Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 36519347
Link to DOI – 10.1080/21505594.2022.2158656
Virulence. 2023 Dec;14(1):2158656.
The amoeba parasite Entamoeba histolytica is the causative agent of human amebiasis, an enteropathic disease affecting millions of people worldwide. This ancient protozoan is an elementary example of how parasites evolve with humans, e.g. taking advantage of multiple mechanisms to evade immune responses, interacting with microbiota for nutritional and protective needs, utilizing host resources for growth, division, and encystation. These skills of E. histolytica perpetuate the species and incidence of infection. However, in 10% of infected cases, the parasite turns into a pathogen; the host-parasite equilibrium is then disorganized, and the simple lifecycle based on two cell forms, trophozoites and cysts, becomes unbalanced. Trophozoites acquire a virulent phenotype which, when non-controlled, leads to intestinal invasion with the onset of amoebiasis symptoms. Virulent E. histolytica must cross mucus, epithelium, connective tissue and possibly blood. This highly mobile parasite faces various stresses and a powerful host immune response, with oxidative stress being a challenge for its survival. New emerging research avenues and omics technologies target gene regulation to determine human or parasitic factors activated upon infection, their role in virulence activation, and in pathogenesis; this research bears in mind that E. histolytica is a resident of the complex intestinal ecosystem. The goal is to eradicate amoebiasis from the planet, but the parasitic life of E. histolytica is ancient and complex and will likely continue to evolve with humans. Advances in these topics are summarized here.
Keywords: Entamoeba; lifecycle; pathogenesis; stress responses; virulence.https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/36519347/