Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Sink or swim: lipid rafts in parasite pathogenesis

Trends Parasitol. 2012 Aug 17. [Epub ahead of print]

Sink or swim: lipid rafts in parasite pathogenesis

Goldston AM, Powell RR, Temesvari LA.

Department of Genetics and Biochemistry, Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29634, USA.

Lipid rafts, sterol- and sphingolipid-rich membrane microdomains, have been extensively studied in mammalian cells. Recently, lipid rafts have been shown to control virulence in a variety of parasites including Entamoeba histolytica, Giardia intestinalis, Leishmania spp., Plasmodium spp., Toxoplasma gondii, and Trypanosoma spp. Parasite rafts regulate adhesion to host and invasion, and parasite adhesion molecules often localize to rafts. Parasite rafts also control vesicle trafficking, motility, and cell signaling. Parasites disrupt host cell rafts; the dysregulation of host membrane function facilitates the establishment of infection and evasion of the host immune system. Discerning the mechanism by which lipid rafts regulate parasite pathogenesis is essential to our understanding of virulence. Such insight may guide the development of new drugs for disease management.

PMID: 22906512 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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