Evidence of arbovirus co-infection in suspected febrile malaria and typhoid patients in Nigeria

  • Marycelin Baba College of Medical Sciences, University of Maiduguri, Maiduguri, Nigeria
  • Christopher Hugh Logue Microbiology Services - HPA Porton, Health Protection Agency, Porton Down, United Kingdom
  • Bamidele Oderinde College of Medical Sciences, University of Maiduguri, Maiduguri, Nigeria
  • Hauwa Abdulmaleek College of Medical Sciences, University of Maiduguri, Maiduguri, Nigeria
  • Joshua Williams College of Medical Sciences, University of Maiduguri, Maiduguri, Nigeria
  • James Lewis Microbiology Services - HPA Porton, Health Protection Agency, Porton Down, United Kingdom
  • Thomas R Laws Microbiology, Biomedical Sciences, Porton Down, United Kingdom
  • Roger Hewson Microbiology Services - HPA Porton, Health Protection Agency, Porton Down, United Kingdom
  • Alessandro Marcello International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, Trieste, Italy
  • Pierlanfranco D' Agaro IRCCS Burlo, Garofolo, Department of Reproductive, Trieste, Italy
Keywords: arbovirus, co-infection, malaria, dengue, chikungunya, Nigeria

Abstract

Introduction: Clinical symptoms of malaria and typhoid infections are virtually indistinguishable from those initially seen in many arbovirus infections. Here we describe arbovirus co-infection detected in 310 sera samples collected from febrile, clinically suspected malaria/typhoid patients in Borno State, Nigeria.

Methodology: Tested initially for Plasmodium falciparum by microscopy and for Salmonella Typhi by Widal test, samples were subsequently tested for chikungunya (CHIKV), yellow fever (YFV), dengue (DENV) and West Nile viruses (WNV) by plaque reduction neutralization test.

Results: While 92% of patients tested positive for malaria, typhoid, an arbovirus infection, or a combination of one or more of these types of infections, less than 1% of the patients tested positive for malaria alone and only 3.9% tested positive for typhoid alone.  Approximately half of the patients tested positive for infection with a single arbovirus (48%) regardless of the presence or absence of malaria or typhoid. Of those who showed 90% to 95% virus neutralization, 67.7% had neutralizing antibodies against DENV, 50% against CHIKV, 25% against WNV and 8.7% against YFV. Eight per cent tested negative against all six pathogens, suggesting that other arboviruses not tested for in this study may also be circulating in Nigeria.

Conclusions: The results suggest that misdiagnosis of arbovirus co-infections as malaria infections, combined with a lack of virus surveillance and underreporting of arbovirus infections, increases the potential for undetected and uncontrolled spread of important vector-borne arboviruses becoming serious underlying public health concerns in Nigeria.

Author Biographies

Marycelin Baba, College of Medical Sciences, University of Maiduguri, Maiduguri, Nigeria

Professor of Virology at the College of Medical Sciences, University of Maiduguri, Nigeria and Head of the Department of Medical Laboratory Science. She is the Director of National Polio Laboratory, Maiduguri, Nigeria and a member of national committees on virus related programs in Nigeria. She is an Associate Member of Medical Laboratory Science Council of Nigeria AMLSCN and holds a Masters degree in Health Planning and Management.

Christopher Hugh Logue, Microbiology Services - HPA Porton, Health Protection Agency, Porton Down, United Kingdom

 



 

Bamidele Oderinde, College of Medical Sciences, University of Maiduguri, Maiduguri, Nigeria

 

Hauwa Abdulmaleek, College of Medical Sciences, University of Maiduguri, Maiduguri, Nigeria

 

 

Joshua Williams, College of Medical Sciences, University of Maiduguri, Maiduguri, Nigeria

 

James Lewis, Microbiology Services - HPA Porton, Health Protection Agency, Porton Down, United Kingdom

 

 


 

Published
2013-01-15
How to Cite
1.
Baba M, Logue CH, Oderinde B, Abdulmaleek H, Williams J, Lewis J, Laws TR, Hewson R, Marcello A, D’ Agaro P (2013) Evidence of arbovirus co-infection in suspected febrile malaria and typhoid patients in Nigeria. J Infect Dev Ctries 7:051-059. doi: 10.3855/jidc.2411
Section
Case Reports