False positivity of circumsporozoite protein (CSP)-ELISA in zoophilic anophelines in Bangladesh

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Circumsporozoite protein enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (CSP-ELISAs) are widely used for malaria vector identification throughout the world. However, several studies have reported false-positive results when using this method. The present study was conducted to estimate the frequency of false positives among anopheline species in malaria endemic areas of Bangladesh. In total, 4724 Anopheles females belonging to 25 species were collected and tested for Plasmodium falciparum, Plasmodium vivax-210, and P. vivax-247 CSP. Initially, 144 samples tested positive using routine CSP-ELISA, but the number of positive results declined to 85 (59%) when the samples were tested after heating at 100°C for 10min to remove false-positive specimens. Ten species, Anopheles annularis, Anopheles baimaii, Anopheles barbirostris, Anopheles jeyporiensis, Anopheles karwari, Anopheles kochi, Anopheles minimus s.l., Anopheles peditaeniatus, Anopheles philippinensis, and Anopheles vagus were CSP-positive. The highest and lowest infection rates were found in An. baimaii (4/25, 16.0%) and An. jeyporiensis (1/139, 0.67%), respectively. A significant correlation was found (regression analysis, R2=0.49, F=8.25, P<0.05) between human blood index results and the true CSP-positive ratios in 15 Anopheles species. We confirmed that false-positive reactions occurred more frequently in zoophilic species. The relatively high proportion of false positives (40%) that was found in this study should warn malaria epidemiologists working in the field to be cautious when interpreting ELISA results. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.


  • Acta Tropica

    Acta Tropica 125(2), 220-225, 2013-02-01

    Elsevier B.V.


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