Seroepidemiology of melioidosis in children from a remote region of Papua New Guinea

Diefenbach-Elstob, Tanya R., Graves, Patricia M., Burgess, Graham W., Pelowa, Daniel B., and Warner, Jeffrey M. (2015) Seroepidemiology of melioidosis in children from a remote region of Papua New Guinea. International Health, 7 (5). pp. 332-338.

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Background: The Balimo region in Papua New Guinea has previously been identified as melioidosis-endemic with a predilection for children. Where health resources are scarce, seroepidemiology can be used to assess exposure to Burkholderia pseudomallei and therefore risk of acquiring melioidosis.

Methods: Logistic regression was used to determine associations between indirect haemagglutination assay (IHA) seroreactivity with environmental and demographic/cultural factors to aid in determining risk factors associated with exposure to B. pseudomallei in children.

Results: Of the 968 participants, 92.9% (899/968) were children, representing the majority of the community school population in the immediate Balimo region. Of these, 24.6% (221/899) were seropositive. Bathing in the lagoon (OR=2.679), drinking from the well or lagoon (OR=1.474), and being a member of the Siboko (OR=1.914) or Wagumisi (OR=1.942) clans were significantly associated with seropositivity. In the multivariate analysis, drinking from a well or lagoon (OR=1.713), and the Siboko (OR=2.341) and Wabadala (OR=2.022) clans were associated with seropositivity.

Conclusions: This study in children supports observations that interactions with groundwater in this region are risk factors in acquiring melioidosis. Public health measures intended to limit this exposure may help reduce the risk of acquiring melioidosis in this remote community. Associations with clan structure may provide more cultural specific insights, however this requires further elucidation.

Item ID: 37672
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1876-3405
Keywords: olderia Pseudomallei, indirect haemagglutination assay, melioidosis, Papua New Guinea, seroepidemiology
Funders: James Cook University (JCU)
Projects and Grants: JCU Internal Research Allocation
Date Deposited: 10 Mar 2015 03:15
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1108 Medical Microbiology > 110801 Medical Bacteriology @ 90%
11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111706 Epidemiology @ 10%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920404 Disease Distribution and Transmission (incl. Surveillance and Response) @ 100%
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