ancient eukaryotic functions

UB Department of Biological Sciences: Kiong Ho: "Parasitic protozoa are causative agents of widespread human diseases, including malaria (caused by Plasmodium falciparum), African sleeping sickness (Trypanosome brucei), and Chagas' disease (Trypanosome cruzi). Because these parasites diverged early from the main branch of the eukaryotic lineage, their unusual mechanisms of gene expression reflect ancient eukaryotic functions that have been preserved to present. By studying the process of gene expression, not only may we learn about the evolution of higher eukaryotes, but we can also identify parasite specific processes that can be exploited as targets for novel therapeutic intervention."

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