Insights Into Entamoeba histolytica Virulence Modulation

Author(s): F. Padilla-Vaca, F. Anaya-Velazquez

Journal Name: Infectious Disorders - Drug Targets
Formerly Current Drug Targets - Infectious Disorders

Volume 10 , Issue 4 , 2010

Become EABM
Become Reviewer
Call for Editor


Entamoeba histolytica is able to invade human tissues by means of several molecules and biological properties related to the virulence. Pathogenic amebas use three major virulence factors, Gal/GalNAc lectin, amebapore and proteases, for lyse, phagocytose, kill and destroy a variety of cells and tissues in the host. Responses of the parasite to host components such as mucins and bacterial flora influence the behavior of pathogenic amebas altering their expression of virulence factors. The relative virulence of different strains of E. histolytica has been shown to vary as a consequence of changes in conditions of in vitro cultivation which implies substantial changes in basic metabolic aspects and factors directly and indirectly related to amebic virulence. Comparison of E. histolytica strains with different virulence phenotypes and under different conditions of growth will help to identify new virulence factor candidates and define the interplay between virulence factors and invasive phenotype. Virulence attenuate mutants of E. histolytica are useful also to uncover novel virulence determinants. The comparison of biological properties and virulence factors between E. histolytica and E. dispar, a non-pathogenic species, has been a useful approach to investigate the key factors involved in the experimental presentation of amebiasis and its complex regulation. The molecular mechanisms that regulate these variations in virulence are not yet known. Their elucidation will help us to better understand the gene expression plasticity that enables the effective adaptation of the ameba to changes in growth culture conditions and host factors.

Keywords: Entamoeba histolytica, pathogenicity, virulence modulation

Rights & PermissionsPrintExport Cite as

Article Details

Year: 2010
Page: [242 - 250]
Pages: 9
DOI: 10.2174/187152610791591638
Price: $65

Article Metrics

PDF: 11