Taxonomy: f. Plasmodidae
Animal: Plasmodium malariae 3 11.jpg
Plasmodium malariae trophozite in thin film - note compact ring in non-enlarged red cell and abundant dark brown pigment. P. malariae has little amoeboid activity, double infections are rare, it usually invades mature red cells and there is usually a low parasitaemia. Untreated P. malariae infections can last up to 50 years due to a low grade cycle in the blood. The incubation period is 18-40 days (but can be much longer) and the periodicity is a regular 72 hour cycle (c.f other human malarial parasites which have irregular 48 hours cycles except for P.falciparum which has a 36-48 hour cycle but can be continuous initially).
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