Pedro Cravo, GHTM Cross-cutting Issue Drug Discovery & Resistance facilitator, has just published a review article about rodent malaria genetics as a model to unravel the mechanisms of drug resistance in malaria parasites of humans.
This review was published in a special issue in memorian of the recently deceased Professor Richard Carter, from the University of Edinburgh, whom was one of the all-time fathers of malaria genetics. In this work, he tells the tale of more than forty years of research, much of which was carried out at IHMT, and presents the main examples of how the rodent model Plasmodium chabaudi has provided an unmatched contribution for unravelling the mutations responsible for drug resistance in malaria parasites.
The discovery of these mutations was pioneering and later shown to also play a role in drug resistance in natural infections of human malaria parasites, supporting the use of this experimental model a fast-track predictive paradigm to identify candidate genetic markers of resistance to present and future antimalarial drugs and improving our understanding of the biology of resistance.
Understanding and predicting these traits enables diagnostic molecular methods to be developed for identifying and tracking the spread of resistant parasites in clinical and field isolates retrospectively or in real-time, allowing for timely adjustments of treatment policies in given areas based on evidence-based information.
Read here the article published in Parasitology International Journal.