Structural and functional insights into the mechanism of actin filament capping in malaria parasites

Thesis event information

Date and time of the thesis defence

Place of the thesis defence

Auditorium F101 of the Faculty of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine (Aapistie 7), remotely: https://tinyurl.com/AAB-defence-2021

Topic of the dissertation

Structural and functional insights into the mechanism of actin filament capping in malaria parasites

Doctoral candidate

M.Sc. Ábris Ádám Bendes

Faculty and unit

University of Oulu Graduate School, Faculty of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine, Protein and Structural Biology Research Unit

Subject of study

Biochemistry

Opponent

Professor Jari Ylänne, University of Jyväskylä

Custos

Professor Inari Kursula, University of Oulu

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The capping protein of the malaria parasite is a unique actin filament regulator

This doctoral study focuses on the molecular regulation of the malaria parasite motility. By utilising various biochemical and structural biology methods, the dissertation uncovers several key aspects of one of the proteins essential for the motility and propagation of the pathogen. In higher organisms the F-actin capping protein binds to the fast-growing end of the actin filament restricting the addition or removal of actin subunits. This interaction is required for functional actin-based cellular motility. The present research shows that the capping protein of the malaria parasite has two structurally different functional forms. These parasite capping proteins exert their actin regulation in a completely novel way as compared to higher organisms. The present scientific work laid the crucial groundwork for future drug developmental studies aimed at eradicating the notorious malaria disease.
Last updated: 12.4.2021