Malaria and malnutrition remain primary causes of morbidity and mortality among children younger than 5 years in Africa. Studies investigating the association between malnutrition and subsequent malaria outcomes are inconsistent. We studied the effects of malnutrition on incidence and prevalence of malaria parasitemia in data from a cohort studied in the 1990s.
The global COVID-19 pandemic has been affecting the maintenance of various disease control programmes, including malaria. In some malaria-endemic countries, funding and personnel reallocations were executed from malaria control programmes to support COVID-19 response efforts, resulting mainly in interruptions of disease control activities and reduced capabilities of health system.
The directional selection for insecticide resistance due to indiscriminate use of insecticides in public health and agricultural system favors an increase in the frequency of insecticide-resistant alleles in the natural populations. Similarly, removal of selection pressure generally leads to decay in resistance. Past investigations on the emergence of insecticide resistance in mosquitoes mostly relied on field survey of resistance in vector populations that typically had a complex history of exposure to various public health and agricultural pest control insecticides in nature, and thus the effect of specific insecticides on rate of resistance emergency or resistance decay rate is not known.
Malaria prevention in Africa is mainly through the use of long-lasting insecticide treated nets (LLINs). The objective of the study was to assess the effect of supplementing LLINs with either larviciding with Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (Bti) or community education and mobilization (CEM), or with both interventions in the context of integrated vector management (IVM).
High-throughput Plasmodium genomic data is increasingly useful in assessing prevalence of clinically important mutations and malaria transmission patterns. Understanding parasite diversity is important for identification of specific human or parasite populations that can be targeted by control programs, and to monitor the spread of mutations associated with drug resistance. An up-to-date understanding of regional parasite population dynamics is also critical to monitor the impact of control efforts.
Across Africa, malaria control programmes are increasingly challenged with the emergence of insecticide resistance among malaria vector populations. Confronted with this challenge, vector control staff must understand insecticide resistance management, think comprehensively and react positively when confronted with new problems. However, information on the subject is often only available through written guidelines that are difficult to put into practice.
Plasmodium vivax malaria is much less common in Africa than the rest of the world because the parasite relies primarily on the Duffy antigen/chemokine receptor (DARC) to invade human erythrocytes, and the majority of Africans are Duffy negative. Recently, there has been a dramatic increase in the reporting of P. vivax cases in Africa, with a high number of them being in Duffy negative individuals, potentially indicating P. vivax has evolved an alternative invasion mechanism that can overcome Duffy negativity.
Plasmodium vivax is the most prevalent cause of malaria outside of Africa. P. vivax biology and pathogenesis are still poorly understood. The role of one highly occurring phenotype in particular where infected reticulocytes cytoadhere to noninfected normocytes, forming rosettes, remains unknown. Here, using a range of ex vivo approaches, we showed that P. vivax rosetting rates were enhanced by plasma of infected patients and that total immunoglobulin M levels correlated with rosetting frequency.
Malaria surveillance is a key pillar in the control of malaria in Africa. The value of using routinely collected data from health facilities to define malaria risk at community levels remains poorly defined.
Monitoring of Plasmodium falciparum sensitivity to antimalarial drugs in Africa is vital for malaria elimination. However, the commonly used ex-vivo/in-vitro IC50 test is inconsistent for several antimalarials, while the alternative ring-stage survival assay (RSA) for artemisinin derivatives has not been widely adopted. Here we applied an alternative two-colour flow-cytometry based parasite survival rate assay (PSRA) to detect ex-vivo antimalarial tolerance in P. falciparum isolates from The Gambia.