Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Vol.528, No.3, 531-537, 2020
Insulin signalling in RBC is responsible for growth stimulation of malaria parasite in diabetes patients
A cross-talk between diabetes and malaria within-host is well established. Diabetes is associated with modulation of the immune system, impairment of the healing process and to disturb the host metabolism to contribute towards propagation of parasite infection. Glucose metabolism in host is maintained by insulin and RBC has 2000 insulin receptor present on plasma membrane. These receptors are robust to relay down-stream signaling in RBCs but role of intracellular signaling in parasite growth is not been explored. The malaria parasite treated with insulin (100 ng/ml) is giving stimulation in parasite growth. The effect is lasting for several generations resulting into high parasitemia. Insulin signaling is phosphorylating protein in infected RBCs and level is high in parasite RBCs compared to uninfected RBCs. It is phosphorylating Spectrin-(alpha/beta), Band-4.2, Ankyrin and the other proteins of RBC cytoskeleton. It in-turn induces enhanced glucose uptake inside infected RBCs. There is a high level of infection of normal RBCs by merozoites. In summary, insulin and glucose metabolism plays a crucial role in parasite propagation, disease severity and need consideration while treating patients. (C) 2020 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.