Field evaluation of a new molecular tool for malaria diagnosis

The field evaluation study titled “Diagnostic performance of a novel loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) assay targeting the apicoplast genome for malaria diagnosis in a field setting in sub-Saharan Africa” was recently published in Malaria Journal. A new molecular tool known as LAMP was optimised as part of Eniyou Oriero’s MRC funded PhD project to target a unique part of the plasmodium parasite that causes malaria.

Eniyou Cheryll OrieroThe study which, was carried out in villages around the MRC Basse field station showed that the new LAMP test can detect very low amounts of malaria parasites present in healthy individuals than the commonly used methods (microscopy and rapid diagnostic test). This new tool can become useful for mass or focused screening and treatment campaigns, which are being proposed for use in countries that are considering elimination of malaria.

The first author of the publication, Dr Eniyou Oriero,a Postdoc Scientist, said “we have come a long way from when molecular tools were a ‘mystery’ in Africa and its routine use was only a dream. We now have the capacity not only to develop and evaluate these tools, but also to tailor them to meet our specific needs. In our efforts to fight disease in Africa we need to be more pro-active and the role of proper diagnosis cannot be overemphasized”.

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