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J Lab Physicians. 2019 Apr-Jun;11(2):161-163. doi: 10.4103/JLP.JLP_19_19.

Exflagellation of Plasmodium vivax in peripheral blood: An uncommon finding and its significance.

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Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, AIIMS, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India.


Malaria continues to be a major public health problem. The life cycle of malaria is completed in two hosts Anopheles mosquito - definitive host and humans - the intermediate host. Exflagellation of microgametocyes in the life cycle of Plasmodium vivax occurs in mosquitoes and is rarely seen in human peripheral blood. Less than 15 occurrences of exflagellated microgametocyte of Plasmodium species have been reported to date. The appearance of exflagellated microgametes in human blood may pose a diagnostic dilemma due to its resemblance with other hemoparasites such as Borrelia and Trypanosoma.


Exflagellation; Plasmodium; hemoparasites; malaria; microgametocyte

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