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Essays in biochemistry

Glucose metabolism in Trypanosoma cruzi.


PMID 22023439

Abstract

The causative agent of Chagas disease, Trypanosoma cruzi, metabolizes glucose through two major pathways: glycolysis and the pentose phosphate pathway. Glucose is taken up via one facilitated transporter and its catabolism by the glycolytic pathway leads to the excretion of reduced products, succinate and l-alanine, even in the presence of oxygen; the first six enzymes are located in a peroxisome-like organelle, the glycosome, and the lack of regulatory controls in hexokinase and phosphofructokinase results in the lack of the Pasteur effect. All of the enzymes of the pentose phosphate pathway are present in the four major stages of the parasite's life cycle, and some of them are possible targets for chemotherapy. The gluconeogenic enzymes phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase and fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase are present, but there is no reserve polysaccharide.