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PREVALENT PFMDR1 N86Y MUTANT PLASMODIUM FALCIPARUM IN MADAGASCAR DESPITE ABSENCE OF PFCRT MUTANT STRAINS

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  • 1 Unité de Recherche sur le Paludisme, Antananarivo, Institut Pasteur de Madagascar, Madagascar; Institut Pasteur de Cambodge, Phnom Pehn, Cambodge; Service de Lutte Contre le Paludisme, Ministère de la Santé et du Planning Familial, Antananarivo Madagascar

We assessed the status of point mutations associated with chloroquine resistance in pfcrt codon 76 and in pfmdr1 codon 86 among Plasmodium falciparum isolates from symptomatic patients in 3 sites in Madagascar. The in vitro susceptibility of P. falciparum isolates to quinoline-containing drugs was also determined. All isolates (N = 117) successfully typed were pfcrt wild-type, except one from Tsiroanomandidy (1 of 27). However, 67.5% (95% CI: 58.2–75.9%) of these isolates contained mutant pfmdr1 86Y. The pfmdr1 N86Y mutation is associated with higher mefloquine susceptibility, but it did not affect the sensitivity of parasites to chloroquine or quinine. Our findings demonstrate that pfmdr1 mutant P. falciparum are prevalent in Madagascar and confirm the low prevalence of pfcrt mutant P. falciparum after 60 years of chloroquine use. They provide additional field-based evidence for increased mefloquine susceptibility in pfmdr1 mutant P. falciparum and are suggestive of the intrahost selection of pfmdr1 mutant parasites.

Author Notes

Reprint requests: Milijaona Randrianarivelojosia, Unité de Recherche sur le Paludisme, BP 1274 Antananarivo (101), Institut Pasteur de Madagascar, E-mail: milijaon@pasteur.mg.
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