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CD4+ T Cell Responses to the Plasmodium falciparum Erythrocyte Membrane Protein 1 in Children with Mild Malaria


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Gitau, Evelyn, Tuju, J., Karanja, H., Stevenson, L., Requena, Pilar, Kimani, E., Olotu, A., Kimani, D., Marsh, K., Bull, P. and Urban, Britta ORCID: (2014) 'CD4+ T Cell Responses to the Plasmodium falciparum Erythrocyte Membrane Protein 1 in Children with Mild Malaria'. The Journal of Immunology, Vol 192, Issue 4, pp. 1753-1761.

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The immune response against the variant surface Ag Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) is a key component of clinical immunity against malaria. We have investigated the development and maintenance of CD4+ T cell responses to a small semiconserved area of the Duffy binding–like domain (DBL)α–domain of PfEMP1, the DBLα-tag. Young children were followed up longitudinally, and parasites and PBMCs were isolated from 35 patients presenting with an acute case of uncomplicated malaria. The DBLα-tag from the PfEMP1 dominantly expressed by the homologous parasite isolate was cloned and expressed as recombinant protein. The recombinant DBLα-tag was used to activate PBMCs collected from each acute episode and from an annual cross-sectional survey performed after the acute malaria episode. In this article, we report that CD4+ T cell responses to the homologous DBLα-tag were induced in 75% of the children at the time of the acute episode and in 62% of the children at the following cross-sectional survey on average 235 d later. Furthermore, children who had induced DBLα-tag–specific CD4+IL-4+ T cells at the acute episode remained episode free for longer than children who induced other types of CD4+ T cell responses. These results suggest that a wide range of DBLα-tag–specific CD4+ T cell responses were induced in children with mild malaria and, in the case of CD4+IL-4+ T cell responses, were associated with protection from clinical episodes.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: QU Biochemistry > Cells and Genetics > QU 375 Cell physiology
QU Biochemistry > Proteins. Amino Acids. Peptides > QU 55 Proteins
QX Parasitology > Protozoa > QX 135 Plasmodia
WC Communicable Diseases > Tropical and Parasitic Diseases > WC 750 Malaria
Faculty: Department: Biological Sciences > Department of Tropical Disease Biology
Digital Object Identifer (DOI):
Depositing User: Lynn Roberts-Maloney
Date Deposited: 29 Apr 2015 10:53
Last Modified: 06 Feb 2018 13:09


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