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Antigenic variation in African trypanosomes requires monoallelic transcription and switching of variant surface glycoprotein (VSG) genes. The transcribed VSG, always flanked by '70 bp'-repeats and telomeric-repeats, is either replaced through DNA double-strand break (DSB) repair or transcriptionally inactivated. However, little is known about the(More)
Eukaryotic chromosomes are capped with telomeres which allow complete chromosome replication and prevent the ends from being recognized by the repair machinery. The African trypanosome, Trypanosoma brucei, is a protozoan parasite where antigenic variation requires reversible silencing of a repository of telomere-adjacent variant surface glycoprotein (VSG)(More)
Antigenic variation in African trypanosomes involves monoallelic expression and reversible silencing of variant surface glycoprotein (VSG) genes found adjacent to telomeres in polycistronic expression sites (ESs). We assessed the impact on ES silencing of five candidate essential chromatin-associated factors that emerged from a genome-wide RNA interference(More)
A unifying feature of eukaryotic nuclear organization is genome segregation into transcriptionally active euchromatin and transcriptionally repressed heterochromatin. In metazoa, lamin proteins preserve nuclear integrity and higher order heterochromatin organization at the nuclear periphery, but no non-metazoan lamin orthologues have been identified,(More)
The concept of disease-specific chemotherapy was developed a century ago. Dyes and arsenical compounds that displayed selectivity against trypanosomes were central to this work, and the drugs that emerged remain in use for treating human African trypanosomiasis (HAT). The importance of understanding the mechanisms underlying selective drug action and(More)
To be effective, therapeutic compounds must typically enter target cells and, in some cases, must be concentrated or modified. Thus, uptake and activation mechanisms often form the basis of selectivity against infectious agents. Loss-of-function screens can be used to identify proteins involved in drug uptake and metabolism and may also identify clinically(More)
One of the most promising new targets for trypanocidal drugs to emerge in recent years is the cyclic AMP (cAMP) phosphodiesterase (PDE) activity encoded by TbrPDEB1 and TbrPDEB2. These genes were genetically confirmed as essential, and a high-affinity inhibitor, CpdA, displays potent antitrypanosomal activity. To identify effectors of the elevated cAMP(More)
Chromatin modification is important for virtually all aspects of DNA metabolism but little is known about the consequences of such modification in trypanosomatids, early branching protozoa of significant medical and veterinary importance. MYST-family histone acetyltransferases in other species function in transcription regulation, DNA replication,(More)
African trypanosomes are lethal human and animal parasites that use antigenic variation for evasion of host adaptive immunity. To facilitate antigenic variation, trypanosomes dedicate approximately one third of their nuclear genome, including many minichromosomes, and possibly all sub-telomeres, to variant surface glycoprotein (VSG) genes and associated(More)
Temporal and spatial organization of the nucleus is critical for the control of transcription, mRNA processing and the assembly of ribosomes. This includes the occupancy of specific territories by mammalian chromosomes, the presence of subnuclear compartments such as the nucleolus and Cajal bodies and the division of chromatin between active and inactive(More)