Lytic Cycle of Toxoplasma gondii: 15 Years Later

Annu Rev Microbiol. 2015;69:463-85. doi: 10.1146/annurev-micro-091014-104100. Epub 2015 Aug 28.


Toxoplasmosis is the clinical and pathological consequence of acute infection with the obligate intracellular apicomplexan parasite Toxoplasma gondii. Symptoms result from tissue destruction that accompanies lytic parasite growth. This review updates current understanding of the host cell invasion, parasite replication, and eventual egress that constitute the lytic cycle, as well as the ways T. gondii manipulates host cells to ensure its survival. Since the publication of a previous iteration of this review 15 years ago, important advances have been made in our molecular understanding of parasite growth and mechanisms of host cell egress, and knowledge of the parasite's manipulation of the host has rapidly progressed. Here we cover molecular advances and current conceptual frameworks that include each of these topics, with an eye to what may be known 15 years from now.

Keywords: Apicomplexa; IRG; egress; endodyogeny; inflammasome; invasion.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Host-Parasite Interactions
  • Humans
  • Protozoan Proteins / metabolism
  • Toxoplasma / cytology
  • Toxoplasma / growth & development*
  • Toxoplasmosis / immunology
  • Toxoplasmosis / parasitology*
  • Toxoplasmosis / pathology
  • Vacuoles / parasitology


  • Protozoan Proteins