In Vitro Culture of Plasmodium falciparum: Obtention of Synchronous Asexual Erythrocytic Stages


Cultivation of the erythrocytic stages of Plasmodium parasites, specifically the most important and deadly for humans, Plasmodium falciparum, has required a lot of effort and time in order to develop a continuous in vitro culture. Moreover, the development of methods to synchronize P. falciparum parasites (which grow asynchronously in vitro) has become an essential tool in research to study different immulogical, biochemical or physiological aspects of the parasite. We have compared two different synchronization methods, one based on differential permeability of the membrane of parasitized erythrocytes, and the other on the sedimentation behavior in gelatin solution. An optimized method has been established which allows for maintaining a healthy, highly synchronous culture for longer periods of time. Asexual erythrocytic stages of a complete P. falciparum cycle have been obtained, which is the starting point of the stage-specific assays of the activity of new antimalarial drugs.

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Roncalés, M. , Vidal, J. , Torres, P. and Herreros, E. (2015) In Vitro Culture of Plasmodium falciparum: Obtention of Synchronous Asexual Erythrocytic Stages. Open Journal of Epidemiology, 5, 71-80. doi: 10.4236/ojepi.2015.51010.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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