Modeling Plasmodium vivax: Relapses, treatment, seasonality, and G6PD deficiency

Farida Chamchod, John C. Beier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Plasmodium vivax (. P. vivax) is one of the most important human malaria species that is geographically widely endemic and causes social and economic burden globally. However, its consequences have long been neglected and underestimated as it has been mistakenly considered a benign and inconsequential malaria species as compared to . Plasmodium falciparum. One of the important differences between . P. falciparum and . P. vivax is the formation of . P. vivax latent-stage parasites (hypnozoites) that can cause relapses after a course of treatment. In this work, mathematical modeling is employed to investigate how patterns of incubation periods and relapses of . P. vivax, variation in treatment, and seasonal abundance of mosquitoes influence the number of humans infected with . P. vivax and the mean age at infection of humans in tropical and temperate regions. The model predicts that: (i) the number of humans infected with . P. vivax may increase when an incubation period of parasites in humans and a latent period of hypnozoites decrease; (ii) without primaquine, the only licensed drug to prevent relapses, . P. vivax may be highly prevalent; (iii) the mean age at infection of humans may increase when a latent period of hypnozoites increases; (iv) the number of infectious humans may peak at a few months before the middle of each dry season and the number of hypnozoite carriers may peak at nearly the middle of each dry season. In addition, glucose-6-phosphate-dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency, which is the most common enzyme defect in humans that may provide some protection against . P. vivax infection and severity, is taken into account to study its impact on the number of humans infected with . P. vivax. Modeling results indicate that the increased number of infected humans may result from a combination of a larger proportion of humans with G6PD deficiency in the population, a lesser protection of G6PD deficiency to . P. vivax infection, and a shorter latent period of hypnozoites.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25-34
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of theoretical biology
Volume316
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2013

Keywords

  • G6PD deficiency
  • Plasmodium vivax
  • Relapse

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Statistics and Probability
  • Applied Mathematics

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