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Ecological transition from natural forest to tea plantations: effect on the dynamics of malaria vectors in the highlands of Cameroon.

Research paper by M C MC Tanga, W I WI Ngundu

Indexed on: 08 Sep '10Published on: 08 Sep '10Published in: Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene



Abstract

From October 2002 to September 2003, an entomological survey was carried out in a rural forested fringed village in the highlands of Mount Cameroon region to determine the temporal dynamics of the anopheline population and the intensity of malaria transmission. A total of 2387 Anopheles spp. were collected, with A. funestus predominating (59.9%), followed by A. hancocki (24.4%) and A. gambiae s.l. (15.7%). Considerable differences were observed in the nocturnal biting cycles of parous mosquitoes, with peak activity in the latter part of the night. PCR revealed that all specimens of the A. funestus group were A. funestus s.s. and all specimens from the A. gambiae complex were A. gambiae s.s. of the S molecular form. Plasmodium falciparum sporozoite rates of 17.3% and 8.5% were recorded for A. funestus and A. hancocki, respectively, with an anthropophilic rate of 96.3%. A strong positive correlation (r=0.996) was found between the human-biting rate and the entomological inoculation rate (EIR). Malaria transmission was very high and perennial, with an estimated annual EIR of 460.1 infective bites per person per year. These results confirm that in high agricultural activity areas, A. funestus can be by far the major malaria vector responsible for malaria transmission.