Environmental and spatial risk factors for the larval habitats of Plasmodium knowlesi vectors in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo

Byrne, Isabel and Aure, Wilfredo and Manin, Benny O. and Vythilingam, Indra and Ferguson, Heather M. and Drakeley, Chris J. and Chua, Tock H. and Fornace, Kimberly M. (2021) Environmental and spatial risk factors for the larval habitats of Plasmodium knowlesi vectors in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. Scientific Reports, 11 (1). ISSN 2045-2322, DOI https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-90893-1.

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Land-use changes, such as deforestation and agriculture, can influence mosquito vector populations and malaria transmission. These land-use changes have been linked to increased incidence in human cases of the zoonotic malaria Plasmodium knowlesi in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. This study investigates whether these associations are partially driven by fine-scale land-use changes creating more favourable aquatic breeding habitats for P. knowlesi anopheline vectors. Using aerial remote sensing data, we developed a sampling frame representative of all land use types within a major focus of P. knowlesi transmission. From 2015 to 2016 monthly longitudinal surveys of larval habitats were collected in randomly selected areas stratified by land use type. Additional remote sensing data on environmental variables, land cover and landscape configuration were assembled for the study site. Risk factor analyses were performed over multiple spatial scales to determine associations between environmental and spatial variables and anopheline larval presence. Habitat fragmentation (300 m), aspect (350 m), distance to rubber plantations (100 m) and Culex larval presence were identified as risk factors for Anopheles breeding. Additionally, models were fit to determine the presence of potential larval habitats within the areas surveyed and used to generate a time-series of monthly predictive maps. These results indicate that land-use change and topography influence the suitability of larval habitats, and may partially explain the link between P. knowlesi incidence and deforestation. The predictive maps, and identification of the spatial scales at which risk factors are most influential may aid spatio-temporally targeted vector control interventions.

Item Type: Article
Funders: UK Research & Innovation (UKRI), Medical Research Council UK (MRC), European Commission, Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), Economic & Social Research Council (ESRC), Biotechnology and Biosciences Research Council through the Environmental and Social Ecology of Human Infectious Diseases Initiative (ESEI) [Grant No: G1100796]
Uncontrolled Keywords: Mosquito vector populations; Malaria transmission; Zoonotic malaria Plasmodium; Aquatic breeding habitats
Subjects: Q Science > Q Science (General)
T Technology > T Technology (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Medicine
Depositing User: Ms Zaharah Ramly
Date Deposited: 13 Jul 2022 03:12
Last Modified: 13 Jul 2022 03:12
URI: http://eprints.um.edu.my/id/eprint/33917

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