Characterisation of uptake and sub-cellular transit of human serum trypanolytic factors by Trypanosoma brucei
Human serum contains two complexes (TLF1 and TLF2), each of which includes apolipoprotein-L1 that lyses most African trypanosomes, rendering us immune to these parasites. However, two sub-species of Trypanosoma brucei have evolved resistance to these factors, making T. b. gambiense and T. b. rhodesiense human-infectious and the cause of human African trypanosomiasis or sleeping sickness.
Our work seeks to identify and characterise the parasite factors and pathways that support the lytic action of human serum and apolipoprotein-L1 against T. b. brucei. This will increase our understanding of the action of this innate trypanolytic factor and identify parasite pathways that we may be able to exploit for future chemotherapeutic development.