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Recent insights into the export of PEXEL/HTS-motif containing proteins in Plasmodium parasites.

Bullen HE, Crabb BS, Gilson PR

  • Journal Current opinion in microbiology

  • Published 22 Oct 2012

  • Volume 15

  • ISSUE 6

  • Pagination 699-704

  • DOI 10.1016/j.mib.2012.09.008


Protein export in intra-erythrocytic Plasmodium parasites is of considerable interest in the malaria field because the process is inextricably linked to virulence and survival mechanisms in the human host. Despite many and varied functions, a common link between many exported proteins is their actual mode of export. Most exported proteins must traverse two membranes to their destination in the infected erythrocyte cytosol, the parasite plasma membrane and surrounding parasitophorous vacuole membrane (PVM). In recent years, several studies have shone light on the common molecular mechanism by which the major class of exported proteins, the so-called PEXEL/HTS motif-containing proteins, are translocated across these membranes. Roles for parasite-specific molecular processes in two distinct sites, the endoplasmic reticulum and the PVM have been revealed.