The European Malaria Reagent Repository is dedicated to the development, annotation, and curation of the largest and globally most diverse bank of malaria parasite-specific reagents. The aim of the repository is to secure the future of reagents held in the University of Edinburgh and maximise their utility across the global community. Edinburgh’s long history of malaria research has generated a globally recognised collection of reagents that includes:
- Parasite cell lines, including >380 strains of laboratory-adapted parasites of human and rodent malaria parasites. This includes the WHO Registry of Standard Strains of Malaria Parasites, established in 1983.
- The P. falciparum collection includes genetically and antigenically diverse isolates collected over several decades from globally diverse locations, clonal progeny from genetic crosses, and a unique bank of lines selected for adhesion phenotypes.
- The rodent malaria parasites were collected from 1948-1972 and span 4 species and over 13 subspecies. The collection contains viable original isolates, characterised cloned lines, the progeny of crosses generated between defined clones, and a series of congenic lines resistant to most of the major antimalarial drugs.
- Parasite proteins, including panels of recombinant proteins used in diagnostics, vaccine development, and immunological assays. This includes >60 characterised proteins derived from blood stage antigens of P. falciparum and 10 proteins derived from MSP-1 antigens of P. chabaudi.
- Antibodies, including >200 cloned hybridoma cell lines, monoclonal and polyclonal antibodies, specific for a wide range of P. falciparum antigens.
The European Malaria Reagent Repository has been developed by David Cavanagh and is led by a team of Edinburgh’s current malaria researchers, including David Cavanagh, Sarah Reece, Joanne Thompson and Alex Rowe. Funding for the European Malaria Reagent Repository is currently provided by the Wellcome Trust on the basis that the repository will become self-sustaining by 2017. Therefore, reagents are provided to the community on a cost-recovery basis.