Trypanosoma brucei is a protozan parasite that causes great suffering to both men and cattle. The fight against the diseases caused by this parasite is hampered by the fact that trypanosomes are capable of defending themselves against a host immune response using a mechanism of antigenic variation of their surface glycoprotein coat. Furthermore, during evolution trypanosomes have evolved in such way that they have become capable of modulating the host immune response and are capable of using host immune regulatory molecules in favor of their own growth regulation. This project aims at elucidating this host mediated growth regulation, and will focus more particular at the mechanisms involved in the trypanolysis mediated by two host cytokine, tumor necrosis factor (TNF) and interleukine-2 (IL-2). During this project it will be analyzed which parasite components are involved in binding and uptake of these cytokines. In parallel, it will be investigate which parasite component is capable of binding CCF-1, a newly discovered trypanolytic molecule with high functional homology to TNF, isolated in our labaratory from theceolomic fluid of the earthworm Eisenia Foetida. Apart from the identification of cytokine-binding molecules on the trypanosome surface, special attention will be given to the analysis of the cellular mechanism involved in cutokine-mediated trypanolysis. As such, the combined results from these investigations might open the possibility for the design of a useful therapeutic anti-trypanosome compound.
Effective start/end date1/01/9931/12/01

    Flemish discipline codes

  • Basic sciences
  • Biological sciences

    Research areas

  • immunology, interleukine, receptor, cytokine, trypanosome, tumor necrosis factor

ID: 2834842