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Infectivity of patent Plasmodium falciparum gametocyte carriers to mosquitoes: establishing capacity to investigate the infectious reservoir of malaria in a low-transmission setting in The Gambia

June 16, 2021 - 14:56 -- Open Access
Ahmad A, Soumare HM, Camara MM, Jadama L, Gaye PM, Bittaye H, Bradley J, Achan J, Bousema T, D'Alessandro U, Drakeley C, Moreno M
Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg. 2021 Jun 9:trab087

Understanding the human malaria infectious reservoir is important for elimination initiatives. Here, we implemented mosquito membrane feeding experiments to prepare for larger studies to quantify the transmission potential and relative contribution of the human infectious reservoir.

Development of a chimeric odour blend for attracting gravid malaria vectors

June 16, 2021 - 12:53 -- Open Access
Betelehem Wondwosen, Mengistu Dawit, Yared Debebe, Habte Tekie, Sharon R. Hill and Rickard Ignell
Malaria Journal 2021 20:262, 9 June 2021

Odour-based tools targeting gravid malaria vectors may complement existing intervention strategies. Anopheles arabiensis are attracted to, and stimulated to oviposit by, natural and synthetic odours of wild and domesticated grasses associated with mosquito breeding sites. While such synthetic odour lures may be used for vector control, these may have limited efficacy when placed in direct competition with the natural source. In this study, workflows developed for plant-feeding pests was used to design and evaluate a chimeric odour blend based on shared attractive compounds found in domesticated grass odours.

Comparison of four outdoor mosquito trapping methods as potential replacements for human landing catches in western Kenya

June 16, 2021 - 09:45 -- Open Access
Abong'o B, Gimnig JE, Oxborough RM, et al.
Parasit Vectors. 2021 Jun 12;14(1):320

Longitudinal monitoring of outdoor-biting malaria vector populations is becoming increasingly important in understanding the dynamics of residual malaria transmission. However, the human landing catch (HLC), the gold standard for measuring human biting rates indoors and outdoors, is costly and raises ethical concerns related to increased risk of infectious bites among collectors. Consequently, routine data on outdoor-feeding mosquito populations are usually limited because of the lack of a scalable tool with similar sensitivity to outdoor HLC.

The relationship between house height and mosquito house entry: an experimental study in rural Gambia

June 15, 2021 - 10:54 -- Open Access
Majo Carrasco-Tenezaca, Musa Jawara, Steve W. Lindsay, et al.
J. R. Soc. Interface, May 2021 Volume 18 Issue 178

Most malaria infections in sub-Saharan Africa are acquired indoors, thus finding effective ways of preventing mosquito house entry should reduce transmission. Since most malaria mosquitoes fly less than 1 m from the ground, we tested whether raising buildings off the ground would prevent the entry of Anopheles gambiae, the principal African malaria vector, in rural Gambia.

Impact of increased ventilation on indoor temperature and malaria mosquito density: an experimental study in The Gambia

June 15, 2021 - 10:53 -- Open Access
Ebrima Jatta, Majo Carrasco-Tenezaca, Steve W. Lindsay, et al.
J. R. Soc. Interface, May 2021 Volume 18 Issue 178

In sub-Saharan Africa, cooler houses would increase the coverage of insecticide-treated bednets, the primary malaria control tool. We examined whether improved ventilation, using windows screened with netting, cools houses at night and reduces malaria mosquito house entry in The Gambia. Identical houses were constructed, with badly fitting doors the only mosquito entry points.

The application of drones for mosquito larval habitat identification in rural environments: a practical approach for malaria control

June 5, 2021 - 06:29 -- Open Access
Michelle C. Stanton, Patrick Kalonde, Kennedy Zembere, Remy Hoek Spaans and Christopher M. Jones
Malaria Journal 2021 20:244, 31 May 2021

Spatio-temporal trends in mosquito-borne diseases are driven by the locations and seasonality of larval habitat. One method of disease control is to decrease the mosquito population by modifying larval habitat, known as larval source management (LSM). In malaria control, LSM is currently considered impractical in rural areas due to perceived difficulties in identifying target areas. High resolution drone mapping is being considered as a practical solution to address this barrier. In this paper, the authors’ experiences of drone-led larval habitat identification in Malawi were used to assess the feasibility of this approach.

A single-cell atlas of Plasmodium falciparum transmission through the mosquito

June 1, 2021 - 15:29 -- Open Access
Real E, Howick VM, Lawniczak MKN, et al.
Nat Commun. 2021 May 27;12(1):3196

Malaria parasites have a complex life cycle featuring diverse developmental strategies, each uniquely adapted to navigate specific host environments. Here we use single-cell transcriptomics to illuminate gene usage across the transmission cycle of the most virulent agent of human malaria - Plasmodium falciparum. We reveal developmental trajectories associated with the colonization of the mosquito midgut and salivary glands and elucidate the transcriptional signatures of each transmissible stage.

NOT Open Access | A natural symbiotic bacterium drives mosquito refractoriness to Plasmodium infection via secretion of an antimalarial lipase

May 12, 2021 - 13:06 -- NOT Open Access
Gao H, Bai L, Wang S, et al.
Nat Microbiol. 2021 May 6

The stalling global progress in the fight against malaria prompts the urgent need to develop new intervention strategies. Whilst engineered symbiotic bacteria have been shown to confer mosquito resistance to parasite infection, a major challenge for field implementation is to address regulatory concerns. Here, we report the identification of a Plasmodium-blocking symbiotic bacterium, Serratia ureilytica Su_YN1, isolated from the midgut of wild Anopheles sinensis in China that inhibits malaria parasites via secretion of an antimalarial lipase.

NOT Open Access | Crystalloids: Fascinating Parasite Organelles Essential for Malaria Transmission

May 5, 2021 - 08:15 -- NOT Open Access
Dessens JT, Tremp AZ, Saeed S
Trends Parasitol. 2021 Apr 30:S1471-4922(21)00082-9

Crystalloids are malaria parasite organelles exclusive to the ookinete and young oocyst life stages that infect the mosquito.

Higher gametocyte production and mosquito infectivity in chronic compared to incident Plasmodium falciparum infections

April 29, 2021 - 07:46 -- Open Access
Barry A, Bradley J, Bousema T, et al.
Nat Commun. 2021 Apr 26;12(1):2443

Plasmodium falciparum gametocyte kinetics and infectivity may differ between chronic and incident infections. In the current study, we assess parasite kinetics and infectivity to mosquitoes among children (aged 5-10 years) from Burkina Faso with (a) incident infections following parasite clearance (n = 48) and (b) chronic asymptomatic infections (n = 60). In the incident infection cohort, 92% (44/48) of children develop symptoms within 35 days, compared to 23% (14/60) in the chronic cohort. All individuals with chronic infection carried gametocytes or developed them during follow-up, whereas only 35% (17/48) in the incident cohort produce gametocytes before becoming symptomatic and receiving treatment.


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