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  • Invited speaker presentation
  • Open Access

A common protein export pathway in malaria parasites

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Malaria Journal20109 (Suppl 2) :I3

  • Published:


  • Malaria
  • Malaria Parasite
  • Drug Target
  • Human Host
  • Protozoan Parasite

Protozoan parasites that cause malaria export hundreds of proteins into their host red blood cell cytosol, and some even beyond that to the extracellular environment. These proteins have a wide range of functions that are crucial to parasite virulence and/or parasite survival in the human host. It has been thought for some time that a common link to all these proteins is the mechanism by which they are exported. Recently, we have revealed much of how this export occurs, including the discovery of a novel translocon through which exported proteins must pass. As a common portal for many essential proteins this translocon becomes a strongly validated drug target.

Authors’ Affiliations

Burnet Institute, Melbourne, 3004, Australia
School of Medicine, Deakin University Waurn Ponds campus, Geelong, 3217, Australia
Walter & Eliza Hall Institute, Parkville, 3052, Australia


© Crabb et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2010

This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


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