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© Valérie Choumet
Mosquitoes were orally infected with the chikungunya virus. Midguts were dissected at day 5 post-infection, fixed and permeabilised. Virus is shown in red (anti-E2 protein, cyanine 3), the actin network in green (phalloidin 548) and nuclei in blue (DAPI).
Publication : EMBO molecular medicine

ZIPCO, a putative metal ion transporter, is crucial for Plasmodium liver-stage development

Scientific Fields
Diseases
Organisms
Applications
Technique

Published in EMBO molecular medicine - 01 Nov 2014

Sahu T, Boisson B, Lacroix C, Bischoff E, Richier Q, Formaglio P, Thiberge S, Dobrescu I, Ménard R, Baldacci P

Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 25257508

EMBO Mol Med 2014 Nov;6(11):1387-97

The malaria parasite, Plasmodium, requires iron for growth, but how it imports iron remains unknown. We characterize here a protein that belongs to the ZIP (Zrt-, Irt-like Protein) family of metal ion transport proteins and have named ZIP domain-containing protein (ZIPCO). Inactivation of the ZIPCO-encoding gene in Plasmodium berghei, while not affecting the parasite’s ability to multiply in mouse blood and to infect mosquitoes, greatly impairs its capacity to develop inside hepatocytes. Iron/zinc supplementation and depletion experiments suggest that ZIPCO is required for parasite utilization of iron and possibly zinc, consistent with its predicted function as a metal transporter. This is the first report of a ZIP protein having a crucial role in Plasmodium liver-stage development, as well as the first metal ion transporter identified in Plasmodium pre-erythrocytic stages. Because of the drastic dependence on iron of Plasmodium growth, ZIPCO and related proteins might constitute attractive drug targets to fight against malaria.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25257508