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New Progress has been Achieved on the Pathogenesis of Toxoplasma gondii by SHVRI Researchers

Source: Shanghai Veterinary Research Institute

Recently, Prof. Wang Quan,Dr. Xue Junxin and Dr. Jiang Wei in Shanghai Veterinary Research Institute of Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS) and Prof. Huang Kehe from Nanjing Agricultural University, found that thioredoxin reductase (TR) was able to resist oxidative damage from host macrophages and could be considered as a crucial virulence factor of Toxoplasma gondii infection. The study was published on line in FASEB Journal (impact factor 5.498) in July 7, 2017.

The thioredoxin reductase (TR) can help pathogens resist oxidative-burst injury from host immune cells by maintaining thioredoxin-reduction state under condition of NADPH consumption. TR is a necessary virulence factor for enabling the persistent infection of some parasites. We performed bioinformatics analyses and biochemical assays to characterize the activity, subcellular localization, and genetic ablation of Toxoplasma gondii TR (TgTR) to shed light on its biological function. Thioredoxin reductase gene of T. gondii was also knocked out by CRISPR/CAS9 gene editing technology. It was observed that parasite antioxidant capacity, invasion efficiency, and proliferation were decreased in TR-knockout strains in vitro. Furthermore, in vivo results revealed that the survival time of mice infected with the TR-knockout strain was significantly prolonged relative to that of mice infected with the wild-type strain. These results suggested that TgTR played an important role in resistance to oxidative damage and can be considered as a virulence factor associated with T. gondii infection. More information can be found in the below link: http://www.fasebj.org/content/early/2017/07/05/fj.201700008R.

By Wang Quan
wangquan@shvri.ac.cn