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Scientific Articles

Investigating a Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte invasion phenotype switch at the whole transcriptome level

January 24, 2020 - 15:05 -- Open Access
Nyarko PB, Tarr SJ, Aniweh Y, Stewart LB, Conway DJ, Awandare GA
Sci Rep. 2020 Jan 14; 10(1):245

The central role that erythrocyte invasion plays in Plasmodium falciparum survival and reproduction makes this process an attractive target for therapeutic or vaccine development. However, multiple invasion-related genes with complementary and overlapping functions afford the parasite the plasticity to vary ligands used for invasion, leading to phenotypic variation and immune evasion. Overcoming the challenge posed by redundant ligands requires a deeper understanding of conditions that select for variant phenotypes and the molecular mediators.

Long-term immunogenicity and immune memory response to the hepatitis B antigen in the RTS,S/AS01E malaria vaccine in African children: a randomized trial

January 24, 2020 - 15:04 -- Open Access
Valéa I, Adjei S, Agbenyega T, et al.
Hum Vaccin Immunother. 2020 Jan 17:1-7

RTS,S/AS01E malaria vaccine contains the hepatitis B virus surface antigen and may thus serve as a potential hepatitis B vaccine. To evaluate the impact of RTS,S/AS01E when implemented in the Expanded Program of Immunization, infants 8–12 weeks old were randomized to receive either RTS,S/AS01E or a licensed hepatitis B control vaccine (HepB), both co-administered with various combinations of the following childhood vaccines: diphtheria-tetanus-acellular pertussis-Haemophilus influenzae type b, trivalent oral poliovirus, pneumococcal non-typeable Haemophilus influenzae protein D conjugate and human rotavirus vaccine.

NOT Open Access | G-strand binding protein 2 is involved in asexual and sexual development of Plasmodium berghei

January 24, 2020 - 15:02 -- NOT Open Access
Mamoru Niikura, Toshiyuki Fukutomi, Kana Fukui, Shin-Ichi Inoue, Hiroko Asahi, Fumie Kobayashi
Parasitology International, 18 January 2020, 102059

G-strand binding protein 2 (GBP2) is a Ser/Arg-rich (SR) protein involved in mRNA surveillance and nuclear mRNA quality control in yeast. However, the roles of GBP2 in virulence and sexual development in Plasmodium parasites are unclear, although GBP2 is involved in the asexual development of Plasmodium berghei, the rodent malaria parasite. In this study, we investigated the role of GBP2 in virulence and sexual development of P. berghei using gbp2-deleted P. berghei (Δgbp2 parasites).

NAD(P) transhydrogenase has vital non-mitochondrial functions in malaria parasite transmission

January 24, 2020 - 14:59 -- Open Access
Saeed S, Tremp AZ, Sharma V, Lasonder E, Dessens JT
EMBO Rep. 2020 Jan 17:e47832

Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) and its phosphorylated form (NADP) are vital for cell function in all organisms and form cofactors to a host of enzymes in catabolic and anabolic processes. NAD(P) transhydrogenases (NTHs) catalyse hydride ion transfer between NAD(H) and NADP(H). Membrane‐bound NTH isoforms reside in the cytoplasmic membrane of bacteria, and the inner membrane of mitochondria in metazoans, where they generate NADPH.

NOT Open Access | Congenital Malaria in Newborns Delivered to Mothers with Malaria-Infected Placenta in Blue Nile State, Sudan

January 24, 2020 - 14:57 -- NOT Open Access
Omer SA, Adam I, Noureldien A, Elhaj H, Guerrero-Latorre L, Silgado A, Sulleiro E, Molina I
Journal of Tropical Pediatrics, fmz083

Diagnosis of congenital malaria is complicated by the low density of the parasite circulating in the cord blood and/or the peripheral blood of the newborns. Molecular techniques are significantly more sensitive than blood smears in detecting low-level parasitemia. This study investigated the prevalence of congenital malaria by the use of the real-time polymerase chain reaction (real-time PCR) in 102 babies born to mothers with microscopically confirmed infected placenta from Blue Nile state, Sudan.

Determinants of the persistence of malaria in Rwanda

January 24, 2020 - 14:53 -- Open Access
Guillaume Rudasingwa and Sung-Il Cho
Malaria Journal 2020 19:36, 21 January 2020

Malaria has a considerable impact on the health of the populations of developing countries; indeed, the entire population of Rwanda is at risk of contracting the disease. Although various interventions to control malaria have been implemented in Rwanda, the incidence of malaria has increased since 2012. There is an interest in understanding factors driving its persistence in Rwanda. This study aims at evaluating the effect of socio-economic and environmental factors, seasonality and the use of insecticide-treated mosquito nets (ITNs) on malaria persistence in Rwanda.

Improving the performance of spray operators through monitoring and evaluation of insecticide concentrations of pirimiphos-methyl during indoor residual spraying for malaria control on Bioko Island

January 24, 2020 - 14:52 -- Open Access
Godwin Fuseini, Hanafy M. Ismail, Michael E. von Fricken, Thomas A. Weppelmann, Jordan Smith, Rhiannon Agnes Ellis Logan, Folasade Oladepo, Kyle J. Walker, Wonder P. Phiri, Mark J. I. Paine and Guillermo A. García
Malaria Journal 2020 19:35, 21 January 2020

Quality control of indoor residual spraying (IRS) is necessary to ensure that spray operators (SOs) deposit the correct concentration of insecticide on sprayed structures, while also confirming that spray records are not being falsified.

Optimal timing of primaquine to reduce Plasmodium falciparum gametocyte carriage when co-administered with artemether–lumefantrine

January 24, 2020 - 14:49 -- Open Access
Seif Shekalaghe, Dominic Mosha, Ali Hamad, Thabit A. Mbaga, Michael Mihayo, Teun Bousema, Chris Drakeley and Salim Abdulla
Malaria Journal 2020 19:34, 21 January 2020

Primaquine is an important gametocytocidal drug that is combined with conventional malaria treatment for prevention of Plasmodium falciparum malaria transmission. Primaquine has been administered together on the first or the last day of conventional treatment but the impact of primaquine timing has never been examined. This study aimed to assess safety, efficacy and optimal timing of single full-dose (0.75 mg/kg) primaquine when added to a standard 6-dose regimen of artemether–lumefantrine (AL).

Clustering of asymptomatic Plasmodium falciparum infection and the effectiveness of targeted malaria control measures

January 24, 2020 - 14:47 -- Open Access
Jeffrey G. Shaffer, Mahamoudou B. Touré, Nafomon Sogoba, Seydou O. Doumbia, Jules F. Gomis, Mouhamadou Ndiaye, Daouda Ndiaye, Ayouba Diarra, Ismaela Abubakar, Abdullahi Ahmad, Muna Affara, Davis Nwakanma, Mary Lukowski, James C. Welty, Frances J. Mather, Joseph Keating & Donald J. Krogstad
Malaria Journal 2020 19:33, 21 January 2020

Because clustering of Plasmodium falciparum infection had been noted previously, the clustering of infection was examined at four field sites in West Africa: Dangassa and Dioro in Mali, Gambissara in The Gambia and Madina Fall in Senegal.

Pregnancy-specific malarial immunity and risk of malaria in pregnancy and adverse birth outcomes: a systematic review

January 24, 2020 - 14:45 -- Open Access
Cutts JC, Agius PA, Zaw Lin, Powell R, Moore K, Draper B, Simpson JA, Fowkes FJI
BMC Med 18, 14 (2020)

In endemic areas, pregnant women are highly susceptible to Plasmodium falciparum malaria characterized by the accumulation of parasitized red blood cells (pRBC) in the placenta. In subsequent pregnancies, women develop protective immunity to pregnancy-associated malaria and this has been hypothesized to be due to the acquisition of antibodies to the parasite variant surface antigen VAR2CSA. In this systematic review we provide the first synthesis of the association between antibodies to pregnancy-specific P. falciparum antigens and pregnancy and birth outcomes.


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