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A stereological study of the differentiation process inTrypanosoma cruzi


When epimastigote forms ofTrypanosoma cruzi grown in a rich medium (LIT) are transferred to a simple, chemically defined medium (TAU3AAG, containing Ca2+, Mg2+, K+, Na+,l-proline,l-glutamate, andl-aspartate in phosphate buffer, they transform into trypomastigote forms. Morphometric analysis of transmission electron micrographs of thin sections of parasites collected at different steps of the transformation process showed that no changes occurred in the volume density of mitochondria and cytoplasmic vacuoles. However, a significant increase in the volume density of the kinetoplast DNA network as well as the lipid inclusions and a decrease in that of the reservosome (a special type of endosome) was observed. These observations suggest that during differentiation,T. cruzi accumulates lipids and uses molecules contained in the reservosome as its main energy source.

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Correspondence to W. de Souza.

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Soares, M.J., Souto-Padrón, T., Bonaldo, M.C. et al. A stereological study of the differentiation process inTrypanosoma cruzi . Parasitol Res 75, 522–527 (1989).

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  • Lipid
  • Thin Section
  • Differentiation Process
  • Morphometric Analysis
  • Transformation Process