Saturday, May 21, 2016

The Knowns Unknowns: Exploring the Homologous Recombination Repair Pathway in Toxoplasma gondii

Front Microbiol. 2016 May 3;7:627. doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2016.00627. eCollection 2016.

Author information

  • 1Laboratorio de Parasitología Molecular, IIB-INTECH, CONICET-UNSAM Chascomús, Argentina.
  • 2Cell Cycle Genomic Instability Laboratory, Fundación Instituto Leloir, IIBBA-CONICET Chascomús, Argentina.


Toxoplasma gondii is an apicomplexan parasite of medical and veterinary importance which causes toxoplasmosis in humans. Great effort is currently being devoted toward the identification of novel drugs capable of targeting such illness. In this context, we believe that the thorough understanding of the life cycle of this model parasite will facilitate the identification of new druggable targets in T. gondii. It is important to exploit the available knowledge of pathways which could modulate the sensitivity of the parasite to DNA damaging agents. The homologous recombination repair (HRR) pathway may be of particular interest in this regard as its inactivation sensitizes other cellular models such as human cancer to targeted therapy. Herein we discuss the information available on T. gondii's HRR pathway from the perspective of its conservation with respect to yeast and humans. Special attention was devoted to BRCT domain-containing and end-resection associated proteins in T. gondii as in other experimental models such proteins have crucial roles in early/late steps or HRR and in the pathway choice for double strand break resolution. We conclude that T. gondii HRR pathway is a source of several lines of investigation that allow to to comprehend the extent of diversification of HRR in T. gondii. Such an effort will serve to determine if HRR could represent a potential targer for the treatment of toxoplasmosis. 


DNA damage; Toxoplasma; chromatin; double strand break; fork collapse; homologous recombination repair

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