One of the most fascinating and remarkable features of parasites, which cause malaria, is their choice of erythrocytes as the principal host cells in which to reside during infection of a vertebrate host. Parasites completely renovate the terminally differentiated cells, which lack most of the normal organelles and functions of other cells, such as a nucleus and the machinery to express and transport proteins to subcellular locations. Erythrocyte remodeling begins immediately after invasion by the parasite, by expression and export of many hundreds of proteins that assemble into molecular machinery in the host cell that permit protein trafficking, harvesting of nutrients, and mechanisms to evade host immune responses. In this review, we discuss recent studies on erythrocyte remodeling, including mechanisms of protein export as well as the identity, functions, and subcellular locations of key exported proteins.

Keyword(s): exportmalariaPEXELtraffickingtranslocon

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  • Article Type: Review Article
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