Dematin, a human erythrocyte cytoskeletal protein, is a substrate for a recombinant FIKK kinase from Plasmodium falciparum

Gabriel S. Brandt, Scott Bailey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

P. falciparum causes the most deadly form of malaria, resulting from the adherence of infected red blood cells to blood vessels. During the blood stage of infection, the parasite secretes a large number of proteins into the host erythrocyte. The secretion of a 20-member family of protein kinases known as FIKK kinases, after a conserved Phe-Ile-Lys-Lys sequence motif, is unique to P. falciparum. Identification of physiological substrates of these kinases may provide perspective on the importance of FIKK kinase activity to P. falciparum virulence. We demonstrate, for the first time, the heterologous expression and purification of a FIKK kinase (PfFk4.1, PFD1165w). The recombinant kinase is active against general substrates and phosphorylates itself. Having demonstrated kinase activity, we incubated recombinant Fk4.1 with parasite and human erythrocyte lysates. No parasite-derived substrates were identified. However, treatment of erythrocyte ghosts shows that the FIKK kinase Fk4.1 phosphorylates dematin, a cytoskeletal protein found at the red blood cell spectrin-actin junction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)20-23
Number of pages4
JournalMolecular and Biochemical Parasitology
Volume191
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 9 2013

Keywords

  • Autophosphorylation
  • Dematin
  • FIKK kinase
  • Malaria
  • Pathogen kinase
  • Plasmodium falciparum

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • Molecular Biology

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