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Cell Microbiol. 2008 Jan;10(1):218-24. Epub 2007 Aug 14.

Dissecting in vitro host cell infection by Plasmodium sporozoites using flow cytometry.

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1
Unidade de Malária, Instituto de Medicina Molecular, Universidade de Lisboa, 1649-028 Lisboa, Portugal. mprudencio@fm.ul.pt

Abstract

The study of the liver stage of malaria has been hampered by limitations in the experimental approaches required to effectively dissect and quantify hepatocyte infection by Plasmodium. Here, we report on the use of flow cytometry, in conjunction with GFP-expressing Plasmodium sporozoites, to assess the various steps that constitute a successful malaria liver infection: cell traversal, hepatocyte invasion and intrahepatocyte parasite development. We show that this rapid, efficient and inexpensive method can be used to overcome current limitations in the independent quantification of those steps, facilitating routine or large-scale studies of host-pathogen molecular interactions.

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