Frequency distribution of Wuchereria bancrofti microfilariae in human populations and its relationships with age and sex

P. K. Das, A. Manoharan, A. Srividya, B. T. Grenfell, D. A.P. Bundy

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32 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper examines the effects of host age and sex on the frequency distribution of Wuchereria bancrofti infections in the human host. Microfilaria! counts from a large data base on the epidemiology of bancroftian filariasis in Pondicherry, South India are analysed. Frequency distributions of microfilarial counts divided by age are successfully described by zero-truncated negative binomial distributions, fitted by maximum likelihood. Parameter estimates from the fits indicate a significant trend of decreasing overdispersion with age in the distributions above age 10; this pattern provides indirect evidence for the operation of density-dependent constraints on microfilaria! intensity. The analysis also provides estimates of the proportion of mf-positive individuals who are identified as negative due to sampling errors (around 5 % of the total negatives). This allows the construction of corrected mf age-prevalence curves, which indicate that the observed prevalence may underestimate the true figures by between 25 % and 100 %. The age distribution of mf-negative individuals in the population is discussed in terms of current hypotheses about the interaction between disease and infection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)429-434
Number of pages6
JournalParasitology
Volume101
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1990
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Parasitology
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Infectious Diseases

Keywords

  • Wuchereria bancrofti
  • age distribution
  • density dependence
  • lymphatic filariasis
  • sex distribution
  • truncated negative binomial

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