[Prevalence, genetic diversity and multiplicity of Plasmodium falciparum infection in school children in central Cote d'Ivoire].Med Trop (Mars). 2006 Apr; 66(2):149-56.MT
A study was carried out in the village of Taabo, located in the vicinity of a large man-made lake in central Côte d'Ivoire. The objectives were (i) to determine the level of prevalence, genetic diversity and multiplicity of Plasmodiumfakiparum infection in schoolchildren and (ii) to compare the diagnostic performance of light microscopy and polymerase chain reaction (PCR). A total of 424 schoolchildren ranging in age from 5 to 15 years underwent diagnostic testing using both light microscopy of blood smears and PCR. Multiplicity of P. falciparum infection was investigated in 196 children (46.2%). The prevalence of malaria was 54.7% based on light microscopy and 83.9% based on PCR. Genotyping based on polymorphism in the length of the restriction fragment of the gene encoding the merozoite surface protein-2 (msp2) showed that 86.5% of cases involved multiple infection with a geometric mean of 3.87 genotypes per positive child. There was a strong positive correlation between multipcity of infection and parasite density in the 56-year old age group. A total of 50 genotypes including six observed for the first time were identified and classified into families with similar-sized sequence groups: 26 x FC27 (52%) and 24 x 3D7 (48%). In comparison with PCR, the sensitivity and specificity of light microscopy for diagnosis of P. falciparum was 81.3% and 88.2% respectively. Data are discussed in the light of similar studies carried out in sub-Saharan Africa and elsewhere. These findings can serve as a basis for monitoring the longterm effect of major water resource management projects on the prevalence, genetic diversity and multiplicity of P. falciparum infection.