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Africa

Migration-associated malaria from Africa in southern Spain

May 12, 2021 - 09:36 -- Open Access
Author(s): 
Pousibet-Puerto J, Lozano-Serrano AB, Salas-Coronas J, et al.
Reference: 
Parasit Vectors. 2021 May 7;14(1):240

The western area of the province of Almeria, sited in southern Spain, has one of the highest immigrant population rates in Spain, mainly dedicated to agricultural work. In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number of cases of imported malaria associated with migrants from countries belonging to sub-Saharan Africa. The objective of our study is to describe the epidemiological, clinical and analytical characteristics of malaria patients treated in a specialized tropical unit, paying special attention to the differences between VFR and non-VFR migrants and also to the peculiarities of microscopic malaria cases compared to submicroscopic ones.

NOT Open Access | Characterization of pfmdr1, pfcrt, pfK13, pfubp1, and pfap2mu in travelers returning from Africa with Plasmodium falciparum infections reported in China from 2014-2018

April 29, 2021 - 07:24 -- NOT Open Access
Author(s): 
Feng J, Xu D, Kong X, Lin K, Yan H, Feng X, Tu H, Xia Z
Reference: 
Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2021 Apr 26:AAC.02717-20

The artemisinin-based combination therapies (ACTs) used to treat Plasmodium falciparum in Africa are threatened by the emergence of parasites in Asia carrying variants of the Kelch 13 (K13) locus with delayed clearance in response to ACTs. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in other molecular markers, such as ap2mu and ubp1, were associated with artemisinin resistance in rodent malaria and clinical failure in African malaria patients. Here, we characterized the polymorphisms in pfmdr1, pfcrt, pfK13, pfubp1 and pfap2mu among African isolates reported in Shandong and Guangxi provinces in China.

Systems analysis and controlled malaria infection in Europeans and Africans elucidate naturally acquired immunity

April 28, 2021 - 14:25 -- Open Access
Author(s): 
de Jong SE, van Unen V, Yazdanbakhsh M, et al.
Reference: 
Nat Immunol. 2021 Apr 22

Controlled human infections provide opportunities to study the interaction between the immune system and malaria parasites, which is essential for vaccine development. Here, we compared immune signatures of malaria-naive Europeans and of Africans with lifelong malaria exposure using mass cytometry, RNA sequencing and data integration, before and 5 and 11 days after venous inoculation with Plasmodium falciparum sporozoites.

NOT Open Access | Spatial and molecular mapping of Pfkelch13 gene polymorphism in Africa in the era of emerging Plasmodium falciparum resistance to artemisinin: a systematic review

April 1, 2021 - 09:03 -- NOT Open Access
Author(s): 
Kayiba NK, Yobi DM, Speybroeck N, et al.
Reference: 
Lancet Infect Dis. 2021 Apr;21(4):e82-e92

The spread of Plasmodium falciparum isolates carrying mutations in the kelch13 (Pfkelch13) gene associated with artemisinin resistance (PfART-R) in southeast Asia threatens malaria control and elimination efforts. Emergence of PfART-R in Africa would result in a major public health problem. In this systematic review, we investigate the frequency and spatial distribution of Pfkelch13 mutants in Africa, including mutants linked to PfART-R in southeast Asia. Seven databases were searched (PubMed, Embase, Scopus, African Journal Online, African Index Medicus, Bioline, and Web of Science) for relevant articles about polymorphisms of the Pfkelch13 gene in Africa before January, 2019.

NOT Open Access | Overview of natural antiplasmodials from the last decade to inspire medicinal chemistry

March 31, 2021 - 14:32 -- NOT Open Access
Author(s): 
Degotte G, Pirotte B, Francotte P, Frédérich M
Reference: 
Curr Med Chem. 2021 Mar 29.

Despite the major advances in the fight against this parasitic disease, malaria remains a major cause of concerns in 2020. This infection, mainly due to Plasmodium falciparum, causes every year more than 200 million of cases and hundreds of thousands of deaths in developing regions, mostly in Africa. The last statistics show an increase of cases for the third consecutive year, from 211 million in 2015, it has reached 229 million in 2019. This trend could be partially explained by the appearance of resistances to all the used antimalarials, even to artemisinin. Thus, the design of new anti-Plasmodium compounds is an urgent need. For thousands of years, nature has offered to humans the medicines to cure their diseases or the inspiration for development of new active principles. It seems then logical to explore the natural sources to find new molecules to treat this parasitosis.

Fitness characteristics of the malaria vector Anopheles funestus during an attempted laboratory colonization

March 18, 2021 - 09:20 -- Open Access
Author(s): 
Halfan S. Ngowo, Emmanuel E. Hape, Jason Matthiopoulos, Heather M. Ferguson and Fredros O. Okumu
Reference: 
Malaria Journal 2021 20:148, 12 March 2021

The malaria vector Anopheles funestus is increasingly recognized as a dominant vector of residual transmission in many African settings. Efforts to better understand its biology and control are significantly impeded by the difficulties of colonizing it under laboratory conditions. To identify key bottlenecks in colonization, this study compared the development and fitness characteristics of wild An. funestus from Tanzania (FUTAZ) and their F1 offspring during colonization attempts. The demography and reproductive success of wild FUTAZ offspring were compared to that of individuals from one of the only An. funestus strains that has been successfully colonized (FUMOZ, from Mozambique) under similar laboratory conditions.

Home-Based Intervention for the Prevention and Treatment of Malaria Among Children Younger Than 5 Years in the West Region of Cameroon: Protocol for a Randomized Controlled Trial

March 17, 2021 - 17:05 -- Open Access
Author(s): 
Dongmo Kenfack E, Tendongfor N, Nsagha DS
Reference: 
JMIR Res Protoc. 2021 Mar 12;10(3):e19633

Although malaria is preventable and curable, 1 child dies of this disease every 2 minutes in Africa. Home-based management of malaria reduces the progression of severe malaria by more than 50%. Scalable, efficacious, and cost-effective strategies are needed to empower the capacities of home caregivers of children younger than 5 years of age in health education, diagnosis, and treatment of malaria at home.

NOT Open Access | Vector-borne protozoal infections of the CNS: cerebral malaria, sleeping sickness and Chagas disease

March 17, 2021 - 09:22 -- NOT Open Access
Author(s): 
Singh G, Njamnshi AK, Sander L
Reference: 
Curr Opin Neurol. 2021 Mar 11

Malaria, Chagas Disease and Human African Trypanosomiasis are vector-borne protozoan illnesses, frequently associated with neurological manifestations. Intriguing but ignored, limited mainly to resource-limited, tropical settings, these disorders are now coming to light because of globalisation and improved diagnosis and treatment. Enhanced understanding of these illnesses has prompted this review.

NOT Open Access | Development and validation of an in silico decision-tool to guide optimisation of intravenous artesunate dosing regimens for severe falciparum malaria patients

March 10, 2021 - 13:55 -- NOT Open Access
Author(s): 
Zaloumis SG, Whyte JM, Simpson JA, et al.
Reference: 
Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2021 Mar 8:AAC.02346-20

Most deaths from severe falciparum malaria occur within 24 hours of presentation to hospital. Intravenous (i.v.) artesunate is the first-line treatment for severe falciparum malaria, but its efficacy may be compromised by delayed parasitological responses. In patients with severe malaria the life-saving benefit of the artemisinin derivatives is their ability to clear circulating parasites rapidly, before they can sequester and obstruct the microcirculation.

Real-time dispersal of malaria vectors in rural Africa monitored with lidar

March 9, 2021 - 16:02 -- Open Access
Author(s): 
Jansson S, Malmqvist E, Mlacha Y, Ignell R, Okumu F, Killeen G, Kirkeby C, Brydegaard M
Reference: 
PLoS One. 2021 Mar 4;16(3):e0247803

Lack of tools for detailed, real-time observation of mosquito behavior with high spatio-temporal resolution limits progress towards improved malaria vector control. We deployed a high-resolution entomological lidar to monitor a half-kilometer static transect positioned over rice fields outside a Tanzanian village. A quarter of a million in situ insect observations were classified, and several insect taxa were identified based on their modulation signatures.

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