Genetic diversity and natural selection of Plasmodium vivax reticulocyte invasion genes in Ecuador

Andrés Núñez, Francis B. Ntumngia, Yasel Guerra, John H. Adams, Fabián E. Sáenz

Producción científica: Contribución a una revistaArtículorevisión exhaustiva

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Background: Knowledge of the diversity of invasion ligands in malaria parasites in endemic regions is essential to understand how natural selection influences genetic diversity of these ligands and their feasibility as possible targets for future vaccine development. In this study the diversity of four genes for merozoite invasion ligands was studied in Ecuadorian isolates of Plasmodium vivax. Methods: Eighty-eight samples from P. vivax infected individuals from the Coast and Amazon region of Ecuador were obtained between 2012 and 2015. The merozoite invasion genes pvmsp-1-19, pvdbpII, pvrbp1a-2 and pvama1 were amplified, sequenced, and compared to the Sal-1 strain. Polymorphisms were mapped and genetic relationships between haplotypes were determined. Results: Only one nonsynonymous polymorphism was detected in pvmsp-1-19, while 44 nonsynonymous polymorphisms were detected in pvdbpII, 56 in pvrbp1a-2 and 33 in pvama1. While haplotypes appeared to be more related within each area of study and there was less relationship between parasites of the coastal and Amazon regions of the country, diversification processes were observed in the two Amazon regions. The highest haplotypic diversity for most genes occurred in the East Amazon of the country. The high diversity observed in Ecuadorian samples is closer to Brazilian and Venezuelan isolates, but lower than reported in other endemic regions. In addition, departure from neutrality was observed in Ecuadorian pvama1. Polymorphisms for pvdbpII and pvama1 were associated to B-cell epitopes. Conclusions: pvdbpII and pvama1 genetic diversity found in Ecuadorian P. vivax was very similar to that encountered in other malaria endemic countries with varying transmission levels and segregated by geographic region. The highest diversity of P. vivax invasion genes in Ecuador was found in the Amazonian region. Although selection appeared to have small effect on pvdbpII and pvrbp1a-2, pvama1 was influenced by significant balancing selection.

Idioma originalInglés
Número de artículo225
PublicaciónMalaria Journal
EstadoPublicada - 3 ago. 2023

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© 2023, BioMed Central Ltd., part of Springer Nature.


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