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Blood group variants are characteristic of population groups, and can show conspicuous geographic patterns. Interest in the global prevalence of the Duffy blood group variants is multidisciplinary, but of particular importance to malariologists due to the resistance generally conferred by the Duffy-negative phenotype against Plasmodium vivax infection. Here we collate an extensive geo-database of surveys, forming the evidence-base for a multi-locus Bayesian geostatistical model to generate global frequency maps of the common Duffy alleles to refine the global cartography of the common Duffy variants. We show that the most prevalent allele globally was FY*A, while across sub-Saharan Africa the predominant allele was the silent FY*B(ES) variant, commonly reaching fixation across stretches of the continent. The maps presented not only represent the first spatially and genetically comprehensive description of variation at this locus, but also constitute an advance towards understanding the transmission patterns of the neglected P. vivax malaria parasite.

Original publication

DOI

10.1038/ncomms1265

Type

Journal article

Journal

Nature communications

Publication Date

01/2011

Volume

2

Addresses

Spatial Ecology and Epidemiology Group, Tinbergen Building, Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3PS, UK.

Keywords

Humans, Plasmodium vivax, Malaria, Vivax, Duffy Blood-Group System, Gene Frequency, Alleles, Africa South of the Sahara