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Contribution of P. falciparum parasites with Pfhrp 2 gene deletions to false negative PfHRP 2 based malaria RDT results in Ghana: A nationwide study of symptomatic malaria patients

September 8, 2020 - 12:32 -- Open Access
Amoah LE, Abuaku B, Bukari AH, Dickson D, Amoako EO, Asumah G, Asamoah A, Preprah NY, Malm KL
PLoS One. 2020 Sep 4;15(9):e0238749

False-negative malaria rapid diagnostic test (RDT) results amongst symptomatic malaria patients are detrimental as they could lead to ineffective malaria case management. This study determined the nationwide contribution of parasites with Pfhrp2 and Pfhrp 3 gene deletions to false negative malaria RDT results in Ghana.

Insecticide resistance in indoor and outdoor-resting Anopheles gambiae in Northern Ghana

September 1, 2020 - 10:24 -- Open Access
Majidah Hamid-Adiamoh, Alfred Amambua-Ngwa, Davis Nwakanma, Umberto D’Alessandro, Gordon A. Awandare and Yaw A. Afrane
Malaria Journal 2020 19:314, 31 August 2020

Selection pressure from continued exposure to insecticides drives development of insecticide resistance and changes in resting behaviour of malaria vectors. There is need to understand how resistance drives changes in resting behaviour within vector species. The association between insecticide resistance and resting behaviour of Anopheles gambiae sensu lato (s.l.) in Northern Ghana was examined.

Evaluating the predictive performance of malaria antibodies and FCGR3B gene polymorphisms on Plasmodium falciparum infection outcome: a prospective cohort study

September 1, 2020 - 09:50 -- Open Access
Duah Dwomoh, Bright Adu, Daniel Dodoo, Michael Theisen, Samuel Iddi and Thomas A. Gerds
Malaria Journal 2020 19:307, 27 August 2020

Malaria antigen-specific antibodies and polymorphisms in host receptors involved in antibody functionality have been associated with different outcomes of Plasmodium falciparum infections. Thus, to identify key prospective malaria antigens for vaccine development, there is the need to evaluate the associations between malaria antibodies and antibody dependent host factors with more rigorous statistical methods. In this study, different statistical models were used to evaluate the predictive performance of malaria-specific antibodies and host gene polymorphisms on P. falciparum infection in a longitudinal cohort study involving Ghanaian children.

A multicenter study of the prevalence and risk factors of malaria and anemia among pregnant women at first antenatal care visit in Ghana

August 25, 2020 - 07:57 -- Open Access
Fondjo LA, Addai-Mensah O, Annani-Akollor ME, Quarshie JT, Boateng AA, Assafuah SE, Owiredu EW
PLoS One. 2020 Aug 21;15(8):e0238077

Malaria in pregnancy remains a major public health problem in Africa and Ghana and has been associated with a variety of pregnancy-related adverse complications. The development of effective and timely health policies for the prevention and control of malaria and anemia in pregnancy; requires current and consistent data on the prevalence and risk factors. We report the prevalence and risk factors of malaria and anemia from three major hospitals across three regions in Ghana.

Microscopic and sub-microscopic asymptomatic Plasmodium falciparum infections in Ghanaian children and protection against febrile malaria

July 28, 2020 - 14:46 -- Open Access
Adu B, Issahaque QA, Sarkodie-Addo T, Kumordjie S, Kyei-Baafour E, Sinclear CK, Eyia-Ampah S, Owusu-Yeboa E, Theisen M, Dodoo D
Infect Immun. 2020 Jul 27:IAI.00125-20

Naturally acquired immunity to Plasmodium falciparum malaria is thought to be non-sterile and sustained by persistence of low level parasitaemia. This study assessed the association between baseline microscopic and submicroscopic asymptomatic P. falciparum infections and anti-malarial antibody levels and whether these parasitaemia modify protective associations between antibody levels and malaria in Ghanaian children.

Point prevalence of asymptomatic Plasmodium infection and the comparison of microscopy, rapid diagnostic test and nested PCR for the diagnosis of asymptomatic malaria among children under 5 years in Ghana

July 28, 2020 - 14:06 -- Open Access
Okyere B, Owusu-Ofori A, Dickerson T, et al.
PLoS ONE 15(7): e0232874

Plasmodium infection among children is a serious public health problem. Asymptomatic malaria infection among humans serves as a significant reservoir for transmitting Plasmodium to uninfected Anopheles mosquitoes, fueling malaria endemicity and asymptomatic malaria may progress to clinical malaria. Therefore, prompt and accurate diagnosis of malaria infection is crucial for the management and control of malaria, especially in endemic areas. This study assessed the point prevalence of asymptomatic malaria infection and evaluated the performance of malaria Rapid Diagnostic Tests (RDT), light microscopy and nested PCR (nPCR) for the diagnosis of asymptomatic malaria infection in a paediatric population in the Atwima Nwabiagya North district, Ghana.

Characterization of putative drug resistant biomarkers in Plasmodium falciparum isolated from Ghanaian blood donors

July 26, 2020 - 13:43 -- Open Access
Aninagyei E, Duedu KO, Rufai T, Tetteh CD, Chandi MG, Ampomah P, Acheampong DO
BMC Infect Dis. 2020 Jul 22;20(1):533

Plasmodium falciparum parasites, which could harbour anti-malaria drug resistance genes, are commonly detected in blood donors in malaria-endemic areas. Notwithstanding, anti-malaria drug resistant biomarkers have not been characterized in blood donors with asymptomatic P. falciparum infection.

Plasmodium falciparum histidine-rich protein 2 diversity in Ghana

July 20, 2020 - 15:10 -- Open Access
Otchere Addai-Mensah, Bismarck Dinko, Alexander Yaw Debrahq, et al.
Malaria Journal 2020 19:256, 16 July 2020

In the absence of microscopy, Plasmodium falciparum histidine-rich proteins 2 (PfHRP2)-based rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) are recommended for the diagnosis of falciparum malaria, particularly in endemic regions. However, genetic variability of the pfhrp2 gene threatens the usefulness of the test due to its impact on RDT sensitivity. This study aimed to investigate the diversity of pfhrp2 in malaria cases among children in Ghana.

Plasmodium falciparum genetic factors rather than host factors are likely to drive resistance to ACT in Ghana

July 20, 2020 - 14:50 -- Open Access
Peter Hodoameda, Nancy Odurowah Duah-Quashie, Charles Oheneba Hagan, Sena Matrevi, Benjamin Abuaku, Kwadwo Koram and Neils Ben Quashie
Malaria Journal 2020 19:255, 15 July 2020

Artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT) partner drugs, currently used in Ghana are lumefantrine, amodiaquine and piperaquine. Plasmodium falciparum isolates with reduced susceptibility to these partner drugs may affect treatment outcome. Mutations in pfmdr1 gene is linked to reduced parasite susceptibility to amodiaquine and lumefantrine. In addition, the potency of the partner drugs in vivo depends on the metabolism by the cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzyme in the host. Mutations in the CYP2C8 and CYP3A4 genes are linked to reduced metabolism of amodiaquine and lumefantrine in vitro, respectively. This study investigated the host and parasite genetic factors affecting the susceptibility of the malaria parasite to ACT partner drugs.

An observational analysis of the impact of indoor residual spraying in Northern, Upper East, and Upper West Regions of Ghana: 2014 through 2017

July 14, 2020 - 09:22 -- Open Access
Christelle Gogue, Joseph Wagman, Molly Robertson, et al.
Malaria Journal 2020 19:242, 11 July 2020

Ghana has been implementing the indoor residual spraying (IRS) of insecticides since 2006, focusing operations in the north. Insecticide resistance concerns prompted a switch from pyrethroids to organophosphates, beginning gradually in 2011 and switching fully to the micro-encapsulated formulation of pirimiphosmethyl (PM CS), Actellic® 300CS, a third-generation indoor residual spraying (3GIRS) product, by 2014. Entomological surveillance studies have shown IRS to be a highly effective malaria control tool, but epidemiological evidence is needed as well. Countrywide prevalence surveys have shown that malaria parasite prevalence in children under 5 years of age in Northern, Upper East, and Upper West Regions had declined to less than 40% in each region by 2016. Similarly, malaria deaths in children under 5 years of age have also been declining nationally since 2009. Although IRS is suspected to have contributed to this decline, stronger evidence is needed to link the IRS interventions to the epidemiological impact.


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