Friday, March 11, 2016

Phosphatidic Acid-Mediated Signaling Regulates Microneme Secretion in Toxoplasma

 2016 Mar 9;19(3):349-360. doi: 10.1016/j.chom.2016.02.006.


The obligate intracellular lifestyle of apicomplexan parasites necessitates an invasive phase underpinned by timely and spatially controlled secretion of apical organelles termed micronemes. In Toxoplasma gondii, extracellular potassium levels and other stimuli trigger a signaling cascade culminating in phosphoinositide-phospholipase C (PLC) activation, which generates the second messengers diacylglycerol (DAG) and IP3 and ultimately results in microneme secretion. Here we show that a delicate balance between DAG and its downstream product, phosphatidic acid (PA), is essential for controlling microneme release. Governing this balance is the apicomplexan-specific DAG-kinase-1, which interconverts PA and DAG, and whose depletion impairs egress and causes parasite death. Additionally, we identify an acylated pleckstrin-homology (PH) domain-containing protein (APH) on the microneme surface that senses PA during microneme secretion and is necessary for microneme exocytosis. As APH is conserved in Apicomplexa, these findings highlight a potentially widely used mechanism in which key lipid mediators regulate microneme exocytosis.
Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Apicomplexa; Toxoplasma gondii; diacylglycerol kinase; invasion; microneme; phosphatidic acid; phosphatidic acid phosphatase; phosphoinositide-phospholipase C; pleckstrin homology domain; propranolol; regulated exocytosis
[PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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