Malaria (Plasmodium species)
Ultrasensitive qualitative screen for
by real time PCR. This assay detects but does not differentiate
Plasmodium species, including
P. falciparum, P. malariae, P.
vivax, P. ovale,
P. knowlesi, P. fieldi, P. hylobati, P. juxtanucleare, P.
yoelii, P. brasilianum, P. cynomolgi, P. inui, P.
schwetzi, P. reichenowi, P. eyles, P.jefferyi, P. youngi, P.
pitheci, P. silvaticum, P. coatneyi, P. fragile, P. simiovale,
P. simium, P. cathemerium, P.
gallinaceum and P.
Ultrasensitive qualitative detection of
Plasmodium inui by
real time PCR. This assay does not detect other
Malaria is caused by protozoan parasites of the genus
Plasmodium. The parasites are transmitted by infected mosquitos. As
the infected female mosquito takes a blood meal, it injects the
parasite, which travels in the bloodstream to the liver. Inside
the liver, the organism undergoes several developmental changes
leading to the release of a large number of merozoites. These
merozoites invade the red blood cells. The asexual stages often
seen in blood films are young trophozoites (also known as “ring
forms”), mature trophozoites, and the dividing schizonts that
yield the merozoites for a new generation. The liver then acts
as a reservoir from which periodic bouts of parasitemia may
Parasitemia in infected animals can fluctuate
dramatically over short periods, so Plasmodium
screening should be performed at multiple time
points. In particular, stress or other immune-suppressive events
may trigger an increase in parasitemia from previously
undetectable levels. Therefore it is ideal when feasible to
screen using liver or spleen biopsy, because the titer of
Plasmodium organisms is more consistently detectable in
these tissues than in peripheral blood.
Traditionally, malaria screening and diagnosis relied on
microscopic examination of blood smears. This method is fast and
cheap but has a very low sensitivity. Successful detection in
blood smears also depends on collecting the specimen at the peak
of the parasitemia. Antibody detection can be used to diagnose
the disease but paired serum samples several weeks apart are
required in order to identify actively infected animals, making
rapid diagnosis impossible. Furthermore, most serology testing
currently available targets the Plasmodium species that
infect humans, such as P. malariae, P. falciparum, P. vivax
and P. ovale. Reagents used for these human serology tests
are not useful for screening for malaria in animals. Molecular
detection by PCR is a rapid, specific and sensitive method for
accurately diagnosing and identifying carriers.
Help confirm the disease causing agent
Help ensure that animal colonies are free of malaria
Early prevention of spread of malaria among a colony
Minimize personnel exposure to malaria
Safety monitoring of biological products and vaccines
that derive from susceptible animals
Cogswell, F.B. (2000) Malaria and Piroplasms of non-human
primates. In: Companion and Exotic Animal Parasitology, Bowman
D.D. (Ed). A0304.0600.
0.2 ml liver or spleen tissue.
Less preferred specimen: 0.2 ml whole blood in EDTA (purple top) or ACD (yellow top)
Contact Zoologix if advice is needed to determine an appropriate specimen type for a specific diagnostic application. For specimen types not listed here, please contact Zoologix to confirm specimen acceptability and shipping instructions.
specimen types, if there will be a delay in shipping, or during
very warm weather, refrigerate specimens until shipped and ship
with a cold pack unless more stringent shipping requirements are
specified. Frozen specimens should be shipped so as to remain
frozen in transit. See shipping
instructions for more information.
2 business days
real time PCR