Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Multiple malaria infection inhibits spread of parasite

People who are frequently infected with malaria parasites can develop immunity against the gametocyte, the infectious stage. This immunity inhibits the spread of the parasite. Dutch researcher Mike van der Kolk discovered this during his research into malaria transmission under the inhabitants of Cameroon, Senegal and Indonesia. After just a few infections, people can develop immunity that inhibits transmission.

Malaria is not caused by a mosquito but by a parasite in the mosquito. The malaria parasite needs the mosquito to reproduce and spread. The gametocyte is the developmental stage of the parasite that can be transmitted from people to the mosquito. In the mosquito's stomach the gametes are released and fertilisation takes place. The parasite develops further until the final stage (the sporozoite) in the salivary gland. The sporozoite can be transmitted with the saliva to a person if he/she is bitten by this mosquito. There the parasite reproduces rapidly and the person becomes ill.

People who live in areas where malaria is prevalent, can develop a natural immunity that stops the development of the parasite in the mosquito. This prevents the parasite from spreading further. The presence of this immunity, the so-called transmission-reducing activity, is determined using a laboratory test. Van der Kolk discovered that people who are often infected with malaria could quickly acquire this immunity. He also found that people with higher numbers of gametocytes are more frequently immune.
Infectious bites
Each year more than 200 million people develop malaria. More than one million people die from malaria each year. In Cameroon, the researchers recorded how often people were bitten by a mosquito that carried malaria parasites. They also examined the number of transmittable parasites in the blood of infected persons. In a neighbourhood of the capital Yaoundé, 34 infectious bites per person per year were found to occur. The number of gametocytes per person was season and age dependent. Children were found to be by far the most important source of malaria transmission in the area. In the village Koundou, the number of infectious bites was about five times as high as in the capital. There previous research had revealed 177 infectious bites.
The existing laboratory test for malaria immunity did not yet work optimally. Therefore the researchers first modified this method before starting the research on immunity. With the improved test, the researchers studied how people not previously exposed to malaria become infected or immune. Migrants in the province of Papua in Indonesia, who had not previously been exposed to malaria were investigated for this purpose. Malaria is highly prevalent in Papua. After just one to four malaria infections the immunity against the infectious gametocytes increased. Immunity therefore develops quickly after exposure to an infection. The researchers expect that the modified methods will make it possible to carry out more detailed studies into the development and maintenance of immunity within the population.

Mike van der Kolk's research was funded by NWO.

Mike van der Kolk | alfa
Further information:

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia
21.10.2016 | Universitätsklinikum Magdeburg

nachricht New potential cancer treatment using microwaves to target deep tumors
12.10.2016 | University of Texas at Arlington

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia

21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine

Stanford researchers create new special-purpose computer that may someday save us billions

21.10.2016 | Information Technology

From ancient fossils to future cars

21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>