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Labeling surface epitopes to identify Cryptosporidium life stages using a scanning electron microscopy-based immunogold approach

Edwards, H., Thompson, R.C.A., Koh, W.H. and Clode, P.L. (2012) Labeling surface epitopes to identify Cryptosporidium life stages using a scanning electron microscopy-based immunogold approach. Molecular and Cellular Probes, 26 (1). pp. 21-28.

Link to Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.mcp.2011.11.001
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Abstract

The Apicomplexan parasite Cryptosporidium parvum is responsible for the widespread disease cryptosporidiosis, in both humans and livestock. The nature of C. parvum infection is far from understood and many questions remain in regard to host parasite interactions, limiting successful treatment of the disease. To definitively identify a range of C. parvum stages in cell culture and to begin to investigate host cell interactions in some of the lesser known life stages, we have utilized a combined scanning electron microscopy and immunolabeling approach, correlating high resolution microstructural information with definitive immunogold labeling of Cryptosporidium stages. Several life cycle stages, including oocysts, merozoites I, trophozoites, gamonts and microgametocytes, were successfully immunolabeled in an in vitro model system. Developing oocysts were clearly immunolabeled, but this did not persist once excystation had occurred. Immunolabeling visualized on the host cell surface adjacent to invasive merozoites is likely to be indicative of receptor shedding, with merozoites also initiating host responses that manifested as abnormal microvilli on the host cell surface. Small sub-micron stages such as microgametocytes, which were impossible to identify as single entities without immunolabeling, were readily visualized and observed to attach to host cells via novel membranous projections. Epicellular parasites also expressed Cryptosporidium-derived epitopes within their encapsulating membrane. These data have allowed us to confidently identify a variety of C. parvum stages in cell culture at high resolution. With this, we provide new insight into C. parvum - host cell interactions and highlight future opportunities for investigating and targeting receptor-mediated interactions between Cryptosporidium life cycle stages and host cells.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences
Publisher: Elsevier Ltd
Copyright: © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/7038
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