martes, agosto 21, 2007

Martes 21 de agosto de 2007


Enviado por: MICHAEL MAKLER.

Dr Robert Piper and I have developed rapid malaria tests that are simple to use in small, towns, villages and hamlets where malaria exists. We designed these diagnostic tests to require only a small amount of blood from a finger prick.
The results of the test are easy to understand even by non-health workers The tests is designed to be stable to heat and to humidity so it can be stored without refrigeration for several months. Finally the diagnostic tests are inexpensive. Even the poorest member of the community can afford to purchase them.
The diagnostic tests detects a protein, parasite lactate dehydrogenase (pLDH). This protein is present in viable malaria parasites. Effective treatment of the malaria infection kills the parasite and this test immediately becomes negative. The test is also designed to tell the type of human malaria present. For example it distinguishes between P. falciparum and P.vivax, P.malariae and P. ovale.
A recent combination of some of our monoclonal reagents directed to pLDH has enabled us to develop another rapid test, we have called Animalaria™ . This test is able to diagnose malaria in all animals including birds, primates, rodents and humans.
We can no longer expect to control malaria by diagnosing and treating malaria only in humans. We must become aware of the types of malaria present in the animal populations where we live. (See Balbir Singh and colleagues in Lancet March 2004). Please note that P. brasilianum (in monkeys) is identical to P. malariae (in humans), and that P. reichenowi (in gorillas) is very similar to P.falciparum (in humans).

Be well
Michael T. Makler, MD

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