Credit: (Inset) Lynne Turnbull, ithree Institute, University of Technology Sydney; (Main) Eric Hanssen, Head Bio21 EM Unit.
How Malaria Parasite Morphs to Sneak Into Body
The firstِ time doctors sawِ the odd banana-shaped malaria parasite wasِ inِ 1880, andِ since then, scientists haveِ beenِ puzzled overِ howِ the lethal parasite goesِ aboutِ its shape-shifting.
New research mayِ haveِ solved theِ mystery, revealing malaria usesِ a scaffold ofِ proteins toِ contort itsِ spherical body intoِ a banana shape beforeِ sex.
As theِ malaria parasite canِ only reproduce inِ its ‘banana form,’ ifِ we canِ target theseِ scaffold proteins inِ a vaccine orِ drug, weِ mayِ beِ able toِ stop itِ reproducing andِ prevent malaria transmission entirely, study researcher Matthew Dixon ofِ the University ofِ Melbourne inِ Australia saidِ inِ a statement.
The study was led by Dixon and Melbourne doctoral student Megan Dearnley.
Follow LiveScience forِ the latest inِ science news andِ discoveries onِ Twitter @livescience andِ on Facebook.