Parasitology Research

, Volume 84, Issue 1, pp 59–62

Bloodstream forms of Trypanosoma brucei require only small amounts of iron for growth

  • Dietmar Steverding

DOI: 10.1007/s004360050357

Cite this article as:
Steverding, D. Parasitol Res (1997) 84: 59. doi:10.1007/s004360050357


Bloodstream forms of Trypanosoma brucei require transferrin (Tf) for growth. Uptake of Tf is mediated by a heterodimeric, glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored receptor. Competition studies of the uptake of iron-loaded Tf (holo-Tf) versus iron-free Tf (apo-Tf) showed that bloodstream-form trypanosomes required only small amounts of iron for growth. The competition experiments were possible as the trypanosome Tf receptor shows a similarly high affinity for both holo-Tf and apo-Tf. Calculations revealed that accumulation of about 40,000 iron atoms during 1 generation-doubling time was sufficient for parasite multiplication.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dietmar Steverding
    • 1
  1. 1.Hygiene-Institut der Ruprecht-Karls-Universität, Abteilung Parasitologie, Im Neuenheimer Feld 324, D-69120 Heidelberg, Germany Tel.: (+49) 6221-565043; Fax: (+49) 6221-565948; e-mail: n89@ix.urz.uni-heidelberg.deDE

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