Journal article

Characterization of Metabolically Quiescent Leishmania Parasites in Murine Lesions Using Heavy Water Labeling

Joachim Kloehn, Eleanor C Saunders, Sean O'Callaghan, Michael J Dagley, Malcolm J McConville

PLOS PATHOGENS | PUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE | Published : 2015

Abstract

Information on the growth rate and metabolism of microbial pathogens that cause long-term chronic infections is limited, reflecting the absence of suitable tools for measuring these parameters in vivo. Here, we have measured the replication and physiological state of Leishmania mexicana parasites in murine inflammatory lesions using 2H2O labeling. Infected BALB/c mice were labeled with 2H2O for up to 4 months, and the turnover of parasite DNA, RNA, protein and membrane lipids estimated from the rate of deuterium enrichment in constituent pentose sugars, amino acids, and fatty acids, respectively. We show that the replication rate of parasite stages in these tissues is very slow (doubling tim..

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