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Scientific Articles

Distribution and phylogenetic diversity of Anopheles species in malaria endemic areas of Honduras in an elimination setting

July 2, 2020 - 13:59 -- Open Access
Author(s): 
Escobar D, Ascencio K, Ortiz A, Palma A, Fontecha G
Reference: 
Parasit Vectors. 2020 Jul 1;13(1):333

Anopheles mosquitoes are the vectors of malaria, one of the most important infectious diseases in the tropics. More than 500 Anopheles species have been described worldwide, and more than 30 are considered a public health problem. In Honduras, information on the distribution of Anopheles spp. and its genetic diversity is scarce. This study aimed to describe the distribution and genetic diversity of Anopheles mosquitoes in Honduras.

Naturally Acquired Humoral Immunity against Malaria Parasites in Non-Human Primates from the Brazilian Amazon, Cerrado and Atlantic Forest

July 2, 2020 - 13:58 -- Open Access
Author(s): 
Monteiro EF, Fernandez-Becerra C, Kirchgatter K, et al.
Reference: 
Pathogens. 2020 Jun 29;9(7):E525

Non-human primates (NHPs) have been shown to be infected by parasites of the genus Plasmodium, the etiological agent of malaria in humans, creating potential risks of zoonotic transmission. Plasmodium brasilianum, a parasite species similar to P. malariae of humans, have been described in NHPs from Central and South America, including Brazil.

Haem oxygenase protects against thrombocytopaenia and malaria-associated lung injury

July 2, 2020 - 13:56 -- Open Access
Author(s): 
Isaclaudia G. de Azevedo-Quintanilha, Isabel M. Medeiros-de-Moraes, Hugo C. Castro-Faria-Neto, et al.
Reference: 
Malaria Journal 2020 19:234, 1 July 2020

Malaria-triggered lung injury can occur in both severe and non-severe cases. Platelets may interact with parasitized erythrocytes, leukocytes and endothelium. These interactions can lead to microvessel obstructions and induce release of inflammatory mediators. Induction of the haem oxygenase enzyme is important in the host’s response to free haem and to several other molecules generated by infectious or non-infectious diseases. In addition, an important role for the haem oxygenase-1 isotype has been demonstrated in experimental cerebral malaria and in clinical cases. Therefore, the present work aims to determine the influence of haem oxygenase in thrombocytopaenia and acute pulmonary injury during infection with Plasmodium berghei strain NK65.

Not Open Access | The E3 ubiquitin ligase MARCH1 regulates antimalaria immunity through interferon signaling and T cell activation

July 2, 2020 - 13:23 -- NOT Open Access
Author(s): 
Wu J, Xia L, Su XZ, et al.
Reference: 
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2020 Jun 30:202004332

Malaria infection induces complex and diverse immune responses. To elucidate the mechanisms underlying host–parasite interaction, we performed a genetic screen during early (24 h) Plasmodium yoelii infection in mice and identified a large number of interacting host and parasite genes/loci after transspecies expression quantitative trait locus (Ts-eQTL) analysis.

NOT Open Access | Relaxometric studies of erythrocyte suspensions infected by Plasmodium falciparum: a tool for staging infection and testing anti-malarial drugs

July 1, 2020 - 16:38 -- NOT Open Access
Author(s): 
Di Gregorio E, Ferrauto G, Schwarzer E, Gianolio E, Valente E, Ulliers D, Aime S, Skorokhod O
Reference: 
Magn Reson Med. 2020 Jun 30

Malaria is a global health problem with the most malignant form caused by Plasmodium falciparum (P. falciparum) . Parasite maturation in red blood cells (RBCs) is accompanied by changes including the formation of paramagnetic hemozoin (HZ) nanocrystals, and increased metabolism and variation in membrane lipid composition. Herein, MR relaxometry (MRR) was applied to investigate water exchange across RBCs’ membrane and HZ formation in parasitized RBCs.

Malaria Risk Map Using Spatial Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis along Yunnan Border During the Pre-elimination Period

July 1, 2020 - 16:35 -- Open Access
Author(s): 
Zhao X, Thanapongtharm W, Lawawirojwong S, Wei C, Tang Y, Zhou Y, Sun X, Cui L, Sattabongkot J, Kaewkungwal J
Reference: 
Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2020 Jun 29

In moving toward malaria elimination, finer scale malaria risk maps are required to identify hotspots for implementing surveillance–response activities, allocating resources, and preparing health facilities based on the needs and necessities at each specific area. This study aimed to demonstrate the use of multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA) in conjunction with geographic information systems (GISs) to create a spatial model and risk maps by integrating satellite remote-sensing and malaria surveillance data from 18 counties of Yunnan Province along the China–Myanmar border.

NOT Open Access | Prevalence of Glucose 6-Phosphate Dehydrogenase Variants in Malaria-Endemic Areas of South Central Timor, Eastern Indonesia

July 1, 2020 - 16:33 -- NOT Open Access
Author(s): 
Sulistyaningrum N, Arlinda D, Chaijaroenkul W, et al.
Reference: 
Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2020 Jun 29

Primaquine is an effective anti-hypnozoite drug for Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium ovale. However, it can trigger erythrocyte hemolysis in people with glucose 6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency. In a previous report from South Central Timor (SCT), Indonesia, we described the prevalence of Vanua Lava, Chatham, and Viangchan variants; in this study, other G6PD variants (Kaiping, Coimbra, Gaohe, Canton, and Mahidol) were subsequently analyzed. For clarity, all of these results are described together.

NOT Open Access | Using the Ultrasensitive Alere Plasmodium falciparum Malaria Ag HRP-2(™) Rapid Diagnostic Test in the Field and Clinic in Northeastern Uganda

July 1, 2020 - 16:31 -- NOT Open Access
Author(s): 
Owalla TJ, Okurut E, Apungia G, Ojakol B, Lema J, Sean MC, Thomas EG
Reference: 
Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2020 Jun 29

The ultrasensitive Alere Plasmodium falciparum Malaria Ag histidine-rich protein 2 rapid diagnostic test (Alere uRDT) is a new diagnostic tool which is more expensive than other malaria rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) routinely used in Ugandan clinics. The manufacturer recommends testing samples within 2 days and scoring results after 20 minutes, which may be impractical in high-volume resource-poor clinics.

A lipocalin mediates unidirectional heme biomineralization in malaria parasites

June 30, 2020 - 14:58 -- Open Access
Author(s): 
Matz JM, Drepper B, Blackman MJ, et al.
Reference: 
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2020 Jun 29:202001153

During blood-stage development, malaria parasites are challenged with the detoxification of enormous amounts of heme released during the proteolytic catabolism of erythrocytic hemoglobin. They tackle this problem by sequestering heme into bioinert crystals known as hemozoin. The mechanisms underlying this biomineralization process remain enigmatic. Here, we demonstrate that both rodent and human malaria parasite species secrete and internalize a lipocalin-like protein, PV5, to control heme crystallization.

NOT Open Access | Computational chemogenomics drug repositioning strategy enables the discovery of Epirubicin as a new repurposed hit for P. falciparum and P. vivax

June 30, 2020 - 14:57 -- NOT Open Access
Author(s): 
Ferreira LT, Rodrigues J, Costa FTM, et al.
Reference: 
Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2020 Jun 29:AAC.02041-19

Widespread resistance against antimalarial drugs thwarts current efforts for controlling the disease and urges the discovery of new effective treatments. Drug repositioning is increasingly becoming an attractive strategy since it can reduce costs, risks and time-to-market. Herein we have used this strategy to identify novel antimalarial hits. We performed a comparative in silico chemogenomics approach to select Plasmodium falciparum and P. vivax proteins as potential drug targets and analyzed these using a computer-assisted drug repositioning pipeline to identify approved drugs with potential antimalarial activity. Among seven drugs identified as promising antimalarial candidates, the anthracycline epirubicin was selected for further experimental validation.

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