Matz et al. present an integrated approach of experimental genetics and nutritional metabolite restriction to demonstrate two complementary folate acquisition strategies of the malaria parasite in the blood: endogenous synthesis and salvage of the folate precursor pABA. Uptake of pABA, and not folate, is physiological, facilitating avoidance of host-parasite competition.
Matz, J. M., Watanabe, M., Falade, M., Tohge, T., Hoefgen, R., & Matuschewski, K. (2019). Plasmodium Para-Aminobenzoate Synthesis and Salvage Resolve Avoidance of Folate Competition and Adaptation to Host Diet. Cell Reports, 26(2), 356-363.e4. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.celrep.2018.12.062