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NOT Open Access | Plasmodium infection-cure cycles induce modulation of conventional dendritic cells

March 2, 2020 - 15:15 -- NOT Open Access
Adachi R, Tamura T
Microbiol Immunol. 2020 Feb 25

Malaria is one of the most widespread human infectious diseases worldwide and a cause of mortality. It is difficult to induce immunological memory against malarial parasites, Plasmodium. The immunity to clinical malaria disease is acquired with multiple infection and treatment cycles, along with substantial reduction in parasite burden. However, the mechanism of the acquired immunity remains largely unclear. Conventional dendritic cells (cDCs) play a pivotal role in orchestration of immune responses. The purpose of this study is to analyze the characterization of cDCs after the infection and cure treatment cycles.

Use of real-time multiplex PCR, malaria rapid diagnostic test and microscopy to investigate the prevalence of Plasmodium species among febrile hospital patients in Sierra Leone

February 25, 2020 - 15:56 -- Open Access
Tomasz A. Leski, Chris Rowe Taitt, David A. Stenger, et al.
Malaria Journal 2020 19:84, 21 February 2020

Malaria continues to affect over 200 million individuals every year, especially children in Africa. Rapid and sensitive detection and identification of Plasmodium parasites is crucial for treating patients and monitoring of control efforts. Compared to traditional diagnostic methods such as microscopy and rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs), DNA based methods, such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR) offer significantly higher sensitivity, definitive discrimination of Plasmodium species, and detection of mixed infections. While PCR is not currently optimized for routine diagnostics, its role in epidemiological studies is increasing as the world moves closer toward regional and eventually global malaria elimination. This study demonstrates the field use of a novel, ambient temperature-stabilized, multiplexed PCR assay in a small hospital setting in Sierra Leone.

Plasmodium-infected erythrocytes induce secretion of IGFBP7 to form type II rosettes and escape phagocytosis

February 22, 2020 - 17:21 -- Open Access
Lee WC, Russell B, Sobota RM, Ghaffar K, Howland SW, Wong ZX, Maier AG, Dorin-Semblat D, Biswas S, Gamain B, Lau YL, Malleret B, Chu C, Nosten F, Renia L
Elife. 2020 Feb 18;9. pii: e51546

In malaria, rosetting is described as a phenomenon where an infected erythrocyte (IRBC) is attached to uninfected erythrocytes (URBC). In some studies, rosetting has been associated with malaria pathogenesis. Here, we have identified a new type of rosetting. Using a step-by-step approach, we identified IGFBP7, a protein secreted by monocytes in response to parasite stimulation, as a rosette-stimulator for Plasmodium falciparum- and P. vivax-IRBC. IGFBP7-mediated rosette-stimulation was rapid yet reversible.

NOT Open Access | Targeting Plasmodium with constrained peptides and peptidomimetics

February 17, 2020 - 15:03 -- NOT Open Access
Helton LG, Kennedy EJ
IUBMB Life. 2020 Feb 10

Malaria remains a worldwide health concern with an estimated quarter of a billion people infected and nearly half a million deaths annually. Malaria is caused by a parasite infection from Plasmodium strains which are transmitted from mosquitoes into the human host. Although several small molecule inhibitors have been found to target the early stages of transmission and prevent parasite proliferation, multiple drug resistant parasite strains have emerged and drug resistance remains a major hurdle.

Not Open Access | A Plasmodium key fits a mosquito lock

February 17, 2020 - 12:27 -- NOT Open Access
Cha SJ, Jacobs-Lorena M
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2020 Feb 5. pii: 202000122

Malaria is one of the three most lethal infectious diseases. Unlike AIDS and tuberculosis, malaria is unique in that the parasite must complete a complex differentiation program in its mosquito vector for transmission to occur (1) (Fig. 1). Despite significant progress made in the last couple of decades, our mechanistic understanding of how the parasite develops in the mosquito is incomplete.

Exposure of Anopheles mosquitoes to trypanosomes reduces reproductive fitness and enhances susceptibility to Plasmodium

February 17, 2020 - 12:10 -- Open Access
Dieme C, Zmarlak NM, Brito-Fravallo E, Travaillé C, Pain A, Cherrier F, Genève C, Calvo-Alvarez E, Riehle MM, Vernick KD, Rotureau B, Mitri C
PLoS Negl Trop Dis 14(2): e0008059

During a blood meal, female Anopheles mosquitoes are potentially exposed to diverse microbes in addition to the malaria parasite, Plasmodium. Human and animal African trypanosomiases are frequently co-endemic with malaria in Africa. It is not known whether exposure of Anopheles to trypanosomes influences their fitness or ability to transmit Plasmodium. Using cell and molecular biology approaches, we found that Trypanosoma brucei brucei parasites survive for at least 48h after infectious blood meal in the midgut of the major malaria vector, Anopheles coluzzii before being cleared.

RNA-Seq Analysis Illuminates the Early Stages of Plasmodium Liver Infection

February 14, 2020 - 16:49 -- Open Access
Toro-Moreno M, Sylvester K, Srivastava T, Posfai D, Derbyshire ER
mBio. 2020 Feb 4;11(1). pii: e03234-19

The apicomplexan parasites Plasmodium spp. are the causative agents of malaria, a disease that poses a significant global health burden. Plasmodium spp. initiate infection of the human host by transforming and replicating within hepatocytes. This liver stage (LS) is poorly understood compared to other Plasmodium life stages, which has hindered our ability to target these parasites for disease prevention. We conducted an extensive transcriptome sequencing (RNA-Seq) analysis throughout the Plasmodium berghei LS, covering as early as 2 h postinfection (hpi) and extending to 48 hpi.

Molecular characterization of RNase III protein of Asaia sp. for developing a robust RNAi-based paratransgensis tool to affect the sexual life-cycle of Plasmodium or Anopheles fitness

February 11, 2020 - 15:47 -- Open Access
Majid Asgari, Mahdokht Ilbeigikhamsehnejad, Elham Rismani, Navid Dinparast Djadid, Abbasali Raz
Parasit Vectors. 2020; 13:42

According to scientific recommendations, paratransgenesis is one of the solutions for improving the effectiveness of the Global Malaria Eradication Programme. In paratransgenesis, symbiont microorganisms are used for distorting or blocking the parasite life-cycle, affecting the fitness and longevity of vectors or reducing the vectorial competence. It has been revealed recently that bacteria could be used as potent tools for double stranded RNA production and delivery to insects. Moreover, findings showed that RNase III mutant bacteria are more competent for this aim. Asaia spp. have been introduced as potent paratransgenesis candidates for combating malaria and, based on their specific features for this goal, could be considered as effective dsRNA production and delivery tools to Anopheles spp. Therefore, we decided to characterize the rnc gene and its related protein to provide the basic required information for creating an RNase III mutant Asaia bacterium.

Optimal timing of primaquine to reduce Plasmodium falciparum gametocyte carriage when co-administered with artemether–lumefantrine

January 24, 2020 - 14:49 -- Open Access
Seif Shekalaghe, Dominic Mosha, Ali Hamad, Thabit A. Mbaga, Michael Mihayo, Teun Bousema, Chris Drakeley and Salim Abdulla
Malaria Journal 2020 19:34, 21 January 2020

Primaquine is an important gametocytocidal drug that is combined with conventional malaria treatment for prevention of Plasmodium falciparum malaria transmission. Primaquine has been administered together on the first or the last day of conventional treatment but the impact of primaquine timing has never been examined. This study aimed to assess safety, efficacy and optimal timing of single full-dose (0.75 mg/kg) primaquine when added to a standard 6-dose regimen of artemether–lumefantrine (AL).

Clustering of asymptomatic Plasmodium falciparum infection and the effectiveness of targeted malaria control measures

January 24, 2020 - 14:47 -- Open Access
Jeffrey G. Shaffer, Mahamoudou B. Touré, Nafomon Sogoba, Seydou O. Doumbia, Jules F. Gomis, Mouhamadou Ndiaye, Daouda Ndiaye, Ayouba Diarra, Ismaela Abubakar, Abdullahi Ahmad, Muna Affara, Davis Nwakanma, Mary Lukowski, James C. Welty, Frances J. Mather, Joseph Keating & Donald J. Krogstad
Malaria Journal 2020 19:33, 21 January 2020

Because clustering of Plasmodium falciparum infection had been noted previously, the clustering of infection was examined at four field sites in West Africa: Dangassa and Dioro in Mali, Gambissara in The Gambia and Madina Fall in Senegal.


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