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Research articles

ScienceAsia 41 (2015): 340-344 |doi: 10.2306/scienceasia1513-1874.2015.41.340

Cytochrome b mutation and atovaquone susceptibility in Plasmodium falciparum isolates from the Thai-Cambodian border during 1990–2010

Jitravee Cheychoma, Naowarat Kanchanakhana, Saowanit Vijaykadgab, Jariyanart Gayweec, Pongchai Harnyuttanakornd,*

ABSTRACT:     WHO reported that the efficacy of artemisinin combination-based therapies (ACTs) has decreased around the Thai-Cambodian border. To maintain the efficacy and prolong the life span of ACTs, malarone (an atovaquone and proguanil combination) has been administered in Trat and Chanthaburi Provinces of Thailand since 2009. The mutations of codons 133, 258, 268, 272, 275, 280, 283, and 284 in the cytochrome b gene have been reported to be related to malarone resistance. This study investigates the susceptibility in vitro and mutations in the cytochrome b gene before and after the administration of malarone. Plasmodium falciparum infected blood samples obtained from malaria patients attending malaria clinics in these two provinces were included in this study. Fifteen parasite isolates were subjected to in vitro susceptibility tests against atovaquone. Their mean inhibitory concentrations ranged from 5 × 10−9–5 × 10−10 M. The DNA sequences from 37 PCR samples revealed no mutations. Therefore the variation of drug susceptibility among these parasites may be unrelated to point mutations in the cytochrome b gene.

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a College of Public Health Sciences, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok 10330 Thailand
b Bureau of Vector-Borne Disease, Department of Disease Control, Ministry of Public Health, Nonthaburi 11000 Thailand
c Armed Forces Research Institute of Medical Sciences, Bangkok 10400 Thailand
d Department of Biology, Faculty of Sciences, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok 10330 Thailand

* Corresponding author, E-mail: Pongchai.H@chula.ac.th

Received 19 Sep 2014, Accepted 13 Sep 2015