Abstract by Vance Willis
Chemistry and Biochemistry
Investigating glycosomal pH regulation in bloodstream form Trypanosoma brucei
Trypanosoma brucei is the protozoan parasite responsible for causing the disease Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT). This infectious parasite changes its metabolism as it transitions from the procyclic form (PCF) in the tsetse fly to the bloodstream form (BF) in mammals, where it solely metabolizes glucose. Disrupting the glycolysis metabolic pathway may be a viable method for killing the parasite while in a human host. Recent published work discovered that glycosomal pH regulation is used in response to changes in environmental conditions. While this work focused on PCF glycosomal pH, BF glycosomal pH regulation was not measured despite this being the more relevant parasite life stage. To measure BF glycosomal pH, we genetically-encoded a fluorescent biosensor with the purpose of elucidating the mechanism(s) of pH regulation in BF T. brucei. We report our progress in employing this new pH sensor in BF T. brucei.