Marseille, France
Marseille, France

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Wurtz N.,UMR MD3 | Chapus C.,UMR MD3 | Desplans J.,UMR MD3 | Parzy D.,UMR MD3
Parasitology | Year: 2011

One of the most important public health problems in the world today is the emergence and dissemination of drug-resistant malaria parasites. Plasmodium falciparum is the causative agent of the most lethal form of human malaria. New anti-malarial strategies are urgently required, and their design and development require the identification of potential therapeutic targets. However, the molecular mechanisms controlling the life cycle of the malaria parasite are still poorly understood. The published genome sequence of P. falciparum and previous studies have revealed that several homologues of eukaryotic signalling proteins, such as protein kinases, are relatively conserved. Protein kinases are now widely recognized as important drug targets in protozoan parasites. Cyclic AMP-dependent protein kinase (PKA) is implicated in numerous processes in mammalian cells, and the regulatory mechanisms of the cAMP pathway have been characterized. P. falciparum cAMP-dependent protein kinase plays an important role in the parasite's life cycle and thus represents an attractive target for the development of anti-malarial drugs. In this review, we focus on the P. falciparum cAMP/PKA pathway to provide new insights and an improved understanding of this signalling cascade. Copyright © 2010 Cambridge University Press.


Atkinson A.,French Institute of Health and Medical Research | Atkinson A.,Aix - Marseille University | Garnier S.,French Institute of Health and Medical Research | Garnier S.,Aix - Marseille University | And 6 more authors.
Malaria Journal | Year: 2012

Background: There is accumulating evidence that host heparan sulphate proteoglycans play an important role in the life cycle of Plasmodium through their heparan sulphate chains, suggesting that genetic variations in genes involved in heparan sulphate biosynthesis may influence parasitaemia. Interestingly, Hs3st3a1 and Hs3st3b1 encoding enzymes involved in the biosynthesis of heparan sulphate are located within a chromosomal region linked to Plasmodium chabaudi parasitaemia in mice. This suggests that HS3ST3A1 and HS3ST3B1 may influence P. falciparum parasitaemia in humans. Methods. Polymorphisms within HS3ST3A1 and HS3ST3B1 were identified in 270 individuals belonging to 44 pedigrees and living in Burkina Faso. Linkage and association between parasitaemia and the polymorphisms were assessed with MERLIN and FBAT. A genetic interaction analysis was also conducted based on the PGMDR approach. Results: Linkage between P. falciparum parasitaemia and the chromosomal region containing HS3ST3A1 and HS3ST3B1 was detected on the basis of the 20 SNPs identified. In addition, rs28470223 located within the promoter of HS3ST3A1 was associated with P. falciparum parasitaemia, whereas the PGMDR analysis revealed a genetic interaction between HS3ST3A1 and HS3ST3B1. Seventy-three significant multi-locus models were identified after correcting for multiple tests; 37 significant multi-locus models included rs28470223, whereas 38 multi-locus models contained at least one mis-sense mutation within HS3ST3B1. Conclusion: Genetic variants of HS3ST3A1 and HS3ST3B1 are associated with P. falciparum parasitaemia. This suggests that those variants alter both the function of heparan sulphate proteoglycans and P. falciparum parasitaemia. © 2012 Atkinson et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


Lefevre L.,UMR MD3 | Lefevre L.,Toulouse 1 University Capitole | Authier H.,UMR MD3 | Authier H.,Toulouse 1 University Capitole | And 16 more authors.
Nature Communications | Year: 2015

Liver receptor homologue-1 (LRH-1) is a nuclear receptor involved in the repression of inflammatory processes in the hepatointestinal tract. Here we report that LRH-1 is expressed in macrophages and induced by the Th2 cytokine IL-13 via a mechanism involving STAT6. We show that loss-of-function of LRH-1 in macrophages impedes IL-13-induced macrophage polarization due to impaired generation of 15-HETE PPARγ ligands. The incapacity to generate 15-HETE metabolites is at least partially caused by the compromised regulation of CYP1A1 and CYP1B1. Mice with LRH-1-deficient macrophages are, furthermore, highly susceptible to gastrointestinal and systemic Candida albicans infection. Altogether, these results identify LRH-1 as a critical component of the anti-inflammatory and fungicidal response of alternatively activated macrophages that acts upstream from the IL-13-induced 15-HETE/PPARγ axis. © 2015 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

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