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In the life-cycle of apicomplexan protozoa, sporozoites are cells that infect new hosts. In the parasites that cause malaria (Plasmodium), for instance, the sporozoites are cells that develop in the mosquito's salivary glands, leave the mosquito during a blood meal, and enter the liver where they multiply. Cells infected with sporozoites eventually burst, releasing merozoites into the bloodstream.

Sporozoites are formed by sporogony, a type of sexual or asexual reproduction by multiple fission of a spore or zygote, characteristic of many sporozoans.

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