Comparative sequence analysis reveals regulation of genes in developing schistosomula of Schistosoma mansoni exposed to host portal serum

Jeremias, W. d. J. et al. (2017) Comparative sequence analysis reveals regulation of genes in developing schistosomula of Schistosoma mansoni exposed to host portal serum. PLoS ONE, 12(6), e0178829. (doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0178829) (PMID:28622369) (PMCID:PMC5473564)

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Once inside a vertebrate host after infection, individual schistosomula of the parasite Schistosoma mansoni find a new and complex environment, which requires quick adjustments for survival, such as those that allow it to avoid the innate immune response of the host. Thus, it is very important for the parasite to remain within the skin after entering the host for a period of about 3 days, at which time it can then reach the venous system, migrate to the lungs and, by the end of eighth day post-infection, it reach the portal venous system, while undergoing minimal changes in morphology. However, after just a few days in the portal blood system, the parasite experiences an extraordinary increase in biomass and significant morphological alterations. Therefore, determining the constituents of the portal venous system that may trigger these changes that causes the parasite to consolidate its development inside the vertebrate host, thus causing the disease schistosomiasis, is essential. The present work simulated the conditions found in the portal venous system of the vertebrate host by exposing schistosomula of S. mansoni to in vitro culture in the presence of portal serum of the hamster, Mesocricetus auratus. Two different incubation periods were evaluated, one of 3 hours and one of 12 hours. These time periods were used to mimic the early contact of the parasite with portal serum during the course of natural infection. As a control, parasites were incubated in presence of hamster peripheral serum, in order to compare gene expression signatures between the two conditions. The mRNA obtained from parasites cultured under both conditions were submitted to a whole transcriptome library preparation and sequenced with a next generation platform. On average, nearly 15 million reads were produced per sample and, for the purpose of gene expression quantification, only reads mapped to one location of the transcriptome were considered. After statistical analysis, we found 103 genes differentially expressed by schistosomula cultured for 3 hours and 12 hours in the presence of hamster portal serum. After the subtraction of a second list of genes, also differentially expressed between schistosomula cultured for 3 hours and 12 hours in presence of peripheral serum, a set of 58 genes was finally established. This pattern was further validated for a subset of 17 genes, by measuring gene expression through quantitative real time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Processes that were activated by the portal serum stimulus include response to stress, membrane transport, protein synthesis and folding/degradation, signaling, cytoskeleton arrangement, cell adhesion and nucleotide synthesis. Additionally, a smaller number of genes down-regulated under the same condition act on cholinergic signaling, inorganic cation and organic anion membrane transport, cell adhesion and cytoskeleton arrangement. Considering the role of these genes in triggering processes that allow the parasite to quickly adapt, escape the immune response of the host and start maturation into an adult worm after contact with the portal serum, this work may point to unexplored molecular targets for drug discovery and vaccine development against schistosomiasis.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Kusel, Dr John
Authors: Jeremias, W. d. J., Araújo, F. M. G., Queiroz, F. R., Pais, F. S. M., Mattos, A. C. A. d., Salim, A. C. d. M., Coelho, P. M. Z., Oliveira, G. C., Kusel, J. R., Guerra-Sá, R., Coimbra, R. S., and Babá, É. H.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Infection Immunity and Inflammation
Journal Name:PLoS ONE
Publisher:Public Library of Science
ISSN (Online):1932-6203
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2017 Jeremias et al.
First Published:First published in PLoS ONE 12(6): e0178829
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons license

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