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|Transcriptional variation in malaria parasites: why and how
|Llorà Batlle, Oriol
Tintó Font, Elisabet
|Oxford University Press
|Transcriptional differences enable the generation of alternative phenotypes from the same genome. In malaria parasites, transcriptional plasticity plays a major role in the process of adaptation to fluctuations in the environment. Multiple studies with culture-adapted parasites and field isolates are starting to unravel the different transcriptional alternatives available to Plasmodium falciparum and the underlying molecular mechanisms. Here we discuss how epigenetic variation, directed transcriptional responses and also genetic changes that affect transcript levels can all contribute to transcriptional variation and, ultimately, parasite survival. Some transcriptional changes are driven by stochastic events. These changes can occur spontaneously, resulting in heterogeneity within parasite populations that provides the grounds for adaptation by dynamic natural selection. However, transcriptional changes can also occur in response to external cues. A better understanding of the mechanisms that the parasite has evolved to alter its transcriptome may ultimately contribute to the design of strategies to combat malaria to which the parasite cannot adapt.
|Versió postprint del document publicat a: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/bfgp/elz009
|It is part of:
|Briefings in Functional Genomics, 2019
|Appears in Collections:
|Articles publicats en revistes (ISGlobal)
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