• Falciparum Malaria and Climate Change in the Northwest Frontier Province of Pakistan.

      Bouma, M J; Dye, C; van der Kaay, H J; Medecins Sans Frontieres-Holland, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. (Published by: American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 1996-08)
      Following a striking increase in the severity of autumnal outbreaks of Plasmodium falciparum during the last decade in the Northwest Frontier Province (NWFP) of Pakistan, the role of climatologic variables was investigated. A multivariate analysis showed that during the transmission season of P. falciparum, the amount of rainfall in September and October, the temperature in November and December, and the humidity in December were all correlated (r2 = 0.82) with two measures of P. falciparum, the falciparum rate (percent of slides examined positive for P. falciparum) since 1981 and the annual P. falciparum proportion (percent of all malaria infections diagnosed as P. falciparum) since 1978. Climatologic records since 1876 show an increase in mean November and December temperatures by 2 degrees C and 1.5 degrees C, respectively, and in October rainfall. Mean humidity in December has also been increasing since 1950. These climatologic changes in the area appear to have made conditions for transmission of P. falciparum more favorable, and may account for the increase in incidence observed in the NWFP in recent years.
    • Field Application of SD Bioline Malaria Ag Pf/Pan Rapid Diagnostic Test for Malaria in Greece

      Tseroni, Maria; Pervanidou, Danai; Tserkezou, Persefoni; Rachiotis, George; Pinaka, Ourania; Baka, Agoritsa; Georgakopoulou, Theano; Vakali, Annita; Dionysopoulou, Martha; Terzaki, Irene; et al. (Public Library of Science, 2015-03-24)
      Greece, a malaria-free country since 1974, has experienced re-emergence of Plasmodium vivax autochthonous malaria cases in some agriculture areas over the last three years. In early 2012, an integrated control programme (MALWEST Project) was launched in order to prevent re-establishment of the disease. In the context of this project, the rapid diagnostic tests (RDT) of SD Bioline Malaria Ag Pf/Pan that detects hrp-2 and pan-LDH antigens were used. The aim of this study was to assess the field application of the RDT for the P. vivax diagnosis in comparison to light microscopy and polymerase chain reaction (PCR). A total of 955 samples were tested with all three diagnostic tools. Agreement of RDT against microscopy and PCR for the diagnosis of P. vivax was satisfactory (K value: 0.849 and 0.976, respectively). The sensitivity, specificity and positive predictive value of RDT against PCR was 95.6% (95% C.I.: 84.8-99.3), 100% (95% C.I.: 99.6-100.0) and 100% (95% CI: 91.7-100.0) respectively, while the sensitivity, specificity and positive predictive value of RDT against microscopic examination was 97.4% (95% C.I.: 86.1-99.6), 99.4% (95% C.I.: 98.6-99.8) and 86.1% (95% CI: 72.1-94.7), respectively. Our results indicate that RDT performed satisfactory in a non-endemic country and therefore is recommended for malaria diagnosis, especially in areas where health professionals lack experience on light microscopy.
    • Focusing on quality patient care in the new global subsidy for malaria medicines.

      Moon, S; Pérez Casas, C; Kindermans, J M; de Smet, M; von Schoen-Angerer, T; Giorgio Ruffolo Doctoral Research Fellow, Sustainability Science Program, Center for International Development, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. (2009-07-21)
      Tido von Schoen-Angerer and colleagues discuss the new Affordable Medicines Facility for malaria (AMFm), which subsidizes and facilitates access to artemisinin-based combination therapy, and what mechanisms are needed to ensure it stays focused on quality patient care.
    • Forecasting malaria incidence based on monthly case reports and environmental factors in Karuzi, Burundi, 1997-2003.

      Gomez-Elipe, A; Otero, A; Van Herp, M; Aguirre-Jaime, A; Public Health Department, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, C/Arzobispo Morcillo 2, 28029 Madrid, Spain. agomez.elipe@gmail.com (BMC, 2007)
      BACKGROUND: The objective of this work was to develop a model to predict malaria incidence in an area of unstable transmission by studying the association between environmental variables and disease dynamics. METHODS: The study was carried out in Karuzi, a province in the Burundi highlands, using time series of monthly notifications of malaria cases from local health facilities, data from rain and temperature records, and the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI). Using autoregressive integrated moving average (ARIMA) methodology, a model showing the relation between monthly notifications of malaria cases and the environmental variables was developed. RESULTS: The best forecasting model (R2adj = 82%, p < 0.0001 and 93% forecasting accuracy in the range +/- 4 cases per 100 inhabitants) included the NDVI, mean maximum temperature, rainfall and number of malaria cases in the preceding month. CONCLUSION: This model is a simple and useful tool for producing reasonably reliable forecasts of the malaria incidence rate in the study area.
    • Free treatment, rapid diagnostic tests and malaria village workers can hasten the progress towards achieving the malaria related Millennium Development Goals: The MSF experience from Chad, Sierra-Leone and Mali.

      Tayler-Smith K; Kociejowski A; de Lamotte N; Gerard S; Ponsar F; Philips M; Zachariah R; Operational Research Unit and Advocacy Unit, MSF OCB, and MSF UK (PAGEPress, 2011-03)
    • Geographical distribution of selected and putatively neutral SNPs in Southeast Asian malaria parasites.

      Anderson, T J C; Nair, S; Sudimack, D; Williams, J T; Mayxay, M; Newton, P N; Guthmann, J P; Smithuis, F M; Tran, T H; van den Broek, I; et al. (2005-12)
      Loci targeted by directional selection are expected to show elevated geographical population structure relative to neutral loci, and a flurry of recent papers have used this rationale to search for genome regions involved in adaptation. Studies of functional mutations that are known to be under selection are particularly useful for assessing the utility of this approach. Antimalarial drug treatment regimes vary considerably between countries in Southeast Asia selecting for local adaptation at parasite loci underlying resistance. We compared the population structure revealed by 10 nonsynonymous mutations (nonsynonymous single-nucleotide polymorphisms [nsSNPs]) in four loci that are known to be involved in antimalarial drug resistance, with patterns revealed by 10 synonymous mutations (synonymous single-nucleotide polymorphisms [sSNPs]) in housekeeping genes or genes of unknown function in 755 Plasmodium falciparum infections collected from 13 populations in six Southeast Asian countries. Allele frequencies at known nsSNPs underlying resistance varied markedly between locations (F(ST) = 0.18-0.66), with the highest frequencies on the Thailand-Burma border and the lowest frequencies in neighboring Lao PDR. In contrast, we found weak but significant geographic structure (F(ST) = 0-0.14) for 8 of 10 sSNPs. Importantly, all 10 nsSNPs showed significantly higher F(ST) (P < 8 x 10(-5)) than simulated neutral expectations based on observed F(ST) values in the putatively neutral sSNPs. This result was unaffected by the methods used to estimate allele frequencies or the number of populations used in the simulations. Given that dense single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) maps and rapid SNP assay methods are now available for P. falciparum, comparing genetic differentiation across the genome may provide a valuable aid to identifying parasite loci underlying local adaptation to drug treatment regimes or other selective forces. However, the high proportion of polymorphic sites that appear to be under balancing selection (or linked to selected sites) in the P. falciparum genome violates the central assumption that selected sites are rare, which complicates identification of outlier loci, and suggests that caution is needed when using this approach.
    • Glucose-6-Phosphate Dehydrogenase Deficiency, Chlorproguanil-Dapsone with Artesunate and Post-treatment Haemolysis in African children treated for uncomplicated Malaria

      Van Malderen, Carine; Van Geertruyden, Jean-Pierre; Machevo, Sonia; González, Raquel; Bassat, Quique; Talisuna, Ambrose; Yeka, Adoke; Nabasumba, Carolyn; Piola, Patrice; Daniel, Atwine; et al. (2012-04-30)
      Malaria is a leading cause of mortality, particularly in sub-Saharan African children. Prompt and efficacious treatment is important as patients may progress within a few hours to severe and possibly fatal disease. Chlorproguanil-dapsone-artesunate (CDA) was a promising artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT), but its development was prematurely stopped because of safety concerns secondary to its associated risk of haemolytic anaemia in glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD)-deficient individuals. The objective of the study was to assess whether CDA treatment and G6PD deficiency are risk factors for a post-treatment haemoglobin drop in African children<5 years of age with uncomplicated malaria.
    • Heterogeneous decrease in malaria prevalence in children over a six-year period in south-western Uganda.

      De Beaudrap, Pierre; Nabasumba, Carolyn; Grandesso, Francesco; Turyakira, Eleanor; Schramm, Birgit; Boum, Yap; Etard, Jean-François; Epicentre Mbarara Research Base, Mbarara, Uganda. pierre.debeaudrap@epicentre.msf.org (2011-05-18)
      Malaria is a major public health problem, especially for children. However, recent reports suggest a decline in the malaria burden. The aim of this study was to assess the change in the prevalence of malaria infection among children below five years of age between 2004 and 2010 in a mesoendemic area of Uganda and to analyse the risk factors of malaria infection.
    • High Burden of Malaria and Anemia Among Tribal Pregnant Women in a Chronic Conflict Corridor in India

      Corrêa, G; Das, M; Kovelamudi, R; Jaladi, N; Pignon, C; Vysyaraju, K; Yedla, U; Laxmi, V; Vemula, P; Gowthami, V; et al. (BioMed Central, 2017-06-20)
      With more than 200 million cases a year, malaria is an important global health concern, especially among pregnant women. The forested tribal areas of Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Chhattisgarh in India are affected by malaria and by an on-going chronic conflict which seriously limits access to health care. The burden of malaria and anemia among pregnant women in these areas is unknown; moreover there are no specific recommendations for pregnant women in the Indian national malaria policy. The aim of this study is to measure the burden of malaria and anemia among pregnant women presenting in mobile clinics for antenatal care in a conflict-affected corridor in India.
    • High Efficacy of Two Artemisinin-Based Combinations (Artesunate + Amodiaquine and Artemether + Lumefantrine) in Caala, Central Angola.

      Guthmann, J P; Cohuet, S; Rigutto, C; Fortes, F; Saraiva, N; Kiguli, J; Kyomuhendo, J; Francis, M; Noël, F; Mulemba, M; et al. (Published by: American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 2006-07)
      In April 2004, 137 children 6-59 months of age with uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum (Pf) malaria (Caala, Central Angola) were randomized to receive either artemether-lumefantrine (Coartem) or artesunate + amodiaquine (ASAQ). After 28 days of follow-up, there were 2/61 (3.2%) recurrent parasitemias in the Coartem group and 4/64 (6.2%) in the ASAQ group (P = 0.72), all classified as re-infections after PCR genotyping (cure rate = 100% [95%CI: 94-100] in both groups). Only one patient (ASAQ group) had gametocytes on day 28 versus five (Coartem) and three (ASAQ) at baseline. Compared with baseline, anemia was significantly improved after 28 days of follow-up in both groups (Coartem: from 54.1% to 13.4%; ASAQ: from 53.1% to 15.9%). Our findings are in favor of a high efficacy of both combinations in Caala. Now that Coartem has been chosen as the new first-line anti-malarial, the challenge is to insure that this drug is available and adequately used.
    • 'I could not join because I had to work for pay.': A qualitative evaluation of falciparum malaria pro-active case detection in three rural Cambodian villages

      Taffon, P; Rossi, G; Kindermans, JM; Van den Bergh, R; Nguon, C; Debackere, M; Vernaeve, L; De Smet, M; Venables, E (Public Library of Science, 2018-04-12)
      Pro-active case detection (Pro-ACD), in the form of voluntary screening and treatment (VSAT) following community mobilisation about 'asymptomatic malaria', is currently being evaluated as a tool for Plasmodium falciparum elimination in Preah Vihear Province, Cambodia.
    • Identifying exceptional malaria occurrences in the absence of historical data in South Sudan: a method validation

      Benedetti, G; White, RA; Akello Pasquale, H; Stassjins, J; van den Boogaard, W; Owiti, P; Van den Bergh, R (International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, 2019-09-21)
      Background: Detecting unusual malaria events that may require an operational intervention is challenging, especially in endemic contexts with continuous transmission such as South Sudan. Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) utilises the classic average plus standard deviation (AV+SD) method for malaria surveillance. This and other available approaches, however, rely on antecedent data, which are often missing. Objective: To investigate whether a method using linear regression (LR) over only 8 weeks of retrospective data could be an alternative to AV+SD. Design: In the absence of complete historical malaria data from South Sudan, data from weekly influenza reports from 19 Norwegian counties (2006–2015) were used as a testing data set to compare the performance of the LR and the AV+SD methods. The moving epidemic method was used as the gold standard. Subsequently, the LR method was applied in a case study on malaria occurrence in MSF facilities in South Sudan (2010–2016) to identify malaria events that required a MSF response. Results: For the Norwegian influenza data, LR and AV+SD methods did not perform differently (P  0.05). For the South Sudanese malaria data, the LR method identified historical periods when an operational response was mounted. Conclusion: The LR method seems a plausible alternative to the AV+SD method in situations where retrospective data are missing.
    • Identifying malaria control issues: a district hospital-based evaluation.

      Kimerling, M; Houth, H; Hilderbrand, K; Goubert, L; MSF Holland-Belgium, Phnom Penh, Cambodia. (1995-12)
      Chuk district hospital is centrally located in a rural malarious region in southern Cambodia. It was the site of a hospital-based evaluation (KAP assessment and in vivo i.v. quinine/oral tetracycline drug study) done to identify relevant issues for establishing a rational malaria control strategy. The KAP assessment identified the young, male forest worker as the highest risk group. Of 112 study patients, 73% were male and 82% reported various forest activities. The primary reason found for patient delay (8.9 days) in seeking hospital care was self-treatment at home (N = 102, 91%) with drugs purchased through private sellers (104/105). Using the 7-day WHO field test methodology, resistance rates were calculated (N = 22); S1/R1, 73%; R1, 9%; R2, 0%; R3, 18%. A modified version of the 7-day test was used to calculate its utility in this particular rural setting. It showed a negative predictive value of 93% and a positive predictive value of 71%. The case fatality rate for the study period was 2.7%. Information from this study, which correlates a confirmed malaria diagnosis with prior patient behavior and response to anti-malarial therapy, is intended for realizing the goals set forth by the national malaria control program.
    • Impact and Lessons Learned from Mass Drug Administrations of Malaria Chemoprevention during the Ebola Outbreak in Monrovia, Liberia, 2014

      Kuehne, A; Tiffany, A; Lasry, E; Janssens, M; Besse, C; Okonta, C; Larbi, K; Pah, AC; Danis, K; Porten, K (Public Library of Science, 2016-08-31)
      In October 2014, during the Ebola outbreak in Liberia healthcare services were limited while malaria transmission continued. Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) implemented a mass drug administration (MDA) of malaria chemoprevention (CP) in Monrovia to reduce malaria-associated morbidity. In order to inform future interventions, we described the scale of the MDA, evaluated its acceptance and estimated the effectiveness.
    • Impact of malaria during pregnancy on pregnancy outcomes in a Ugandan prospective cohort with intensive malaria screening and prompt treatment

      De Beaudrap, Pierre; Turyakira, Eleanor; White, Lisa J; Nabasumba, Carolyn; Tumwebaze, Benon; Muehlenbachs, Atis; Guérin, Philippe J; Boum, Yap; McGready, Rose; Piola, Patrice; et al. (BioMed Central, 2013-04-24)
      Malaria in pregnancy (MiP) is a major public health problem in endemic areas of sub-Saharan Africa and has important consequences on birth outcome. Because MiP is a complex phenomenon and malaria epidemiology is rapidly changing, additional evidence is still required to understand how best to control malaria. This study followed a prospective cohort of pregnant women who had access to intensive malaria screening and prompt treatment to identify factors associated with increased risk of MiP and to analyse how various characteristics of MiP affect delivery outcomes.
    • Imported Malaria Including HIV and Pregnant Woman Risk Groups: Overview of the Case of a Spanish City 2004-2014

      Fernández López, María; Ruiz Giardín, Jose Manuel; San Martín López, Juan Víctor; Jaquetti, Jerónimo; García Arata, Isabel; Jiménez Navarro, Carolina; Cabello Clotet, Noemi (BioMed Central, 2015-09-17)
      Arrival of inmigrants from malaria endemic areas has led to a emergence of cases of this parasitic disease in Spain. The objective of this study was to analyse the high incidence rate of imported malaria in Fuenlabrada, a city in the south of Madrid, together with the frequent the lack of chemoprophylaxis, for the period between 2004 and 2014. Both pregnant women and HIV risk groups have been considered.
    • Improving the Specificity of Plasmodium falciparum Malaria Diagnosis in High-Transmission Settings with a Two-Step Rapid Diagnostic Test and Microscopy Algorithm

      Murungi, M; Fulton, T; Reyes, R; Matte, M; Ntaro, M; Mulogo, E; Nyehangane, D; Juliano, J; Siedner, M; Boum, Y; et al. (American Society for Microbiology, 2017-05)
      Poor specificity may negatively impact rapid diagnostic test (RDT)-based diagnostic strategies for malaria. We performed real-time PCR on a subset of subjects who had undergone diagnostic testing with a multiple-antigen (histidine-rich protein 2 and pan-lactate dehydrogenase pLDH [HRP2/pLDH]) RDT and microscopy. We determined the sensitivity and specificity of the RDT in comparison to results of PCR for the detection of Plasmodium falciparum malaria. We developed and evaluated a two-step algorithm utilizing the multiple-antigen RDT to screen patients, followed by confirmatory microscopy for those individuals with HRP2-positive (HRP2+)/pLDH-negative (pLDH-) results. In total, dried blood spots (DBS) were collected from 276 individuals. There were 124 (44.9%) individuals with an HRP2+/pLDH+ result, 94 (34.1%) with an HRP2+/pLDH- result, and 58 (21%) with a negative RDT result. The sensitivity and specificity of the RDT compared to results with real-time PCR were 99.4% (95% confidence interval [CI], 95.9 to 100.0%) and 46.7% (95% CI, 37.7 to 55.9%), respectively. Of the 94 HRP2+/pLDH- results, only 32 (34.0%) and 35 (37.2%) were positive by microscopy and PCR, respectively. The sensitivity and specificity of the two-step algorithm compared to results with real-time PCR were 95.5% (95% CI, 90.5 to 98.0%) and 91.0% (95% CI, 84.1 to 95.2), respectively. HRP2 antigen bands demonstrated poor specificity for the diagnosis of malaria compared to that of real-time PCR in a high-transmission setting. The most likely explanation for this finding is the persistence of HRP2 antigenemia following treatment of an acute infection. The two-step diagnostic algorithm utilizing microscopy as a confirmatory test for indeterminate HRP2+/pLDH- results showed significantly improved specificity with little loss of sensitivity in a high-transmission setting.
    • In vivo assessment of drug efficacy against Plasmodium falciparum malaria: duration of follow-up.

      Stepniewska, K; Taylor, W R J; Mayxay, M; Price, R; Smithuis, F; Guthmann, J P; Barnes, K; Myint, H Y; Adjuik, M; Olliaro, P; et al. (2004-11)
      To determine the optimum duration of follow-up for the assessment of drug efficacy against Plasmodium falciparum malaria, 96 trial arms from randomized controlled trials (RCTs) with follow-up of 28 days or longer that were conducted between 1990 and 2003 were analyzed. These trials enrolled 13,772 patients, and participating patients comprised 23% of all patients enrolled in RCTs over the past 40 years; 61 (64%) trial arms were conducted in areas where the rate of malaria transmission was low, and 58 (50%) trial arms were supported by parasite genotyping to distinguish true recrudescences from reinfections. The median overall failure rate reported was 10% (range, 0 to 47%). The widely used day 14 assessment had a sensitivity of between 0 and 37% in identifying treatment failures and had no predictive value. Assessment at day 28 had a sensitivity of 66% overall (28 to 100% in individual trials) but could be used to predict the true failure rate if either parasite genotyping was performed (r(2) = 0.94) or if the entomological inoculation rate was known. In the assessment of drug efficacy against falciparum malaria, 28 days should be the minimum period of follow-up.
    • In Vivo Efficacy of Artesunate-Amodiaquine and Artemether-Lumefantrine for the Treatment of Uncomplicated Falciparum Malaria: an Open-Randomized, Non-Inferiority Clinical Trial in South Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo

      de Wit, M; Funk, AL; Moussally, K; Nkuba, DA; Siddiqui, R; Bil, K; Piriou, E; Bart, A; Bahizi Bizoza, P; Bousema, T (BioMed Central (Springer Science), 2016)
      Between 2009 and 2012, malaria cases diagnosed in a Médecins sans Frontières programme have increased fivefold in Baraka, South Kivu, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The cause of this increase is not known. An in vivo drug efficacy trial was conducted to determine whether increased treatment failure rates may have contributed to the apparent increase in malaria diagnoses.
    • In vivo parasitological measures of artemisinin susceptibility

      Stepniewska, Kasia; Ashley, Elizabeth; Lee, Sue J; Anstey, Nicholas; Barnes, Karen I; Binh, Tran Quang; D'Alessandro, Umberto; Day, Nicholas P J; de Vries, Peter J; Dorsey, Grant; et al. (2010-01-19)
      Parasite clearance data from 18,699 patients with falciparum malaria treated with an artemisinin derivative in areas of low (n=14,539), moderate (n=2077), and high (n=2083) levels of malaria transmission across the world were analyzed to determine the factors that affect clearance rates and identify a simple in vivo screening measure for artemisinin resistance. The main factor affecting parasite clearance time was parasite density on admission. Clearance rates were faster in high-transmission settings and with more effective partner drugs in artemisinin-based combination treatments (ACTs). The result of the malaria blood smear on day 3 (72 h) was a good predictor of subsequent treatment failure and provides a simple screening measure for artemisinin resistance. Artemisinin resistance is highly unlikely if the proportion of patients with parasite densities of <100,000 parasites/microL given the currently recommended 3-day ACT who have a positive smear result on day 3 is <3%; that is, for n patients the observed number with a positive smear result on day 3 does not exceed (n + 60)/24.