Practical course of molecular malaria diagnostics in the Juruá river valley
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This practical course is intended to teach different tools in malaria diagnostics focusing on molecular techniques such as DNA analysis. The course will give students the opportunity to acquire knowledge about basic molecular techniques of malaria diagnosis in an endemic field situation. The main techniques which are applied are sample preparation (plasmodial genomic DNA from blood samples), recombinant protein production and purification, nested PCR with Plasmodium species identification, eventually amplification of polymorphic loci from P. vivax e falciparum, electrophoresis in agarose and polyacrylamide gels, ELISA and comprehensive data analysis. Each technique will be discussed for their applicability. The goal is to enable the student to perform and critically evaluate methodologies of malaria diagnostics and their limitations. In parallel, clinical aspects of malaria will be discussed as well as their relation to historical, cultural and economic facts in the region of the Juruá valley.