Transfection technologies for investigating the role and antimalarial potential of GPCR-like proteins in Plasmodium

Transfection technologies for investigating the role and antimalarial potential of GPCR-like proteins in Plasmodium

Objectives

To investigate the role of Plasmodium GPR89 in the regulation of parasite growth, differentiation, virulence, and immunogenicity, and gain insights into signaling pathways operating through GPR89 by identifying binding partners within the infected-erythrocyte. This approach will take advantage of unique expertise in transfection technologies for Plasmodium chabaudi; a particularly useful and relevant mouse model for studying acute and chronic malaria infection and for investigating host-parasite interactions that regulate cell-cycle progression, differentiation, and immune evasion during blood-stage infection.

These studies will advance our understanding of GPCR-like proteins in Plasmodium and will bring technological advances to the P.chabaudi model; so providing an experimental framework for the investigation and validation of a new class of therapeutic targets.

PI Institution(s)

Principal Investigator (PI)

Funding source(s)

Abstract

Malaria causes more than 650,000 deaths annually, and new antimalarial therapies are urgently needed. Signalling pathways acting through GPCRs are the targets of 50% of drugs currently in therapeutic use, so have high potential as antimalarial drug targets. This project is aimed, therefore, at exploring the function and therapeutic potential of Plasmodium members of an evolutionary-ancient family of proteins, GPR89, that are classified as divergent G-Protein Coupled Receptors and have been implicated in environmental sensing in a diverse range of eukaryotes.

Key facts

  • Dates
    May 2016 to Nov 2017
    Funding amount
    $140,809
    Funding information
    Seed Award in Science; 99,893 GBP

MESA tags

  • Methodology
    Basic science
    Theme(s)
    Parasite genetic diversity