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Malaria: Efficacy of monotherapies in Cameroon

stant strains observed in the north than in the south of Cameroon, complement the results of clinical investigations. The research team has since then launched similar work, focused especially on the gene for resistance to sulfadoxine, the other constituent of the sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine mixture.

The molecular approach, adapted to the varied epidemiological backgrounds that prevail in Cameroon, is therefore highly promising as a tool for tracking the evolution of resistance to monotherapies and thus for helping to improve malaria control strategies.

(1) Cameroon, with a surface area of 475 442 km2, is situated deep in the Gulf of Guinea, a region where Central Africa and West Africa meet. This geographical situation explains the great variety of climates and landscapes which make the country a kind of "Africa in miniature" (www.diplomatie.gouv.fr/fr/payszones- geo_833/cameroun_361/presentation-ducameroun_ 946/geographie_8432.html). In the north, dominated by vast plains, malaria transmission is seasonal. In the south, characterized by the presence of vast forest, it occurs continuously and intensively.

(2) In the standard surveys on therapeutic efficiency, just one drug or a single combination was tested simultaneously, in each patient and each locality, by a specialist mobile team. In the north of Cameroon where transmission is seasonal, this team's expeditions into the field had to be carefully planned. However, in the genetic approach, the collection of capillary blood on absorbent paper does not require any specialized team. A local team of local care providers gathers all samples together and sends them to the laboratory. The search for specific resistance markers can be carried on at the same time for several substances in uniform conditions.


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Contact: Marie Guillaume-Signoret
fichesactu@paris.ird.fr
33-014-803-7607
Institut de Recherche Pour le Dveloppement
13-Oct-2006


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