Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department

Global Health

Major Professor

Thomas R. Unnasch, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Dennis Kyle, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Chitra Chauhan, Ph.D.


Lymphatic filariasis, Nematode, Transfection, Luciferase, Elephantiasis


Previous studies have indicated that the promoters of the human filarial parasite Brugia malayi are unusual in that they do not exhibit the CAAT or TATAA sequences usually found in the core domains of promoters of most eukaryotic organisms. Analysis of the promoters of the ribosomal proteins showed that the region flanking the splice leader (SL) addition site plays an important role in transcription and may function as the core promoter domain in B. malayi. To test the hypothesis that the SL addition domain is the most important essential region of the ribosomal protein promoters, the SL addition site of the BmRPL13 gene was replaced with the SL addition domains from other ribosomal protein genes from B. malayi. The promoter activity of the replacement constructs were tested using a transient transfection dual luciferase assay. Promoter activity with RPL13 replacement constructs was correlated with that seen in the wild type promoters, suggesting that roughly 80% of the variations seen in promoter activity among ribosomal protein promoters is due to variation in the SL core promoter domain.