Plasmodium asexual growth and sexual development in the haematopoietic niche of the host

Venugopal, K. , Hentzschel, F., Valkiūnas, G. and Marti, M. (2020) Plasmodium asexual growth and sexual development in the haematopoietic niche of the host. Nature Reviews Microbiology, 18(3), pp. 177-189. (doi: 10.1038/s41579-019-0306-2) (PMID:31919479)

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Plasmodium spp. parasites are the causative agents of malaria in humans and animals, and they are exceptionally diverse in their morphology and life cycles. They grow and develop in a wide range of host environments, both within blood-feeding mosquitoes, their definitive hosts, and in vertebrates, which are intermediate hosts. This diversity is testament to their exceptional adaptability and poses a major challenge for developing effective strategies to reduce the disease burden and transmission. Following one asexual amplification cycle in the liver, parasites reach high burdens by rounds of asexual replication within red blood cells. A few of these blood-stage parasites make a developmental switch into the sexual stage (or gametocyte), which is essential for transmission. The bone marrow, in particular the haematopoietic niche (in rodents, also the spleen), is a major site of parasite growth and sexual development. This Review focuses on our current understanding of blood-stage parasite development and vascular and tissue sequestration, which is responsible for disease symptoms and complications, and when involving the bone marrow, provides a niche for asexual replication and gametocyte development. Understanding these processes provides an opportunity for novel therapies and interventions.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Hentzschel, Dr Franziska and Venugopal, Dr Kannan and Marti, Professor Matthias
Authors: Venugopal, K., Hentzschel, F., Valkiūnas, G., and Marti, M.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Infection & Immunity
Journal Name:Nature Reviews Microbiology
Publisher:Nature Research
ISSN (Online):1740-1534
Published Online:09 January 2020
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2020 Springer Nature Limited
First Published:First published in Nature Reviews Microbiology 18(3):177–189
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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