Programmed cell death in Giardia

Bagchi, S, Oniku, A E, Topping, K, Mamhoud, Z N and Paget, Timothy (2012) Programmed cell death in Giardia. Parasitology, 139 (7). pp. 894-903. ISSN 0031-1820

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Abstract

Programmed cell death (PCD) has been observed in many unicellular eukaryotes; however, in very few cases have the pathways been described. Recently the early divergent amitochondrial eukaryote Giardia has been included in this group. In this paper we investigate the processes of PCD in Giardia. We performed a bioinformatics survey of Giardia genomes to identify genes associated with PCD alongside traditional methods for studying apoptosis and autophagy. Analysis of Giardia genomes failed to highlight any genes involved in apoptotic-like PCD; however, we were able to induce apoptotic-like morphological changes in response to oxidative stress (H2O2) and drugs (metronidazole). In addition we did not detect caspase activity in induced cells. Interestingly, we did observe changes resembling autophagy when cells were starved (staining with MDC) and genome analysis revealed some key genes associated with autophagy such as TOR, ATG1 and ATG 16. In organisms such as Trichomonas vaginalis, Entamoeba histolytica and Blastocystis similar observations have been made but no genes have been identified. We propose that Giardia possess a pathway of autophagy and a form of apoptosis very different from the classical known mechanism; this may represent an early form of programmed cell death.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Sciences > Pharmacy and Pharmacology
Divisions: Faculty of Applied Sciences
Faculty of Applied Sciences > Department of Pharmacy Health and Wellbeing
Health Sciences and Wellbeing Beacon
Health Sciences and Wellbeing Beacon > Health Improvement and Wellbeing Workstream
Depositing User: Glenda Young
Date Deposited: 08 Jan 2013 11:17
Last Modified: 08 Jan 2013 11:17
URI: http://sure.sunderland.ac.uk/id/eprint/3301

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