Metabolic enzymes as drug targets

The malaria parasite synthesizes vitamin B6 de novo via the PLP (pyridoxal -5-phosphate) synthase enzymatic complex consisting of PfPdx1 and PfPdx2 proteins (Gengenbacher et al., 2006; Guédez et al., 2012; Pdx1-Pdx2 complex illustration by Strohmeier et al., 2006). In the malaria parasite, biosynthesis of PLP is largely performed by PfPdx1, while humans do not own this enzyme and have to take up vitamin B6 by their diet. Our goal is to rule out the impact of PfPdx1 on metabolic regulation of malaria blood stages.