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What is still so fascinating about the trypanosome coat?

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The cell surface coat of African trypanosomes has been studied for a long time. So you could assume that all the essentials are known. However, this is not the case. In my talk, I focus on the fabric from which this coat is woven (the VGSs) and their incredible dynamics. We’ve known for 20 years that the VSG coat can be recycled quickly, and we have a good idea of why. However, how the underlying biological processes can take place at such high speeds is only gradually coming to light. We’re trying to put the puzzle together step by step. In doing so, we sometimes come across surprising insights that can shed new light on basic cell biology. That’s what I’m going to tell you about. In addition, I would like to make my talk a plea for continuing research into parasitic protozoa, whose extreme adaptations can expand our reductionist perspective on cell biology.

This talk is part of the Parasitology Seminars series.

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