CD68 acts as a major gateway for malaria sporozoite liver infection

Sung Jae Cha, Kiwon Park, Prakash Srinivasan, Christian W. Schindler, Nico Van Rooijen, Monique Stins, Marcelo Jacobs-Lorena

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


After being delivered by the bite from an infected mosquito, Plasmodium sporozoites enter the blood circulation and infect the liver. Previous evidence suggests that Kupffer cells, a macrophage-like component of the liver blood vessel lining, are traversed by sporozoites to initiate liver invasion. However, the molecular determinants of sporozoite-Kupffer cell interactions are unknown. Understanding the molecular basis for this specific recognition may lead to novel therapeutic strategies to control malaria. Using a phage display library screen, we identified a peptide, P39, that strongly binds to the Kupffer cell surface and, importantly, inhibits sporozoite Kupffer cell entry. Furthermore, we determined that P39 binds to CD68, a putative receptor for sporozoite invasion of Kupffer cells that acts as a gateway for malaria infection of the liver.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1391-1403
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Experimental Medicine
Issue number9
StatePublished - Aug 24 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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