Help Fund my Ph.D Project on Characterizing the Ecology, Malaria and Vector Species in Embu County of Upper Eastern Region of Kenya
My name is Laban Ireri, a resident of Kenya and holds a Master of Science Degree in Applied Parasitology. I am appealing for funds to help me finish my Doctor of Philosophy research study project I am pursuing in Mount Kenya University. I love research on alleviating human suffering but scholarships are elusive to aged guys like me, I am 54 years old. However much I would like to re-discover and distribute sensitive control tools especially at this time of parasite and vector resistance to chemotherapy/agents, funds are hard to come by.
Malaria is a household name and a mysterious killer disease worldwide and classically in sub-Saharan African countries including Kenya. It is a well known cause of serious sickly conditions and death to pregnant women, young children, the aged, people living with HIV/AIDS and international travelers from non-malaria areas due to low immunity status. Embu County although classified as a low transmission zone has been shown to have active transmission due to drastic climatic variations, newly created rice puddles, hydroelectric power dams and man-made water masses after stone mining which are enhancing mosquito breeding.
Through this project, I wish to de-mystify the circumstances surrounding malaria infection, causative agents, vectors, pathology and the associated environmental factors. There are many myths the local populace and the knowledgeable alike believe causes malaria including but not limited to eating raw mangoes, drinking swamp or stagnant water, bathing outside at night, stealing,eating sheep meat, stealing people’s wives, bad omen and witchcraft. This result to deviation from recommended treatment to other none effective remedies resulting to unnecessary deaths or resistance to malaria drugs.
First I will constitute a field team comprising of four entomologists, one clinician and two field guides. We will then thoroughly search and randomly select mosquito breeding sites in Embu County using a hand-held GPS devise after sampling using a standard ladle to ascertain mosquito larvae presence and document in a field register.We will then collect third and fourth instar larvae and pupa of Anopheles mosquitoes, take then to the laboratory and rear then to adult mosquitoes for identification purposes in a bid to incriminate transmission vectors.
We will also map houses which we will collect adult mosquitoes which will be used for identification purposes using morphological keys and Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) to see whether they are the ones responsible for malaria transmission.
The mosquitoes will also be tested to see what animal they have fed on and whether they are infected with malaria parasite stages by Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assaytechniques (ELISA) in the laboratory
For adult mosquito Collection we will use;
- CDC light traps
- Pyrethrum based insecticide spray
- Aspiration using mouth apparatus and/ electric
We will also collect blood smears from young children and will be examined in the laboratory to assess the prevalence and intensity of malaria parasites. All permits and ethical certification have been approved by relevant bodies and copies are available.
Why do I need to do this?
- 3.4 billion are at risk of malaria worldwide, and 212 Million cases occur every year & 627,000 deaths were witnessed in sub-Saharan Africa (WHO, 2016)
- Malaria vectors are increasing tremendously due to global warming,increased breeding sites and mosquito resistance to chemicals used on bed nets, spraying houses and in lotions & sprays
- Malaria parasites are resisting prescribed treatment drugs causing untold suffering and death
- There is loss of income causing poverty due to lost man hours
- Create awareness
- The world needs to be directed on the next cause of action in mosquito control
- Mosquitoes MUST die for the world to be free of insect-borne diseases like malaria, yellow fever, dengue, zika and elephantiasis!
- And lastly to gain knowledge, complete my Ph.D studies and generate crucial data which will help residents, policy makers, scholars; and the world in crushing malaria!
Donated money will be used for:-
- Hiring a car for field activities of mapping of breeding sites and houses in 4 large locations
- Collection of larvae and adult mosquitoes
- Buying supplies for larvae and adult collection, and apparatus
- Buying supplies for malaria parasite examination, PCR & ELISA assays
- Field Allowances for the field team and laboratory assistants
- Molecular Analysis fee
- Transport costs
- Publication and dissemination of study findings
You never know, a malaria mosquito might be staring at you waiting to steal blood or cause uncomfortable itching sensation even if it doesn’t infect you!Please be proud to be part of this noble project and let’s meet on World Malaria Day, the 25th of April 2018, to present and celebrate our findings and help evade deadly mosquito-borne diseases worldwide.
I am banking on “Little by little fills the measure!” Today it’s me; tomorrow will be you, or your child/friend to take the challenge, and WE will be there to extend a helping hand!
My vision: Is To see prosperous people, smiling faces, free of preventable diseases and conditions the world over. Be blessed as you Donate, thank you.