Kharon1 null mutants of leishmania Mexicana are avirulent in mice and exhibit a cytokinesis defect within macrophages

Khoa D. Tran, Danielle P. Vieira, Marco Sanchez, Jessica Valli, Eva Gluenz, Scott Landfear

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In a variety of eukaryotes, flagella play important roles both in motility and as sensory organelles that monitor the extracellular environment. In the parasitic protozoan Leishmania mexicana, one glucose transporter isoform, LmxGT1, is targeted selectively to the flagellar membrane where it appears to play a role in glucose sensing. Trafficking of LmxGT1 to the flagellar membrane is dependent upon interaction with the KHARON1 protein that is located at the base of the flagellar axoneme. Remarkably, while Δkharon1 null mutants are viable as insect stage promastigotes, they are unable to survive as amastigotes inside host macrophages. Although Δkharon1 promastigotes enter macrophages and transform into amastigotes, these intracellular parasites are unable to execute cytokinesis and form multinucleate cells before dying. Notably, extracellular axenic amastigotes of Δkharon1 mutants replicate and divide normally, indicating a defect in the mutants that is only exhibited in the intra-macrophage environment. Although the flagella of Δkharon1 amastigotes adhere to the phagolysomal membrane of host macrophages, the morphology of the mutant flagella is often distorted. Additionally, these null mutants are completely avirulent following injection into BALB/c mice, underscoring the critical role of the KHARON1 protein for viability of intracellular amastigotes and disease in the animal model of leishmaniasis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere0134432
JournalPLoS One
Volume10
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 12 2015

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Leishmania mexicana
amastigotes
Cytokinesis
Macrophages
cytokinesis
Flagella
macrophages
mutants
Defects
flagellum
mice
promastigotes
Membranes
Axoneme
Animal Disease Models
Leishmaniasis
animal disease models
Facilitative Glucose Transport Proteins
Eukaryota
glucose transporters

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Kharon1 null mutants of leishmania Mexicana are avirulent in mice and exhibit a cytokinesis defect within macrophages. / Tran, Khoa D.; Vieira, Danielle P.; Sanchez, Marco; Valli, Jessica; Gluenz, Eva; Landfear, Scott.

In: PLoS One, Vol. 10, No. 8, e0134432, 12.08.2015.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Tran, Khoa D. ; Vieira, Danielle P. ; Sanchez, Marco ; Valli, Jessica ; Gluenz, Eva ; Landfear, Scott. / Kharon1 null mutants of leishmania Mexicana are avirulent in mice and exhibit a cytokinesis defect within macrophages. In: PLoS One. 2015 ; Vol. 10, No. 8.
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