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Int Rev Cell Mol Biol. 2012;298:1-31. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-394309-5.00001-8.

Cytoskeleton assembly in Toxoplasma gondii cell division.

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Department of Biology, Boston College, Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, USA.


Cell division across members of the protozoan parasite phylum Apicomplexa displays a surprising diversity between different species as well as between different life stages of the same parasite. In most cases, infection of a host cell by a single parasite results in the formation of a polyploid cell from which individual daughters bud in a process dependent on a final round of mitosis. Unlike other apicomplexans, Toxoplasma gondii divides by a binary process consisting of internal budding that results in only two daughter cells per round of division. Since T. gondii is experimentally accessible and displays the simplest division mode, it has manifested itself as a model for apicomplexan daughter formation. Here, we review newly emerging insights in the prominent role that assembly of the cortical cytoskeletal scaffold plays in the process of daughter parasite formation.

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