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Exp Parasitol. 1992 Sep;75(2):248-56.

Plasmodium falciparum: release of circumsporozoite protein by sporozoites in the mosquito vector.

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Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases, Johns Hopkins University, School of Hygiene and Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland 21205.


The release of circumsporozoite (CS) protein by Plasmodium falciparum sporozoites was investigated to identify factors regulating this process within infected Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes. The potential for sporozoites to release CS protein in vitro was not dependent upon their site-specific developmental stage (i.e., mature oocysts, hemolymph, salivary glands), their duration in the vector, or their exposure to mosquito-derived components such as salivary glands or hemolymph. The capacity of sporozoites to release CS protein was depressed by mosquito blood feeding during periods of sporozoite migration to the salivary glands, but the effect was only temporary and those sporozoites already in the glands were not affected. Free CS protein in the salivary glands was present in 93.3% of 45 infective mosquitoes. Sporozoites from these same, individual mosquitoes were also tested in vitro for CS protein release. In both cases, the amount of soluble CS protein increased as a function of sporozoite density but the total amount of CS protein per sporozoite became progressively less with increasing numbers of sporozoites. Further experiments showed that sporozoite contact with increasing amounts of soluble CS protein caused a down-regulation of CS protein release. Thus, a primary factor regulating the production and release of CS protein by sporozoites is their contact with soluble CS protein within the mosquito.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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