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Disruption of a cysteine protease that localizes to the vacuolar compartment of Toxoplasma gondii shows that autophagy is required for the intracellular survival of the parasite during chronic infection.
Apicomplexans are parasites that use membrane transporters to scavenge essential nutrients from the host. Here the authors identify and characterize two apicomplexans transporters showing that these are crucial for cationic amino acid uptake, parasite survival and virulence.
Protozoan parasites produce extracellular vesicles to communicate with the host and within the parasite population. In this Progress article, Hajduk and colleagues review the production and effects of extracellular vesicles from parasites, including Plasmodium spp., Trichomonas vaginalis and kinetoplastids.
The goal of malaria eradication is threatened by drug resistance. Now, two studies characterize Plasmodium falciparum PKG inhibitors and hexahydroquinolines as antimalarial compounds that could block transmission and help mitigate the risk of parasite escape via drug resistance.
A recent study by Silvester et al. found that a conserved quorum sensing signalling pathway regulates interspecies crosstalk in trypanosome co-infections and provided novel insights into trypanosome virulence and transmission.
The antimalarial mefloquine has been used in the clinic for decades, yet its mode of action has remained elusive. Now, a study reports that the enantiomer (+)-mefloquine binds to the cytosolic ribosome of the major malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.