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Nat Genet DOI:10.1038/ng.2373

The malaria parasite Plasmodium vivax exhibits greater genetic diversity than Plasmodium falciparum.

Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsNeafsey, DE, Galinsky, K, H Y Jiang, R, Young, L, Sykes, SM, Saif, S, Gujja, S, Goldberg, JM, Young, S, Zeng, Q, Chapman, SB, Dash, AP, Anvikar, AR, Sutton, PL, Birren, BW, Escalante, AA, Barnwell, JW, Carlton, JM
JournalNat Genet
Date Published2012 Sep
KeywordsAfrica, Americas, Animals, Asia, Genetic Variation, Geography, Humans, Malaria, Falciparum, Malaria, Vivax, Microsatellite Repeats, Molecular Sequence Data, Phylogeny, Plasmodium falciparum, Plasmodium vivax, Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide

We sequenced and annotated the genomes of four P. vivax strains collected from disparate geographic locations, tripling the number of genome sequences available for this understudied parasite and providing the first genome-wide perspective of global variability in this species. We observe approximately twice as much SNP diversity among these isolates as we do among a comparable collection of isolates of P. falciparum, a malaria-causing parasite that results in higher mortality. This indicates a distinct history of global colonization and/or a more stable demographic history for P. vivax relative to P. falciparum, which is thought to have undergone a recent population bottleneck. The SNP diversity, as well as additional microsatellite and gene family variability, suggests a capacity for greater functional variation in the global population of P. vivax. These findings warrant a deeper survey of variation in P. vivax to equip disease interventions targeting the distinctive biology of this neglected but major pathogen.


Alternate JournalNat. Genet.
PubMed ID22863733
PubMed Central IDPMC3432710
Grant ListU19 AI089676 / AI / NIAID NIH HHS / United States
HHSN272200900018C / AI / NIAID NIH HHS / United States
HHSN272200900008C / AI / NIAID NIH HHS / United States
U19AI089676 / AI / NIAID NIH HHS / United States
HHSN272200900001C / AI / NIAID NIH HHS / United States
R01GM084320 / GM / NIGMS NIH HHS / United States
HHSN266200400001C / AO / NIAID NIH HHS / United States
R01 GM084320 / GM / NIGMS NIH HHS / United States
R01 GM080586 / GM / NIGMS NIH HHS / United States