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Recent Progress in Functional Genomic Research in Plasmodium falciparum

[ Vol. 11 , Issue. 4 ]


Jianbing Mu, Karl B. Seydel, Adam Bates and Xin-Zhuan Su   Pages 279 - 286 ( 8 )


With the completion and near completion of many malaria parasite genome-sequencing projects, efforts are now being directed to a better understanding of gene functions and to the discovery of vaccine and drug targets. Inter- and intraspecies comparisons of the parasite genomes will provide invaluable insights into parasite evolution, virulence, drug resistance, and immune invasion. Genome-wide searches for loci under various selection pressures may lead to discovery of genes conferring drug resistance or encoding for protective antigens. In addition, the Plasmodium falciparum genome sequence provides the basis for the development of various microarrays to monitor gene expression and to detect nucleotide substitution and deletion/amplification. Genome-wide profiling of the parasite proteome, chromatin modification, and nucleosome position also depend on availability of the parasite genome. In this brief review, we will highlight some recent advances and studies in characterizing gene function and related phenotype in P. falciparum that were made possible by the genome sequence, particularly the development of a genome-wide diversity map and various high-throughput genotyping methods for genome-wide association studies (GWAS).


Malaria, microarray, genome diversity, SNP, recombination, comparative genomics


LMVR, NIAID, NIH, 12735 Twinbrook Parkway, Room 3E-32C, Rockville, MD 20852, USA.

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