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Performance of a sensitive haemozoin‐based malaria diagnostic test validated for vivax malaria diagnosis in Brazilian Amazon

March 18, 2021 - 09:14 -- Open Access
Gisely Cardoso de Melo, Rebeca Linhares Abreu Netto, Marcus Vinícius Guimarães Lacerda, et al.
Malaria Journal 2021 20:146, 12 March 2021

Vivax malaria diagnosis remains a challenge in malaria elimination, with current point of care rapid diagnostic tests (RDT) missing many clinically significant infections because of usually lower peripheral parasitaemia. Haemozoin-detecting assays have been suggested as an alternative to immunoassay platforms but to date have not reached successful field deployment. Haemozoin is a paramagnetic crystal by-product of haemoglobin digestion by malaria parasites and is present in the food vacuole of malaria parasite-infected erythrocytes. This study aimed to compare the diagnostic capability of a new haemozoin-detecting platform, the Gazelle™ device with optical microscopy, RDT and PCR in a vivax malaria-endemic region.

Rapid diagnostic test negative Plasmodium falciparum malaria in a traveller returning from Ethiopia

March 18, 2021 - 09:10 -- Open Access
Stefan Schlabe, Ingrid Reiter-Owona, Tamara Nordmann, Ramona Dolscheid-Pommerich, Egbert Tannich, Achim Hoerauf and Jürgen Rockstroh
Malaria Journal 2021 20:145, 12 March 2021

Plasmodium falciparum strains with mutations/deletions of the genes encoding the histidine-rich proteins 2/3 (pfhrp2/3) have emerged during the last 10 years leading to false-negative results in HRP2-based rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs). This can lead to unrecognized infections in individuals and to setbacks in malaria control in endemic countries where RDTs are the backbone of malaria diagnostics and control.

Trends in access to anti‐malarial treatment in the formal private sector in Uganda: an assessment of availability and affordability of first‐line anti‐malarials and diagnostics between 2007 and 2018

March 10, 2021 - 15:23 -- Open Access
Denis Kibira, Anthony Ssebagereka, Hendrika A. van den Ham, Jimmy Opigo, Henry Katamba, Morries Seru, Tim Reed, Hubert G. Leufkens and Aukje K. Mantel-Teeuwisse
Malaria Journal 2021 20:142, 10 March 2021

Malaria is the single largest cause of illness in Uganda. Since the year 2008, the Global Fund has rolled out several funding streams for malaria control in Uganda. Among these are mechanisms aimed at increasing the availability and affordability of artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT). This paper examines the availability and affordability of first-line malaria treatment and diagnostics in the private sector, which is the preferred first point of contact for 61% of households in Uganda between 2007 and 2018.

Malaria rapid diagnostic test (HRP2/pLDH) positivity, incidence, care accessibility and impact of community WASH Action programme in DR Congo: mixed method study involving 625 households

March 3, 2021 - 15:39 -- Open Access
Nlandu Roger Ngatu, Basilua Andre Muzembo, Tomohiro Hirao, et al.
Malaria Journal 2021 20:117, 27 February 2021

Malaria is one of the most prevalent and deadliest illnesses in sub-Saharan Africa. Despite recent gains made towards its control, many African countries still have endemic malaria transmission. This study aimed to assess malaria burden at household level in Kongo central province, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), and the impact of community participatory Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Action programme.

NOT Open Access | Comparison of polymerase chain reaction, microscopy, and rapid diagnostic test in malaria detection in a high burden state (Odisha) of India

March 2, 2021 - 15:10 -- NOT Open Access
Ahmad A, Soni P, Kumar L, Singh MP, Verma AK, Sharma A, Das A, Bharti PK
Pathog Glob Health. 2021 Feb 26:1-6

Precise identification of Plasmodium species is critical in malaria control and elimination. Despite several shortcomings, microscopy and rapid diagnostic test (RDT) continue to be the leading diagnostic methods. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is the most sensitive method but its dependency on advanced laboratory and skilled workers limits its use.

Social group and health-care provider interventions to increase the demand for malaria rapid diagnostic tests among community members in Ebonyi state, Nigeria: a cluster-randomised controlled trial

March 2, 2021 - 15:03 -- Open Access
Omale UI, Azuogu BN, Ibemesi DO, et al.
Lancet Glob Health. 2021 Mar;9(3):e320-e330

The rate of diagnostic testing for malaria is still very low in Nigeria despite the scale-up of malaria rapid diagnostic test (MRDT) availability, following WHO's recommendation of universal diagnostic testing in 2010. We investigated whether a social group sensitisation and education intervention (social group intervention) and a social group intervention plus health-care provider training intervention would increase the demand (use or request, or both) for MRDTs among community members in Ebonyi state, Nigeria.

Detection of high prevalence of Plasmodium falciparum histidine-rich protein 2/3 gene deletions in Assosa zone, Ethiopia: implication for malaria diagnosis

February 23, 2021 - 14:24 -- Open Access
Gezahegn Solomon Alemayehu, Kayla Blackburn, Karen Lopez, Cheikh Cambel Dieng, Eugenia Lo, Daniel Janies and Lemu Golassa
Malaria Journal 2021 20:109, 23 February 2021

Rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) targeting histidine rich protein 2(HRP2) are widely used for diagnosis of Plasmodium falciparum infections. Besides PfHRP2, the PfHRP3 antigen contributes to the detection of P. falciparum infections in PfHRP2 RDTs. However, the performance HRP2-based RDT is affected by pfhrp2/3 gene deletions resulting in false-negative test results. The objective of this study was to determine the presence and prevalence of pfhrp2/3 gene deletions including the respective flanking regions among symptomatic patients in Assosa zone, Northwest Ethiopia.

Genomic investigation of atypical malaria cases in Kanel, northern Senegal

February 23, 2021 - 14:10 -- Open Access
Mouhamad Sy, Aida Sadikh Badiane, Doudou Sène, et al.
Malaria Journal 2021 20:103, 19 February 2021

The diagnosis of malaria cases in regions where the malaria burden has decreased significantly and prevalence is very low is more challenging, in part because of reduced clinical presumption of malaria. The appearance of a cluster of malaria cases with atypical symptoms in Mbounguiel, a village in northern Senegal where malaria transmission is low, in September 2018 exemplifies this scenario. The collaboration between the National Malaria Control Programme (NMCP) at the Senegal Ministry of Health and the Laboratory of Parasitology and Mycology at Cheikh Anta Diop University worked together to evaluate this cluster of malaria cases using molecular and serological tools.

Needs assessment of community health workers to enhance efficient delivery of their services for community case management of malaria in Kenya

February 20, 2021 - 08:42 -- Open Access
Michelle D. S. Boakye, Collins J. Owek, Elizabeth Oluoch, Sefa Bonsu Atakora, Juddy Wachira and Yaw A. Afrane
Malaria Journal 2021 20:102, 18 February 2021

Malaria continues to be the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in Africa. Community Case Management of malaria (CCMm) which is undertaken by engaging Community Health Workers (CHWs) to effectively address management of malaria cases in some endemic communities was explored in this study. The aim was to assess the needs of CHWs that would help sustain and retain their services to enhance the efficient delivery of CCMm.

Parasite genetic diversity reflects continued residual malaria transmission in Vhembe District, a hotspot in the Limpopo Province of South Africa

February 17, 2021 - 09:12 -- Open Access
Hazel B. Gwarinda, Sofonias K. Tessema, Jaishree Raman, Bryan Greenhouse and Lyn-Marié Birkholtz
Malaria Journal 2021 20:96, 16 February 2021

South Africa aims to eliminate malaria transmission by 2023. However, despite sustained vector control efforts and case management interventions, the Vhembe District remains a malaria transmission hotspot. To better understand Plasmodium falciparum transmission dynamics in the area, this study characterized the genetic diversity of parasites circulating within the Vhembe District.


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