Malaria parasites vary in phenotypic traits of biomedical or biological interest such as growth rate, virulence, sex ratio and drug resistance, and there is considerable interest in identifying the genes that underlie this variation.
In this study, a combination of fluorescent ion indicators and 36Cl- flux measurements was used to investigate the transport of Cl- and the Cl- dependent transport of "H+ equivalents" in mature (trophozoite-stage) parasites, isolated from their host erythrocytes.
Our results reveal a specific vital role for an apicomplexan G-actin-binding protein during sporogony, the parasite replication phase that precedes formation of malaria transmission stages.
Dendritic cells (DCs) play a crucial role in the development of protective immunity to malaria. However, it remains unclear how malaria parasites trigger immune responses in DCs.
In this study, we analysed the longevity of both antibody and B cell memory responses to malaria antigens among individuals who were living in an area of extremely low malaria transmission in northern Thailand, and who were known either to be malaria naïve or to have had a documented clinical attack of P. falciparum and/or P. vivax in the past 6 years.
The invasion of erythrocytes by Plasmodium merozoites requires specific interactions between host receptors and parasite ligands. We have used time-lapse video microscopy to study changes in intracellular calcium levels in Plasmodium falciparum merozoites during erythrocyte invasion.
A recent study published in Nature by de Koning-Ward et al. provides further insights into the way in which the lethal malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, remodels the host red blood cell during the pathogenic blood stage of development.