Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Proteases as regulators of pathogenesis: Examples from the apicomplexa

Biochim Biophys Acta. 2011 Jun 14. [Epub ahead of print]

Proteases as regulators of pathogenesis: Examples from the apicomplexa.

Li H, Child MA, Bogyo M.

The diverse functional roles that proteases play in basic biological processes make them essential for virtually all organisms. Not surprisingly, proteolysis is also a critical process required for many aspects of pathogenesis. In particular, obligate intracellular parasites must precisely coordinate proteolytic events during their highly regulated life cycle inside multiple host cell environments. Advances in chemical, proteomic and genetic tools that can be applied to parasite biology have led to an increased understanding of the complex events centrally regulated by proteases. In this review, we outline recent advances in our knowledge of specific proteolytic enzymes in two medically relevant apicomplexan parasites: Plasmodium falciparum and Toxoplasma gondii. Efforts over the last decade have begun to provide a map of key proteotolyic events that are essential for both parasite survival and propagation inside host cells. These advances in our molecular understanding of proteolytic events involved in parasite pathogenesis provide a foundation for the validation of new networks and enzyme targets that could be exploited for therapeutic purposes. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Proteolysis 50years after the discovery of lysosome.

Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier B.V.

PMID:21683169[PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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