RESEARCH ARTICLE


Subcellular Proteomics and Global Analysis of Posttranslational Modifications to Study Functional Roles of Trypanosoma cruzi Molecules



Igor C. Almeida*, Ernesto S. Nakayasu*
The Border Biomedical Research Center, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Texas at El Paso, 500 West University Avenue, El Paso, TX 79968, USA.


© 2010 C. Almeida and S. Nakayasu;

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode. This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Border Biomedical Research Center, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Texas at El Paso, 500 West University Avenue, El Paso, TX 79968, USA; Tel: +1 (915) 747-6898/+1 (915) 747-6086; Fax: +1 (915) 747-5808; E-mails: icalmeida@utep.edu, esnakayasu@miners.utep.edu


Abstract

One century after the discovery of Chagas disease, the treatment for this illness is still based only on two drugs with limited efficacy and severe side effects. In this mini-review, we discuss the application of mass spectrometry (MS)- based proteomic approaches to study the biochemistry and cell biology of etiologic agent of Chagas disease, Trypanosoma cruzi. We focus the discussion in the analysis of subcellular proteomics and posttranslational modifications (PTMs). In recent years, subcellular proteomics has brought new insights into the localization of proteins and possible functions of organelles. Thus far, proteomic analysis of reservosomes, ribosomes, detergent-solubilized membranes, and a preparation of an organelle mixture have been performed. In addition, a number of analyses of PTMs of T. cruzi proteins (i.e., histone modifications, phosphorylation, glycosylation, glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI)-anchoring, and nitrosylation) have been successfully carried out. The identification of those and other PTMs combined with cutting-edge biochemical, immunological and cell biology approaches, have allowed a more in-depth understanding of biological and pathophysiological processes resulting from host cell-parasite interactions.

Keywords: Trypanosoma cruzi, Chagas disease, proteomics, posttranslational modifications, mass spectrometry.