Distribution of Plasmodium spp. infection in asymptomatic carriers in perennial and low seasonal malaria transmission settings in West Africa

Gbalégba, Constant G. N. and Ba, Hampâté and Silué, Kigbafori D. and Ba, Ousmane and Tia, Emmanuel and Chouaibou, Mouhamadou and Tian-Bi, Nathan T. Y. and Yapi, Grégoire Y. and Koné, Brama and Utzinger, Jürg and Koudou, Benjamin G.. (2018) Distribution of Plasmodium spp. infection in asymptomatic carriers in perennial and low seasonal malaria transmission settings in West Africa. Infectious Diseases of Poverty, 7. p. 39.

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Since 2000, substantial progress has been made in reducing malaria worldwide. However, some countries in West Africa remain a hotspot for malaria with all age groups at risk. Asymptomatic carriers of Plasmodium spp. are important sources of infections for malaria vectors and thus contribute to the anchoring of the disease in favourable eco-epidemiological settings. The objective of this study was to assess the asymptomatic malaria case rates in Korhogo and Kaedi, two urban areas in northern Côte d'Ivoire and southern Mauritania, respectively.; Cross-sectional surveys were carried out during the rainy season in 2014 and the dry season in 2015 in both settings. During each season, 728 households were randomly selected and a household-based questionnaire was implemented to collect demographic and epidemiological data, including of malaria preventive methods used in communities. Finger-prick blood samples were obtained for biological examination using microscopy and rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs).; Overall, 2672 households and 15 858 consenting participants were surveyed. Plasmodium spp. infection was confirmed in 12.4% (n = 832) and 0.3% (n = 22) of the assessed individuals in Korhogo and Kaedi, respectively. In Korhogo, the prevalence of asymptomatic malaria was 10.5% (95% CI: 9.7-11.2) as determined by microscopy and 9.3% (95% CI: 8.6-10.0%) when assessed by RDT. In Kaedi, asymptomatic malaria prevalence was 0.2% (95% CI: 0.1-0.4%) according to microscopy, while all RDTs performed were negative (n = 8372). In Korhogo, asymptomatic malaria infection was significantly associated with age and season, with higher risk within the 5-14 years-old, and during the rainy season. In Kaedi, the risk of asymptomatic malaria infection was associated with season only (higher during the dry season; crude OR (cOR): 6.37, 95% CI: 1.87-21.63). P. falciparum was the predominant species identified in both study sites representing 99.2% (n = 825) in Korhogo and 59.1% (n = 13) in Kaedi. Gametocytes were observed only in Korhogo and only during the rainy season at 1.3% (95% CI: 0.7-2.4%).; Our findings show a low prevalence of clinical malaria episodes with a significant proportion of asymptomatic carriers in both urban areas. National policies for malaria infections are focused on treatment of symptomatic cases. Malaria control strategies should be designed for monitoring and managing malaria infections in asymptomatic carriers. Additional measures, including indoor residual spraying, effective use of long-lasting insecticidal nets is strongly needed to reduce the number of Plasmodium spp. infections in Korhogo and Kaedi.
Faculties and Departments:09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH)
09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) > Former Units within Swiss TPH > Health Impact Assessment (Utzinger)
UniBasel Contributors:Utzinger, Jürg
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:Biomed Central
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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Last Modified:04 Mar 2019 10:06
Deposited On:04 Mar 2019 10:06

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