Attacking blood-borne parasites with mathematics

van Niekerk, D. D., Penkler, G., du Toit, F., Snoep, J. L., Bakker, B. M. & Haanstra, J. R., 5-Aug-2016, A Comprehensive Analysis of Parasite Biology: From Metabolism to Drug Discovery. Müller, S., Cerdan, R. & Radulescu, O. (eds.). Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, p. 513-541 557 p.

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  • Attacking Blood‐Borne Parasites with Mathematics

    Final publisher's version, 487 KB, PDF document


  • David D. van Niekerk
  • Gerald Penkler
  • François du Toit
  • Jacky L. Snoep
  • Barbara M. Bakker
  • Jurgen R. Haanstra

Central carbon metabolism is important to cells as it supplies free energy in the form of ATP and the building blocks for new cells. Parasites harvest many of the components they require from their hosts, but they still have to generate ATP themselves, making the metabolic pathways that generate ATP essential to the parasites' survival and thereby potential target pathways for antiparasitic drugs. Metabolic networks often consist of many components that interact with each other via nonlinear kinetics.The behavior of the network arises from the interaction of the components within and outside the network. To understand network behavior, experimental measurements on the components should be integrated through computational approaches. In this chapter, we present an overview of how experiment-driven mathematical models have provided insights on important aspects of parasite metabolism and have aided in elucidating potent antiparasitic drug targets within metabolism.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationA Comprehensive Analysis of Parasite Biology
Subtitle of host publicationFrom Metabolism to Drug Discovery
EditorsSylke Müller, Rachel Cerdan, Ovidiu Radulescu
PublisherWiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA
Number of pages557
ISBN (Electronic)9783527694082
ISBN (Print)9783527339044
Publication statusPublished - 5-Aug-2016


  • Kinetic models, Metabolic control analysis, Plasmodium falciparum, Systems biology, Trypanosoma brucei

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