African sleeping sickness is a vector-borne devastating disease caused by the parasitic protozoan Trypanosoma brucei. Sleeping sickness threatens over 60 million people in 36 countries of sub-Saharan Africa. Over 70,000 deaths every year are a result of sleeping sickness and the disease is always fatal unless treated. Of great importance is the fact that, as opposed to other parasitic organisms, trypanosomes synthesize phospholipids de novo. This makes the trypanosome phospholipids biosynthesis machinery a very attractive target for new drug design. TbLpn is a trypanosome lipin homologue that catalyzes the dephosphorylation of phosphatidic acid (PA) to diacylglycerol (DAG), with a potential role in phospholipid biosynthesis. In addition, as predicted from its in vivo interaction with a protein arginine methyltransferase (PRMT), we have shown that TbLpn contains methylated arginine residues. This work was aimed at determining whether TbLpn can form, as predicted, dimers and oligomers, and whether the major T. brucei PRMT, TbPRMT1 could catalyze the methylation of TbLpn.
|Presenter:||Mackenzie Meyer (Undergraduate Student)|
|Time:||10 am (Session I)
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