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Variability of in vitro immune responses to Plasmodium falciparum

Genetic polymorphisms of host erythrocytes and immune effector cells influence risk and manifestation of malaria.

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Plasmodium falciparum

The involved mechanisms are only very incompletely understood. We investigate the in vitro monocytes responses to Plasmodium falciparum infecting variant and non-variant red blood cells. In the same model, we examine the role of genetic polymorphisms of various immune receptors and mediators with respect to the monocytes response to infected erythrocytes. In parallel, the clinical significance for malaria risk and manifestation of the polymorphisms under study is assessed in field studies.

Project Details

Principal Investigator:
Prof. Dr. med. Frank P. Mockenhaupt

Steffen Zander
Stefanie Meese
Prabhanjan Gai
Doctoral students

School of Medical Scienes, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana
Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderbad, Indien
University Teaching Hospital of Butare, School of Medicine, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Rwanda, Butare, Rwanda
Dept. of Bacteriology and Immunology, Haartman Institute, University of Helsinki, Finland
Institut für Mikrobiologie und Hygiene, Charité, Berlin
and many others

Project duration:
Since 1998, ongoing

Project status:
Laboratory examinations, analysis, planning

Charité, DFG, Sonnenfeld Foundation


Bedu-Addo G, Meese S, Mockenhaupt FP. An ATP2B4 polymorphism protects against malaria in pregnancy. J Infect Dis. 2013 May 15;207(10):1600-3.