News From the Field
Malaria-infected Cells Stiffen, Block Blood Flow
December 20, 2010
Researchers led by Brown University has completed the first modeling, followed by experiments, of how red blood cells are infected by a malarial parasite that attacks the brain. The researchers report that infected cells stiffen by as much as 50 times more than healthy cells. Infected cells also tend to stick along blood vessel walls, impeding the flow of blood to critical organs. Results appear in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
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