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Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública

Print version ISSN 1020-4989


BRANQUINHO, Maria Stela et al. Infection of Anopheles (Kerteszia) cruzii with Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium vivax variant VK247 in the municipalities of São Vicente and Juquitiba, São Paulo. Rev Panam Salud Publica [online]. 1997, vol.2, n.3, pp. 189-193. ISSN 1020-4989.

Sporadic cases of autochthonous malaria have been recorded in São Paulo State, located in the Southeast region of Brazil. These cases are characterized by their benign course, low parasitemia, and mild symptomatology and have been identified as vivax malaria. Little is known about the symptoms and immune response elicited in humans by the variants Plasmodium vivax VK247 and P. vivax-like human malaria parasites. These variants are transmitted by Anopheles (Kerteszia) cruzii, one of the most common species of mosquitoes in the Southeast of Brazil. The objective of the study described in this paper was to investigate infection in anophelines using ELISA immunoenzymatic assay with specific monoclonal antibodies directed against the repetitive regions of the circumsporozoite protein in classic P. vivax, P. brasilianum/P. malariae, and P. vivax VK247. Between 1991 and 1993, mosquitoes were collected in São Vicente and Juquitiba, municipalites located in a remnant of the Brazilian Atlantic forest in São Paulo State, an ecosystem rich in plants of the Bromeliaceae family. These plants function as nurseries for immature forms of anophelines of the subgenus Kerteszia. Of 1117 An. (Ker.) cruzii captured in São Vicente, 0.179% were positive for classic P. vivax. In Juquitiba, of 1161 An. (Ker.) cruzii, 0.086% were positive for P. vivax VK247, confirming the presence of this variant in the region. Although the infection rate is low, the high density of these mosquitoes and their voracity (they exhibit 24-h biting activity) could compensate for the low percentage of infected specimens.

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