Sub-species of Trypanosoma brucei
are the causal agents of human African sleeping sickness and Nagana in domesticated livestock. These pathogens have developed an organelle-like compartment called the flagellar pocket (FP). The FP carries out endo- and exocytosis and is the only structure this parasite has evolved to do so. The FP is essential for parasite viability, making it an interesting structure to evaluate as a drug target, especially since it has an indispensible cytoskeleton component called the flagellar pocket collar (FPC). The FPC is located at the neck of the FP where the flagellum exits the cell. The FPC has a complex architecture and division cycle, but little is known concerning its organization. Recent work has focused on understanding how the FP and the FPC are formed and as a result of these studies an important calcium-binding, polymer-forming protein named Tb
BILBO1 was identified. Cellular biology analysis of Tb
BILBO1 has demonstrated its uniqueness as a FPC component and until recently, it was unknown what structural role it played in forming the FPC. This review summarizes the recent data on the polymer forming properties of Tb
BILBO1 and how these are correlated to the FP cytoskeleton.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited