Submission note: A thesis submitted in total fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy [to the] School of Molecular Sciences, Faculty of Science, Technology and Engineering, La Trobe University, Bundoora.
Malaria is a disease that has plagued humanity for millennia and is still threatening a large part of the population on earth causing major health problems, most prominently in the developing world. The causative agent, protozoan parasites of the genus Plasmodium, infects a wide range of host animals, from birds and reptiles to monkeys and mice. They are more than 200 species in the Plasmodium genus and 5 of these are reported to infect humans: P. falciparum, P. vivax, P. ovale, P. malariae and P. knowlesi. These are all transmitted by the bite of a female Anopheles mosquito and the most severe cases are attributed to infections with P.falciparum and less deaths confirmed from P.vivax infections.
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