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  • 1
    ISSN: 1365-2958
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Notes: The structure, genomic organization and transcription of the gene encoding histone H2B in the protozoan parasite Trypanosoma cruzi have been studied. This gene consists of a 746-nucleotlde unit, tandemly repeated at least 18 times in each of two clusters. DNA probes corresponding to histones H2B and H3 hybridized to different chromosomes revealing that the genes coding for these two histones are not physically linked in the genome of T. cruzi. The primary transcription product of the H2B gene is processed by trans-splicing and polyadenylation. Inhibition of DNA synthesis with aphidicolin resulted in the reduction of histone H2B mRNA to undetectable levels in about two hours, suggesting that its abundance is regulated throughout the cell cycle as it occurs in other eukaryotes. in addition, a concomitant inhibition of translation by cycloheximide reverted this effect indicating that de novo protein synthesis is required for RNA instability. Histone mRNA abundance was dependent on the life-cycle stage of T. cruzi: abundant in amastigotes and epimastigotes, the dividing forms in the host cell and the insect vector, respectively, white undetected in trypomastigotes, the parasite's non-dividing life stage.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1365-2958
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Notes: The life cycle of African trypanosomes is characterized by the alternation of proliferative and quiescent stages but the molecular details of this process remain unknown. Here, we describe a new cytoplasmic protein kinase from Trypanosoma brucei, termed TBPK50, that belongs to a family of protein kinases involved in the regulation of the cell cycle, cell shape and proliferation. TBPK50 is expressed only in proliferative forms but is totally absent in quiescent cells despite the fact that the gene is constitutively transcribed at the same level throughout the life cycle. It is probable that TBPK50 has very specific substrate requirements as it was unable to transphosphorylate a range of classical phosphoacceptor substrates in vitro, although an autophosphorylation activity was readily detectable in the same assays. Complementation studies using a fission yeast mutant demonstrated that TBPK50 is a functional homologue of Orb6, a protein kinase involved in the regulation of cellular morphology and cell cycle progression in yeast. These results link the expression of TBPK50 and the growth status of trypanosomes and support the view that this protein kinase is likely to be involved in the control of life cycle progression and cell division of these parasites.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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