Vertebrate cell cycle modulates infection by protozoan parasites

Science  27 Nov 1981:
Vol. 214, Issue 4524, pp. 1034-1036
DOI: 10.1126/science.7029713


Synchronized HeLa cell populations were exposed to Trypanosoma cruzi or Toxoplasma gondii, obligate intracellular protozoan parasites that cause Chagas' disease and toxoplasmosis, respectively, in humans. The ability of the two parasites to infect HeLa cells increased as the HeLa cells proceeded from the G1 phase to the S phase of their growth cycle and decreased as the cells entered G2-M. Characterization of the S-phase cell surface components responsible for this phenomenon could be beneficial in the development of vaccines against these parasitic diseases.