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Open Access Highly Accessed Research article

Molecular analysis of reticulocyte binding protein-2 gene in Plasmodium vivax isolates from India

Surendra K Prajapati*, Pragati Kumari and Om P Singh

Author Affiliations

Molecular Biology Division, National Institute of Malaria Research (NIMR), Sector 8, Dwarka, Delhi, India

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BMC Microbiology 2012, 12:243  doi:10.1186/1471-2180-12-243

Published: 24 October 2012

Abstract

Background

Plasmodium vivax reticulocyte binding protein-2 (PvRBP-2) is a promising candidate for development of vaccine against parasite. DNA sequence polymorphism in pvrbp-2 which may hamper the vaccine development program has been identified in laboratory strains. Therefore, unraveling genetic polymorphism in pvrbp-2 from field isolates is a prerequisite for success in vaccine development. This study was designed with a primary aim to uncover genetic polymorphism in pvrbp-2 among P. vivax field isolates.

Results

Using virtual restriction mapping of pvrbp-2 sequences, two restriction enzymes (AluI and ApoI) were selected for the development of pvrbp-2 as a PCR-RFLP marker. Restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analysis revealed a high degree of genetic polymorphism in the pvrbp-2 gene among field isolates of P. vivax. ApoI-RFLP was found to be more efficient in identifying the extent of genetic polymorphism in pvrbp-2 compared to AluI-RFLP. Combined genotyping/haplotyping of RFLP pattern revealed a total of 36 distinct RFLP patterns among 83 P. vivax isolates analyzed. DNA sequence analysis also supports high degree of genetic polymorphism among field isolates of P. vivax. Pvrbp-2 PCR-RFLP method is able to distinguish multiple infection up to 16.86% and it revealed a low level of shared genetic pool between more than two populations.

Conclusion

The study suggests that pvrbp-2 is highly polymorphic genetic marker which can be used for population genetic analyses. RFLP analysis suggests presence of nearly similar proportion of Sal-1 and Belem alleles in Indian P. vivax populations. The larger extent of genetic polymorphism identified from limited samples advocates to screen genetic polymorphism in pvrbp-2 from malaria endemic geographical regions and countries for designing pvrbp-2 based anti-malarial control measures.