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sub-Saharan Africa

Dendritic cell responses to Plasmodium falciparum in a malaria-endemic setting

January 7, 2021 - 12:00 -- Open Access
Triniti C. Turner, Charles Arama, Aissata Ongoiba, Safiatou Doumbo, Didier Doumtabé, Kassoum Kayentao, Jeff Skinner, Shanping Li, Boubacar Traore, Peter D. Crompton and Anton Götz
Malaria Journal 2021 20:9, 6 January 2021

Plasmodium falciparum causes the majority of malaria cases worldwide and children in sub-Saharan Africa are the most vulnerable group affected. Non-sterile clinical immunity that protects from symptoms develops slowly and is relatively short-lived. Moreover, current malaria vaccine candidates fail to induce durable high-level protection in endemic settings, possibly due to the immunomodulatory effects of the malaria parasite itself. Because dendritic cells play a crucial role in initiating immune responses, the aim of this study was to better understand the impact of cumulative malaria exposure as well as concurrent P. falciparum infection on dendritic cell phenotype and function.

Insights into factors sustaining persistence of high malaria transmission in forested areas of sub-Saharan Africa: the case of Mvoua, South Cameroon

January 5, 2021 - 15:15 -- Open Access
Mieguim Ngninpogni D, Ndo C, Ntonga Akono P, Nguemo A, Nguepi A, Metitsi DR, Tombi J, Awono-Ambene P, Bilong Bilong CF
Parasit Vectors. 2021 Jan 2;14(1):2

In Mvoua, a village situated in a forested area of Cameroon, recent studies have reported high prevalence of Plasmodium falciparum infection among the population. In order to understand factors that can sustain such a high malaria transmission, we investigated the biology of Anopheles vectors and its susceptibility to insecticides, as well as long-lasting insecticidal net (LLIN) coverage, use and bio-efficacy.

Assessing the impact of low-technology emanators alongside long-lasting insecticidal nets to control malaria

December 29, 2020 - 15:23 -- Open Access
Hellewell J, Sherrard-Smith E, Ogoma S, Churcher TS
Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 2021 Feb 15;376(1818):20190817

Malaria control in sub-Saharan Africa relies on the widespread use of long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLINs) or the indoor residual spraying of insecticide. Disease transmission may be maintained even when these indoor interventions are universally used as some mosquitoes will bite in the early morning and evening when people are outside. As countries seek to eliminate malaria, they can target outdoor biting using new vector control tools such as spatial repellent emanators, which emit airborne insecticide to form a protective area around the user.

NOT Open Access | Time-to-death is a potential confounder in observational studies of blood transfusion in severe malaria

December 29, 2020 - 14:59 -- NOT Open Access
Ackerman H, Olola CHO, Krishna S, Roberts DJ, Kremsner PG, Newton CR, Taylor T, Valim C, Casals-Pascual C
Lancet Haematol. 2021 Jan;8(1):e12-e13

In our analysis of 26 106 patients admitted to six hospitals in five sub-Saharan African countries, we found transfusion to be associated with decreased odds of death in site-adjusted and severity-adjusted analysis (odds ratio [OR] 0·50, 95% CI 0·42–0·60). This association could be subject to immortal time bias if many patients died before having an opportunity to receive transfusion—a concern that James Watson and colleagues have raised and that we explicitly stated as a possible limitation in our Article.

Pentafluoro-3-hydroxy-pent-2-en-1-ones potently inhibit FNT-type lactate transporters from all five human-pathogenic Plasmodium species

December 23, 2020 - 09:21 -- Open Access
Walloch P, Hansen C, Priegann T, Schade D, Beitz E
ChemMedChem. 2020 Dec 18

The protozoan parasite Plasmodium falciparum causes the most severe and prevailing form of malaria in sub-Saharan Africa. Previously, we identified the plasmodial lactate transporter, PfFNT, a member of the microbial formate-nitrite transporter family, as a novel antimalarial drug target. With the pentafluoro-3-hydroxy-pent-2-en-1-ones, we discovered PfFNT inhibitors that potently kill P. falciparum parasites in vitro.

Competing interests, clashing ideas and institutionalizing influence: insights into the political economy of malaria control from seven African countries

December 16, 2020 - 09:23 -- Open Access
Parkhurst J, Ghilardi L, Webster J, Snow RW, Lynch CA
Health Policy Plan. 2020 Dec 14:czaa166

This article explores how malaria control in sub-Saharan Africa is shaped in important ways by political and economic considerations within the contexts of aid-recipient nations and the global health community. Malaria control is often assumed to be a technically driven exercise: the remit of public health experts and epidemiologists who utilize available data to select the most effective package of activities given available resources.

Pharmacogenetic considerations in the treatment of co-infections with HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria in Congolese populations of Central Africa

December 15, 2020 - 14:38 -- Open Access
Pallerla SR, Assiana DOE, Velavan TP, et al.
Int J Infect Dis. 2020 Dec 9:S1201-9712(20)32532-7

HIV-infection, tuberculosis and malaria are the big three communicable diseases that plague sub-Saharan Africa. If these diseases occur as co-morbidities they require polypharmacy, which may lead to severe drug-drug-gene interactions and variation in adverse drug reactions, but also in treatment outcomes. Polymorphisms in genes encoding drug-metabolizing enzymes are the major cause of these variations, but such polymorphisms may support the prediction of drug efficacy and toxicity. There is little information on allele frequencies of pharmacogenetic variants of enzymes involved in the metabolism of drugs used to treat HIV-infection, TB and malaria in the Republic of Congo (ROC). The aim of this study was therefore to investigate the occurrence and allele frequencies of 32 pharmacogenetic variants localized in absorption distribution, metabolism and excretion (ADME) and non-ADME genes and to compare the frequencies with population data of African and non-African derived from the 1000 Genomes Project.

A microplanning model to improve door-to-door health service delivery: the case of Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention in Sub-Saharan African villages

December 9, 2020 - 07:30 -- Open Access
Ouédraogo AL, Zhang J, Tinto H, Valéa I, Wenger EA
BMC Health Serv Res. 2020 Dec 7;20(1):1128

Malaria incidence has plateaued in Sub-Saharan Africa despite Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention’s (SMC) introduction. Community health workers (CHW) use a door-to-door delivery strategy to treat children with SMC drugs, but for SMC to be as effective as in clinical trials, coverage must be high over successive seasons.

Seasonal malaria chemoprevention: closing the know-do gap

December 8, 2020 - 10:02 -- Open Access
Ashley EA, Yeka A
Lancet. 2020 Dec 5;396(10265):1778-1779

Malaria continues to impact on young lives, causing sickness, impaired school performance, disability, and preventable death, with little progress made to reduce the overall burden since 2014. In 2019, 274 000, or 67%, of all malaria deaths were in children younger than 5 years in sub-Saharan Africa. WHO has recommended seasonal malaria chemoprevention (SMC) for malaria control in areas across the Sahel sub-region since 2012.

Preventive malaria treatment among school-aged children in sub-Saharan Africa: a systematic review and meta-analyses

December 3, 2020 - 12:27 -- Open Access
Cohee LM, Opondo C, Chico RM, et al.
Lancet Glob Health. 2020 Dec;8(12):e1499-e1511

The burden of malaria infection in sub-Saharan Africa among school-aged children aged 5–15 years is underappreciated and represents an important source of human-to-mosquito transmission of Plasmodium falciparum. Additional interventions are needed to control and eliminate malaria. We aimed to assess whether preventive treatment of malaria might be an effective means of reducing P falciparum infection and anaemia in school-aged children and lowering parasite transmission.


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