Malaria is an infectious disease caused by a parasite: it is spread by the bite of an infected mosquito. People catch malaria when the parasite control of malaria pdf the blood.
The parasite causes a deadly infection which kills many people each year. The parasite that causes malaria is a protozoan called ‘Plasmodium’. Protozoa are organisms with only one cell, but they are not bacteria. Bacteria are smaller and simpler than protozoans. People usually get malaria from the Anopheles or Culex mosquitoes: they are the vectors of the disease. The Plasmodium gets into people by the bites of mosquitoes. The Plasmodium is in the mosquito’s special saliva.
Only the female mosquito gives people malaria, because only the female mosquito consumes blood. The male mosquito lives on the nectar of flowers. The female uses blood as a source of protein for its eggs. Some people do not get malaria from mosquitoes. A baby can get it while inside its mother. People can also get malaria from a blood transfusion. This is when someone gives blood to another person.
Another way people can catch malaria is by using a needle that someone with the disease used before them. Malaria life cycle In humans, after being bitten by an infected mosquito the malaria parasites first infects the liver. At this stage their are no symptoms. The red blood cells are infected next, at this stage symptoms of malaria appear. When an uninfected mosquito bites an infected human they become infected and continue the cycle. The small bumps on the infected cell show how the parasite remodels its host cell.
Falciparum malaria is the worst kind, and kills the most people. When Plasmodium enters the blood, they are then called sporozoites. Sporozoites go to the liver, where they make many more sporozoites. Then they change into a different form of Plasmodium. The merozoites go into the red blood cells, then they make many more merozoites.
The merozoites break out of the red blood cells again and again. When they do this, the person gets very sick, and shows symptoms of malaria. This happens every few days, and is called a paroxysm. A person can look well, but still have the Plasmodium in the liver. This is called a dormant phase.