We found that, as in African trypanosomes, endogenous phospholipase A1 (Plase A1) activity can catalyse extensive deacylation of phospholipids upon cell death in all life stages of Trypanosoma cruzi. A major lysosomal Plase A1 was purified and characterized. The enzyme products can explain the lesions surrounding degenerating T. cruzi cells in host tissues. Thus Plase A1 emerges as a target to block pathogenesis in trypanosomal infections.

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