The Treatment of Plasmodium knowlesi Malaria

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Plasmodium knowlesi occurs across Southeast Asia and is the most common cause of malaria in Malaysia. High parasitaemias can develop rapidly, and the risk of severe disease in adults is at least as high as in falciparum malaria. Prompt initiation of effective treatment is therefore essential. Intravenous artesunate is highly effective in severe knowlesi malaria and in those with moderately high parasitaemia but otherwise uncomplicated disease. Both chloroquine and artemisinin-combination therapy (ACT) are highly effective for uncomplicated knowlesi malaria, with faster parasite clearance times and lower anaemia rates with ACT. Given the difficulties with microscope diagnosis of P. knowlesi, a unified treatment strategy of ACT for all Plasmodium species is recommended in coendemic regions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)242-253
Number of pages12
JournalTrends in Parasitology
Issue number3
Early online date1 Oct 2016
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2017


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