Meiosis in Plasmodium: how does it work?

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Meiosis is sexual cell division, a process in eukaryotes whereby haploid gametes are produced. Compared to canonical model eukaryotes, meiosis in apicomplexan parasites appears to diverge from the process with respect to the molecular mechanisms involved; the biology of Plasmodium meiosis, and its regulation by means of post-translational modification, are largely unexplored. Here, we discuss the impact of technological advances in cell biology, evolutionary bioinformatics, and genome-wide functional studies on our understanding of meiosis in the Apicomplexa. These parasites, including Plasmodium falciparum, Toxoplasma gondii, and Eimeria spp., have significant socioeconomic impact on human and animal health. Understanding this key stage during the parasite's life cycle may well reveal attractive targets for therapeutic intervention.

Journal details

Volume 39
Issue number 10
Pages 812-821
Available online
Publication date

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Crick First author
Crick Corresponding author