Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Acta Trop. 2005 Apr;94(1):25-34.

Comparison of Plasmodium falciparum growth in sickle cells in low oxygen environment and candle-jar.

Author information

  • 1Department of Medical Laboratory Sciences, Faculty of Allied Health Sciences, Kuwait University, Sulaibikhat, Arabian Gulf.


The first successful in vitro cultivation of Plasmodium falciparum in sickle cells in a gas mixture containing 3% oxygen, 4% carbon dioxide and 93% nitrogen has been reported recently, contradicting earlier claims that the parasite does not multiply continuously in sickle cell trait (HbAS) and sickle cell anemia (HbSS) erythrocytes at low oxygen tension. The present study extends that report by growing three P. falciparum strains in erythrocytes from four different sickle cell trait and four sickle cell anemia donors. Because P. falciparum is known to grow normally in sickle cells when incubated in a candle-jar estimated to contain 15-18% oxygen, we have also compared the growth at 3% oxygen with that in a candle-jar. For convenience, we also refer to the 3% oxygen and the candle-jar as low and high oxygen environment, respectively. The three P. falciparum strains were first grown continuously in low oxygen environment for at least 1 month in erythrocytes from one HbAS carrier. These stock cultures were then used to infect erythrocytes from additional three HbAS carriers and four HbSS patients. Results of the experiments showed that parasite growth and hemozoin production in HbAS erythrocytes in low oxygen environment were comparable to those obtained in the candle-jar. There was growth retardation in HbSS erythrocytes in low oxygen environment, but some of the parasites survived and eventually produced high parasitemia levels. Continuous cultivation of different P. falciparum strains in HbAS erythrocytes is necessary for investigation of possible molecular differences between malaria parasites in sickle cells and those in HbAA erythrocytes.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk