BBC News – Honduras declares state of emergency over dengue fever

Honduras has declared a state of emergency after an outbreak of dengue fever which has killed 16 people so far this year.

More than 12,000 people have been diagnosed with the disease, which causes high fever and joint pains….

Health Minister Salvador Pineda said more than half of Honduras’ municipalities have registered cases of the viral infection this year.

The worst outbreak of dengue in Honduras was in 2010, when 83 people died.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the incidence of dengue has increased 30-fold over the last 50 years.

via BBC News – Honduras declares state of emergency over dengue fever.


Get inspired by this MMV story about capacity building for malaria drug research in Cote d’Ivoire.

During his seven week mission, Xavier Ding worked with local staff at the Centre Suisse de Recherche Scientifique (CSRS) to set up an MMV-CSRS lab and…

via Capacity Building in Côte d’Ivoire | MMV.


Scientific American on malaria-mosquito control: no simple answer, every site needs its own selection of tools

But a decade of blanketing Africa with pyrethroids has fueled resistance to this front-line chemical weapon. Now pyrethroid-immune mosquitoes are spreading quickly throughout the continent.“At some level, to really control the mosquitoes,” Artress says, “they’re going to have to do more.”What that “more” is, however, is uncertain. Because of a lack of research, no new chemicals for killing malaria-infected mosquitoes have emerged in more than 40 years.

via Malaria Mosquitoes Gain Ground as Search for New Defenses Intensifies: Scientific American.


Insight: The CDC explains its evaluation and action on dengue outbreak in Angola

Luanda receives numerous international visitors each year, and some of them were bringing the unwanted souvenir of dengue back home with them. When physicians see a patient with a fever who has recently traveled to Africa, they are likely to suspect malaria, but not dengue. There were also three other dengue outbreaks in Africa in 2013, so the issue of clinical recognition of dengue was not likely to be limited to travelers returning from Angola. Because of this and the rapidly increasing case count, we decided to release an MMWR to notify clinicians in the U.S. and abroad of the need to be vigilant for dengue as a potential cause of fever in residents of and travelers returning from Angola.

via CDC – Blogs – Public Health Matters Blog – The Reality of Outbreak Investigations: Dengue in Angola.


Kite Mosquito Patch developer tries to raise funds for their first field test in Uganda

Initial funding for the technology came to Ray’s lab from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.  Olfactor Laboratories Inc. has funding from the National Institute of Health, agreements with the Walter Reed Army Institute for Research and the U.S. Department of Agriculture to test a range of technologies developed at the company relating to mosquito and other vector insects.  The Kite Mosquito Patch is one of a number of new products with the ‘Kite’ product family, all of which use non-toxic compounds to repel, kill or lure vector insects.

“Kite will provide a new level of protection to, for example, children in Uganda, for the elderly in Mali, and hikers in Seattle or Sarasota seeking a safer, socially responsible solution,” said Grey Frandsen, project lead and chief marketing officer at Innovation Economy Crowd (ieCrowd), a crowd-powered platform aimed at transforming innovations into solutions. Olfactor Laboratories Inc. is an ieCrowd company.

The first Kite Mosquito Patches will be tested in districts of Uganda hardest hit by malaria. In 2010 an estimated 219 million cases of malaria occurred worldwide and 660,000 people died, 91 percent in the African Region.

via UCR Today: Research Leads to Affordable Technology to Fight Mosquito-borne Diseases.


Engineered liver tissue developed at MIT could help scientists test malaria drugs and vaccines

MIT researchers has now developed a way to grow liver tissue that can support the liver stage of the life cycle of the two most common species of malaria, Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax. This system could be used to test drugs and vaccines against both species, says Sangeeta Bhatia, the John and Dorothy Wilson Professor of Health Sciences and Technology and Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT.

via New way to target an old foe: malaria – MIT News Office.


Important new research on Vivax Malaria released at Phys.org

While falciparum malaria remains the leading killer, vivax is the most geographically widespread malarial parasite. Due to lower mortality rates associated with P. vivax compared with P. falciparum, vivax malaria has been referred to in the past as “benign tertian malaria,” though Escalante insists this is a misnomer. “People are starting to see vivax with different eyes. It’s more aggressive. It may not be as aggressive as falciparum, but there’s nothing benign about it.”

Indeed, severe health complications associated with vivax malaria may be more common than once appreciated and include anemia, low neonatal birth weight and a dangerous decrease in the amount of platelets in the blood (a condition known as thrombocytopenia). Additionally, the complex nature of P. vivax infection makes eradication challenging. The disease is contagious very early in the infection process, increasing the probability of transmission while a patient is still pre-clinical and symptom-free.

via Malaria in the Americas presents a complex picture.