Malaria parasites solve the problem of a low calcium environment

Patricia Camacho

Research output: Contribution to journalShort surveypeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The parasite responsible for malaria, Plasmodium falciparum, spends much of its life in the RBC under conditions of low cytosolic Ca2+. This poses an interesting problem for a parasite that depends on a Ca2+ signaling system to carry out its vital functions. This long standing puzzle has now been resolved by a clever series of experiments performed by Gazarini et al. (2003). Using advances in fluorescent Ca2+ imaging (Grynkiewics, G., M. Poenie, and R.Y. Tsien. 1985. J. Biol. Chem. 260:3440-3450; Hofer, A., and T. Machen. 1994. Am. J. Physiol. 267:G442-G451; Hofer, A.M., B. Landolfi, L. Debellis, T. Pozzan, and S. Curci. 1998. EMBO J. 17:1986-1995), these authors have elucidated the source of the Ca2+ gradient that allows the accumulation of intracellular Ca2+ within the parasite.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)17-19
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Cell Biology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 14 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


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