Background: Malaria is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in children in sub-Saharan Africa. Since micronutrients have been implicated in the pathogenicity of Plasmodium falciparum, it is important to ascertain the riboflavin and thiamin status in Nigerian malarous children. Methodology: The P. falciparum parasitaemia was determined by thick blood smear using Giemsa stain. The riboflavin and thiamin status were determined using high performance liquid chromatography. Results⁄ Principal findings: The mean malarial parasitaemia of the 148 malarous children screened was 4707.06 ± 995.53⁄ΜL. The infected children had mean riboflavin (55.0 ± 2.59 nmol⁄L), flavin mononucleotide, FMN (29.1 ± 2.8 nmol⁄L), flavin adeno dinucleotide, FAD (213.3 ± 12.43 nmol⁄L) and thiamin (0.08 ± 0.03 nmol⁄L). The control subjects had higher mean riboflavin (108.8 ± 10.2 nmol⁄L), FMN (102.8 ± 3.5 nmol⁄L), FAD (404.9 ± 8.7 nmol⁄L) and thiamin (2.04 ± 0.39). These differences between the control and the infected children for mean riboflavin, FMN and FAD were statistically significant (Χ2 = 26.56, p&It;0.05; Χ2 = 52.83, p&It;0.05; Χ2 = 59.38, p&It;0.05) respectively, but not significant for the mean thiamin (Χ2 = 1.08, p>0.05). The relationship between the malarial parasitaemia and thiamin was positively correlated (r = 0.89). The plasma concentration of riboflavin, FMN and FAD were negatively correlated and statistically significant with the malarial parasitaemia (r = -0.99, p&It;0.05; r = -0.95, p&It;0.05; r = -0.95, p&It;0.05 respectively). Children in the 1-5 age group had a lower concentration of riboflavin (52.8 ± 27.9 nmol⁄L), FMN (191.7 ± 13.3 nmol⁄L) and FAD (27.4 ± 13.2 nmol⁄L) but a higher concentration of thiamin (0.11 ± 0.13). These differences in the levels of riboflavin, FMN, FAD and thiamin between the age groups 1-5 and >6 were not statistically significant (Χ2 = 0.315, p>0.05; Χ2 = 1.045, p>0.05; Χ2 = 1.94, p>0.05, Χ2 = 0.11, p>0.05 respectively). Conclusion: We observed a lower riboflavin and thiamin concentration in Nigerian children with P. falciparum infection than in control subjects, a finding that might reflect the impact of P. falciparum on the serum concentration of these malarous children in our locality.
On 2nd April 2007, at 7:40 local time (20:40 GMT 1 April), a massive earthquake, the epicenter of which was 10 km deep and 45 km south-southeast of Gizo, the provincial capital of the Western Province, struck the Solomon Islands, killing 52 people and displacing approximately 5,000. This study, based on field research in May 2007, reports on the result of the cross-sectional assessment of the bacterial contamination (E. coli, Vibrio spp. and total bacteria) of drinking water and water sources and the longitudinal comparison of dietary intake and epidemiology in six earthquake- and tsunami-affected villages in the Western Province, Solomon Islands. The test-paper method revealed that 92.0% of drinking-water was unsafe in four camps of evacuated people. Only 3 out of 11 drink-water samples collected from safe water sources were free from contamination throughout the study villages. The reported occurrence of diarrhea, while only 7.6 per mil in 2001 and 4.8 per mil in 2003 in one of the study villages, was 12.7 person-days per mil after the disaster in 2007. Deterioration of dietary intakes was not observed. Although further studies are expected to follow up on the changes in water, diet, and health in mid- and long-term recovery operations, the rapid assessment suggested the need to provide safe water or purifiers and education regarding water and hygiene-related management in order to minimize health risks in devastated villages.
Background: A prospective study assessing the levels of Interleukin-2 (IL-2) and gamma interferon (IFN-γ) levels, CD4, CD8 and other haematological parameters in a heterogeneous group of HIV sero-positive adults with uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum malaria was carried out in Benin City, Nigeria. Methods: IL-2, IFN-γ were determined by Enzyme Linked Immunosorbent Assay, CD4 and CD8 cells were counted using the Dynabeads T4-T8 Quantification protocol while haematological parameters was estimated using standard haematological techniques. Results: Serum levels of IFN-γ were significantly reduced in HIV⁄malaria and HIV infected individuals (P<0.05). Also, a significant reduction in CD4 and CD8 cells was observed in HIV⁄Malaria and HIV infected individuals (P<0.05), while monocyte count was significantly higher in HIV⁄Malaria, HIV, and Malaria infected individuals (P<0.05). Conclusion: The depletion in CD4, CD8 and other haematological cells may be associated with lowered serum levels of immunological mediators a direct outcome of which could be the poor immune response observed in HIV co- infected and HIV- infected individuals.
Malaria epidemiological surveys were carried out in two subdistricts; Meninting of Lombok island and Utan of Sumbawa island, Indonesia in 2002 through 2003. In Meninting, distribution of hypo- to meso- endemicity was observed mainly in hilly forested areas and partially in coastal areas with no distribution in the more densely populated flat areas surrounded by rice fields. In contrast, in Utan the distribution was limited to the coastal areas. In Utan, treatment follow-up studies revealed the prevalence of chloroquine resistant Plasmodium falciparum (P. f.). Although the degree of malaria endemicity in the two areas was regarded as hypo- to meso-endemic, the majority of affected individuals were under the age of ten, and the number of positive cases declined with increasing age. Interestingly, age dependence to species-specific infection was observed, younger children being more prone to P. vivax infections than to P. f.
In malaria endemic areas, people naturally acquire an age-related immunity to malaria. Part of this immunity involves anti-malarial specific antibodies. Acquisition of these malaria-specific antibodies depends not only on exposure to malaria parasites but also on the human genetic predisposition. CTLA-4 is a costimulatory molecule that delivers an inhibitory signal to suppress T-cell as well as B-cell responses. We investigated associations between malaria-specific antibody levels and CTLA-4 polymorphisms in 189 subjects living in a hyper-endemic area of Papua New Guinea (PNG), where both P. falciparum and P. vivax are prevalent. We determined P. falciparum⁄ P. vivax specific IgG⁄IgE levels (Pf-IgG, Pv-IgG, Pf-IgE, Pv-IgE) and polymorphisms in the CTLA-4 gene at position -1661 promoter region (A⁄G), the +49 exon 1 non-synonymous mutation (A⁄G), and the +6230 3‘-UTR (A⁄G). All quantified antibody levels were significantly higher in subjects > 5 years (n = 150) than in subjects ≤ 5 years of age (n = 39). In children ≤ 5 years old, significant associations were detected between CTLA-4 +49 (GG⁄AG vs. AA) and Pv-IgG (median 18.7 vs. 13.7 Μg⁄ml, P = 0.017) and Pv-IgE (266.6 vs. 146.5 pg⁄ml, P = 0.046). No significant difference was observed in subjects > 5 years old. These results suggest that the CTLA-4+49 polymorphism influenced Pv-IgG and Pv-IgE levels among children less than five years old in the studied population, which may regulate the age- and species-specific clinical outcomes of malaria infection.
Objective: Candidiasis is the most common fungal infection in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) - infected individuals. As there is sparse data on the oral Candida species in HIV- infected individuals in India, we characterized Candida species from the oral cavity in two cohorts - with and without HIV infection and with presence or absence of clinical oral candidiasis, in Chennai, South India. Methods: Saliva samples were collected from 147 consecutive study participants by the oral rinse technique. Candidal species were isolated by culturing specimens on Sabouraud‘s dextrose agar. The pure cultures so derived were speciated using the commercially available ID32C system, and the results were interpreted using APILAB plus software. Results: In the HIV seropositive group, the most commonly isolated candida species was C.albicans (86%) followed by C.tropicalis (23%), C.guilliermondi (6%), C.krusei (5%) and others (4%). In the healthy cohort without clinical candidiasis, C.tropicalis was the most commonly isolated species. Conclusion: There appears to be a marked variation in oral Candida species found in HIV-seropositive and seronegative individuals in India. To our knowledge, this is the first attempt to identify oral Candida species in a South Indian population.
Mosquito-borne diseases such as dengue, chikungunya and malaria are of public health importance in Jaffna district. The use of larvivorous fish is perceived as an environmentally sound measure to control mosquitoes. A pilot study in the laboratory and field using Oreochromis mossambicus was carried out to evaluate its potentiality to control Aedes and Anopheles larvae. In the laboratory studies, O. mossambicus showed a greater feeding affinity for Aedes than either Anopheles or artificial fish diet, with a predatory index of 239.7 for Aedes, the fish having 2.9 g body weight. In the field trial, the introduction of O. mossambicus into water storage tanks proved to be effective in eliminating Aedes larvae within 3 days.
We present a severe case of tungiasis (sand flea disease) in an orphan with mental disease, living in a rural village in Lagos State, Nigeria. More than 1,100 embedded sand fleas were counted, causing severe pathology on the feet and difficulty walking. Lesions also occurred on the hands, elbows, and buttocks. This case shows that tungiasis may cause severe disease in a small proportion of high-risk individuals in endemic communities. Action is needed to reduce severe morbidity caused by this parasitic skin disease in this and other underprivileged communities.