Wednesday, 24 August 2016

DRAQ5 uncovers life-cycle of Microsporidia pathogen

Scientists at Rutgers University and the National Institutes of Health have recently developed novel fluorescence-based methods for the tracking of the microsporidial pathogenic parasite Anncaliia algerae; its development in the human host cellular niche

A. algerae is an opportunistic parasitic pathogen that is a risk to immune-compromised individuals and was first identified in mosquitoes, that is however poorly understood due to limited methodologies.

The far-red cell permeant DNA probe DRAQ5 was used as the key fluorescent reagent to label live parasites prior to infection of, and time-lapse imaging inside, GFP-transformed HeLa cells observed for 8 days.  The DRAQ5 stained A. algerae inoculum successfully infected the host cells and produced numerous progeny via unaffected mitosis.

DRAQ5 was also applied for conventional fixed cell end-point imaging of infected host cells.

These studies should hopefully increase understanding of the biology and life-cycle of pathogenic microsporidia sp.

Read the J. Euk. Microbiol. paper here: