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Infect Genet Evol. 2015 Mar;30:195-205. doi: 10.1016/j.meegid.2014.12.029. Epub 2014 Dec 31.

Geographical sequence variation in the Leishmania major virulence factor P46.

Author information

1
Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine, Hamburg, Germany.
2
Institute for Microbiology, and Hygiene, Charitè University Medicine Berlin, Germany.
3
Mikrobiologisches Institut - Klinische Mikrobiologie, Immunologie und Hygiene, Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg and Universitätsklinikum Erlangen, Germany.
4
Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine, Hamburg, Germany. Electronic address: clos@bnitm.de.

Abstract

Cutaneous leishmaniasis as caused by Leishmania major is a zoonotic infection with wide epidemiological impact. The L. major P46 virulence gene was shown to boost the parasite's virulence and extends its range of experimental hosts. Here we show that P46 is subject to significant geographical sequence variations that may reflect the adaption to different reservoir hosts. This view is supported by the results of passage experiments using P46 variants in different experimental hosts. Conversely, loss of P46 expression leads to attenuation both in vitro and in BALB/c mice. Although part of the L. major exosomal protein payload, P46 is not required for exosome-mediated immune modulation.

KEYWORDS:

Genetics; Host adaption; Infectivity; L. major; P46

PMID:
25558028
DOI:
10.1016/j.meegid.2014.12.029
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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