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Open Access Highly Accessed Methodology

In vitro culture of Plasmodium berghei-ANKA maintains infectivity of mouse erythrocytes inducing cerebral malaria

Ronan Jambou12*, Fatima El-Assaad1, Valery Combes1 and Georges E Grau1

Author Affiliations

1 Vascular Immunology Unit, Department of Pathology and Bosch Institute, Sydney Medical School, The University of Sydney, NSW, Australia

2 Institut Pasteur de Madagascar, BP1274 Antananarivo 101, Antananarivo, Madagascar

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Malaria Journal 2011, 10:346  doi:10.1186/1475-2875-10-346

Published: 25 November 2011

Abstract

Background

Infection with Plasmodium berghei is a widely used model of murine malaria and a powerful tool for reverse genetic and pathogenesis studies. However, the efficacy of in vitro reinvasion of erythrocytes is generally low, limiting in vitro studies.

Methods

Plasmodium berghei ANKA-infected blood obtained from a susceptible infected mouse was cultured in various conditions and in vitro parasitaemia was measured every day to evaluate the rate of reinvasion.

Results

High quality culture media were used and reinvasion rates were improved by vigorous orbital shaking of the flask and increasing density of the medium with gelatin.

Discussion

Using these settings, reinvasion of normal mouse erythrocytes by the parasite was obtained in vitro over two weeks with preservation of the infectivity in vivo.