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synthetic mimic

Structure-Guided Design of a Synthetic Mimic of an Endothelial Protein C Receptor-Binding PfEMP1 Protein

January 12, 2021 - 15:06 -- Open Access
Author(s): 
Barber NM, Lau CKY, Turner L, Watson G, Thrane S, Lusingu JPA, Lavstsen T, Higgins MK
Reference: 
mSphere. 2021 Jan 6;6(1):e01081-20

Structure-guided vaccine design provides a route to elicit a focused immune response against the most functionally important regions of a pathogen surface. This can be achieved by identifying epitopes for neutralizing antibodies through structural methods and recapitulating these epitopes by grafting their core structural features onto smaller scaffolds. In this study, we conducted a modified version of this protocol. We focused on the PfEMP1 protein family found on the surfaces of erythrocytes infected with Plasmodium falciparum A subset of PfEMP1 proteins bind to endothelial protein C receptor (EPCR), and their expression correlates with development of the symptoms of severe malaria.

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