The Francis Crick Institute
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Evidence of Plasmodium vivax circulation in western and eastern regions of Senegal: implications for malaria control.

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journal contribution
posted on 2024-05-17, 10:44 authored by Aida S Badiane, Bassirou Ngom, Tolla Ndiaye, Deirdre Cunningham, James Campbell, Amy Gaye, Aita Sène, Mouhamad Sy, Daouda Ndiaye, Davis Nwakanma, Jean Langhorne
BACKGROUND: Malaria elimination in Senegal requires accurate diagnosis of all Plasmodium species. Plasmodium falciparum is the most prevalent species in Senegal, although Plasmodium malariae, Plasmodium ovale, and recently Plasmodium vivax have also been reported. Nonetheless, most malaria control tools, such as Histidine Rich Protein 2 rapid diagnosis test (PfHRP2-RDT,) can only diagnose P. falciparum. Thus, PfHRP2-RDT misses non-falciparum species and P. falciparum infections that fall below the limit of detection. These limitations can be addressed using highly sensitive Next Generation Sequencing (NGS). This study assesses the burden of the four different Plasmodium species in western and eastern regions of Senegal using targeted PCR amplicon sequencing. METHODS: Three thousand samples from symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals in 2021 from three sites in Senegal (Sessene, Diourbel region; Parcelles Assainies, Kaolack region; Gabou, Tambacounda region) were collected. All samples were tested using PfHRP2-RDT and photoinduced electron transfer polymerase chain reaction (PET-PCR), which detects all Plasmodium species. Targeted sequencing of the nuclear 18S rRNA and the mitochondrial cytochrome B genes was performed on PET-PCR positive samples. RESULTS: Malaria prevalence by PfHRP2-RDT showed 9.4% (94/1000) and 0.2% (2/1000) in Diourbel (DBL) and Kaolack (KL), respectively. In Tambacounda (TAM) patients who had malaria symptoms and had a negative PfHRP2-RDT were enrolled. The PET-PCR had a positivity rate of 23.5% (295/1255) overall. The PET-PCR positivity rate was 37.6%, 12.3%, and 22.8% in Diourbel, Kaolack, and Tambacounda, respectively. Successful sequencing of 121/295 positive samples detected P. falciparum (93%), P. vivax (2.6%), P. malariae (4.4%), and P. ovale wallikeri (0.9%). Plasmodium vivax was co-identified with P. falciparum in thirteen samples. Sequencing also detected two PfHRP2-RDT-negative mono-infections of P. vivax in Tambacounda and Kaolack. CONCLUSION: The findings demonstrate the circulation of P. vivax in western and eastern Senegal, highlighting the need for improved malaria control strategies and accurate diagnostic tools to better understand the prevalence of non-falciparum species countrywide.


Medical Research Council (Grant ID: MR/P028071/1, Grant title: GCRF-Crick African Network MR/P028071/1) Crick (Grant ID: CC2079, Grant title: Langhorne CC2079) Crick (Grant ID: CC1107, Grant title: STP Bioinformatics & Biostatistics)