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Toxoplasma gondii tachyzoite-bradyzoite interconversion

Lyons, Russell E and McLeod, Rima and Roberts, Craig W (2002) Toxoplasma gondii tachyzoite-bradyzoite interconversion. Trends in Parasitology, 18 (5). pp. 198-201. ISSN 1471-4922

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During infection in the intermediate host, Toxoplasma gondii undergoes stage conversion between the rapidly dividing tachyzoite that is responsible for acute toxoplasmosis and the slowly replicating, encysted bradyzoite stage. This process of tachyzoite-bradyzoite interconversion is central to the pathogenesis and longevity of infection. Recent research has identified several stage-specific genes and proteins. However, despite recent advances in the understanding of Toxoplasma cell biology, more research is necessary to elucidate the complex events occurring during tachyzoite-bradyzoite interconversion. Here, a brief summary of this process is provided and a new method to characterize gene expression during interconversion is introduced.