Article

Recent insights into fatty acid acquisition and metabolism in malarial parasites

F1000 Biology Reports 03/2010; 2(1). DOI: 10.3410/B2-24
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT

The malarial parasite has a tremendous requirement for fatty acids during the replicative stages that take place in the mammalian host. A series of recent papers, discussed below, have revealed some of the mechanisms employed by the parasite to meet these demands.

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    • "In P. falciparum, it maintains a 35-kb circular genome and several particular biochemical pathways that are present in bacteria and plants but are absent in humans, thus providing many attractive targets that are extensively investigated for drug development. These pathways include the type II fatty acid biosynthesis pathway, which involves 6 distinct enzymes in Plasmodium while in human the type I fatty acid biosynthesis pathway involves a multifunctional enzyme, the 1- deoxy D xylulose 5 phosphate (DOXP) isoprenoid biosynthesis pathway that is mevalonateindependent in the malaria parasite contrary to humans, and apicoplast replication, transcription and translation which involve enzymes of bacterial origins (Dahl & Rosenthal, 2008, Goodman & McFadden, 2007, Grawert et al., 2011, Jayabalasingham et al., 2010). "

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