Encyclopedia of Malaria

Editors: Peter G. Kremsner, Sanjeev Krishna

Glyoxalase Systems in Malaria Parasites

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-8757-9_17-1



The glyoxalase system consists of glutathione and two enzymes that catalyze the conversion of 2-oxoaldehydes to 2-hydroxycarboxylic acids. For example, the cytosolic glyoxalase systems of malaria parasites and their hosts convert harmful glycolysis-derived methylglyoxal to d-lactic acid. Moreover, the host-parasite unit comprises additional glyoxalase isoforms with peculiar properties suggesting other, yet uncharacterized, physiological functions.


According to current theories the glyoxalase system is a metabolic adaptation to reactive 2-oxoaldehydes (2-OAs), which are formed as by-products during glycolysis and other metabolic pathways. Electrophilic 2-OAs are harmful because of their ability to react with physiological nucleophiles resulting in modified proteins and nucleic acids. Such modified biomolecules are summarized as advanced glycation endproducts...
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Infectiology/ParasitologyHeidelberg UniversityHeidelbergGermany