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Malar J. 2011 Jan 25;10:17. doi: 10.1186/1475-2875-10-17.

var gene transcription and PfEMP1 expression in the rosetting and cytoadhesive Plasmodium falciparum clone FCR3S1.2.

Author information

1
Department of Microbiology, Tumor and Cell Biology (MTC), Karolinska Institutet, Box 280, SE-171 77 Stockholm, Sweden.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The pathogenicity of Plasmodium falciparum is in part due to the ability of the parasitized red blood cell (pRBC) to adhere to intra-vascular host cell receptors and serum-proteins. Binding of the pRBC is mediated by Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1), a large multi-variant molecule encoded by a family of ≈60 var genes.

METHODS:

The study of var gene transcription in the parasite clone FCR3S1.2 was performed by semi-quantitative PCR and quantitative PCR (qPCR). The expression of the major PfEMP1 in FCR3S1.2 pRBC was analysed with polyclonal sera in rosette disruption assays and immunofluorescence.

RESULTS:

Transcripts from var1 (FCR3S1.2(var1); IT4var21) and other var genes were detected by semi-quantitative PCR but results from qPCR showed that one var gene transcript dominated over the others (FCR3S1.2(var2); IT4var60). Antibodies raised in rats to the recombinant NTS-DBL1α of var2 produced in E. coli completely and dose-dependently disrupted rosettes (≈95% at a dilution of 1/5). The sera reacted with the Maurer's clefts in trophozoite stages (IFA) and to the infected erythrocyte surface (FACS) indicating that FCR3S1.2(var2) encodes the dominant PfEMP1 expressed in this parasite.

CONCLUSION:

The major transcript in the rosetting model parasite FCR3S1.2 is FCR3S1.2(var2) (IT4var60). The results suggest that this gene encodes the PfEMP1-species responsible for the rosetting phenotype of this parasite. The activity of previously raised antibodies to the NTS-DBL1α of FCR3S1.2(var1) is likely due to cross-reactivity with NTS-DBL1α of the var2 encoded PfEMP1.

PMID:
21266056
PMCID:
PMC3036667
DOI:
10.1186/1475-2875-10-17
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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