We have cloned a developmentally regulated gene from the parasitic protozoan Leishmania enriettii. The mRNA from this gene accumulates to a much higher level in the promastigote stage of the parasite life cycle that lives in the gut of the insect vector than in the amastigote stage of the parasite that lives inside the macrophages of the mammalian host. The predicted protein encoded by this gene is homologous to the human erythrocyte glucose transporter and to several sugar-transport proteins from Escherichia coli. These structural similarities strongly suggest that the cloned gene encodes a membrane transport protein that is developmentally induced when the parasite enters its insect vector. Regulated membrane transporters may be required for the parasite to adapt to the environment of the insect gut.
|Number of pages
|Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
|Published - 1989
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