ring-forms and gametocytes in human blood.
is a mosquito-borne infectious disease caused by a eukaryotic protist of thegenus
. It is widespread in tropical and subtropical regions, including parts of the Americas, Asia, and Africa. Each year, there are approximately 350–500 millioncases of malaria, killing between one and three million people, the majority of whom areyoung children in Sub-Saharan Africa. Ninety percent of malaria-related deaths occur inSub-Saharan Africa. Malaria is commonly associated with poverty, but is also a cause of poverty and a major hindrance to economic development.Five species of the plasmodium parasite can infect humans; the most serious forms of thedisease are caused by
. Malaria caused by
causes milder disease in humans that is notgenerally fatal. A fifth species,
, is a zoonosis that causes malariain macaques but can also infect humans.Malaria is naturally transmitted by the bite of a female
When amosquito bites an infected person, a small amount of blood is taken, which containsmalaria parasites. These develop within the mosquito and about one week later, when themosquito takes its next blood meal, the parasites are injected into the person being bitten