Proteolytic processing and primary structure of Plasmodium falciparum apical membrane antigen-1.

Howell, SA; Withers-Martinez, C; Kocken, CH; Thomas, AW; Blackman, MJ; (2001) Proteolytic processing and primary structure of Plasmodium falciparum apical membrane antigen-1. The Journal of biological chemistry, 276 (33). pp. 31311-20. ISSN 0021-9258 DOI:

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Plasmodium falciparum apical membrane antigen-1 (PfAMA-1) is a malaria merozoite integral membrane protein that plays an essential but poorly understood role in invasion of host erythrocytes. The PfAMA-1 ectodomain comprises three disulfide-constrained domains, the first of which (domain I) is preceded by an N-terminal prosequence. PfAMA-1 is initially routed to secretory organelles at the apical end of the merozoite, where the 83-kDa precursor (PfAMA-1(83)) is converted to a 66-kDa form (PfAMA-1(66)). At about the time of erythrocyte invasion, PfAMA-1(66) selectively translocates onto the merozoite surface. Here we use direct microsequencing and mass spectrometric peptide mass fingerprinting to characterize in detail the primary structure and proteolytic processing of PfAMA-1. We have determined the site at which processing takes place to convert PfAMA-1(83) to PfAMA-1(66) and have shown that both species possess a completely intact and unmodified transmembrane and cytoplasmic domain. Following relocation to the merozoite surface, PfAMA-1(66) is further proteolytically cleaved at one of two alternative sites, either between domains II and III, or at a membrane-proximal site following domain III. As a result, the bulk of the ectodomain is shed from the parasite surface in the form of two soluble fragments of 44 and 48 kDa. PfAMA-1 is not detectably modified by the addition of N-linked oligosaccharides.

Item Type: Article
Faculty and Department: Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases > Dept of Pathogen Molecular Biology
PubMed ID: 11399764
Web of Science ID: 170472900095


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