Sex-specific Separation of Plasmodium falciparum Gametocyte Populations

Date

2021

Authors

Ridgway, Melanie
Cihalova, Daniela
Maier, Alexander

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title

Publisher

Bio-Protocol

Abstract

Plasmodium falciparum is a unicellular eukaryotic parasite that causes malaria in humans. The parasite is spread by Anopheles mosquitoes after ingestion of sexual stage parasites known as gametocytes. Malaria transmission depends on parasites switching from the disease-causing asexual blood forms to male and female gametocytes. The current protocol allows the simultaneous isolation of male and female parasites from the same population to study this critical lifecycle stage in a sex-specific manner. We have generated a transgenic P. falciparum cell line that expresses a GFP-tagged parasite protein in female, but not male, parasites. Gametocyte production is stress induced and, through a series of steps, sexual stage parasites are enriched relative to uninfected red blood cells or red blood cells infected with asexual stage parasites. Finally, male and female gametocytes are separated by fluorescence- activated cell sorting. This protocol allows for the separation of up to 12 million live male and female parasites from the same population, which are amenable to further analysis.

Description

Keywords

Plasmodium falciparum, Malaria, Gametocytes, Genetic marker, FACS, Sex-specific, gABCG2

Citation

Source

Bio-Protocol

Type

Journal article

Book Title

Entity type

Access Statement

Open Access

License Rights

DOI

10.21769/BioProtoc.4045

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