Southern Cameroons Health What Can Cause Malaria

What Can Cause Malaria



Malaria is a disease of life-threatening red blood cells caused by parasites and is transmitted to humans by Anopheles mosquitoes. After a human is bitten by a mosquito, the parasite multiplies in the human liver before it infects and destroys red blood cells. At this time, the vaccine for the disease is still undiscovered.

The disease is caused by the bite of the female Anopheles mosquito which is inside the body contained Plasmodium parasite. Anopheles is the only mosquito that can make malaria. The success of a parasite to thrive in a mosquito’s body depends on several factors, especially the humidity and temperature factors of the mosquito.

When an infected mosquito bites a human, the parasite infiltrates the bloodstream and becomes active in the liver. For the next 5-16 days after being bitten, the bitten person will begin to show symptoms. The new malaria parasite is then freed back inside the bloodstream from the liver to the red blood cells and begins to multiply. There are more than 100 species of Plasmodium but scientists have identified five types of Plasmodium that are specifically capable of infecting humans:

1. P. falciparum – is in the whole world, but the majority in Africa. An estimated 1 million people are killed because of this strain every year. These strains can multiply rapidly into severe malaria, for example, to attack the brain. However, these strains are not able to relapse.

2. P. Vivax – located in Latin America, Africa, and Asia, mostly in Asia. This strain has an active stage in the liver that can activate and attack blood after months or years, called relapse.

3. P. Ovale – located mainly in the West African region. This strain is capable of attacking the negative Duffy blood group, which is a class of the majority sub-Saharan African population. This explains that the prevalence of these strains (not P. Vivax) is mostly in Africa.

4. P. Malariae – located worldwide and the only active malaria parasite every 3 days. If left untreated, P. Malariae can cause a chronic infection that can last a lifetime.

5. P. Knowlesi – located in Southeast Asia, is known to have a 24-hour cycle and, therefore, can multiply rapidly in patients. A fatal case of this strain was also reported.

Tags: , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *