The cathepsin-like cysteine peptidases of trematodes of the genus Fasciola

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Advances in Parasitology, 2019, 104 pp. 113 - 164
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© 2019 Elsevier Ltd Fasciolosis caused by trematode parasites of the genus Fasciola is a global disease of livestock, particularly cattle, sheep, water buffalo and goats. It is also a major human zoonosis with reports suggesting that 2.4–17 million people are infected worldwide, and 91.1 million people currently living at risk of infection. A unique feature of these worms is their reliance on a family of developmentally-regulated papain-like cysteine peptidases, termed cathepsins. These proteolytic enzymes play central roles in virulence, infection, tissue migration and modulation of host innate and adaptive immune responses. The availability of a Fasciola hepatica genome, and the exploitation of transcriptomic and proteomic technologies to probe parasite growth and development, has enlightened our understanding of the cathepsin-like cysteine peptidases. Here, we clarify the structure of the cathepsin-like cysteine peptidase families and, in this context, review the phylogenetics, structure, biochemistry and function of these enzymes in the host-parasite relationship.
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