Targeting human transmission biology for malaria elimination

Nilsson, S. K., Childs, L. M., Buckee, C. and Marti, M. (2015) Targeting human transmission biology for malaria elimination. PLoS Pathogens, 11(6), e1004871. (doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1004871) (PMID:26086192) (PMCID:PMC4472755)

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Malaria remains one of the leading causes of death worldwide, despite decades of public health efforts. The recent commitment by many endemic countries to eliminate malaria marks a shift away from programs aimed at controlling disease burden towards one that emphasizes reducing transmission of the most virulent human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. Gametocytes, the only developmental stage of malaria parasites able to infect mosquitoes, have remained understudied, as they occur in low numbers, do not cause disease, and are difficult to detect in vivo by conventional methods. Here, we review the transmission biology of P. falciparum gametocytes, featuring important recent discoveries of genes affecting parasite commitment to gametocyte formation, microvesicles enabling parasites to communicate with each other, and the anatomical site where immature gametocytes develop. We propose potential parasite targets for future intervention and highlight remaining knowledge gaps.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Marti, Professor Matthias
Authors: Nilsson, S. K., Childs, L. M., Buckee, C., and Marti, M.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Infection & Immunity
Journal Name:PLoS Pathogens
Publisher:Public Library of Science
ISSN (Online):1553-7374
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2015 The Authors
First Published:First published in PLoS Pathogens 11(6):e1004871
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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