HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Discovery of metabolic pathway for parasite could lead to new controls for diseases

Toxoplasma gondii is one nasty bug. A microscopic parasite, it lives in the intestinal tract of cats but can be carried by most warm-blooded animals. In humans, it can harm or even kill a developing fetus, and it can as well sicken those with compromised immune systems, such as AIDS patients.

Now, for the first time, cellular biologists at the University of Georgia and the University of Pennsylvania have shown that fatty acid synthesis in T. gondii is essential for the parasite's survival. The discovery could lead to the development of new drugs to make the parasite's effects much less troublesome in both humans and animals.

"New drugs with novel mechanisms of action are urgently needed," said Boris Striepen, a cellular biologist in the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences and the Center for Tropical and Emerging Global Diseases at the University of Georgia. "This new study presents us with a viable target for such new drugs."

The research was published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Other authors on the paper are Jolly Mazumdar, formerly a doctoral student at UGA and now a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Pennsylvania, and Emma Wilson, Kate Masek and Christopher Hunter of the School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.

Toxoplasma belongs to a group of parasites that harbor a chloroplast-like organelle, the apicoplast. Chloroplasts are the home of photosynthesis in plants and algae and are responsible for the green color of leaves. Apicoplasts have long puzzled scientists. What does a parasite living in the brain or blood of humans have to do with a structure associated with harvesting sunlight? It turns out that the chloroplasts have additional functions, and it is these functions that the parasites require.

Striepen and his team discovered that a special chloroplast fatty acid synthesis (FAS) pathway in T. gondii is essential for the parasite's ab
'"/>

Contact: Kim Carlyle
kcarlyle@uga.edu
706-542-8083
University of Georgia
14-Aug-2006


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Discovery of new protein could provide new understanding of male fertility
2. Discovery in plant virus may help prevent HIV and similar viruses
3. Discovery could help bring down price of DNA sequencing
4. Discovery in orange cauliflower may lead to more nutritious crops
5. Discovery of new family of pseudo-metallic chemicals
6. Discovery in plants suggests entirely new approach to treating human cancers
7. Discovery of master switch for the communication process between chloroplast and nuclei of plants
8. Discovery of new cave millipedes casts light on Arizona cave ecology
9. Discovery of chemical profiles for infectious diarrhea
10. Discovery could lead to better control of hemorrhagic fever viruses
11. Honey bee researcher wins National Research Initiative Discovery Award

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:7/4/2020)... ... July 03, 2020 , ... Aesthetics ... recognition and multiple awards for not only the products and treatments developed, but ... and Vivace® Microneedle RF. All the brands built by ABM have received several ...
(Date:6/28/2020)... ... June 25, 2020 , ... ... R&D, today announced that it has entered into a multi-year contract with ... to support their translational and clinical research strategy to discover and develop ...
(Date:6/23/2020)... ... 22, 2020 , ... The field of quantitation of large molecules or proteins ... this area. However, the use of mass spectrometry in this field has gained a ... “How do you choose which approach to use (LBA or MS)?” In many ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:7/22/2020)... ... July 22, 2020 , ... Join experts from ... Sr. Manager Regulatory Solutions, in a one hour live webinar on Thursday, ... body in China for drugs and medical devices. Specifically, for medical devices, the NMPA ...
(Date:7/18/2020)... , ... July 16, 2020 , ... ... to aid in the early detection and prevention of high-burden diseases, and Centric ... US-based hospitals and healthcare organizations to utilize existing data in order to identify ...
(Date:7/10/2020)... , ... July 09, 2020 ... ... company, announced today that Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has expanded the ... license allows PathSensors to move into the point-of-care diagnostic market, focusing initially ...
(Date:7/7/2020)... ... ... R3 International is now offering stem cell therapy for Alzheimers dementia in Mexico ... patient's condition, treatment may be offered IV, intrathecal or with a combination. , A ... and the incidence continues to increase as individuals live longer. There is no cure, ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: