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Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) has saved more human lives than any other man made chemical in history (Edwards, 2004). However, due to public pressure from books such as Silent Spring by Rachel Carson and research claiming the compound carcinogenicity, toxicity to birds, anti-androgenic properties, and prolonged environmental persistence have resulted in millions of malaria associated deaths (Edwards, 2004). Jared Diamond novel Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies, it was noted that the gap in power and technology between human societies originate in environmental difference (Diamond, 2007). The limited use of DDT has shown to be associated with high prevalence malaria thus regressing societal and economic progress hence gap and environmental difference between underdeveloped and developed countries. Global transportation has changed the scope of environment. There is constant interaction between developed, developing and under-developed counties; global transport vehicles have now become vectors for infectious disease, which has all countries at a stalemate. It is incumbent to limit and eradicated infectious disease by all necessary means that is at disposal in order for a healthy interaction. The continued use of DDT is essential to control malaria. The objective henceforth includes (1) causative agent of malaria (2) DDT (3) support for DDT use by presenting (a) epidemiology of malaria (b) benefits of DDT and (4) perspective of international organization as for the continued use of DDT to control malaria.
According microbiological investigation by Wiser, the plasmodium species is the malaria causing parasite transmitted by vector, a female mosquito of the genus Anopheles, and human serve as a dead-end host. Four Plasmodium species infect humans: P. falciparum, P. vivax, P.ovale and P. Malariae (Wiser, 2009). Malaria infection is initiated by the mosquito via a bite, containing the infectious agent, in a sporozoite form (mosquito endogenous sexual form). After infection a host (human), the infectious agent is latent in liver cell, via haematogenous dissemination the parasite is carried by the circulatory system. Endogenously, the infectious agent changes into a merozoite form which is associate with parasetemia; this form invade erythrocytes. A clinical symptom of malaria is associated with lysis of the infected erythrocytes. Among the four species, P. falciparum exhibits a continuous fever; it is responsible for more morbidity and mortality than the other species (Wiser, 2009).
DDT, the chemical compound in controlling malaria, is a man-made compound. It is a white amorphous powder that is odourless. There are various metabolites, which occur as colorless crystals or white powders with weak aromatic odors (Substance Profile, 2001). Current, suppliers include China, India and Russia; with India being the major supplier and user (Substance Profile, 2001). DDT was first used in the United States as an insecticide between 1939 and 1972. In the public health field, it is use as an insecticide and to control malaria. Due to its extensive use insecticidal use remnant exposure are exhibited among those associate with its use; current use in developing country associated with high prevalence of malaria persist the exposure of the compound and its metabolites in the environment and with human . In vertebrates the compound accumulates in fatty tissue; it is anticipated being a human carcinogen based on sufficient evidence of carcinogenicity in experimental animals; when administered orally in the diet or by stomach tube, DDT induced hepatomas in mice and rats of both sexes, and lymphomas and lung carcinomas and adenomas in mice (Substance Profile, 2001).
Devastation brought upon by malaria span across a number of health perspective. Malaria threatens close to one-half of the worldââ‚¬â„¢s population, and more than 1 million children die each year of malaria related complications (Curtis & Lines, 2000). In untreated pregnant women, malaria causes low birth weight, which can lead to a range of impairments including cerebral palsy, mental retardation, and cognitive deficits. In Sub-Saharan Africa, nearly 4 percent of all maternal deaths annually are the result of malaria-associated anaemia (Curtis & Lines, 2000). According to the research titled, Maternal malaria during pregnancy and infant mortality rate: critical literature review and a new analytical approach, by Haghdoosta, Alexanderb and Smith (2007), malaria during pregnancy was recognised as risk factor for low birth weight and decreases the survival of offspring, particularly during their first month of life ( Haghdoosta et al., 2007). Subsequently, in area with continued plaque of malaria, maintaining a substantial healthy population is a dilemma. Additionally, Haghdoosta et al., indicated that maternal immunity are transferred via prenatally; however this infants grown up to become breeding ground for other infective illness. In a study Prevalence of malaria as co-infection in HIV-infected individuals in a malaria endemic area of southeastern Nigeria, an observation of the different prevalence rates of P. Falciparum malaria was observed among three groups which included (1) symptomatic HIV seropostive, (2) asymptomatic HIV seropostive and (3)HIV seronegative, groups. Results indicated that prevalence was tripled in symptomatic HIV seropositive group; it indicated a c possible obtainable prevalence of malaria infection alone in a malaria endemic area. Further yields indicated that the prevalence of P. falciparum malaria as a co-infection amongst the asymptomatic HIV seropositive group was 12 (11.8%) and amongst the symptomatic HIV seropositive group was 16 (33.3%). However, the prevalence rate of P. falciparum malaria amongst the control HIV seronegative group was 5 (10.6%) and the combined burden of P. falciparum malaria amongst both groups of HIV seropositives was 28 (18.9%). As with a number of endemic countries, particular Sub-Saharan Africa, this is has become a normal picture. Population sustainability has owe its growth to infectious disease. As with malaria, which critically affects the major connective tissue of the body ( blood), its set a breeding stream for other infectious disease to accumulate. In particular to hemotologic affects which malaria has bere, a study titled, Prevalence of Malaria and Anemia Among Young Children in a Tertiary Hospital in Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria, clearly elaborate on the longevity of symptoms associated with malaria. The study concluded that males had a significantly higher risk of malaria infection while females had a significantly higher risk of anemia; malaria is a risk factor for acquiring anemia . Overall prevalences of 75.77% and 87.32% for malaria and anemia were observed. While malaria parasitemia was higher among males, anemia was higher in females. The acquisition of malaria sets a precedent negative life course for those who acquired it at an early stage. The infective agent ability to lyse red blood cells, causes health detriments in many ways; from suppress the bone marrow to causing intravascular haemorrhage. The array of health issue presented directly and indirectly due to malaria association holds truth to confront both the young, old, and immune-suppressed individuals.
Public health response to malaria, devised methods at controlling outbreaks has relatively minimize the wide spread of malaria; nonetheless the use of pharmacogenic drugs is a luxury of nation who were once, endemic victim of malaria. From an international health perspective, irrespective of medical pharmacological method aim at controlling malaria there is an increase in resistance to antimicrobial. Among two of the four species of malaria infectious agent resistance has been described for two, P. falciparum and P. vivax. P. falciparum has developed resistance to nearly all antimalarials in current use, P. Vivax infection acquired in some areas has been shown to be resistant to chloroquine and/or primaquine (Bloland, 2001). The increase resistance to measures at controlling malaria has now become a stalement for developed and developing countries, to receive the possible of malaria once again being a global issue.
The affliction caused by malaria has been prevalent since antiquity. The environment has a way of controlling all un-wanted insurgency; but due to man-made mishaps in keeping the environment viable, it natural operation has regress. Harvesting natural elements from the earth however, has become a mean of combating malaria, the research Degradation of dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane by bacterial isolates from cultivated and uncultivated soil, by Hamadi, Muiga, Kiiyukia, Muniru, indicated that microorganism which includes, bacillus, staphyloccus, and stenotrophomanas from cultivated and uncultivated soils grown in minimal media with DDT as the only carbon source can degrade DDT; more importantly, none of the isolates degraded DDT into DDE, the metabolism form found in human adipose tissue (Hamadi et al 2010).
In term of governance inertia fostered for the continued use of DDT, for the sole purpose of public health to minimize the prevalence of malaria is accredited to World Health Organization (WHO) . In a document, WHO position on DDT use in disease vector control under the Stockholm Convetion on persistent organic pollutant, , it proposed and support the continued use of DDT for disease vector control in combating malaria, particularly in the poorest endemic countries; importantly to note, the convention set restriction of DDT for public health use and until viable, effective, affordable alternatives compound are proposed (WHO, 2004).
The article Should DDT be Banned by International Treaty by Curtis et al, (2000), made affirmative confirmation for the necessity of DDT. Curtis et al., made accounts on the history of DDT in controlling malaria, which is as follows:[ ninety percent of worldwide malaria morbidity and mortality occurs in tropical Africa, but there has been little mosquito control there in recent years. During the 1960s and 1970s, some local field trials and pilot campaigns of house spraying in equatorial Africa using DDT were very successful, for example, in the islands of Zanzibar and Pemba, where malaria transmission is naturally extremely intense, DDT spraying reduced prevalence of malaria parasitaemia to ,5%. Apart from South Africa and Madagascar, it is from Asia, Europe and Latin America that there are reliable data showing the impact on vector-borne disease of energetic use of DDT. In India, partly because of the bad publicity created by the campaign against DDT, the percentage of householders allowing spraying of their houses has declined far below that achieved in the heyday of the Malaria Eradication Programme in the 1960s] (Curtis et al., 2000). Convincible the abovementioned statement effectively proves the mandate for DDT usage. On the account of the progress India has made in the last forty years, it is important to note that only through an health population, can there be societal advancement; India understood that malaria had to be controlled by all means necessary in order to have a viable and production working population. From a personal perspective, I have been living in India for the last year and half, and have witnessed the trucks driving during routine mosquito spraying and I have also had the luxury of being disturbed by mosquito on a daily basis. Thankfully, due to the headstrong movement of the Indian public health, association between malaria and mosquito are kept to a minimal.
The discovery of DDT as an insecticidal awarded Paul MÃÂ¼ller the Nobel Prize. DDT has been effective in controlling mankind worst vector of infectious disease. The discovery of DDT is a cornerstone in public health because at least 80 percent of human infectious disease worldwide is arthropod borne (Edwards, 2004). Malaria persistency and the international public health failure to aggressively control it in endemic countries has made malaria an echo of human tragedy.