Volume 60, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645


Detection of infective parasites in the vector population can be an early indicator of recrudescence in areas freed of new cases of onchocerciasis. However, dissection of vector black flies is inefficient in areas subject to effective control. Recently, a polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based assay has been used to detect a single Onchocerca volvulus-infected black fly in pools containing large numbers of uninfected flies. This method had not been validated on wild-caught black flies in an area subject to effective vector control. Here, we report a method of restricting the pool screen PCR assay to infectious parasites and the results of a field test in an area subject to long-term vector control. The prevalence of infection determined by dissection did not differ from that determined by pool screen PCR. The results suggest that the PCR assay may be a useful tool for epidemiologic surveillance for 0. volvulus infection.


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