Transcriptional and genomic parallels between the monoxenous parasite Herpetomonas muscarum and Leishmania

Sloan, M. A. , Brooks, K., Otto, T. D. , Sanders, M. J., Cotton, J. A. and Ligoxygakis, P. (2019) Transcriptional and genomic parallels between the monoxenous parasite Herpetomonas muscarum and Leishmania. PLoS Genetics, 15(11), e1008452. (doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1008452) (PMID:31710597) (PMCID:PMC6872171)

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Trypanosomatid parasites are causative agents of important human and animal diseases such as sleeping sickness and leishmaniasis. Most trypanosomatids are transmitted to their mammalian hosts by insects, often belonging to Diptera (or true flies). These are called dixenous trypanosomatids since they infect two different hosts, in contrast to those that infect just insects (monoxenous). However, it is still unclear whether dixenous and monoxenous trypanosomatids interact similarly with their insect host, as fly-monoxenous trypanosomatid interaction systems are rarely reported and under-studied–despite being common in nature. Here we present the genome of monoxenous trypanosomatid Herpetomonas muscarum and discuss its transcriptome during in vitro culture and during infection of its natural insect host Drosophila melanogaster. The H. muscarum genome is broadly syntenic with that of human parasite Leishmania major. We also found strong similarities between the H. muscarum transcriptome during fruit fly infection, and those of Leishmania during sand fly infections. Overall this suggests Drosophila-Herpetomonas is a suitable model for less accessible insect-trypanosomatid host-parasite systems such as sand fly-Leishmania.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:KB, TDO, MJS and JAC were supported by Wellcome via their core support for the Wellcome Sanger Institute (WSI) through grant 206194. Work in Oxford was supported by a Consolidator grant from the European Research Council (310912 Droso-Parasite, to PL), project grant BB/K003569 from the Biological and Biotechnological Sciences Research Council (to PL) and a Wellcome Trust doctoral scholarship (to MAS).
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Cotton, Dr James and Sloan, Dr Megan and Otto, Dr Thomas
Creator Roles:
Otto, T. D.Data curation, Methodology, Software
Sloan, M. A.Data curation, Formal analysis, Investigation, Writing – original draft
Cotton, J. A.Conceptualization, Formal analysis, Investigation, Methodology, Resources, Software, Supervision, Validation, Visualization, Writing – review and editing
Authors: Sloan, M. A., Brooks, K., Otto, T. D., Sanders, M. J., Cotton, J. A., and Ligoxygakis, P.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Infection Immunity and Inflammation
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Biodiversity Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
Journal Name:PLoS Genetics
Publisher:Public Library of Science
ISSN (Online):1553-7404
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2019 Sloan et al.
First Published:First published in PLoS Genetics 15(11):e1008452
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons license

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