[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Genetic evidence for diversifying selection identified the Merozoite Surface Protein1 block2 (PfMSP1 block2) as a putative target of protective immunity against Plasmodium falciparum. The locus displays three family types and one recombinant type, each with multiple allelic forms differing by single nucleotide polymorphism as well as sequence, copy number and arrangement variation of three amino acid repeats. The family-specific antibody responses observed in endemic settings support immune selection operating at the family level. However, the factors contributing to the large intra-family allelic diversity remain unclear. To address this question, population allelic polymorphism and sequence variant-specific antibody responses were studied in a single Senegalese rural community where malaria transmission is intense and perennial.
Family distribution showed no significant temporal fluctuation over the 10 y period surveyed. Sequencing of 358 PCR fragments identified 126 distinct alleles, including numerous novel alleles in each family and multiple novel alleles of recombinant types. The parasite population consisted in a large number of low frequency alleles, alongside one high-frequency and three intermediate frequency alleles. Population diversity tests supported positive selection at the family level, but showed no significant departure from neutrality when considering intra-family allelic sequence diversity and all families combined. Seroprevalence, analysed using biotinylated peptides displaying numerous sequence variants, was moderate and increased with age. Reactivity profiles were individual-specific, mapped to the family-specific flanking regions and to repeat sequences shared by numerous allelic forms within a family type. Seroreactivity to K1-, Mad20- and R033 families correlated with the relative family genotype distribution within the village. Antibody specificity remained unchanged with cumulated exposure to an increasingly large number of alleles.
The Pfmsp1 block2 locus presents a very large population sequence diversity. The lack of stable acquisition of novel antibody specificities despite exposure to novel allelic forms is reminiscent of clonal imprinting. The locus appears under antibody-mediated diversifying selection in a variable environment that maintains a balance between the various family types without selecting for sequence variant allelic forms. There is no evidence of positive selection for intra-family sequence diversity, consistent with the observed characteristics of the antibody response.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Inadequate treatment practices with antimalarials are considered major contributors to Plasmodium falciparum resistance to chloroquine, pyrimethamine and sulfadoxine. The longitudinal survey conducted in Dielmo, a rural Senegalese community, offers a unique frame to explore the impact of strictly controlled and quantified antimalarial use for diagnosed malaria on drug resistance.
We conducted on a yearly basis a retrospective survey over a ten-year period that included two successive treatment policies, namely quinine during 1990-1994, and chloroquine (CQ) and sulfadoxine/pyrimethamine (SP) as first and second line treatments, respectively, during 1995-1999. Molecular beacon-based genotyping, gene sequencing and microsatellite analysis showed a low prevalence of Pfcrt and Pfdhfr-ts resistance alleles of Southeast Asian origin by the end of 1994 and their effective dissemination within one year of CQ and SP implementation. The Pfcrt resistant allele rose from 9% to 46% prevalence during the first year of CQ reintroduction, i.e., after a mean of 1.66 CQ treatment courses/person/year. The Pfdhfr-ts triple mutant rose from 0% to 20% by end 1996, after a mean of 0.35 SP treatment courses/person in a 16-month period. Both resistance alleles were observed at a younger age than all other alleles. Their spreading was associated with enhanced in vitro resistance and rapidly translated in an increased incidence of clinical malaria episodes during the early post-treatment period.
In such a highly endemic setting, selection of drug-resistant parasites took a single year after drug implementation, resulting in a rapid progression of the incidence of clinical malaria during the early post-treatment period. Controlled antimalarial use at the community level did not prevent dissemination of resistance haplotypes. This data pleads against reintroduction of CQ in places where resistant allele frequency has dropped to a very low level after CQ use has been discontinued, unless drastic measures are put in place to prevent selection and spreading of mutants during the post-treatment period.