IIn this FY, we accomplished and advanced several projects. They are (1) Identifications of unique properties of parasitophorous vacuole membrane (PVM) and differences in properties of parasitized erythrocyte membranes between HbA and HbS erythrocytes, (2) Direct visualizations of whole MC by electron microscopy, (3) Microscopy study of gametocyte metabolism and drug resistance relationship, and (4) Identifications of hemoglobin distributions and their modifications using hyperspectral imaging. (1) We continued studying parasite-derived membranes with unique biophysical properties using fluorescence lifetime microscopy (FLIM). During invasion process, PVM surrounds invading parasite. PVM continuously increase in its size as parasites mature. In addition, new membranes emerge from PVM and form Mauere's cleft (MC). This structure seems to play crucial roles in trafficking and delivery processes for parasite-derived proteins. However, the source of lipids enough to support the size increase in the new membrane structure is not known. A key to solve this question is cholesterol content as parasite does not have a cholesterol synthesis mechanism. In addition, cholesterol is one of the most important molecules for membrane biophysical properties. The potentially unique properties of PVM and MC could provide important insights for their functions responsible for efficient trafficking of parasite proteins to erythrocyte membrane. In previous FYs, we identified the lipid exchange/transfer between parasite and host erythrocyte membranes during intraerythrocytic stages monitored by the translocations of membrane dye, Di4-ANEPPDHQ, and cholesterol analogue, bodipy-cholesterol. These results suggest that lipids are transferred between erythrocyte and parasites, and transfer mechanism may not be the same between cholesterol and nonsterol lipids such as phospholipids. In this FY, we expanded this method to hemoglobin S erythrocytes to study potential influences of membrane abnormalities on parasite protein trafficking. Both heterozygous (AS) and homozygous (SS) non-parasitized erythrocytes had lower Di-4 lifetime compared to non-parasitized HbA erythrocytes. Differences in Di-4 lifetime were also observed in parasitized erythrocytes while the same trend of lifetime differences between erythrocyte, PV and parasite membranes within a same genotype. These data indicate that HbS erythrocytes have significantly different membrane property than that of normal HbA erythrocytes, which may control protein assembly and distributions on the host erythrocyte membrane. (2) We continued studying gametocyte metabolism using microscopy approach. In previous FY, we identified (a) a high lipid content, but similar cholesterol level, (b) reduced reactive oxygen species, and (d) similar mitochondrial membrane potential. To We also studied requirement of mitochondrial activity for gametocyte developments and found complex physiological variability exist in gametocyte developments. In this FY, we focused on studying level of metabolic products on lipid metabolism and potential gluconeogenesis. Using fluorescence indicators, we are currently measuring (a) glycerol, (b) fatty acid, and (c) triacylglycerides and comparing these levels with asexual stages of parasites to study relative activities of each metabolic cascade. These data should provide important information on the mechanism of gametocytogenesis. (3) In previous FY, we initiated a project studying hemoglobin distributions within a erythrocyte using hyperspectral imaging. Hemoglobin molecules have specific absorption spectra with several characteristic peaks, which change to different spectra as hemoglobin degrades. Hyperspectral imaging uses a specially designed optics and changes wavelength of incident light, and scans from UV to near IR regions. Intensities of captured images at each wavelength were compared to original light intensities and absorption spectra were produced. This technique has multiple advantages as absorption spectra of any area of cell can be analyzed that potentially help estimating hemoglobin amount and the level of degradations. We established technical analysis protocol to estimate oxyhemoglobins and hemozoins. We published this work to J. of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics. This FY, we are developing technique to estimate hemoglobin concentration only in specific areas of cell with multiple spectra pattern using combined optics with optical phantom image and fast switching of hyperspectral illuminations of light.

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Tokumasu, Fuyuki; Crivat, Georgeta; Ackerman, Hans et al. (2014) Inward cholesterol gradient of the membrane system in P. falciparum-infected erythrocytes involves a dilution effect from parasite-produced lipids. Biol Open 3:529-41
Tokumasu, Fuyuki; Ostera, Graciela R; Amaratunga, Chanaki et al. (2012) Modifications in erythrocyte membrane zeta potential by Plasmodium falciparum infection. Exp Parasitol 131:245-51
Ostera, Graciela; Tokumasu, Fuyuki; Teixeira, Clarissa et al. (2011) Plasmodium falciparum: nitric oxide modulates heme speciation in isolated food vacuoles. Exp Parasitol 127:1-8
Ma, D; Xu, X; An, S et al. (2011) A novel family of RGD-containing disintegrins (Tablysin-15) from the salivary gland of the horsefly Tabanus yao targets αIIbβ3 or αVβ3 and inhibits platelet aggregation and angiogenesis. Thromb Haemost 105:1032-45
Crivat, Georgeta; Tokumasu, Fuyuki; Sa, Juliana Martha et al. (2011) Tetracysteine-based fluorescent tags to study protein localization and trafficking in Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes. PLoS One 6:e22975
Calvo, Eric; Tokumasu, Fuyuki; Mizurini, Daniella M et al. (2010) Aegyptin displays high-affinity for the von Willebrand factor binding site (RGQOGVMGF) in collagen and inhibits carotid thrombus formation in vivo. FEBS J 277:413-27
Kang, Hyeong-Gon; Tokumasu, Fuyuki; Clarke, Matthew et al. (2010) Probing dynamic fluorescence properties of single and clustered quantum dots toward quantitative biomedical imaging of cells. Wiley Interdiscip Rev Nanomed Nanobiotechnol 2:48-58
Tokumasu, Fuyuki; Nardone, Glenn A; Ostera, Graciela R et al. (2009) Altered membrane structure and surface potential in homozygous hemoglobin C erythrocytes. PLoS One 4:e5828