Kozhikode: A rare species of parasite Plasmodium ovale which causes malaria in humans was detected by a lab technician working with the Beach Hospital here.
With the parasite being detected early, the possibility of a spread of malaria has been avoided. The lab technician M V Sajeevan who belongs to Velliparamba, is also in charge of the malaria laboratory of seven districts. At present he is also functioning as a faculty of WHO.
The parasite was detected from the blood sample of an army man who came to Kannur district hospital with fever. It is understood that the soldier got infected while visiting Sudan as part of a UN mission. Even though initial tests were carried out in Kannur district hospital suspecting malaria, the reports turned out negative. Subsequently the blood samples were sent to Kozhikode district hospital.
The malarial parasites usually found in Kerala are Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium falciparum. Plasmodium ovale is found in African countries. This parasite was detected in Chengannur many years ago.