Deforestation and Malaria

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  • Topic: Malaria, Anopheles, Mosquito
  • Pages : 4 (1404 words )
  • Download(s) : 89
  • Published : April 23, 2013
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Stephanie Saperstein
ISB 201L
Deforestation and Malaria

The changes in global environments is expected to affect the rate of malaria cases in humans. Malaria is a serious and at times fatal disease caused by an infectious parasite that can live within a mosquito that feeds on humans. These mosquitos breed in numerous areas and have affected many populations causing many people to suffer from its painful symptoms and effects of the disease. Researchers have been conducting tests on whether deforestation does in fact increase cases of malaria in hopes to increase the ability to control malaria’s outbreaks in certain areas. The increase in population in many areas is causing there to be an increase in deforestation due to the needs for land for settlement, cultivating agriculture and extracting resources. Research has shown that deforestation does increase the rate of malaria because of the environmental changes of breeding sites and humans moving to and from forested areas.

Malaria’s parasites most commonly and successfully infects the female Anopheles mosquitoes and those humans that are bitten by these mosquitos, however they are both affected by the parasite differently. In humans the parasite begins by infecting the liver where it matures and begins to breed and multiply. After multiplying they begin infecting the blood stream and attacking the host’s red blood cells. These parasites continue this cycle by consistently infecting more and more red blood cells. Unlike humans the mosquito is not harmed when infected by the parasite. When a Anopheles female mosquito feeds on a human carrying this parasite a new cycle of growth and multiplication takes place in the mosquito. The parasite begins in the mosquitos stomach and then travels to the midgut wall of the mosquito where they breed and multiply. After 10-18 days, the parasites are found as "sporozoites" in the mosquito's salivary glands. (The Malaria Lifecycle 2006) When the Anopheles mosquito...