Actualités du LPHI

Maryse Lebrun’s team found an apical membrane complex acting as potential molecular sensor for coupling host cell sensing with injection of virulence factors and invasion in Toxoplasma.

The study began with transcriptional profiling to fish factors involved in the exocytosis of secretory organelles in the ciliate Tetrahymena. The underlying logic was that ciliates share a relatively recent evolutionary history with Apicomplexa, and therefore possess similar exocytic mechanisms, not found in other eukaryotes. The screening was then extended to uncover new exocytic players for rhoptry secretion in Toxoplasma gondii. This search led to the discovery of a novel complex of transmembrane proteins (Cystein-Rich-Modular-Proteins, CRMPs), including members related to GPCR proteins, crucial for rhoptry secretion and invasion in Toxoplasma. Their results suggest that CRMPs represent the elusive connection between the sensing step at the basis of host cell recognition and rhoptry exocytosis.


Mme Maryse Lebrun, directrice de recherche à l’Inserm, responsable de l’équipe Biologie cellulaire des Apicomplexes au sein du LPHI, s’est vu remettre la médaille de Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur par Mme Pascale Cossart, secrétaire perpétuelle de l’Académie des Sciences. Magnifique cérémonie au Jardin des Plantes de Montpellier en ce 1 juillet 2022.