Comparative Analysis of Apicoplast-Targeted Protein Extension Lengths in Apicomplexan Parasites

Biomed Res Int. 2015;2015:452958. doi: 10.1155/2015/452958. Epub 2015 May 31.

Abstract

In general, the mechanism of protein translocation through the apicoplast membrane requires a specific extension of a functionally important region of the apicoplast-targeted proteins. The corresponding signal peptides were detected in many apicomplexans but not in the majority of apicoplast-targeted proteins in Toxoplasma gondii. In T. gondii signal peptides are either much diverged or their extension region is processed, which in either case makes the situation different from other studied apicomplexans. We propose a statistic method to compare extensions of the functionally important regions of apicoplast-targeted proteins. More specifically, we provide a comparison of extension lengths of orthologous apicoplast-targeted proteins in apicomplexan parasites. We focus on results obtained for the model species T. gondii, Neospora caninum, and Plasmodium falciparum. With our method, cross species comparisons demonstrate that, in average, apicoplast-targeted protein extensions in T. gondii are 1.5-fold longer than in N. caninum and 2-fold longer than in P. falciparum. Extensions in P. falciparum less than 87 residues in size are longer than the corresponding extensions in N. caninum and, reversely, are shorter if they exceed 88 residues.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Apicoplasts / genetics
  • Apicoplasts / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Malaria, Falciparum / parasitology
  • Neospora / metabolism
  • Neospora / pathogenicity
  • Parasites / genetics
  • Parasites / metabolism*
  • Plasmodium falciparum / metabolism
  • Plasmodium falciparum / pathogenicity
  • Protein Sorting Signals / genetics
  • Proteins / genetics*
  • Proteins / metabolism
  • Toxoplasma / metabolism*
  • Toxoplasma / pathogenicity

Substances

  • Protein Sorting Signals
  • Proteins