Title

Immune Responses in Malaria Transmission

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

3-1-2018

Journal

Current Clinical Microbiology Reports

Volume

5

Issue

1

DOI

10.1007/s40588-018-0078-x

Keywords

Elimination; Gametocytes; Malaria; Opsonization; Phagocytosis; Transmission

Abstract

© 2018, Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature. Purpose of Review: Malaria transmission depends on the development and survival in humans of mature sexual stage parasites, known as gametocytes which further develop within the mosquito midgut to eventually form sporozoites that are reintroduced to the human host to complete the transmission cycle. This review discusses some recent findings on phagocytic clearance of the gametocytes for novel transmission-blocking strategies towards malaria elimination. Recent Findings: Antibodies to gametocytes are present after natural infection, and phagocytosis of immature gametocytes has been shown. There is evidence that the mature live gametocytes evade the phagocytic clearance pathway possibly providing transmission advantage. Dead gametocytes are effectively phagocytosed. Summary: Phagocytosis of gametocytes by macrophages can result in decreased gametocyte load in humans while concurrently channel antigens into the antigen presentation pathways and induction of natural transmission-blocking antibodies. Thus, clearing gametocytes as they develop in the human host to block transmission or preventing subsequent development of the parasite in the mosquito should be an important component of malaria elimination strategies.

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