Most cells use either a type I or type II synthase to make fatty acids. Trypanosoma brucei, the sleeping sickness parasite, provides the first example of a third mechanism for this process. Trypanosomes use microsomal elongases to synthesize fatty acids de novo, whereas other cells use elongases to make long-chain fatty acids even longer. The modular nature of the pathway allows synthesis of different fatty-acid end products, which have important roles in trypanosome biology. Indeed, this newly discovered mechanism seems ideally suited for the parasitic lifestyle.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)
- Infectious Diseases