Cross-species analysis of apical asparagine-rich protein of Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium knowlesi

Fauzi Muh, Md Atique Ahmed, Jin-Hee Han, Myat Htut Nyunt, Seong-Kyun Lee, Yee Ling Lau, Osamu Kaneko, Eun-Taek Han*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


The Plasmodium falciparum apical asparagine (Asn)-rich protein (AARP) is one of malarial proteins, and it has been studied as a candidate of malaria subunit vaccine. Basic characterization of PvAARP has been performed with a focus on its immunogenicity and localization. In this study, we further analyzed the immunogenicity of PvAARP, focusing on the longevity of the antibody response, cross-species immunity and invasion inhibitory activity by using the primate malaria parasite Plasmodium knowlesi. We found that vivax malaria patient sera retained anti-PvAARP antibodies for at least one year without re-infection. Recombinant PvAARP protein was strongly recognized by knowlesi malaria patients. Antibody raised against the P. vivax and P. knowlesi AARP N-termini reacted with the apical side of the P. knowlesi merozoites and inhibited erythrocyte invasion by P. knowlesi in a concentration-dependent manner, thereby suggesting a cross-species nature of anti-PvAARP antibody against PkAARP. These results can be explained by B cell epitopes predicted in conserved surface-exposed regions of the AARP N-terminus in both species. The long-lived anti-PvAARP antibody response, cross-reactivity, and invasion inhibitory activity of anti-PvAARP support a critical role of AARP during the erythrocyte invasion and suggest that PvAARP induces long-lived cross-species protective immunity against P. vivax and P. knowlesi.
Original languageEnglish
Article number5781
Number of pages11
JournalScientific Reports
Publication statusPublished - 10 Apr 2018


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