Plasmodium spp. in macaques, Macaca fascicularis, in Malaysia, and their potential role in zoonotic malaria transmission

Yusuf, Noorazian Md and Zulkefli, Jannah and Jiram, Adela Ida and Vythilingam, Indra and Hisam, Shamilah and Devi, Renuka and Salehhuddin, Afiqah and Ali, Nurulshuhada Md and Isa, Maccallyster and Alias, Norwahida and Salim, Nurhainis Ogu and Abd Aziz, Adli and Sulaiman, Lokman Hakim (2022) Plasmodium spp. in macaques, Macaca fascicularis, in Malaysia, and their potential role in zoonotic malaria transmission. Parasites & Vectors, 29. ISSN 1756-3305, DOI

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Macaques, Macaca fascicularis, are a known reservoir of Plasmodium knowlesi, the agent of simian malaria which is the predominant zoonotic species affecting humans in Malaysia and other Southeast Asian countries. Recently, a naturally acquired human infection of another simian malaria parasite, P. cynomolgi has been reported. Thus, it is crucial to study the distribution of simian Plasmodium infections with particular attention to the macaques. Four hundred and nineteen (419) long-tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis) were trapped in selected areas where human cases of P. knowlesi and P. cynomolgi have been reported. Nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was conducted to identify the Plasmodium spp., and circumsporozoite protein (CSP) genes of P. knowlesi samples were sequenced. Plasmodium cynomolgi infection was shown to be the most prevalent among the macaque population (68.4%). Although 50.6% of analyzed samples contained single infections either with P. knowlesi, P. cynomolgi, P. inui, P. coatneyi, or P. fieldi, mixed infections with double, triple, quadruple, and all 5 species were also detected. Infection with P. cynomolgi and P. knowlesi were the highest among Malaysian macaques in areas where humans and macaques are in close contact. The risk of zoonotic infection in these areas needs to be addressed since the number of zoonotic malaria cases is on the rise. With the elimination of human malaria, the risk of humans being infected with simian malaria is very high and steps should be taken to mitigate this issue.

Item Type: Article
Funders: Institute for Medical Research, Kuala Lumpur, Ministry of Health Malaysia, Ministry of Health Malaysia Research Grant NMRR-14-213-19692
Uncontrolled Keywords: Zoonotic malaria; Macaques; Simian malaria; Plasmodium knowlesi; Plasmodium cynomolgi
Subjects: Q Science > QL Zoology
Divisions: Faculty of Medicine > Parasitology Deparment
Depositing User: Ms. Juhaida Abd Rahim
Date Deposited: 13 Oct 2023 19:28
Last Modified: 13 Oct 2023 19:28

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