parasitemia, compared with 31.9% in 2002–2004 (P = 0.5). The median parasite clearance time was 32 hours. Only one participant still had parasites at 48 hours and no participant presented parasitemia at 72 hours. Artesunate was highly efficacious, with no evidence of delayed parasite clearance. We provide baseline surveillance data for the emergence or dissemination of P. falciparum resistance in sub-Saharan Africa. PMID:22764287

  15. Efficacy and safety of atovaquone/proguanil as suppressive prophylaxis for Plasmodium falciparum malaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shanks, G D; Gordon, D M; Klotz, F W; Aleman, G M; Oloo, A J; Sadie, D; Scott, T R

    1998-09-01

    Currently recommended prophylactic regimens for Plasmodium falciparum malaria are associated with a high incidence of adverse events and/or suboptimal efficacy. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized clinical trial in western Kenya, adult volunteers received a treatment course of atovaquone/proguanil hydrochloride (250 mg/100 mg per tablet) to eliminate preexisting infection. Immediately thereafter, subjects were randomized to one of the three prophylactic regimens to receive one atovaquone/proguanil tablet daily (n = 68), two atovaquone/proguanil tablets daily (n = 65), or placebo (n = 65) for 10 weeks. The study endpoint for any subject was the development of parasitemia, evident on blood smear, during prophylaxis. Of the evaluable subjects, all in the low-dose (54 of 54) and high-dose (54 of 54) atovaquone/proguanil groups remained malaria-free during the 10-week prophylaxis period, in contrast to only 48% (26 of 54) in the placebo group (P proguanil prophylactic regimens were as well tolerated as placebo. Thus, atovaquone/proguanil appears to be highly efficacious and safe as prophylaxis for P. falciparum malaria.

  16. Proteomic identification of host and parasite biomarkers in saliva from patients with uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum malaria

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    Huang Honglei

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Malaria cases attributed to Plasmodium falciparum account for approximately 600,000 deaths yearly, mainly in African children. The gold standard method to diagnose malaria requires the visualization of the parasite in blood. The role of non-invasive diagnostic methods to diagnose malaria remains unclear. Methods A protocol was optimized to deplete highly abundant proteins from saliva to improve the dynamic range of the proteins identified and assess their suitability as candidate biomarkers of malaria infection. A starch-based amylase depletion strategy was used in combination with four different lectins to deplete glycoproteins (Concanavalin A and Aleuria aurantia for N-linked glycoproteins; jacalin and peanut agglutinin for O-linked glycoproteins. A proteomic analysis of depleted saliva samples was performed in 17 children with fever and a positive–malaria slide and compared with that of 17 malaria-negative children with fever. Results The proteomic signature of malaria-positive patients revealed a strong up-regulation of erythrocyte-derived and inflammatory proteins. Three P. falciparum proteins, PFL0480w, PF08_0054 and PFI0875w, were identified in malaria patients and not in controls. Aleuria aurantia and jacalin showed the best results for parasite protein identification. Conclusions This study shows that saliva is a suitable clinical specimen for biomarker discovery. Parasite proteins and several potential biomarkers were identified in patients with malaria but not in patients with other causes of fever. The diagnostic performance of these markers should be addressed prospectively.

  17. Platelet factor 4 activity against P. falciparum and its translation to nonpeptidic mimics as antimalarials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Love, Melissa S; Millholland, Melanie G; Mishra, Satish; Kulkarni, Swapnil; Freeman, Katie B; Pan, Wenxi; Kavash, Robert W; Costanzo, Michael J; Jo, Hyunil; Daly, Thomas M; Williams, Dewight R; Kowalska, M Anna; Bergman, Lawrence W; Poncz, Mortimer; DeGrado, William F; Sinnis, Photini; Scott, Richard W; Greenbaum, Doron C

    2012-12-13

    Plasmodium falciparum pathogenesis is affected by various cell types in the blood, including platelets, which can kill intraerythrocytic malaria parasites. Platelets could mediate these antimalarial effects through human defense peptides (HDPs), which exert antimicrobial effects by permeabilizing membranes. Therefore, we screened a panel of HDPs and determined that human platelet factor 4 (hPF4) kills malaria parasites inside erythrocytes by selectively lysing the parasite digestive vacuole (DV). PF4 rapidly accumulates only within infected erythrocytes and is required for parasite killing in infected erythrocyte-platelet cocultures. To exploit this antimalarial mechanism, we tested a library of small, nonpeptidic mimics of HDPs (smHDPs) and identified compounds that kill P. falciparum by rapidly lysing the parasite DV while sparing the erythrocyte plasma membrane. Lead smHDPs also reduced parasitemia in a murine malaria model. Thus, identifying host molecules that control parasite growth can further the development of related molecules with therapeutic potential. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Plasmodium falciparum secretome in erythrocyte and beyond

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    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.

  19. Dangerous liaisons: Molecular basis for a syndemic relationship between Kaposi’s sarcoma and P. falciparum malaria

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    Katelyn L. Conant

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available The most severe manifestations of malaria (caused by P. falciparum occur as a direct result of parasitemia following invasion of erythrocytes by post-liver blood-stage merozoites, and during subsequent cyto-adherence of infected erythrocytes to the vascular endothelium. However, the disproportionate epidemiologic clustering of severe malaria with aggressive forms of endemic diseases such as Kaposi’s sarcoma, a neoplasm that is etiologically linked to infection with Kaposi’s sarcoma-associated herpesvirus [KSHV], underscores the significance of previously unexplored co-pathogenetic interactions that have the potential to modify the overall disease burden in co-infected individuals. Based on recent studies of the mechanisms that P. falciparum and KSHV have evolved to interact with their mutual human host, several new perspectives are emerging that highlight a surprising convergence of biological themes potentially underlying their associated co-morbidities. Against this background, ongoing studies are rapidly constructing a fascinating new paradigm in which the major host receptors that control parasite invasion (Basigin/CD147 and cyto-adherence (CD36 are, surprisingly, also important targets for exploitation by KSHV. In this article, we consider the major pathobiological implications of the co-option of Basigin/CD147 and CD36 signaling pathways by both P. falciparum and KSHV, not only as essential host factors for parasite persistence but also as important mediators of the pro-angiogenic phenotype within the virus-infected endothelial microenvironment. Consequently, the triangulation of interactions between P. falciparum, KSHV, and their mutual human host articulates a syndemic relationship that points to a conceptual framework for prevalence of aggressive forms of Kaposi’s sarcoma in malaria endemic areas, with implications for the possibility of dual-use therapies against these debilitating infections in resource-limited parts of the

  20. Efficacy and safety of atovaquone/proguanil compared with mefloquine for treatment of acute Plasmodium falciparum malaria in Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Looareesuwan, S; Wilairatana, P; Chalermarut, K; Rattanapong, Y; Canfield, C J; Hutchinson, D B

    1999-04-01

    The increasing frequency of therapeutic failures in falciparum malaria underscores the need for novel, rapidly effective antimalarial drugs or drug combinations. Atovaquone and proguanil are blood schizonticides that demonstrate synergistic activity against multi-drug-resistant Plasmodium falciparum in vitro. In an open-label, randomized, controlled clinical trial conducted in Thailand, adult patients with acute P. falciparum malaria were randomly assigned to treatment with atovaquone and proguanil/hydrochloride (1,000 mg and 400 mg, respectively, administered orally at 24-hr intervals for three doses) or mefloquine (750 mg administered orally, followed 6 hr later by an additional 500-mg dose). Efficacy was assessed by cure rate (the percentage of patients in whom parasitemia was eliminated and did not recur during 28 days of follow-up), parasite clearance time (PCT), and fever clearance time (FCT). Safety was assessed by sequential clinical and laboratory assessments for 28 days. Atovaquone/proguanil was significantly more effective than mefloquine (cure rate 100% [79 of 79] vs. 86% [68 of 79]; P proguanil and mefloquine treatments did not differ with respect to PCT (mean = 65 hr versus 74 hr) or FCT (mean = 59 hr versus 51 hr). Adverse events were generally typical of malaria symptoms and each occurred in proguanil group. Transient elevations of liver enzyme levels occurred more frequently in patients treated with atovaquone/proguanil than with mefloquine, but the differences were not significant and values returned to normal by day 28 in most patients. The combination of atovaquone and proguanil was well tolerated and more effective than mefloquine in the treatment of acute uncomplicated multidrug-resistant falciparum malaria in Thailand.

  1. Survey of chloroquine-resistant mutations in the Plasmodium falciparum pfcrt and pfmdr-1 genes in Hadhramout, Yemen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bamaga, Omar A A; Mahdy, Mohammed A K; Lim, Yvonne A L

    2015-09-01

    Malaria is still a major public health problem in Yemen. More than 95% of the malaria cases are due to Plasmodium ‎falciparum‎. Recently in Yemen, the antimalarial treatment policy was changed from chloroquine (CQ) to artemisinin combination therapy (ACTs). However, CQ is still available and prescribed in the Yemeni market. The persistence of CQ resistance will be prolonged if the shift to ACT and the simultaneous withdrawal of CQ are not rigorously implemented. The aim of the current survey is to detect chloroquine-resistant mutations in P. falciparum chloroquine-resistance transporter (pfcrt) and P. falciparum multi-drug resistance-1 (pfmdr1) genes. These data will be important for future monitoring and assessment of antimalarial drug policy in Yemen. Blood specimens were collected from 735 individuals from different districts of the Hadhramout province, Yemen by house-to-house visit. Mutation-specific nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) methods were used to investigate the mutations in the pfmdr1(codons 86 and 1246) and pfcrt (codons 76, 271, 326, 356 and 371) genes. The overall prevalence of pfcrt mutations at codons 76, 271, 326 and 371 were 50.4%, 58.7%, 54.3% and 44.9%, respectively. All isolates had wild-type pfcrt 356 allele. The majority of pfmdr1 86 alleles (83.3%) and all pfmdr1 1246 alleles were wild type. There was no association between pfcrt mutations and symptomatology, gender and age groups. In conclusion, point mutations in codons 76, 271, 326 and 371 of pfcrt of P. falciparum are high suggesting a sustained high CQ resistance even after 4 years of shifting to ACTs. These findings warrant complete withdrawal of CQ use from the Yemeni market for P. falciparum and careful usage of CQ for treating Plasmodium vivax. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Severe Plasmodium falciparum malaria is associated with circulating ultra-large von Willebrand multimers and ADAMTS13 inhibition.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Larkin, Deirdre

    2009-03-01

    Plasmodium falciparum infection results in adhesion of infected erythrocytes to blood vessel endothelium, and acute endothelial cell activation, together with sequestration of platelets and leucocytes. We have previously shown that patients with severe infection or fulminant cerebral malaria have significantly increased circulatory levels of the adhesive glycoprotein von Willebrand factor (VWF) and its propeptide, both of which are indices of endothelial cell activation. In this prospective study of patients from Ghana with severe (n = 20) and cerebral (n = 13) P. falciparum malaria, we demonstrate that increased plasma VWF antigen (VWF:Ag) level is associated with disproportionately increased VWF function. VWF collagen binding (VWF:CB) was significantly increased in patients with cerebral malaria and severe malaria (medians 7.6 and 7.0 IU\\/ml versus 1.9 IU\\/ml; p<0.005). This increased VWF:CB correlated with the presence of abnormal ultra-large VWF multimers in patient rather than control plasmas. Concomitant with the increase in VWF:Ag and VWF:CB was a significant persistent reduction in the activity of the VWF-specific cleaving protease ADAMTS13 (approximately 55% of normal; p<0.005). Mixing studies were performed using P. falciparum patient plasma and normal pooled plasma, in the presence or absence of exogenous recombinant ADAMTS13. These studies demonstrated that in malarial plasma, ADAMTS13 function was persistently inhibited in a time-dependent manner. Furthermore, this inhibitory effect was not associated with the presence of known inhibitors of ADAMTS13 enzymatic function (interleukin-6, free haemoglobin, factor VIII or thrombospondin-1). These novel findings suggest that severe P. falciparum infection is associated with acute endothelial cell activation, abnormal circulating ULVWF multimers, and a significant reduction in plasma ADAMTS13 function which is mediated at least in part by an unidentified inhibitor.

  3. Clinical trial of extended-dose chloroquine for treatment of resistant falciparum malaria among Afghan refugees in Pakistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, Natasha; Durrani, Naeem; Sanda, Sanda; Beshir, Khalid; Hallett, Rachel; Rowland, Mark

    2011-06-23

    Falciparum malaria is a significant problem for Afghan refugees in Pakistan. Refugee treatment guidelines recommended standard three-day chloroquine treatment (25 mg/kg) for first episodes and extended five-day treatment (40 mg/kg) for recrudescent infections, based on the assumption that a five-day course would more likely achieve a cure. An in-vivo randomized controlled trial was conducted among refugees with uncomplicated falciparum malaria to determine whether five-day treatment (CQ40) was more effective than standard treatment (CQ25). 142 falciparum patients were recruited into CQ25 or CQ40 treatment arms and followed up to 60 days with regular blood smears. The primary outcome was parasitological cure without recrudescence. Treatment failures were retreated with CQ40. PCR genotyping of 270 samples, from the same and nearby sites, was used to support interpretation of outcomes. 84% of CQ25 versus 51% of CQ40 patients experienced parasite recrudescence during follow-up (adjusted odds ratio 0.17, 95%CI 0.08-0.38). Cure rates were significantly improved with CQ40, particularly among adults. Fever clearance time, parasite clearance time, and proportions gametocytaemic post-treatment were similar between treatment groups. Second-line CQ40 treatment resulted in higher failure rates than first-line CQ40 treatment. CQ-resistance marker pfcrt 76T was found in all isolates analysed, while pfmdr1 86Y and 184Y were found in 18% and 37% of isolates respectively. CQ is not suitable for first-line falciparum treatment in Afghan refugee communities. The extended-dose CQ regimen can overcome 39% of resistant infections that would recrudesce under the standard regimen, but the high failure rate after directly observed treatment demonstrates its use is inappropriate.

  4. Structure-based drug design, synthesis and biological assays of P. falciparum Atg3-Atg8 protein-protein interaction inhibitors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villa, Stefania; Legnani, Laura; Colombo, Diego; Gelain, Arianna; Lammi, Carmen; Bongiorno, Daniele; Ilboudo, Denise P.; McGee, Kellen E.; Bosch, Jürgen; Grazioso, Giovanni

    2018-03-01

    The proteins involved in the autophagy (Atg) pathway have recently been considered promising targets for the development of new antimalarial drugs. In particular, inhibitors of the protein-protein interaction (PPI) between Atg3 and Atg8 of Plasmodium falciparum retarded the blood- and liver-stages of parasite growth. In this paper, we used computational techniques to design a new class of peptidomimetics mimicking the Atg3 interaction motif, which were then synthesized by click-chemistry. Surface plasmon resonance has been employed to measure the ability of these compounds to inhibit the Atg3-Atg8 reciprocal protein-protein interaction. Moreover, P. falciparum growth inhibition in red blood cell cultures was evaluated as well as the cyto-toxicity of the compounds.

  5. Effects of the vascular endothelial growth factor receptor-2 (VEGFR-2) inhibitor SU5416 on in vitro cultures of Plasmodium falciparum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hempel, Casper; Hoyer, Nils; Staalsø, Trine

    2014-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is taken up by parasitized red blood cells during malaria and stimulates intra-erythrocytic growth of Plasmodium falciparum in vitro. The cause and consequence of this uptake is not understood. METHODS: Plasmodium falciparum was cultured......, SU5416, dose-dependently inhibited growth. None of the treatments reduced intracellular VEGF levels. Thus, the anti-parasitic effect of SU5416 seemed independent of VEGF uptake. SU5416 reduced phosphorylated tyrosine in parasitized red blood cells. Similarly, the broad-spectrum tyrosine kinase...... in vitro. Parasite growth and intracellular VEGF levels were assessed using flow cytometry. Intracellular VEGF was visualized by fluorescence immunocytochemistry. Phosphorylated tyrosine was measured by western blotting. In vivo assessment of intra-erythrocytic VEGF was performed in Plasmodium berghei ANKA...

  6. 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

    2018-05-01

    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

  7. Genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum isolates from naturally infected children in north-central Nigeria using the merozoite surface protein-2 as molecular marker.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oyedeji, Segun Isaac; Awobode, Henrietta Oluwatoyin; Anumudu, Chiaka; Kun, Jürgen

    2013-08-01

    To characterize the genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum (P. falciparum) field isolates in children from Lafia, North-central Nigeria, using the highly polymorphic P. falciparum merozoite surface protein 2 (MSP-2) gene as molecular marker. Three hundred and twenty children were enrolled into the study between 2005 and 2006. These included 140 children who presented with uncomplicated malaria at the Dalhatu Araf Specialist Hospital, Lafia and another 180 children from the study area with asymptomatic infection. DNA was extracted from blood spot on filter paper and MSP-2 genes were genotyped using allele-specific nested PCR in order to analyze the genetic diversity of parasite isolates. A total of 31 and 34 distinct MSP-2 alleles were identified in the asymptomatic and uncomplicated malaria groups respectively. No difference was found between the multiplicity of infection in the asymptomatic group and that of the uncomplicated malaria group (P>0.05). However, isolates of the FC27 allele type were dominant in the asymptomatic group whereas isolates of the 3D7 allele type were dominant in the uncomplicated malaria group. This study showed a high genetic diversity of P. falciparum isolates in North-central Nigeria and is comparable to reports from similar areas with high malaria transmission intensity. Copyright © 2013 Hainan Medical College. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Dynamics of malaria transmission and susceptibility to clinical malaria episodes following treatment of Plasmodium falciparum asymptomatic carriers: results of a cluster-randomized study of community-wide screening and treatment, and a parallel entomology study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tiono, Alfred B; Guelbeogo, Moussa W; Sagnon, N Falé; Nébié, Issa; Sirima, Sodiomon B; Mukhopadhyay, Amitava; Hamed, Kamal

    2013-11-12

    In malaria-endemic countries, large proportions of individuals infected with Plasmodium falciparum are asymptomatic and constitute a reservoir of parasites for infection of newly hatched mosquitoes. Two studies were run in parallel in Burkina Faso to evaluate the impact of systematic identification and treatment of asymptomatic carriers of P. falciparum, detected by rapid diagnostic test, on disease transmission and susceptibility to clinical malaria episodes. A clinical study assessed the incidence of symptomatic malaria episodes with a parasite density >5,000/μL after three screening and treatment campaigns ~1 month apart before the rainy season; and an entomological study determined the effect of these campaigns on malaria transmission as measured by entomological inoculation rate. The intervention arm had lower prevalence of asymptomatic carriers of asexual parasites and lower prevalence of gametocyte carriers during campaigns 2 and 3 as compared to the control arm. During the entire follow-up period, out of 13,767 at-risk subjects, 2,516 subjects (intervention arm 1,332; control arm 1,184) had symptomatic malaria. Kaplan-Meier analysis of the incidence of first symptomatic malaria episode with a parasite density >5,000/μL showed that, in the total population, the two treatment arms were similar until Week 11-12 after campaign 3, corresponding with the beginning of the malaria transmission season, after which the probability of being free of symptomatic malaria was lower in the intervention arm (logrank p entomological inoculation rate was comparable in both arms, with September peaks in both indices. Community screening and targeted treatment of asymptomatic carriers of P. falciparum had no effect on the dynamics of malaria transmission, but seemed to be associated with an increase in the treated community's susceptibility to symptomatic malaria episodes after the screening campaigns had finished. These results highlight the importance of further

  9. Genetic Diversity of Plasmodium falciparum Merozoite Surface Protein-1 Block 2 in Sites of Contrasting Altitudes and Malaria Endemicities in the Mount Cameroon Region

    OpenAIRE

    Wanji, Samuel; Kengne-Ouafo, Arnaud J.; Joan Eyong, Ebanga E.; Kimbi, Helen K.; Tendongfor, Nicholas; Ndamukong-Nyanga, Judith L.; Nana-Djeunga, Hugues C.; Bourguinat, Catherine; Sofeu-Feugaing, David D.; Charvet, Claude L.

    2012-01-01

    The present study analyzed the relationship between the genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum and parasitologic/entomologic indices in the Mount Cameroon region by using merozoite surface protein 1 as a genetic marker. Blood samples were collected from asymptomatic children from three altitude zones (high, intermediate, and low). Parasitologic and entomologic indices were determined by microscopy and landing catch mosquito collection/circumsporozoite protein–enzyme-linked immunosorbent a...

  10. Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes do not adhere well to C32 melanoma cells or CD36 unless rosettes with uninfected erythrocytes are first disrupted.

    OpenAIRE

    Handunnetti, S M; Hasler, T H; Howard, R J

    1992-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasites modify the human erythrocytes in which they grow so that some parasitized erythrocytes (PE) can cytoadhere (C+) to host vascular endothelial cells or adhere in rosettes (R+) to uninfected erythrocytes. These C+ and R+ adherence properties of PE appear to mediate much of the pathogenesis of severe malaria infections, in part by blocking blood flow in microvessels. From one parasite strain, PE were selected in vitro for C+ R+ or C+ R- adherence properties...

  11. A specific PfEMP1 is expressed in P. falciparum sporozoites and plays a role in hepatocyte infection

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zanghì, Gigliola; Vembar, Shruthi S; Baumgarten, Sebastian

    2018-01-01

    Heterochromatin plays a central role in the process of immune evasion, pathogenesis, and transmission of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum during blood stage infection. Here, we use ChIP sequencing to demonstrate that sporozoites from mosquito salivary glands expand heterochromatin......_SpzPfEMP1. Overall, we show that the epigenetic signature of var genes is reset in mosquito stages. Moreover, the identification of a strain-specific sporozoite PfEMP1 is highly relevant for vaccine design based on sporozoites....

  12. Clinical presentation of severe malaria due plasmodiun falciparum. casecontrol study in Tumaco and Turbo (Colombia. Clínica de la malaria complicada debida a P. falciparum Estudio de casos y controles en Tumaco y Turbo (Colombia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaime Carmona Fonseca

    2006-04-01

    Full Text Available Background: Latin American studies on severe falciparum malaria are scarce, therefore, the pattern of complications of the region is uknown. Objectives. To identify characterize severe malaria in patients from Tumaco (Nariño and Turbo (Antioquia in Colombia. Methods. The 2000 World Health Organization criteria for complicated malaria were applied in a cases and controls study. Results. 64 cases (P falciparum complicated malaria and 135 controls (P falciparum uncomplicated malaria were included. The time of evolution of the disease (mean 5.6 days in cases and 5.9 in the controls and the frequency of most symptoms were similar in both groups (p>0.05. However, respiratory distress and jaundice was more frequent in the cases (p<0.05. The mean glycemia and creatinina values were similar in both groups; hemoglobin and platelet count were lower in the cases (p<0.05 when compared to controls. On the other hand, blood ureic nitrogen, aspartatoaminotransferase, and total and direct bilirrubin were lower in controls (p<0.05. The frequency of complications in the cases was as follows: hyperparasitaemia 48%, liver dysfunction 44%, acute respiratory distress syndrome 9%, kidney failure 6%, severe thrombocytopenia 5%, severe anemia 3%, cerebral malaria 3% and severe hipoglycemia 2%. The WHO criteria for severe malaria were compared with others and the implications are discussed. Antecedentes y problema: son muy pocos los estudios latinoamericanos sobre malaria por Plasmodium falciparum (P falciparum complicada y se requiere estudiarla para identificar un patrón propio. OBJETIVOS. Identificar las complicaciones presentes en pacientes de Tumaco (Nariño y Turbo (Antioquia en Colombia, con malaria por P falciparum. MÉTODOS. Diseño de casos y controles. Se aplicaron los criterios diagnósticos de complicación OMS-2000 (Organización Mundial de la Salud. RESULTADOS. Se captaron 64 casos (con malaria por P. falciparum complicada y 135 controles (con malaria por

  13. Environmental control of asexual reproduction and somatic growth of Aurelia spp. (Cnidaria, Scyphozoa) polyps from the Adriatic Sea

    OpenAIRE

    Hubot, Nathan; Lucas, Cathy H.; Piraino, Stefano

    2017-01-01

    Polyps of two moon jellyfish species, Aurelia coerulea and A.relicta, from two Adriatic Sea coastal habitats were incubated under multiple combinations of temperature (14, 21 °C), salinity (24, 37 ppt) and food regime (9.3, 18.6, 27.9 μg C ind‾¹ week‾¹) to comparatively assess how these factors may influence major asexual reproduction processes in the two species. Both species exhibited a shared pattern of budding mode (Directly Budded Polyps: DBP; Stolonal Budded Polyps: SBP), with DBP favo...

  14. A method for visualizing surface-exposed and internal PfEMP1 adhesion antigens in Plasmodium falciparum infected erythrocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arnot David E

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The insertion of parasite antigens into the host erythrocyte membrane and the structure and distribution of Plasmodium falciparum adhesion receptors on that membrane are poorly understood. Laser scanning confocal microscopy (LSCM and a novel labelling and fixation method have been used to obtain high resolution immuno-fluorescent images of erythrocyte surface PfEMP1 and internal antigens which allow analysis of the accumulation of PfEMP1 on the erythrocyte membrane during asexual development. Methods A novel staining technique has been developed which permits distinction between erythrocyte surface PfEMP1 and intracellular PfEMP1, in parasites whose nuclear material is exceptionally well resolved. Primary antibody detection by fluorescence is carried out on the live parasitized erythrocyte. The surface labelled cells are then fixed using paraformaldehyde and permeabilized with a non-ionic detergent to permit access of antibodies to internal parasite antigens. Differentiation between surface and internal antigens is achieved using antibodies labelled with different fluorochromes and confocal microscopy Results Surface exposed PfEMP1 is first detectable by antibodies at the trophozoite stage of intracellular parasite development although the improved detection method indicates that there are differences between different laboratory isolates in the kinetics of accumulation of surface-exposed PfEMP1. Conclusion A sensitive method for labelling surface and internal PfEMP1 with up to three different fluorochromes has been developed for laser scanning confocal optical microscopy and the analysis of the developmental expression of malaria adhesion antigens.

  15. Active case detection, treatment of falciparum malaria with combined chloroquine and sulphadoxine/pyrimethamine and vivax malaria with chloroquine and molecular markers of anti-malarial resistance in the Republic of Vanuatu

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rogers William O

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Chloroquine-resistant Plasmodium falciparum was first described in the Republic of Vanuatu in the early 1980s. In 1991, the Vanuatu Ministry of Health instituted new treatment guidelines for uncomplicated P. falciparum infection consisting of chloroquine/sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine combination therapy. Chloroquine remains the recommended treatment for Plasmodium vivax. Methods In 2005, cross-sectional blood surveys at 45 sites on Malo Island were conducted and 4,060 adults and children screened for malaria. Of those screened, 203 volunteer study subjects without malaria at the time of screening were followed for 13 weeks to observe peak seasonal incidence of infection. Another 54 subjects with malaria were followed over a 28-day period to determine efficacy of anti-malarial therapy; chloroquine alone for P. vivax and chloroquine/sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine for P. falciparum infections. Results The overall prevalence of parasitaemia by mass blood screening was 6%, equally divided between P. falciparum and P. vivax. Twenty percent and 23% of participants with patent P. vivax and P. falciparum parasitaemia, respectively, were febrile at the time of screening. In the incidence study cohort, after 2,303 person-weeks of follow-up, the incidence density of malaria was 1.3 cases per person-year with P. vivax predominating. Among individuals participating in the clinical trial, the 28-day chloroquine P. vivax cure rate was 100%. The 28-day chloroquine/sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine P. falciparum cure rate was 97%. The single treatment failure, confirmed by merozoite surface protein-2 genotyping, was classified as a day 28 late parasitological treatment failure. All P. falciparum isolates carried the Thr-76 pfcrt mutant allele and the double Asn-108 + Arg-59 dhfr mutant alleles. Dhps mutant alleles were not detected in the study sample. Conclusion Peak seasonal malaria prevalence on Malo Island reached hypoendemic levels during the study

  16. In vivo and in vitro Plasmodium falciparum Resistance to Chloroquine, Amodiaquine and Quinine in the Brazilian Amazon

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aluisio Augusto Cotrim SEGURADO

    1997-03-01

    Full Text Available In order to study the chemoresistance of Plasmodium falciparum to commonly used antimalarial drugs in Brazil the authors have studied ten patients with falciparum malaria, acquired in the Brazilian Amazon region. Patients were submitted to in vivo study of drug sensitivity, after chemotherapy with either 4-aminoquinolines (chloroquine or amodiaquine or quinine. Adequate drug absorption was confirmed by standard urine excretion tests for antimalarials. Eight patients could be followed up to 28 days. Among these in vivo resistance (R I and R II responses was seen in all patients who received 4-amino-quinolines. One patient treated with quinine exhibited a R III response. Peripheral blood samples of the same patients were submitted to in vitro microtests for sensitivity to antimalarials. Out of nine successful tests, resistance to chloroquine and amodiaquine was found in 100% and resistance to quinine in 11.11% of isolates. Probit analysis of log dose-response was used to determine effective concentrations EC50, EC90 and EC99 to the studied drugs. Good correlation between in vivo and in vitro results was seen in six patients. The results emphasize high levels of P. falciparum resistance to 4- aminoquinolines and suggest an increase in resistance to quinine in the Brazilian Amazon region, reinforcing the need for continuous monitoring of drug sensitivity to adequate chemotherapy according to the most efficacious drug regimensResistência in vivo e in vitro do Plasmodium falciparum à cloroquina, amodiaquina e quinino na Amazônia Brasileira. Com o propósito de avaliar a resistência do Plasmodium falciparum às drogas antimaláricas, rotineiramente empregadas no Brasil, os autores acompanharam dez pacientes com malária falciparum adquirida na Amazônia brasileira. Os pacientes foram submetidos a estudo in vivo de sensibilidade a drogas, após tratamento com derivados 4-aminoquinoleínicos (cloroquina e amodiaquina ou quinino. A absorção das

  17. Paludismo por Plasmodium falciparum adquirido en África subsahariana Plasmodium falciparum malaria acquired in Subsaharian Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ricardo Durlach

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available El objetivo de este trabajo es presentar los casos de paludismo por Plasmodium falciparum ocurridos en viajeros provenientes del África tropical, atendidos en el Hospital Alemán. Se definió paludismo de origen africano como la infección adquirida en un país del África subsahariana, diagnosticado y tratado en la Argentina. El diagnóstico se realizó por la clínica y la microscopía óptica en frotis de sangre periférica coloreados con Giemsa. Se revieron las historias clínicas de 11 pacientes adultos -cinco turistas y seis marineros mercantes- no oriundos de área endémica, sin condición inmunosupresora, ni morbilidad asociada, internados entre 1993 y 2007. El rango de edad fue de 21 a 48 años; nueve hombres y dos mujeres. Los pacientes fueron clasificados retrospectivamente en malaria grave (seis o no grave (cinco según cumplieran con uno o más de los criterios de gravedad de la Organización Mundial de la Salud. Todos presentaron fiebre como signo más significativo. Como complicaciones graves se observaron casos de insuficiencia renal, epistaxis, hemoglobinuria, hipoglucemia, edema pulmonar, acidosis y coma. Tres pacientes requirieron internación en la unidad de terapia intensiva. Todos sobrevivieron y solamente tres habían recibido la quimioprofilaxis correcta antes de viajar. El tratamiento se realizó con una o más de las siguientes drogas: mefloquina, quinidina, clindamicina y cotrimoxazol.The purpose of this paper is to present the cases of malaria caused by Plasmodium falciparum in travelers coming from tropical Africa, who were treated at the Hospital Alemán (Buenos Aires. African malaria was defined as an infection acquired in any country within Africa, diagnosed and treated in Argentina. Diagnostic tools included clinical features and optic microscopy with Giemsa stained peripheral blood films. We reviewed the medical records of 11 adult patients -five tourists and six sailors- with no history of malaria

  18. Mutation accumulation and fitness effects in hybridogenetic populations: a comparison to sexual and asexual systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bagheri Homayoun C

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Female only unisexual vertebrates that reproduce by hybridogenesis show an unusual genetic composition. They are of hybrid origin but show no recombination between the genomes of their parental species. Instead, the paternal genome is discarded from the germline prior to meiosis, and gametes (eggs only contain solely unrecombined maternal genomes. Hence hybridogens only transmit maternally inherited mutations. Hybridity is restored each generation by backcrossing with males of the sexual parental species whose genome was eliminated. In contrast, recombining sexual species propagate an intermixed pool of mutations derived from the maternal and paternal parts of the genome. If mutation rates are lower in female gametes than males, it raises the possibility for lower mutation accumulation in a hybridogenetic population, and consequently, higher population fitness than its sexual counterpart. Results We show through Monte-Carlo simulations that at higher male to female mutation ratios, and sufficiently large population sizes, hybridogenetic populations can carry a lower mutation load than sexual species. This effect is more pronounced with synergistic forms of epistasis. Mutations accumulate faster on the sexual part of the genome, and with the purifying effects of epistasis, it makes it more difficult for mutations to be transmitted on the clonal part of the genome. In smaller populations, the same mechanism reduces the speed of Muller's Ratchet and the number of fixed mutations compared to similar asexual species. Conclusion Since mutation accumulation can be less pronounced in hybridogenetic populations, the question arises why hybridogenetic organisms are so scarce compared to sexual species. In considering this, it is likely that comparison of population fitnesses is not sufficient. Despite competition with the sexual parental species, hybrid populations are dependent on the maintenance of – and contact with – their

  19. A cross strain Plasmodium falciparum microarray optimized for the transcriptome analysis of Plasmodium falciparum patient derived isolates

    KAUST Repository

    Subudhi, Amit

    2016-07-20

    Malarial parasite P. falciparum, an apicomplexan protozoan has a 23.3 MB nuclear genome and encodes ~ 5600 transcripts. The genetic diversity of the parasite within and across geographical zones is a challenge to gene expression studies which are essential for understanding of disease process, outcome and developing markers for diagnostics and prognostics. Here, we describe the strategy involved in designing a custom P. falciparum 15K array using the Agilent platform and Genotypic\\'s Right Design methodology to study the transcriptome of Indian field isolates for which genome sequence information is limited. The array contains probes representing genome sequences of two distinct geographical isolates (i.e. 3D7 and HB3) and sub-telomeric var gene sequences of a third isolate (IT4) known to adhere in culture condition. Probes in the array have been selected based on their efficiency to detect transcripts through a 244K array experimentation. Array performance for the 15K array, was evaluated and validated using RNA materials from P. falciparum clinical isolates. A large percentage (91%) of the represented transcripts was detected from Indian P. falciparum patient isolates. Replicated probes and multiple probes representing the same gene showed perfect correlation between them suggesting good probe performance. Additional transcripts could be detected due to inclusion of unique probes representing HB3 strain transcripts. Variant surface antigen (VSA) transcripts were detected by optimized probes representing the VSA genes of three geographically distinct strains. The 15K cross strain P. falciparum array has shown good efficiency in detecting transcripts from P. falciparum parasite samples isolated from patients. The low parasite loads and presence of host RNA makes arrays a preferred platform for gene expression studies over RNA-Seq.

  20. A cross strain Plasmodium falciparum microarray optimized for the transcriptome analysis of Plasmodium falciparum patient derived isolates

    KAUST Repository

    Subudhi, Amit; Boopathi, P.A.; Middha, Sheetal; Acharya, Jyoti; Rao, Sudha Narayana; Mugasimangalam, Raja C.; Sirohi, Paramendra; Kochar, Sanjay K.; Kochar, Dhanpat K.; Das, Ashis

    2016-01-01

    Malarial parasite P. falciparum, an apicomplexan protozoan has a 23.3 MB nuclear genome and encodes ~ 5600 transcripts. The genetic diversity of the parasite within and across geographical zones is a challenge to gene expression studies which are essential for understanding of disease process, outcome and developing markers for diagnostics and prognostics. Here, we describe the strategy involved in designing a custom P. falciparum 15K array using the Agilent platform and Genotypic's Right Design methodology to study the transcriptome of Indian field isolates for which genome sequence information is limited. The array contains probes representing genome sequences of two distinct geographical isolates (i.e. 3D7 and HB3) and sub-telomeric var gene sequences of a third isolate (IT4) known to adhere in culture condition. Probes in the array have been selected based on their efficiency to detect transcripts through a 244K array experimentation. Array performance for the 15K array, was evaluated and validated using RNA materials from P. falciparum clinical isolates. A large percentage (91%) of the represented transcripts was detected from Indian P. falciparum patient isolates. Replicated probes and multiple probes representing the same gene showed perfect correlation between them suggesting good probe performance. Additional transcripts could be detected due to inclusion of unique probes representing HB3 strain transcripts. Variant surface antigen (VSA) transcripts were detected by optimized probes representing the VSA genes of three geographically distinct strains. The 15K cross strain P. falciparum array has shown good efficiency in detecting transcripts from P. falciparum parasite samples isolated from patients. The low parasite loads and presence of host RNA makes arrays a preferred platform for gene expression studies over RNA-Seq.

  1. Retention of Plasmodium falciparum ring-infected erythrocytes in the slow, open microcirculation of the human spleen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Safeukui, Innocent; Correas, Jean-Michel; Brousse, Valentine; Hirt, Déborah; Deplaine, Guillaume; Mulé, Sébastien; Lesurtel, Mickael; Goasguen, Nicolas; Sauvanet, Alain; Couvelard, Anne; Kerneis, Sophie; Khun, Huot; Vigan-Womas, Inès; Ottone, Catherine; Molina, Thierry Jo; Tréluyer, Jean-Marc; Mercereau-Puijalon, Odile; Milon, Geneviève; David, Peter H; Buffet, Pierre A

    2008-09-15

    The current paradigm in Plasmodium falciparum malaria pathogenesis states that young, ring-infected erythrocytes (rings) circulate in peripheral blood and that mature stages are sequestered in the vasculature, avoiding clearance by the spleen. Through ex vivo perfusion of human spleens, we examined the interaction of this unique blood-filtering organ with P falciparum-infected erythrocytes. As predicted, mature stages were retained. However, more than 50% of rings were also retained and accumulated upstream from endothelial sinus wall slits of the open, slow red pulp microcirculation. Ten percent of rings were retained at each spleen passage, a rate matching the proportion of blood flowing through the slow circulatory compartment established in parallel using spleen contrast-enhanced ultrasonography in healthy volunteers. Rings displayed a mildly but significantly reduced elongation index, consistent with a retention process, due to their altered mechanical properties. This raises the new paradigm of a heterogeneous ring population, the less deformable subset being retained in the spleen, thereby reducing the parasite biomass that will sequester in vital organs, influencing the risk of severe complications, such as cerebral malaria or severe anemia. Cryptic ring retention uncovers a new role for the spleen in the control of parasite density, opening novel intervention opportunities.

  2. Mefloquine treatment for uncomplicated falciparum malaria in young children 6-24 months of age in northern Ghana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fryauff, David J; Owusu-Agyei, Seth; Utz, Gregory; Baird, J Kevin; Koram, Kwadwo A; Binka, Fred; Nkrumah, Francis; Hoffman, Stephen L

    2007-02-01

    Mefloquine (MQ) single dose 20 mg/kg treatment of falciparum malaria was evaluated in 186 children of 6-24 months of age in northern Ghana. There were 15 RII/RIII-type parasitologic failures, all with Day 2 MQ blood levels significantly lower than children whose parasitemias cleared before Day 7 and remained clear through 28 days. Predictors of RII/RIII parasitologic response were vomiting after MQ dosing, Day 2 MQ levels < 500 ng/mL, and undetectable Day 2 levels of the carboxymefloquine metabolite. There were 50 cases of delayed RI parasitologic failure, but 71% of these cases had undetectable Day 28 blood levels of MQ and drug levels in the remaining 29% ranged below the 620 ng/mL level that suppresses MQ sensitive strains of P. falciparum. Drug levels among infants that tolerated MQ well were not associated with age, weight, hemoglobin, parasitemia, and pre-existing symptoms of vomiting or diarrhea. An observed recurrent parasitemia of 34,400 trophozoites/microL against a MQ blood concentration of 550 ng/mL was taken as indication of tolerance to suppressive levels of the drug at this location.

  3. Selective and specific inhibition of the plasmodium falciparum lysyl-tRNA synthetase by the fungal secondary metabolite cladosporin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoepfner, Dominic; McNamara, Case W; Lim, Chek Shik; Studer, Christian; Riedl, Ralph; Aust, Thomas; McCormack, Susan L; Plouffe, David M; Meister, Stephan; Schuierer, Sven; Plikat, Uwe; Hartmann, Nicole; Staedtler, Frank; Cotesta, Simona; Schmitt, Esther K; Petersen, Frank; Supek, Frantisek; Glynne, Richard J; Tallarico, John A; Porter, Jeffrey A; Fishman, Mark C; Bodenreider, Christophe; Diagana, Thierry T; Movva, N Rao; Winzeler, Elizabeth A

    2012-06-14

    With renewed calls for malaria eradication, next-generation antimalarials need be active against drug-resistant parasites and efficacious against both liver- and blood-stage infections. We screened a natural product library to identify inhibitors of Plasmodium falciparum blood- and liver-stage proliferation. Cladosporin, a fungal secondary metabolite whose target and mechanism of action are not known for any species, was identified as having potent, nanomolar, antiparasitic activity against both blood and liver stages. Using postgenomic methods, including a yeast deletion strains collection, we show that cladosporin specifically inhibits protein synthesis by directly targeting P. falciparum cytosolic lysyl-tRNA synthetase. Further, cladosporin is >100-fold more potent against parasite lysyl-tRNA synthetase relative to the human enzyme, which is conferred by the identity of two amino acids within the enzyme active site. Our data indicate that lysyl-tRNA synthetase is an attractive, druggable, antimalarial target that can be selectively inhibited. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Cytoadherence and sequestration in Plasmodium falciparum: defining the ties that bind.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherman, Irwin W; Eda, Shigetoshi; Winograd, Enrique

    2003-08-01

    Infected erythrocytes containing the more mature stages of the human malaria Plasmodium falciparum may adhere to endothelial cells and uninfected red cells. These phenomena, called sequestration and rosetting, respectively, are involved in both host pathogenesis and parasite survival. This review provides a critical summary of recent advances in the characterization of the molecules of the infected red blood cell involved in adhesion, i.e. parasite-encoded molecules (PfEMP1, MESA, rifins, stevor, clag 9, histidine-rich protein), a modified host membrane protein (band 3) and exofacial exposure of phosphatidylserine, as well as receptors on the endothelium, i.e. thrombospondin, CD36, ICAM-1 (intercellular adhesion molecule), and chondroitin sulfate.

  5. Malarone treatment failure and in vitro confirmation of resistance of Plasmodium falciparum isolate from Lagos, Nigeria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Warhurst David C

    2002-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract We report the first in vitro and genetic confirmation of Malarone® (GlaxoSmithKline; atovaquone and proguanil hydrochloride resistance in Plasmodium falciparum acquired in Africa. On presenting with malaria two weeks after returning from a 4-week visit to Lagos, Nigeria without prophylaxis, a male patient was given a standard 3-day treatment course of Malarone®. Twenty-eight days later the parasitaemia recrudesced. Parasites were cultured from the blood and the isolate (NGATV01 was shown to be resistant to atovaquone and the antifolate pyrimethamine. The cytochrome b gene of isolate NGATV01 showed a single mutation, Tyr268Asn which has not been seen previously.

  6. Plasmodium falciparum full life cycle and Plasmodium ovale liver stages in humanized mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soulard, Valérie; Bosson-Vanga, Henriette; Lorthiois, Audrey; Roucher, Clémentine; Franetich, Jean-François; Zanghi, Gigliola; Bordessoulles, Mallaury; Tefit, Maurel; Thellier, Marc; Morosan, Serban; Le Naour, Gilles; Capron, Frédérique; Suemizu, Hiroshi; Snounou, Georges; Moreno-Sabater, Alicia; Mazier, Dominique

    2015-07-24

    Experimental studies of Plasmodium parasites that infect humans are restricted by their host specificity. Humanized mice offer a means to overcome this and further provide the opportunity to observe the parasites in vivo. Here we improve on previous protocols to achieve efficient double engraftment of TK-NOG mice by human primary hepatocytes and red blood cells. Thus, we obtain the complete hepatic development of P. falciparum, the transition to the erythrocytic stages, their subsequent multiplication, and the appearance of mature gametocytes over an extended period of observation. Furthermore, using sporozoites derived from two P. ovale-infected patients, we show that human hepatocytes engrafted in TK-NOG mice sustain maturation of the liver stages, and the presence of late-developing schizonts indicate the eventual activation of quiescent parasites. Thus, TK-NOG mice are highly suited for in vivo observations on the Plasmodium species of humans.

  7. Analyses of Interactions Between Heparin and the Apical Surface Proteins of Plasmodium falciparum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kobayashi, Kyousuke; Takano, Ryo; Takemae, Hitoshi; Sugi, Tatsuki; Ishiwa, Akiko; Gong, Haiyan; Recuenco, Frances C.; Iwanaga, Tatsuya; Horimoto, Taisuke; Akashi, Hiroomi; Kato, Kentaro

    2013-11-01

    Heparin, a sulfated glycoconjugate, reportedly inhibits the blood-stage growth of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Elucidation of the inhibitory mechanism is valuable for developing novel invasion-blocking treatments based on heparin. Merozoite surface protein 1 has been reported as a candidate target of heparin; however, to better understand the molecular mechanisms involved, we characterized the molecules that bind to heparin during merozoite invasion. Here, we show that heparin binds only at the apical tip of the merozoite surface and that multiple heparin-binding proteins localize preferentially in the apical organelles. To identify heparin-binding proteins, parasite proteins were fractionated by means of heparin affinity chromatography and subjected to immunoblot analysis with ligand-specific antibodies. All tested members of the Duffy and reticulocyte binding-like families bound to heparin with diverse affinities. These findings suggest that heparin masks the apical surface of merozoites and blocks interaction with the erythrocyte membrane after initial attachment.

  8. Plasmodium falciparum genotypes associated with chloroquine and amodiaquine resistance in Guinea-Bissau

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ursing, Johan; Kofoed, Poul-Erik; Rodrigues, Amabelia

    2007-01-01

    Chloroquine is the most commonly used antimalarial in Guinea-Bissau and high doses are routinely prescribed. Blood from 497 patients treated with different doses of chloroquine or amodiaquine were genotyped. Pfcrt and pfmdr1 polymorphisms were identified. Pfmsp2 analysis identified recrudescent...... infections. The pfcrt 72-76 haplotypes were CVIET and CVMNK. The pfcrt 76T prevalence was 23% at day 0 and 96%, 83% and 100% at recrudescence following treatment with 25 mg/kg and 50 mg/kg of chloroquine and 15 mg/kg of amodiaquine respectively. When treating pfcrt 76T carrying P. falciparum the efficacy...... of 50 mg/kg and 25 mg/kg of chloroquine was 78% and 34% respectively (P = 0.007). The genetic basis of chloroquine resistance is probably the same in Guinea-Bissau as in the rest of Africa. The low pfcrt 76T prevalence suggests that resistance to normal dose chloroquine does not confer a major advantage...

  9. High-throughput tri-colour flow cytometry technique to assess Plasmodium falciparum parasitaemia in bioassays

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tiendrebeogo, Regis W; Adu, Bright; Singh, Susheel K

    2014-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Unbiased flow cytometry-based methods have become the technique of choice in many laboratories for high-throughput, accurate assessments of malaria parasites in bioassays. A method to quantify live parasites based on mitotracker red CMXRos was recently described but consistent...... distinction of early ring stages of Plasmodium falciparum from uninfected red blood cells (uRBC) remains a challenge. METHODS: Here, a high-throughput, three-parameter (tri-colour) flow cytometry technique based on mitotracker red dye, the nucleic acid dye coriphosphine O (CPO) and the leucocyte marker CD45...... for enumerating live parasites in bioassays was developed. The technique was applied to estimate the specific growth inhibition index (SGI) in the antibody-dependent cellular inhibition (ADCI) assay and compared to parasite quantification by microscopy and mitotracker red staining. The Bland-Altman analysis...

  10. Transplacental Transmission of Plasmodium falciparum in a Highly Malaria Endemic Area of Burkina Faso

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alphonse Ouédraogo

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Malaria congenital infection constitutes a major risk in malaria endemic areas. In this study, we report the prevalence of transplacental malaria in Burkina Faso. In labour and delivery units, thick and thin blood films were made from maternal, placental, and umbilical cord blood to determine malaria infection. A total of 1,309 mother/baby pairs were recruited. Eighteen cord blood samples (1.4% contained malaria parasites (Plasmodium falciparum. Out of the 369 (28.2% women with peripheral positive parasitemia, 211 (57.2% had placental malaria and 14 (3.8% had malaria parasites in their umbilical cord blood. The umbilical cord parasitemia levels were statistically associated with the presence of maternal peripheral parasitemia (OR=9.24, ≪0.001, placental parasitemia (OR=10.74, ≪0.001, high-density peripheral parasitemia (OR=9.62, ≪0.001, and high-density placental parasitemia (OR=4.91, =0.03. In Burkina Faso, the mother-to-child transmission rate of malaria appears to be low.

  11. Comparison of three molecular methods for the detection and speciation of Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium falciparum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Price Ric N

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Accurate diagnosis of Plasmodium spp. is essential for the rational treatment of malaria. Despite its many disadvantages, microscopic examination of blood smears remains the current "gold standard" for malaria detection and speciation. PCR assays offer an alternative to microscopy which has been shown to have superior sensitivity and specificity. Unfortunately few comparative studies have been done on the various molecular based speciation methods. Methods The sensitivity, specificity and cost effectiveness of three molecular techniques were compared for the detection and speciation of Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax from dried blood spots collected from 136 patients in western Thailand. The results from the three molecular speciation techniques (nested PCR, multiplex PCR, and real-time PCR were used to develop a molecular consensus (two or more identical PCR results as an alternative gold standard. Results According to the molecular consensus, 9.6% (13/136 of microscopic diagnoses yielded false negative results. Multiplex PCR failed to detect P. vivax in three mixed isolates, and the nested PCR gave a false positive P. falciparum result in one case. Although the real-time PCR melting curve analysis was the most expensive method, it was 100% sensitive and specific and least time consuming of the three molecular techniques investigated. Conclusion Although microscopy remains the most appropriate method for clinical diagnosis in a field setting, its use as a gold standard may result in apparent false positive results by superior techniques. Future studies should consider using more than one established molecular methods as a new gold standard to assess novel malaria diagnostic kits and PCR assays.

  12. A general SNP-based molecular barcode for Plasmodium falciparum identification and tracking

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosen David

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP genotyping provides the means to develop a practical, rapid, inexpensive assay that will uniquely identify any Plasmodium falciparum parasite using a small amount of DNA. Such an assay could be used to distinguish recrudescence from re-infection in drug trials, to monitor the frequency and distribution of specific parasites in a patient population undergoing drug treatment or vaccine challenge, or for tracking samples and determining purity of isolates in the laboratory during culture adaptation and sub-cloning, as well as routine passage. Methods A panel of twenty-four SNP markers has been identified that exhibit a high minor allele frequency (average MAF > 35%, for which robust TaqMan genotyping assays were constructed. All SNPs were identified through whole genome sequencing and MAF was estimated through Affymetrix array-based genotyping of a worldwide collection of parasites. These assays create a "molecular barcode" to uniquely identify a parasite genome. Results Using 24 such markers no two parasites known to be of independent origin have yet been found to have the same allele signature. The TaqMan genotyping assays can be performed on a variety of samples including cultured parasites, frozen whole blood, or whole blood spotted onto filter paper with a success rate > 99%. Less than 5 ng of parasite DNA is needed to complete a panel of 24 markers. The ability of this SNP panel to detect and identify parasites was compared to the standard molecular methods, MSP-1 and MSP-2 typing. Conclusion This work provides a facile field-deployable genotyping tool that can be used without special skills with standard lab equipment, and at reasonable cost that will unambiguously identify and track P. falciparum parasites both from patient samples and in the laboratory.

  13. Common variation in the ABO glycosyltransferase is associated with susceptibility to severe Plasmodium falciparum malaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fry, Andrew E; Griffiths, Michael J; Auburn, Sarah; Diakite, Mahamadou; Forton, Julian T; Green, Angela; Richardson, Anna; Wilson, Jonathan; Jallow, Muminatou; Sisay-Joof, Fatou; Pinder, Margaret; Peshu, Norbert; Williams, Thomas N; Marsh, Kevin; Molyneux, Malcolm E; Taylor, Terrie E; Rockett, Kirk A; Kwiatkowski, Dominic P

    2008-02-15

    There is growing epidemiological and molecular evidence that ABO blood group affects host susceptibility to severe Plasmodium falciparum infection. The high frequency of common ABO alleles means that even modest differences in susceptibility could have a significant impact on the health of people living in malaria endemic regions. We performed an association study, the first to utilize key molecular genetic variation underlying the ABO system, genotyping >9000 individuals across three African populations. Using population- and family-based tests, we demonstrated that alleles producing functional ABO enzymes are associated with greater risk of severe malaria phenotypes (particularly malarial anemia) in comparison with the frameshift deletion underlying blood group O: case-control allelic odds ratio (OR), 1.2; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.09-1.32; P = 0.0003; family-studies allelic OR, 1.19; 95% CI, 1.08-1.32; P = 0.001; pooled across all studies allelic OR, 1.18; 95% CI, 1.11-1.26; P = 2 x 10(-7). We found suggestive evidence of a parent-of-origin effect at the ABO locus by analyzing the family trios. Non-O haplotypes inherited from mothers, but not fathers, are significantly associated with severe malaria (likelihood ratio test of Weinberg, P = 0.046). Finally, we used HapMap data to demonstrate a region of low F(ST) (-0.001) between the three main HapMap population groups across the ABO locus, an outlier in the empirical distribution of F(ST) across chromosome 9 (approximately 99.5-99.9th centile). This low F(ST) region may be a signal of long-standing balancing selection at the ABO locus, caused by multiple infectious pathogens including P. falciparum.

  14. Polymorphism and methylation patterns in Agave tequilana Weber var. 'Azul' plants propagated asexually by three different methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Díaz-Martínez, Miriam; Nava-Cedillo, Alejandro; Guzmán-López, José Alfredo; Escobar-Guzmán, Rocío; Simpson, June

    2012-04-01

    Genetic variation in three forms of asexually propagated Agave tequilana Weber var. 'Azul' plants namely offsets, bulbils and in vitro cultured individuals was studied by AFLP analysis. Low levels of variation were observed between mother plants and offsets and a higher level between mother plant and bulbils. Families obtained from commercial plantations showed lower levels of variation in comparison to families grown as ornamentals. No variation was observed between the original explant and four generations of in vitro cultured plants. Epigenetic variation was also studied by analyzing changes in methylation patterns between mother plants and offspring in each form of asexual reproduction. Offsets and bulbils showed an overall decrease in methylation whereas in vitro cultured plants showed patterns specific to each generation: Generations 1 and 4 showed overall demethylation whereas Generations 2 and 3 showed increased methylation. Analysis of ESTs associated with transposable elements revealed higher proportions of ESTs from Ty1-copia-like, Gypsy and CACTA transposable elements in cDNA libraries obtained from pluripotent tissue suggesting a possible correlation between methylation patterns, expression of transposable element associated genes and somaclonal variation. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Sex in an uncertain world: environmental stochasticity helps restore competitive balance between sexually and asexually reproducing populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, A W; Vandekerkhove, J; Michalakis, Y

    2014-08-01

    Like many organisms, individuals of the freshwater ostracod species Eucypris virens exhibit either obligate sexual or asexual reproductive modes. Both types of individual routinely co-occur, including in the same temporary freshwater pond (their natural habitat in which they undergo seasonal diapause). Given the well-known two-fold cost of sex, this begs the question of how sexually reproducing individuals are able to coexist with their asexual counterparts in spite of such overwhelming costs. Environmental stochasticity in the form of 'false dawn' inundations (where the first hydration is ephemeral and causes loss of early hatching individuals) may provide an advantage to the sexual subpopulation, which shows greater variation in hatching times following inundation. We explore the potential role of environmental stochasticity in this system using life-history data analysis, climate data, and matrix projection models. In the absence of environmental stochasticity, the population growth rate is significantly lower in sexual subpopulations. Climate data reveal that 'false dawn' inundations are common. Using matrix projection modelling with and without environmental stochasticity, we demonstrate that this phenomenon can restore appreciable balance to the system, in terms of population growth rates. This provides support for the role of environmental stochasticity in helping to explain the maintenance of sex and the occurrence of geographical parthenogenesis. © 2014 The Authors. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2014 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  16. FvSTR1, a striatin orthologue in Fusarium virguliforme, is required for asexual development and virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Islam, Kazi T; Bond, Jason P; Fakhoury, Ahmad M

    2017-08-01

    The soil-borne fungus Fusarium virguliforme causes sudden death syndrome (SDS), one of the most devastating diseases of soybean in North and South America. Despite the importance of SDS, a clear understanding of the fungal pathogenicity factors that affect the development of this disease is still lacking. We have identified FvSTR1, a F. virguliforme gene, which encodes a protein similar to a family of striatin proteins previously reported to regulate signalling pathways, cell differentiation, conidiation, sexual development, and virulence in filamentous fungi. Striatins are multi-domain proteins that serve as scaffolding units in the striatin-interacting phosphatase and kinase (STRIPAK) complex in fungi and animals. To address the function of a striatin homologue in F. virguliforme, FvSTR1 was disrupted and functionally characterized using a gene knock out strategy. The resulting Fvstr1 mutants were largely impaired in conidiation and pigmentation, and displayed defective conidia and conidiophore morphology compared to the wild-type and ectopic transformants. Greenhouse virulence assays revealed that the disruption of FvSTR1 resulted in complete loss of virulence in F. virguliforme. Microtome studies using fluorescence microscopy showed that the Fvstr1 mutants were defective in their ability to colonize the vascular system. The Fvstr1 mutants also showed a reduced transcript level of genes involved in asexual reproduction and in the production of secondary metabolites. These results suggest that FvSTR1 has a critical role in asexual development and virulence in F. virguliforme.

  17. Reduced prevalence of placental malaria in primiparae with blood group O

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bedu-Addo, George; Gai, Prabhanjan P.; Meese, Stefanie; Eggelte, Teunis A.; Thangaraj, Kumarasamy; Mockenhaupt, Frank P.

    2014-01-01

    Blood group O protects African children against severe malaria and has reached high prevalence in malarious regions. However, its role in malaria in pregnancy is ambiguous. In 839 delivering Ghanaian women, associations of ABO blood groups with Plasmodium falciparum infection were examined.

  18. Interleukin-10 regulates hepcidin in Plasmodium falciparum malaria

    KAUST Repository

    Huang, Honglei

    2014-02-10

    Background: Acute malarial anemia remains a major public health problem. Hepcidin, the major hormone controlling the availability of iron, is raised during acute and asymptomatic parasitemia. Understanding the role and mechanism of raised hepcidin and so reduced iron availability during infection is critical to establish evidence-based guidelines for management of malaria anemia. Our recent clinical evidence suggests a potential role of IL-10 in the regulation of hepcidin in patients with acute P. falciparum malaria. Methods: We have measured secretion of hepcidin by primary macrophages and the hepatoma cell line HepG2 stimulated with IL-10, IL-6 and Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes. Findings: We have observed that IL-10 and IL-6 production increased in primary macrophages when these cells were co-cultured with Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes. We found that IL-10 induced hepcidin secretion in primary macrophages in a dose-dependent manner but not in HepG2 cells. These effects were mediated through signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT) 3-phosphorylation and completely abrogated by a specific STAT3 inhibitor. Conclusion: IL-10 can directly regulate hepcidin in primary macrophages but not in HepG2 cells. This effect can be modulated by Plasmodium falciparum. The results are consistent with a role for IL-10 in modulating iron metabolism during acute phase of infection. 2014 Huang et al.

  19. Variation of nitric oxide levels in imported Plasmodium falciparum ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    SERVER

    2008-03-18

    Mar 18, 2008 ... ISSN 1684–5315 © 2008 Academic Journals. Full Length Research Paper. Variation of nitric oxide levels in imported Plasmodium falciparum malaria episodes. De Sousa, Karina*, Silva, Marcelo S. and Tavira, Luís T. Instituto de Higiene e Medicina Tropical, Centro de Malária e outras Doenças Tropicais, ...

  20. 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.

  1. Plasmodium falciparum transcriptome analysis reveals pregnancy malaria associated gene expression

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tuikue Ndam, Nicaise; Bischoff, Emmanuel; Proux, Caroline

    2008-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Pregnancy-associated malaria (PAM) causing maternal anemia and low birth weight is among the multiple manifestations of Plasmodium falciparum malaria. Infected erythrocytes (iEs) can acquire various adhesive properties that mediate the clinical severity of malaria. Recent advances...

  2. 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 ...

  3. Plasmodium falciparum uses vitamin E to avoid oxidative stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sussmann, Rodrigo A C; Fotoran, Wesley L; Kimura, Emilia A; Katzin, Alejandro M

    2017-10-10

    Plasmodium falciparum is sensitive to oxidative stress in vitro and in vivo, and many drugs such as artemisinin, chloroquine and cercosporin interfere in the parasite's redox system. To minimize the damage caused by reactive radicals, antioxidant enzymes and their substrates found in parasites and in erythrocytes must be functionally active. It was shown that P. falciparum synthesizes vitamin E and that usnic acid acts as an inhibitor of its biosynthesis. Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant that protects polyunsaturated fatty acids from lipid peroxidation, and this activity can be measured by detecting its oxidized product and by evaluating reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels. Here, we demonstrated that ROS levels increased in P. falciparum when vitamin E biosynthesis was inhibited by usnic acid treatment and decreased to basal levels if exogenous vitamin E was added. Furthermore, we used metabolic labelling to demonstrate that vitamin E biosynthesized by the parasite acts as an antioxidant since we could detect its radiolabeled oxidized product. The treatment with chloroquine or cercosporin of the parasites increased the ratio between α-tocopherolquinone and α-tocopherol. Our findings demonstrate that vitamin E produced endogenously by P. falciparum is active as an antioxidant, probably protecting the parasite from the radicals generated by drugs.

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

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Background: Plasmodium falciparum, the most dangerous malaria parasite species to ... tigen for subunit malaria vaccine.10 It comprises highly ... were also prepared for Giemsa staining as described by ... parasites with different alleles at a given locus and ranges ..... surface protein 1, immune evasion and vaccines against.

  5. Fine-scale genetic characterization of Plasmodium falciparum

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    We have initiated such a study and presented herewith the results from the in silico understanding of a seventh chromosomal region of the malarial parasite Plasmodium falciparum encompassing the antigenic var genes (coding pfemp1) and the drug-resistant gene pfcrt located at a specified region of the chromosome 7.

  6. Submicroscopic Plasmodium falciparum infections in pregnancy in Ghana

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mockenhaupt, F. P.; Rong, B.; Till, H.; Eggelte, T. A.; Beck, S.; Gyasi-Sarpong, C.; Thompson, W. N.; Bienzle, U.

    2000-01-01

    Malarial parasitaemia below the threshold of microscopy but detectable by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays is common in endemic regions. This study was conducted to examine prevalence, predictors, and effects of submicroscopic Plasmodium falciparum infections in pregnancy. In a cross-sectional

  7. High prevalence of Plasmodium falciparum malaria among Human ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Malaria and Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infections are major public health problems in Sub-Saharan Africa. Their overlapping geographical distribution and co-existence often result into high morbidity and mortality. This study was designed to establish the prevalence of Plasmodium falciparum malaria among HIV ...

  8. Plasmodium falciparum multiplicity correlates with anaemia in symptomatic malaria

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mockenhaupt, Frank P.; Ehrhardt, Stephan; Eggelte, Teunis A.; Markert, Miriam; Anemana, Sylvester; Otchwemah, Rowland; Bienzle, Ulrich

    2003-01-01

    In 366 Ghanaian children with symptomatic Plasmodium falciparum malaria, low haemoglobin levels and severe anaemia were associated with a high multiplicity of infection (MOI) and with distinct merozoite surface protein alleles. High MOI not only reflects premunition but may also contribute to

  9. A multi-stage malaria vaccine candidate targeting both transmission and asexual parasite life-cycle stages

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Theisen, Michael; Roeffen, Will; Singh, Susheel K

    2014-01-01

    that combine antigens from both stages may provide direct protection and indirect benefit by reducing the force of infection. We constructed a chimeric antigen composed of a fragment of the Plasmodium falciparum (Pf) glutamate-rich protein fused in frame to a correctly folded fragment of Pfs48/45. The chimera...... dependent cellular inhibition assay. The combined data provide a strong rationale for entering the next phase of clinical grade production and testing....

  10. In silico discovery of transcription regulatory elements in Plasmodium falciparum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Le Roch Karine G

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background With the sequence of the Plasmodium falciparum genome and several global mRNA and protein life cycle expression profiling projects now completed, elucidating the underlying networks of transcriptional control important for the progression of the parasite life cycle is highly pertinent to the development of new anti-malarials. To date, relatively little is known regarding the specific mechanisms the parasite employs to regulate gene expression at the mRNA level, with studies of the P. falciparum genome sequence having revealed few cis-regulatory elements and associated transcription factors. Although it is possible the parasite may evoke mechanisms of transcriptional control drastically different from those used by other eukaryotic organisms, the extreme AT-rich nature of P. falciparum intergenic regions (~90% AT presents significant challenges to in silico cis-regulatory element discovery. Results We have developed an algorithm called Gene Enrichment Motif Searching (GEMS that uses a hypergeometric-based scoring function and a position-weight matrix optimization routine to identify with high-confidence regulatory elements in the nucleotide-biased and repeat sequence-rich P. falciparum genome. When applied to promoter regions of genes contained within 21 co-expression gene clusters generated from P. falciparum life cycle microarray data using the semi-supervised clustering algorithm Ontology-based Pattern Identification, GEMS identified 34 putative cis-regulatory elements associated with a variety of parasite processes including sexual development, cell invasion, antigenic variation and protein biosynthesis. Among these candidates were novel motifs, as well as many of the elements for which biological experimental evidence already exists in the Plasmodium literature. To provide evidence for the biological relevance of a cell invasion-related element predicted by GEMS, reporter gene and electrophoretic mobility shift assays

  11. A role for fetal hemoglobin and maternal immune IgG in infant resistance to Plasmodium falciparum malaria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chanaki Amaratunga

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available In Africa, infant susceptibility to Plasmodium falciparum malaria increases substantially as fetal hemoglobin (HbF and maternal immune IgG disappear from circulation. During the first few months of life, however, resistance to malaria is evidenced by extremely low parasitemias, the absence of fever, and the almost complete lack of severe disease. This resistance has previously been attributed in part to poor parasite growth in HbF-containing red blood cells (RBCs. A specific role for maternal immune IgG in infant resistance to malaria has been hypothesized but not yet identified.We found that P. falciparum parasites invade and develop normally in fetal (cord blood, CB RBCs, which contain up to 95% HbF. However, these parasitized CB RBCs are impaired in their binding to human microvascular endothelial cells (MVECs, monocytes, and nonparasitized RBCs--cytoadherence interactions that have been implicated in the development of high parasite densities and the symptoms of malaria. Abnormal display of the parasite's cytoadherence antigen P. falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein-1 (PfEMP-1 on CB RBCs accounts for these findings and is reminiscent of that on HbC and HbS RBCs. IgG purified from the plasma of immune Malian adults almost completely abolishes the adherence of parasitized CB RBCs to MVECs.Our data suggest a model of malaria protection in which HbF and maternal IgG act cooperatively to impair the cytoadherence of parasitized RBCs in the first few months of life. In highly malarious areas of Africa, an infant's contemporaneous expression of HbC or HbS and development of an immune IgG repertoire may effectively reconstitute the waning protective effects of HbF and maternal immune IgG, thereby extending the malaria resistance of infancy into early childhood.

  12. Production of recombinant proteins from Plasmodium falciparum in Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerra, Ángela Patricia; Calvo, Eliana Patricia; Wasserman, Moisés; Chaparro-Olaya, Jacqueline

    2016-02-23

    The production of recombinant proteins is essential for the characterization and functional study of proteins from Plasmodium falciparum. However, the proteins of P. falciparum are among the most challenging to express, and when expression is achieved, the recombinant proteins usually fold incorrectly and lead to the formation of inclusion bodies.  To obtain and purify four recombinant proteins and to use them as antigens to produce polyclonal antibodies. The production efficiency and solubility were evaluated as the proteins were expressed in two genetically modified strains of Escherichia coli to favor the production of heterologous proteins (BL21-CodonPlus (DE3)-RIL and BL21-pG-KJE8).  The four recombinant P. falciparum proteins corresponding to partial sequences of PfMyoA (Myosin A) and PfGAP50 (gliding associated protein 50), and the complete sequences of PfMTIP (myosin tail interacting protein) and PfGAP45 (gliding associated protein 45), were produced as glutathione S-transferase-fusion proteins, purified and used for immunizing mice.  The protein expression was much more efficient in BL21-CodonPlus, the strain that contains tRNAs that are rare in wild-type E. coli, compared to the expression in BL21-pG-KJE8. In spite of the fact that BL21-pG-KJE8 overexpresses chaperones, this strain did not minimize the formation of inclusion bodies.  The use of genetically modified strains of E. coli was essential to achieve high expression levels of the four evaluated P. falciparum proteins and lead to improved solubility of two of them. The approach used here allowed us to obtain and purify four P. falciparum proteins in enough quantity to produce polyclonal antibodies in mice, and a fair amount of two pure and soluble recombinant proteins for future assays.

  13. Sero-epidemiological evaluation of Plasmodium falciparum malaria in Senegal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sylla, Khadime; Tine, Roger Clément Kouly; Ndiaye, Magatte; Sow, Doudou; Sarr, Aïssatou; Mbuyi, Marie Louise Tshibola; Diouf, Ibrahima; Lô, Amy Colé; Abiola, Annie; Seck, Mame Cheikh; Ndiaye, Mouhamadou; Badiane, Aïda Sadikh; N'Diaye, Jean Louis A; Ndiaye, Daouda; Faye, Oumar; Dieng, Thérèse; Dieng, Yémou; Ndir, Oumar; Gaye, Oumar; Faye, Babacar

    2015-07-16

    In Senegal, a significant decrease of malaria transmission intensity has been noted the last years. Parasitaemia has become lower and, therefore, more difficult to detect by microscopy. In the context of submicroscopic parasitaemia, it has become relevant to rely on relevant malaria surveillance tools to better document malaria epidemiology in such settings. Serological markers have been proposed as an essential tool for malaria surveillance. This study aimed to evaluate the sero-epidemiological situation of Plasmodium falciparum malaria in two sentinel sites in Senegal. Cross-sectional surveys were carried out in Velingara (south Senegal) and Keur Soce (central Senegal) between September and October 2010. Children under 10 years old, living in these areas, were enrolled using two-level, random sampling methods. P. falciparum infection was diagnosed using microscopy. P. falciparum antibodies against circumsporozoite protein (CSP), apical membrane protein (AMA1) and merozoite surface protein 1_42 (MSP1_42) were measured by ELISA method. A stepwise logistic regression analysis was done to assess factors associated with P. falciparum antibodies carriage. A total of 1,865 children under 10 years old were enrolled. The overall falciparum malaria prevalence was 4.99% with high prevalence in Velingara of 10.03% compared to Keur Soce of 0.3%. Symptomatic malaria cases (fever associated with parasitaemia) represented 17.37%. Seroprevalence of anti-AMA1, anti-MSP1_42 and anti-CSP antibody was 38.12, 41.55 and 40.38%, respectively. The seroprevalence was more important in Velingara and increased with age, active malaria infection and area of residence. The use of serological markers can contribute to improved malaria surveillance in areas with declining malaria transmission. This study provided useful baseline information about the sero-epidemiological situation of malaria in Senegal and can contribute to the identification of malaria hot spots in order to concentrate

  14. Interaction of an atypical Plasmodium falciparum ETRAMP with human apolipoproteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sahasrabudhe Sudhir

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In order to establish a successful infection in the human host, the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum must establish interactions with a variety of human proteins on the surface of different cell types, as well as with proteins inside the host cells. To better understand this aspect of malaria pathogenesis, a study was conducted with the goal of identifying interactions between proteins of the parasite and those of its human host. Methods A modified yeast two-hybrid methodology that preferentially selects protein fragments that can be expressed in yeast was used to conduct high-throughput screens with P. falciparum protein fragments against human liver and cerebellum libraries. The resulting dataset was analyzed to exclude interactions that are not likely to occur in the human host during infection. Results An initial set of 2,200 interactions was curated to remove proteins that are unlikely to play a role in pathogenesis based on their annotation or localization, and proteins that behave promiscuously in the two-hybrid assay, resulting in a final dataset of 456 interactions. A cluster that implicates binding between P. falciparum PFE1590w/ETRAMP5, a putative parasitophorous vacuole membrane protein, and human apolipoproteins ApoA, ApoB and ApoE was selected for further analysis. Different isoforms of ApoE, which are associated with different outcomes of malaria infection, were shown to display differential interactions with PFE1590w. Conclusion A dataset of interactions between proteins of P. falciparum and those of its human host was generated. The preferential interaction of the P. falciparum PFE1590w protein with the human ApoE ε3 and ApoE ε4 isoforms, but not the ApoE ε2 isoform, supports the hypothesis that ApoE genotype affects risk of malaria infection. The dataset contains other interactions of potential relevance to disease that may identify possible vaccine candidates and drug targets.

  15. Immunoglobulin G antibody reactivity to a group A Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 and protection from P. falciparum malaria