Plasmodium knowlesi is a significant cause of human malaria in Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo. Only one study has been previously undertaken in Sarawak to identify vectors of P. knowlesi, where Anopheles latens was incriminated as the vector in Kapit, central Sarawak. A study was therefore undertaken to identify malaria vectors in a different location in Sarawak.
The zoonotic malaria parasite, Plasmodium knowlesi, is now a substantial public health problem in Malaysian Borneo. Current understanding of P. knowlesi vector bionomics and ecology in Sabah comes from a few studies near the epicentre of human cases in one district, Kudat. These have incriminated Anopheles balabacensis as the primary vector, and suggest that human exposure to vector biting is peri-domestic as well as in forest environments.
Most malaria in Malaysia is caused by Plasmodium knowlesi parasites through zoonotic infection from macaque reservoir hosts. We obtained genome sequences from 28 clinical infections in Peninsular Malaysia to clarify the emerging parasite population structure and test for evidence of recent adaptation. The parasites all belonged to a major genetic population of P. knowlesi (cluster 3) with high genomewide divergence from populations occurring in Borneo (clusters 1 and 2).
Plasmodium knowlesi and Plasmodium vivax are the predominant Plasmodium species that cause malaria in Malaysia and play a role in asymptomatic malaria disease transmission in Malaysia. The diagnostic tools available to diagnose malaria, such as microscopy and rapid diagnostic test (RDT), are less sensitive at detecting lower parasite density. Droplet digital polymerase chain reaction (ddPCR), which has been shown to have higher sensitivity at diagnosing malaria, allows direct quantification without the need for a standard curve. The aim of this study is to develop and use a duplex ddPCR assay for the detection of P. knowlesi and P. vivax, and compare this method to nested PCR and qPCR.
Population genetic analysis revealed that Plasmodium knowlesi infections in Malaysian Borneo are caused by 2 divergent parasites associated with long-tailed (cluster 1) and pig-tailed (cluster 2) macaques. Because the transmission ecology is likely to differ for each macaque species, we developed a simple genotyping PCR to efficiently distinguish between and survey the 2 parasite subpopulations.
Malaria is caused by multiple different species of protozoan parasites, and interventions in the pre-elimination phase can lead to drastic changes in the proportion of each species causing malaria. In endemic areas, cross-reactivity may play an important role in the protection and blocking transmission. Thus, successful control of one species could lead to an increase in other parasite species.
In this study, recombinase polymerase amplification (RPA) combined with SYBR Green I was developed for the detection of Plasmodium knowlesi. Positive samples were indicated with a green color while negative samples were orange.
Malaria cross-sectional surveys are rarely conducted in very low transmission settings. This study aimed to determine the prevalence and risk factors of Plasmodium infection in a near-elimination setting in southern Thailand.
Invasion of human erythrocytes by merozoites of Plasmodium knowlesi involves interaction between the P. knowlesi Duffy binding protein alpha region II (PkDBPαII) and Duffy antigen receptor for chemokines (DARCs) on the erythrocytes. Information is scarce on the binding level of PkDBPαII to different Duffy antigens, Fya and Fyb.
Quinolones, such as the antimalarial atovaquone, are inhibitors of the malarial mitochondrial cytochrome bc1 complex, a target critical to the survival of both liver and blood stage parasites, making these drugs useful as both prophylaxis and treatment. Recently, several derivatives of endochin have been optimised to produce novel quinolones that are active in vitro and in animal models.