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Open Access Research

Expression profile of the Plasmodium falciparum intra-erythrocytic stage protein, PF3D7_1363700

Renee N Roberts12, Maggie S Schlarman12, Michael M Kariuki1, Alexis N LaCrue13, Ruguang Ou1 and Brenda T Beerntsen1*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Veterinary Pathobiology, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO, USA

2 Molecular Microbiology and Immunology and Veterinary Pathobiology Joint Graduate Program, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO, USA

3 Department of Global Health, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL, USA

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Malaria Journal 2013, 12:66  doi:10.1186/1475-2875-12-66

Published: 19 February 2013

Abstract

Background

Efforts to control malaria are demanding due to drug-resistant parasites, insecticide-resistant mosquitoes and poor health infrastructure in malaria-endemic countries. Therefore, the research and development of additional malaria control methods are crucial. For host-parasite interactions, surface antigens and secreted proteins are likely to be involved in infectivity and invasion of host tissues and therefore can be effective targets for control by vaccines, drug therapy, or novel mosquito control methods. In an effort to identify and characterize genes that may have a role in host-parasite interaction, this study describes the expression profile of Plasmodium falciparum PF3D7_1363700.

Methods

A P. falciparum gene, PF3D7_1363700, was identified by a search of the annotated Plasmodium genome database. Protein alignments of PF3D7_1363700 orthologues from various Plasmodium species were performed to demonstrate protein similarity. Transcript expression profiles of PF3D7_1363700 were determined via reverse-transcriptase PCR and protein expression was investigated by immunofluorescence assays, western blot analysis and green fluorescent trafficking studies.

Results

The PF3D7_1363700 protein demonstrates significant similarity with orthologues in other Plasmodium species and appears to be unique to Apicomplexans. The PF3D7_1363700 transcription profile demonstrated expression during the intra-erythrocytic, oocyst sporozoite, and salivary gland sporozoite stages while the PF3D7_1363700 protein was only detected during the intra-erythrocytic stages.

Conclusions

This research utilized an in silico approach to identify a well-conserved protein known as PF3D7_1363700. By molecular, biochemical and cellular analyses, PF3D7_1363700 was discovered to be an intra-erythrocytic-specific stage protein that is unique to Apicomplexans.

Keywords:
Plasmodium falciparum; PF3D7_1363700; Intra-erythrocytic stage; Gene expression; Protein expression