Receptor and ligand domains for invasion of erythrocytes by Plasmodium falciparum

Filed under: Membrane

Sim, B. K. L.; Chitnis, C. E.; Wasniowska, K.; Hadley, T. J.; Miller, L. H., 1994: Receptor and ligand domains for invasion of erythrocytes by Plasmodium falciparum. Science (washington D C). 264(5167): -1944

A 175-kilodalton erythrocyte binding protein, Eba-175, of the parasite Plasmodium falciparum mediates the invasion of erythrocytes. The erythrocyte receptor for Eba-175 is dependent on sialic acid. The domain of Eba-175 that binds erythrocytes was identified as region Ii with the use of truncated portions of Eba-175 expressed on Cos cells. Region Ii, which contains a cysteine-rich motif, and native Eba-175 bind specifically to glycophorin A, but not to glycophorin B, on the erythrocyte membrane. Erythrocyte recognition of Eba-175 requires both sialic acid and the peptide backbone of glycophorin A. The identification of both the receptor and ligand domains may suggest rational designs for receptor blockade and vaccines.