Nchelenge District in Luapula Province, northern Zambia, experiences holoendemic malaria despite implementation of vector control programs. The major Anopheles vectors that contribute to Plasmodium falciparum transmission in this area had not previously been well defined. Three collections performed during the 2012 wet and dry seasons and the 2013 wet season revealed Anopheles funestus sensu stricto and Anopheles gambiae sensu stricto as the main vectors, where 80-85% of each collection was composed of An. funestus. Both vectors were found to be highly anthropophilic, and An. funestus has higher sporozoite infection rates (SIRs) and entomological inoculation rates (EIRs) year-round compared with An. gambiae: SIRs of 1.8-3.0% and 0-2.5%, respectively, and EIRs of 3.7-41.5 infectious bites per 6-month period (ib/p/6mo) and 0-5.9 ib/p/6mo, respectively. Spatial and temporal changes in each vector's dynamics and bionomics were also observed. Anopheles funestus was the predominant vector in the villages near Kenani Stream in both wet and dry seasons, whereas An. gambiae was found to be the main vector in areas near Lake Mweru during the wet season. The vector data illustrate the need for broader temporal and spatial sampling in Nchelenge and present unique opportunities to further our understanding of malarial transmission and implications for malarial control in high-risk areas.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases