Translationally controlled tumour protein (TCTP) may play an important role in the establishment or maintenance of parasitemia in a malarial infection. In this study, the potential of TCTP as a malaria vaccine was investigated in two trials. In the initial vaccine trial, Plasmodium falciparum TCTP (PfTCTP) was expressed in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and used to immunize BALB/c mice. Following challenge with Plasmodium yoelii YM, parasitemia was significantly reduced during the early stages of infection. In the second vaccine trial, the TCTP from P. yoelii and P. berghei was expressed in Escherichia coli and used in several mouse malaria models. A significant reduction in parasitemia in the early stages of infection was observed in BALB/c mice challenged with P. yoelii YM. A significantly reduced parasitemia at each day leading up to a delayed and reduced peak parasitemia was also observed in BALB/c mice challenged with the nonlethal Plasmodium chabaudi (P.c.) chabaudi AS. These results suggest that TCTP has an important role for parasite establishment and may be important for pathogenesis.
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