The Malaria Cell Atlas: Single parasite transcriptomes across the complete Plasmodium life cycle

Science. 2019 Aug 23;365(6455):eaaw2619. doi: 10.1126/science.aaw2619.


Malaria parasites adopt a remarkable variety of morphological life stages as they transition through multiple mammalian host and mosquito vector environments. We profiled the single-cell transcriptomes of thousands of individual parasites, deriving the first high-resolution transcriptional atlas of the entire Plasmodium berghei life cycle. We then used our atlas to precisely define developmental stages of single cells from three different human malaria parasite species, including parasites isolated directly from infected individuals. The Malaria Cell Atlas provides both a comprehensive view of gene usage in a eukaryotic parasite and an open-access reference dataset for the study of malaria parasites.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anopheles / parasitology
  • Atlases as Topic*
  • Genes, Protozoan / physiology*
  • HeLa Cells
  • Humans
  • Life Cycle Stages / genetics*
  • Malaria / parasitology*
  • Plasmodium berghei / genetics*
  • Plasmodium berghei / isolation & purification
  • Plasmodium berghei / physiology*
  • Single-Cell Analysis
  • Transcriptome*