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Pharmacol Ther. 1990;48(1):45-59.

The dihydrofolate reductase-thymidylate synthetase gene in the drug resistance of malaria parasites.

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Department of Biochemistry and Applied Molecular Biology, University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST), U.K.


Resistance to antifolate drugs such as pyrimethamine is widespread among malaria parasites of the most pathogenic species Plasmodium falciparum. These drugs inhibit the dihydrofolate reductase activity of the dihydrofolate reductase-thymidylate synthetase (DHFR-TS) bifunctional enzyme. This review examines work done to characterize the enzyme, the cloning of plasmodial DHFR-TS genes, chromosomal mapping studies of these genes by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis, and the structural insights into the mechanism of drug resistance that have been gained by comparing genes from drug-sensitive parasites with those from drug-resistant strains that have arisen in the field or after experimental induction.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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