Rebecca Pastrana-Mena

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Infection of red blood cells (RBC) subjects the malaria parasite to oxidative stress. Therefore, efficient antioxidant and redox systems are required to prevent damage by reactive oxygen species. Plasmodium spp. have thioredoxin and glutathione (GSH) systems that are thought to play a major role as antioxidants during blood stage infection. In this report,(More)
Malaria parasites contain a complete glutathione (GSH) redox system, and several enzymes of this system are considered potential targets for antimalarial drugs. Through generation of a gamma-glutamylcysteine synthetase (gamma-GCS)-null mutant of the rodent parasite Plasmodium berghei, we previously showed that de novo GSH synthesis is not critical for blood(More)
Malaria is one of the most devastating parasitic diseases worldwide. Plasmodium drug resistance remains a major challenge to malaria control and has led to the re-emergence of the disease. Chloroquine (CQ) and artemisinin (ART) are thought to exert their anti-malarial activity inducing cytotoxicity in the parasite by blocking heme degradation (for CQ) and(More)
One of the critical gaps in malaria transmission biology and surveillance is our lack of knowledge about Plasmodium falciparum gametocyte biology, especially sexual dimorphic development and how sex ratios that may influence transmission from the human to the mosquito. Dissecting this process has been hampered by the lack of sex-specific protein markers for(More)
Malaria transmission-blocking (T-B) interventions are essential for malaria elimination. Small molecules that inhibit the Plasmodium ookinete-to-oocyst transition in the midgut of Anopheles mosquitoes, thereby blocking sporogony, represent one approach to achieving this goal. Chondroitin sulfate glycosaminoglycans (CS-GAGs) on the Anopheles gambiae midgut(More)
The evolution of drug resistance is a recurrent problem that has plagued efforts to treat and control malaria. Recent emergence of artemisinin resistance in Southeast Asia underscores the need to develop novel antimalarials and identify new targetable pathways in Plasmodium parasites. Transmission-blocking approaches, which typically target gametocytes in(More)
We have synthesized poly-γ-glutamic acid (PGA) modified with a synthetic trivalent glyco-ligand (TriGalNAc) for the hepatocyte asialoglycoprotein receptor (ASGP-R). We investigated in vivo distribution of unmodified PGA and TriGalNAc-modified PGA (TriGalNAc-PGA) in mice after intravenous injection. Most of unmodified PGA administered was transported to the(More)
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