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Plasmodium falciparum is distributed throughout the tropics and is responsible for an estimated 230 million cases of malaria every year, with a further 1.4 billion people at risk of infection. Little is known about the genetic makeup of P. falciparum populations, despite variation in genetic diversity being a key factor in morbidity, mortality, and the(More)
We review the principles of linkage analysis of experimental genetic crosses and their application to Plasmodium falciparum. Three experimental genetic crosses have been performed using the human malaria parasite P. falciparum. Linkage analysis of the progeny of these crosses has been used to identify parasite genes important in phenotypes such as drug(More)
Description of the genetic structure of malaria parasite populations is central to an understanding of the spread of multiple-locus drug and vaccine resistance. The Plasmodium falciparum mating patterns from madang, Papua New Guinea, where intense transmission of malaria occurs, are described here. A high degree of inbreeding occurs in the absence of(More)
The molecular control of cell division and development in malaria parasites is far from understood. We previously showed that a Plasmodium gametocyte-specific NIMA-related protein kinase, nek-4, is required for completion of meiosis in the ookinete, the motile form that develops from the zygote in the mosquito vector. Here, we show that another NIMA-related(More)
Sporozoites, the invasive form of malaria parasites transmitted by mosquitoes, are quiescent while in the insect salivary glands. Sporozoites only differentiate inside of the hepatocytes of the mammalian host. We show that sporozoite latency is an active process controlled by a eukaryotic initiation factor-2alpha (eIF2alpha) kinase (IK2) and a phosphatase.(More)
BACKGROUND A wide range of unicellular eukaryotes have now been shown to undergo a form of programmed cell death (PCD) that resembles apoptosis; exhibiting morphological and, in some cases, biochemical markers typical of metazoans. However, reports that sexual and asexual stages of malaria parasites exhibit these markers have been challenged. Here we use a(More)
BACKGROUND Helminth infections can alter susceptibility to malaria. Studies need to determine whether or not deworming programs can impact on Plasmodium infections in preschool children. METHODS A double-blind placebo-controlled randomised trial was conducted to investigate the impact of anthelmintic treatment on Plasmodium infection in children aged(More)
To determine the duration and complexity of naturally acquired Plasmodium falciparum infections in small children, a longitudinal cohort study of 143 newborns was conducted in coastal Ghana. On average, children experienced 2 episodes of infection in their first 2 years of life, the median duration of an asymptomatic infection was <4 weeks, and estimates of(More)
BACKGROUND Post-transcriptional control of gene expression is suspected to play an important role in malaria parasites. In yeast and metazoans, part of the stress response is mediated through phosphorylation of eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2alpha (eIF2alpha), which results in the selective translation of mRNAs encoding stress-response proteins.(More)
PfPK7 is an orphan protein kinase of Plasmodium falciparum with maximal homology to MEK3/6 and to fungal protein kinase A proteins in its C-terminal and N-terminal regions, respectively. We showed previously that recombinant PfPK7 is active on various substrates but is unable to phosphorylate the Plasmodium falciparum mitogen-activated protein kinase(More)