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Definition of «Plasmodium»

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Plasmodium: The parasite guilty in the case of malaria (paludism). Plasmodium is a type of protozoa, a single-celled organism able to divide only within a host cell.

The main types are:

  • Plasmodium falciparum, the species which causes falciparum malaria, the most dangerous type of malaria;
  • Plasmodium malariae, the species which causes quartan malaria;
  • Plasmodium ovale, a species found primarily in East and Central Africa that causes ovale malaria; and
  • Plasmodium vivax, the species causing vivax malaria which is milder than falciparum malaria.

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