Regulation of translation in the protozoan parasite leishmania

Zemfira N. Karamysheva, Sneider Alexander Gutierrez Guarnizo, Andrey L. Karamyshev

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Leishmaniasis represents a serious health problem worldwide and drug resistance is a growing concern. Leishmania parasites use unusual mechanisms to control their gene expression. In contrast to many other species, they do not have transcriptional regulation. The lack of transcriptional control is mainly compensated by post-transcriptional mechanisms, including tight translational control and regulation of mRNA stability/translatability by RNA-binding proteins. Modulation of translation plays a major role in parasite survival and adaptation to dramatically different environments during change of host; however, our knowledge of fine molecular mechanisms of translation in Leishmania remains limited. Here, we review the current progress in our understanding of how changes in the translational machinery promote parasite differentiation during transmission from a sand fly to a mammalian host, and discuss how translational reprogramming can contribute to the development of drug resistance.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2981
JournalInternational journal of molecular sciences
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 2 2020


  • Drug resistance
  • Leishmania parasites
  • Parasite differentiation
  • Protein synthesis
  • RNA-binding proteins
  • Ribosome
  • Selective translation
  • Translational control
  • Translational reprogramming
  • Unicellular protozoa


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