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Trends of malaria infection in pregnancy in Ghana over the past two decades: a review

January 12, 2022 - 23:40 -- Open Access
Joseph Osarfo, Gifty Dufie Ampofo and Harry Tagbor
Malaria Journal 2022 21:3, 4 January 2022

There has been a global decline in malaria transmission over the past decade. However, not much is known of the impact of this observation on the burden of malaria infection in pregnancy in endemic regions including Ghana. A narrative review was undertaken to help describe trends in malaria infection in pregnancy in Ghana. Among others, such information is important in showing any progress made in malaria in pregnancy control.

Prevalence of asymptomatic malaria, submicroscopic parasitaemia and anaemia in Korogwe District, north-eastern Tanzania

November 18, 2021 - 12:52 -- Open Access
Paul M. Hayuma, Christian W. Wang, Edwin Liheluka, Vito Baraka, Rashid A. Madebe, Daniel T. R. Minja, Gerald Misinzo, Michael Alifrangis and John P. A. Lusingu
Malaria Journal 2021 20:424, 29 October 2021

Asymptomatic malaria infections largely remain undetected and act as a reservoir for continuous transmission. The study assessed the prevalence of submicroscopic asymptomatic malaria infections and anaemia in two rural low (300 m above sea level) and highland (700 m asl) settings of Korogwe District north-eastern Tanzania.

Asymptomatic Plasmodium vivax malaria in the Brazilian Amazon: Submicroscopic parasitemic blood infects Nyssorhynchus darlingi

November 4, 2021 - 12:56 -- Open Access
Almeida GG, Costa PAC, Gazzinelli RT, et al.
PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2021 Oct 29;15(10):e0009077

Individuals with asymptomatic infection due to Plasmodium vivax are posited to be important reservoirs of malaria transmission in endemic regions. Here we studied a cohort of P. vivax malaria patients in a suburban area in the Brazilian Amazon. Overall 1,120 individuals were screened for P. vivax infection and 108 (9.6%) had parasitemia detected by qPCR but not by microscopy. Asymptomatic individuals had higher levels of antibodies against P. vivax and similar hematological and biochemical parameters compared to uninfected controls.

Prevalence and associated risk factors of asymptomatic malaria and anaemia among school-aged children in Dara Mallo and Uba Debretsehay districts: results from baseline cluster randomized trial

October 27, 2021 - 14:00 -- Open Access
Zerihun Zerdo, Hilde Bastiaens, Sibyl Anthierens, Fekadu Massebo, Matewos Masne, Gelila Biresaw, Misgun Shewangizaw, Abayneh Tunje, Yilma Chisha, Tsegaye Yohannes and Jean-Pierre Van Geertruyden
Malaria Journal 2021 20:400, 13 October 2021

Despite the growing evidence that malaria and anaemia are two interlinked health problems of school-aged children (SAC) in developing countries, there is scarce information about malaria among SAC in Ethiopia. Moreover, anaemia-related studies were more concentrated in easily accessible areas. This study aimed to assess the prevalence of malaria and anaemia and corresponding risk factors among SAC in Dara Mallo and Uba Debretshay districts, in hard to reach areas, so as to inform appropriate integrated interventions for both diseases.

Towards the use of a smartphone imaging-based tool for point-of-care detection of asymptomatic low-density malaria parasitaemia

October 9, 2021 - 20:18 -- Open Access
Ashlee J. Colbert, Katrina Co, Giselle Lima-Cooper, Dong Hoon Lee, Katherine N. Clayton, Steven T. Wereley, Chandy C. John, Jacqueline C. Linnes and Tamara L. Kinzer-Ursem
Malaria Journal 2021 20:380, 25 September 2021

Globally, there are over 200 million cases of malaria annually and over 400,000 deaths. Early and accurate detection of low-density parasitaemia and asymptomatic individuals is key to achieving the World Health Organization (WHO) 2030 sustainable development goals of reducing malaria-related deaths by 90% and eradication in 35 countries. Current rapid diagnostic tests are neither sensitive nor specific enough to detect the low parasite concentrations in the blood of asymptomatic individuals.

Antibody signatures of asymptomatic Plasmodium falciparum malaria infections measured from dried blood spots

October 6, 2021 - 20:12 -- Open Access
Christine F. Markwalter, Myat Htut Nyunt, Zay Yar Han, Ricardo Henao, Aarti Jain, Omid Taghavian, Philip L. Felgner, Kay Thwe Han, Myaing M. Nyunt and Christopher V. Plowe
Malaria Journal 2021 20:378, 23 September 2021

Screening malaria-specific antibody responses on protein microarrays can help identify immune factors that mediate protection against malaria infection, disease, and transmission, as well as markers of past exposure to both malaria parasites and mosquito vectors. Most malaria protein microarray work has used serum as the sample matrix, requiring prompt laboratory processing and a continuous cold chain, thus limiting applications in remote locations. Dried blood spots (DBS) pose minimal biohazard, do not require immediate laboratory processing, and are stable at room temperature for transport, making them potentially superior alternatives to serum. The goals of this study were to assess the viability of DBS as a source for antibody profiling and to use DBS to identify serological signatures of low-density Plasmodium falciparum infections in malaria-endemic regions of Myanmar.

Prevalence and risk factors associated with asymptomatic malaria among school children: repeated cross-sectional surveys of school children in two ecological zones in Ghana

September 23, 2021 - 10:39 -- Open Access
Mensah BA, Myers-Hansen JL, Obeng Amoako E, Opoku M, Abuaku BK, Ghansah A
BMC Public Health. 2021 Sep 17;21(1):1697

Asymptomatic Plasmodium infections significantly drive malaria transmission and impact control and elimination strategies, but are largely uncharacterized. We investigated the prevalence and risk factors of asymptomatic malaria infections to inform malaria control strategies in Ghana.

Epidemiological and clinical implications of asymptomatic malaria and schistosomiasis co-infections in a rural community in western Kenya

September 15, 2021 - 12:01 -- Open Access
Kamau E, Yates A, Polyak CS, et al.
BMC Infect Dis. 2021 Sep 9;21(1):937

Malaria and schistosomiasis present considerable disease burden in tropical and sub-tropical areas and severity is worsened by co-infections in areas where both diseases are endemic. Although pathogenesis of these infections separately is well studied, there is limited information on the pathogenic disease mechanisms and clinical disease outcomes in co-infections. In this study, we investigated the prevalence of malaria and schistosomiasis co-infections, and the hematologic and blood chemistry abnormalities in asymptomatic adults in a rural fishing community in western Kenya.

Identification of the asymptomatic Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax gametocyte reservoir under different transmission intensities

September 1, 2021 - 16:27 -- Open Access
Koepfli C, Nguitragool W, Mueller I, et al.
PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2021 Aug 27;15(8):e0009672

Understanding epidemiological variables affecting gametocyte carriage and density is essential to design interventions that most effectively reduce malaria human-to-mosquito transmission.

Tracking severe malaria disease

August 25, 2021 - 16:00 -- Open Access
Taylor T, Slutsker L
Science. 2021 Aug 20;373(6557):855-856

Female Anopheles mosquitoes transmit malaria sporozoites to humans in the context of a blood meal. In malaria-endemic areas, most of the ensuing infections are asymptomatic. Some, however, progress to an uncomplicated illness (fever, headache, body aches, and pains).


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