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Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz
Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Fiocruz
ISSN: 1678-8060
EISSN: 1678-8060
Vol. 109, No. 5, 2014, pp. 662-667
Bioline Code: oc14099
Full paper language: English
Document type: Review Article
Document available free of charge

Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz, Vol. 109, No. 5, 2014, pp. 662-667

 en The remarkable journey of adaptation of the Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasite to New World anopheline mosquitoes
Molina-Cruz, Alvaro & Barillas-Mury, Carolina

Abstract

Plasmodium falciparum originated in Africa, dispersed around the world as a result of human migration and had to adapt to several different indigenous anopheline mosquitoes. Anophelines from the New World are evolutionary distant form African ones and this probably resulted in a more stringent selection of Plasmodium as it adapted to these vectors. It is thought that Plasmodium has been genetically selected by some anopheline species through unknown mechanisms. The mosquito immune system can greatly limit infection and P. falciparum evolved a strategy to evade these responses, at least in part mediated by Pfs47, a highly polymorphic gene. We propose that adaptation of P. falciparum to new vectors may require evasion of their immune system. Parasites with a Pfs47 haplotype compatible with the indigenous mosquito vector would be able to survive and be transmitted. The mosquito antiplasmodial response could be an important determinant of P. falciparum population structure and could affect malaria transmission in the Americas.

Keywords
malaria; Plasmodium falciparum; Anopheles; adaptation; mosquito; Americas

 
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