Bee, A and Culley, F J and Alkhalife, I S and Bodman-Smith, K B and Raynes, J G and Bates, P A (2001) Transformation of Leishmania mexicana metacyclic promastigotes to amastigote-like forms mediated by binding of human C-reactive protein. Parasitology, 122 (5). pp. 521-529. ISSN 0031-1820
Infective metacyclic promastigote forms of Leishmania mexicana are introduced by the bite of sandfly vectors into their human hosts where they transform into the amastigote form. The kinetics of this process was examined in vitro in response to different combinations of temperature (26 degrees C or 32 degrees C), pH (7.2 or 5.5), and exposure to human serum. Little transformation occurred at 26 degrees C/pH 7.2, intermediate levels at 26 degrees C/pH 5.5 and 32 degrees C/pH 7.2, and the greatest response at 32 degrees C/pH 5.5. Transformation was stimulated by exposure to normal human serum, but was markedly reduced when serum previously incubated at 56 degrees C for 1 h was used (complement heat-inactivated). This stimulatory effect was reproduced by exposure to a single purified component of human serum, C-reactive protein (CRP). Binding of CRP to the whole surface of L. mexicana metacyclic promastigotes, including the flagella, was demonstrated by an indirect fluorescent antibody test. The effect of purified CRP was dose dependent and occurred using normal serum concentrations. The stimulatory effect of whole serum was oblated by CRP depletion and restored by addition of purified CRP. The effects of cAMP analogues indicated that transformation could be mediated via an adenylate cyclase cascade.
Actions (login required)