Acceptability of a herd immunity-focused, transmission-blocking malaria vaccine in malaria-endemic communities in the Peruvian Amazon: An exploratory study

Sara E. White, Steven A Harvey, Graciela Meza, Alejandro Llanos, Mitchel Guzman, Dionicia Gamboa, Joseph M. Vinetz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: A transmission-blocking vaccine (TBV) to prevent malaria-infected humans from infecting mosquitoes has been increasingly considered as a tool for malaria control and elimination. This study tested the hypothesis that a malaria TBV would be acceptable among residents of a malaria-hypoendemic region. Methods: The study was carried out in six Spanish-speaking rural villages in the Department of Loreto in the Peruvian Amazon. These villages comprise a cohort of 430 households associated with the Peru-Brazil International Centre for Excellence in Malaria Research. Individuals from one-third (143) of enrolled households in an ongoing longitudinal, prospective cohort study in 6 communities in Loreto, Peru, were randomly selected to participate by answering a pre-validated questionnaire. Results: All 143 participants expressed desire for a malaria vaccine in general; only 1 (0.7%) expressed unwillingness to receive a transmission-blocking malaria vaccine. Injection was considered most acceptable for adults (97.2%); for children drops in the mouth were preferred (96.8%). Acceptability waned marginally with the prospect of multiple injections (83.8%) and different projected efficacies at 70 and 50% (90.1 and 71.8%, respectively). Respondents demonstrated clear understanding that the vaccine was for community, rather than personal, protection against malaria infection. Discussion: In this setting of the Peruvian Amazon, a transmission-blocking malaria vaccine was found to be almost universally acceptable. This study is the first to report that residents of a malaria-endemic region have been queried regarding a malaria vaccine strategy that policy-makers in the industrialized world often dismiss as altruistic.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number179
JournalMalaria Journal
Volume17
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 27 2018

Keywords

  • Amazon
  • Malaria
  • Peru
  • Social acceptability
  • Transmission-blocking vaccine (TBV)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • Infectious Diseases

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