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Malaria Risk and Prevention in Asian Migrants to Angola

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  • 1 National Malaria Control Program, Luanda, Angola;
  • | 2 Population Services International, Luanda, Angola;
  • | 3 Division of Parasitic Diseases and Malaria, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia;
  • | 4 U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia

ABSTRACT

The number of Asian migrants working in sub-Saharan developing countries like Angola has been increasing. Their malaria risk, prevention, and care-seeking practices have not been characterized. A cross-sectional survey was conducted in 733 Chinese and Southeast Asian migrants in Angola. Respondents were interviewed and provided blood samples. Samples were analyzed to detect Plasmodium antigen and characterize host anti-Plasmodium response. Positive samples were genotyped using the pfs47 marker. Most respondents (72%; 95% CI: 68–75) reported using bed nets, but less than 1% reported using chemoprophylaxis. Depending on the assay, 1–4% of respondents had evidence of active malaria infection. By contrast, 55% (95% CI: 52–59) were seropositive for Plasmodium antibodies. Most infections were Plasmodium falciparum, but infection and/or exposure to Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium malariae was also detected. Seroprevalence by time in Angola showed most exposure occurred locally. One respondent had sufficiently high parasitemia for pfs47 genotyping, which showed that the infection was likely locally acquired despite recent travel to home country. Asian migrants to Angola are at substantial risk of malaria. Employers should consider enhanced malaria prevention programs, including chemoprophylaxis; embassies should encourage prevention practices. Angolan healthcare workers should be aware of high malaria exposure in Asian migrants.

    • Supplemental Materials (PDF 455 KB)

Author Notes

Address correspondence to Mateusz M. Plucinski, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1600 Clifton Rd., Atlanta, GA 30329. E-mail: mplucinski@cdc.gov

Disclaimer: The findings and conclusion in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the CDC or the President’s Malaria Initiative. The authors declare they do not have any commercial or other associations that may pose a conflict of interest.

Financial support: Funding for the study and support for M. M. P., G. P. d. L., and E. S. H. were provided by the U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative. Next generation sequencing and bioinformatics analyses were supported by the CDC Advanced Molecular Detection Initiative at the CDC. J. K. was supported in part by the CDC Foundation. Williams Consulting LLC provided support in the form of salary for D. P.

Authors’ addresses: José Franco Martins, National Malaria Control Program, Luanda, Angola, E-mail: jose.martins8219@gmail.com. Cátia Marques and Benjamin Nieto-Andrade, Population Services International, Luanda, Angola, E-mails: catia.marques@psiangola.org and benjamin@psiangola.org. Julia Kelley, Dhruviben Patel, Doug Nace, Camelia Herman, Joel Barratt, Gabriel Ponce de León, Eldin Talundzic, Eric Rogier, Eric S. Halsey, and Mateusz M. Plucinski, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, E-mails: xfi8@cdc.gov, yyr4@cdc.gov, ddn4@cdc.gov, lqz3@cdc.gov, nsk9@cdc.gov, gcp1@cdc.gov, wrj5@cdc.gov, erogier@cdc.gov, ehalsey@cdc.gov, and mplucinski@cdc.gov.

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