Seasonality of Fish Production as a Potential Predictor of Malaria Transmission: A One Health Approach in the Peruvian Amazon

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2022

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Background: Despite long term control efforts, Malaria remains a significant health burden in Peru. The largest number of cases of both P. vivax and P. falciparum occur in the department of Loreto. Climatic variability has been found predictive of malaria incidence. Fish production is similarly affected by environmental variability, and fishers are a reservoir of malaria. Thus, by accounting for environmental variables, fish production may serve as a potential predictor of malaria incidence. Methods: Malaria incidence, weekly fish production and climatic information was drawn for the years 2014-2019 and organized by fishing port, one of four buffer levels and species of Plasmodium. Fish production and environmental variables were lagged as to be predictive of incidence of malaria. An UCM was used to model the relationship between weekly malaria incidence, fish collection, and hydrometeorological variables with a seasonality component. Results: This study found no conclusive evidence that fish production can serve as a predictor of malaria incidence for either P. vivax or P. falciparum. Although there are some trends in best fit lag, there is no clear best lag of fish production as a predictor malaria incidence based on these models. Conclusions: This study does not establish fish production as a predictor of malaria regardless of the relationship between occupational fish production migration and malaria risk. A call for further analysis would establish an improved measure of fish collection which accounts for person-time spent fishing.

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O'Malley, Sara (2022). Seasonality of Fish Production as a Potential Predictor of Malaria Transmission: A One Health Approach in the Peruvian Amazon. Master's thesis, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/25376.

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