Caister Academic Press

Toxoplasma gondii: Without Stress There Is No Life

Maria J. Figueras, Sergio O. Angel, Verónica M. Cóceres and Maria L. Alomar
from: Stress Response in Microbiology (Edited by: Jose M. Requena). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2012)


Toxoplasma gondii is an important pathogen of human and domestic animals. It has a complex life cycle which includes the transition from one host to another, being only exposed to the environment during one stage, as highly resistant oocysts. Interestingly, in the intermediate host (non-feline mammalians and birds) the parasite presents an asexual cycle with two stages that can interconvert without its passage in the definite host (felines). The asexual cycle is very important in the establishment of the infection and on its pathogenesis and it could be driven by different kind of stressors. Therefore, the response to environmental and host stresses is essential to their viability and successful progression through their life cycle. The heat shock proteins are key molecules not only in the resistance to different stressors, but they are also involved in the optimal differentiation as well as in other biological processes in T. gondii. This chapter summarizes the findings on different aspects of T. gondii stress responses and the implication of these processes in the biology and pathogenesis of this parasite read more ...
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