Comparative spatial proteomics of Plasmodium-infected erythrocytes

Cell Rep. 2023 Nov 28;42(11):113419. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2023.113419. Epub 2023 Nov 11.


Plasmodium parasites contribute to one of the highest global infectious disease burdens. To achieve this success, the parasite has evolved a range of specialized subcellular compartments to extensively remodel the host cell for its survival. The information to fully understand these compartments is likely hidden in the so far poorly characterized Plasmodium species spatial proteome. To address this question, we determined the steady-state subcellular location of more than 12,000 parasite proteins across five different species by extensive subcellular fractionation of erythrocytes infected by Plasmodium falciparum, Plasmodium knowlesi, Plasmodium yoelii, Plasmodium berghei, and Plasmodium chabaudi. This comparison of the pan-species spatial proteomes and their expression patterns indicates increasing species-specific proteins associated with the more external compartments, supporting host adaptations and post-transcriptional regulation. The spatial proteome offers comprehensive insight into the different human, simian, and rodent Plasmodium species, establishing a powerful resource for understanding species-specific host adaptation processes in the parasite.

Keywords: CP: Microbiology; annotation; drug targets; erythrocyte modification; evolution; exportome; host-pathogen interaction; malaria; pan-species; pathogenesis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Erythrocytes / parasitology
  • Humans
  • Malaria* / parasitology
  • Plasmodium berghei / metabolism
  • Proteome / metabolism
  • Proteomics*


  • Proteome