AbbreviationsCMconditioned mediumHDhigh densityLDlow densityMMPmitochondrial membrane potentialPfPlasmodium falciparumUuninfected erythrocytesIntroductionProtozoan parasites of genus Plasmodium are responsible for malaria, a vector‐borne febrile illness that impacts nearly half of the world's population. Chronic Plasmodium infections have been associated with regulation of within‐host parasite numbers that could not be explained by innate or acquired immunity alone, suggesting that maintenance of population size may also be a behavioral response by the parasite to conditions of high parasite density . Such regulated responses are commonly utilized in microorganisms to maximize community longevity, following exposure to various antagonists including drug pressure, immunity, resource scarcity, and interspecies or intergenotype competition. In such cases, regulation or reduction of microbial population density via cell fate decision‐making or programmed cell death can increase the overall fitness of the community.In prokaryotic microorganisms, density sensing via the production and recognition of autoinducers is integral to the regulation of biofilm formation, adhesion, and expression of virulence factors in response to environmental change . The opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa produces an acyl‐homoserine lactone that activates expression of two density‐sensing circuits, resulting in an upregulation of genes encoding toxins and extracellular enzymes . Density sensing is also a feature of eukaryotic unicellular organisms. For example, yeast
Febs Journal – Wiley
Published: Jan 1, 2018
Keywords: ; ; ; ;
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