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    γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is a nonstructural amino acid that serves diverse functions in unicellular and multicellular organisms. Besides its widely established role in mammals as an inhibitory neurotransmitter, the diverse biological roles and metabolism of GABA in protozoan parasites have begun to be unveiled. GABA acts as either the intracellular signal or cell-to-cell messenger to mediate a variety of cellular responses that protect the parasites from environmental and host-derived stress. Moreover, GABA metabolism was found to be tightly regulated, involving protein machinery confined to the protozoa lineage. Meanwhile, host-parasite GABAergic interaction plays a role in the pathogenesis and disease manifestation of protozoan infections. Therefore, the GABAergic system apparently is broadly involved in essential biological and pathophysiological processes and is well conserved in parasitic and free-living protozoa. Copyright © 2022 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


    Rivo Yudhinata Brian Nugraha, Ghulam Jeelani, Tomoyoshi Nozaki. Physiological roles and metabolism of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in parasitic protozoa. Trends in parasitology. 2022 Jun;38(6):462-477

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    PMID: 35264298

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