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Polymorphisms in Plasmodium falciparum dihydropteroate synthetase and dihydrofolate reductase genes in Nigerian children with uncomplicated malaria using high-resolution melting technique

January 16, 2021 - 09:38 -- Open Access
Kayode AT, Ajogbasile FV, Akano K, Uwanibe JN, Oluniyi PE, Eromon PJ, Folarin OA, Sowunmi A, Wirth DF, Happi CT
Sci Rep. 2021 Jan 12;11(1):471

In 2005, the Nigerian Federal Ministry of Health revised the treatment policy for uncomplicated malaria with the introduction of artemisinin-based combination therapies (ACTs). This policy change discouraged the use of Sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP) as the second-line treatment of uncomplicated falciparum malaria. However, SP is used as an intermittent preventive treatment of malaria in pregnancy (IPTp) and seasonal malaria chemoprevention (SMC) in children aged 3-59 months. There have been increasing reports of SP resistance especially in the non-pregnant population in Nigeria, thus, the need to continually monitor the efficacy of SP as IPTp and SMC by estimating polymorphisms in dihydropteroate synthetase (dhps) and dihydrofolate reductase (dhfr) genes associated with SP resistance.

Effect of 4 years of seasonal malaria chemoprevention on the acquisition of antibodies to Plasmodium falciparum antigens in Ouelessebougou, Mali

January 13, 2021 - 08:20 -- Open Access
Almahamoudou Mahamar, Djibrilla Issiaka, Alassane Dicko, et al.
Malaria Journal 2021 20:23, 7 January 2021

More than 200 million people live in areas of highly seasonal malaria transmission where Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention (SMC) with sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP) and amodiaquine (AQ) was recommended in 2012 by WHO. This strategy is now implemented widely and protected more than 19 million children in 2018. It was previously reported that exposure to SMC reduced antibody levels to AMA1, MSP-142 and CSP, but the duration of exposure to SMC up to three 3 years, had no effect on antibody levels to MSP-142 and CSP.

Plasma angiopoietin-2 is associated with age-related deficits in cognitive sub-scales in Ugandan children following severe malaria

January 9, 2021 - 13:14 -- Open Access
Benson J. Ouma, Paul Bangirana, John M. Ssenkusu, Dibyadyuti Datta, Robert O. Opoka, Richard Idro, Kevin C. Kain, Chandy C. John and Andrea L. Conroy
Malaria Journal 2021 20:17, 6 January 2021

Elevated angiopoietin-2 (Angpt-2) concentrations are associated with worse overall neurocognitive function in severe malaria survivors, but the specific domains affected have not been elucidated.

VAR2CSA Antibodies in Non-Pregnant Populations

January 7, 2021 - 09:08 -- Open Access
Gnidehou S, Yanow SK
Trends Parasitol. 2021 Jan;37(1):65-76

The Plasmodium falciparum protein VAR2CSA is a critical mediator of placental malaria, and VAR2CSA antibodies (IgGs) are important to protect pregnant women. Although infrequently detected outside pregnancy, VAR2CSA IgGs were reported in men and children from Colombia and Brazil and in select African populations.

Polymorphisms in Plasmodium falciparum chloroquine resistance transporter (Pfcrt) and multidrug-resistant gene 1 (Pfmdr-1) in Nigerian children 10 years post-adoption of artemisinin-based combination treatments

December 30, 2020 - 13:52 -- Open Access
Kayode AT, Akano K, Happi CT, et al.
Int J Parasitol. 2020 Dec 23:S0020-7519(20)30318-0

The emergence and spread of Plasmodium falciparum parasites resistant to artemisinin derivatives and their partners in southeastern Asia threatens malaria control and elimination efforts, and heightens the need for an alternative therapy. We have explored the distribution of P. falciparum chloroquine resistance transporter (Pfcrt) and multidrug-resistant gene 1 (Pfmdr-1) haplotypes 10 years following adoption of artemisinin-based combination therapies (ACTs) in a bid to investigate the possible re-emergence of Chloroquine (CQ)-sensitive parasites in Nigeria, and investigated the effect of these P. falciparum haplotypes on treatment outcomes of patients treated with ACTs. A total of 271 children aged < 5 years with uncomplicated falciparum malaria were included in this study. Polymorphisms on codons 72-76 of the Pfcrt gene and codon 86 and 184 of Pfmdr-1 were determined using the high resolution melting (HRM) assay.

NOT Open Access | RTS,S/AS01(E) malaria vaccine induces IgA responses against CSP and vaccine-unrelated antigens in African children in the phase 3 trial

December 30, 2020 - 12:56 -- NOT Open Access
Suau R, Vidal M, Dobaño C, et al.
Vaccine. 2020 Dec 24:S0264-410X(20)31606-6

The evaluation of immune responses to RTS,S/AS01 has traditionally focused on immunoglobulin (Ig) G antibodies that are only moderately associated with protection. The role of other antibody isotypes that could also contribute to vaccine efficacy remains unclear. Here we investigated whether RTS,S/AS01E elicits antigen-specific serum IgA antibodies to the vaccine and other malaria antigens, and we explored their association with protection.

Acquisition and decay of IgM and IgG responses to merozoite antigens after Plasmodium falciparum malaria in Ghanaian children

December 23, 2020 - 09:50 -- Open Access
Walker MR, Knudsen AS, Partey FD, Bassi MR, Frank AM, Castberg FC, Sarbah EW, Ofori MF, Hviid L, Barfod L
PLoS One. 2020 Dec 17;15(12):e0243943

Developing a vaccine against Plasmodium falciparum malaria has been challenging, primarily due to high levels of antigen polymorphism and a complex parasite lifecycle. Immunization with the P. falciparum merozoite antigens PfMSRP5, PfSERA9, PfRAMA, PfCyRPA and PfRH5 has been shown to give rise to growth inhibitory and synergistic antisera. Therefore, these five merozoite proteins are considered to be promising candidates for a second-generation multivalent malaria vaccine. Nevertheless, little is known about IgG and IgM responses to these antigens in populations that are naturally exposed to P. falciparum. In this study, serum samples from clinically immune adults and malaria exposed children from Ghana were studied to compare levels of IgG and IgM specific for PfMSRP5, PfSERA9, PfRAMA, PfCyRPA and PfRH5.

Disparities in Risks of Malaria Associated with Climatic Variability among Women, Children and Elderly in the Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh

December 23, 2020 - 09:12 -- Open Access
Emeto TI, Adegboye OA, Rumi RA, Khan MI, Adegboye M, Khan WA, Rahman M, Streatfield PK, Rahman KM
Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2020 Dec 17;17(24):E9469

Malaria occurrence in the Chittagong Hill Tracts in Bangladesh varies by season and year, but this pattern is not well characterized. The role of environmental conditions on the occurrence of this vector-borne parasitic disease in the region is not fully understood. We extracted information on malaria patients recorded in the Upazila (sub-district) Health Complex patient registers of Rajasthali in Rangamati district of Bangladesh from February 2000 to November 2009. Weather data for the study area and period were obtained from the Bangladesh Meteorological Department.

Brain Magnetic Resonance Imaging Reveals Different Courses of Disease in Pediatric and Adult Cerebral Malaria

December 16, 2020 - 12:16 -- Open Access
Sahu PK, Hoffmann A, Wassmer SC, et al.
Clin Infect Dis. 2020 Dec 16:ciaa1647

Cerebral malaria is a common presentation of severe Plasmodium falciparum infection and remains an important cause of death in the tropics. Key aspects of its pathogenesis are still incompletely understood, but severe brain swelling identified by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was associated with a fatal outcome in African children. In contrast, neuroimaging investigations failed to identify cerebral features associated with fatality in Asian adults.

NOT Open Access | Adults Are Not Big Children: What Brain Magnetic Resonance Imaging Findings Tell Us About Differences in Pediatric and Adult Cerebral Malaria

December 16, 2020 - 10:51 -- NOT Open Access
John CC
Clin Infect Dis. 2020 Dec 16:ciaa1659

Historically, research studies of infections in children have lagged behind those in adults. There are many reasons for this, including the smaller population of children, resulting in smaller numbers for research studies; a reluctance to subject children to the procedures required and the potential harms from new interventions; and a lack of financial incentive with the smaller market for drugs for pediatric conditions.


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