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Concept: Republic


In June 2007, a previously undescribed monkey known locally as “lesula” was found in the forests of the middle Lomami Basin in central Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). We describe this new species as Cercopithecus lomamiensis sp. nov., and provide data on its distribution, morphology, genetics, ecology and behavior. C. lomamiensis is restricted to the lowland rain forests of central DRC between the middle Lomami and the upper Tshuapa Rivers. Morphological and molecular data confirm that C. lomamiensis is distinct from its nearest congener, C. hamlyni, from which it is separated geographically by both the Congo (Lualaba) and the Lomami Rivers. C. lomamiensis, like C. hamlyni, is semi-terrestrial with a diet containing terrestrial herbaceous vegetation. The discovery of C. lomamiensis highlights the biogeographic significance and importance for conservation of central Congo’s interfluvial TL2 region, defined from the upper Tshuapa River through the Lomami Basin to the Congo (Lualaba) River. The TL2 region has been found to contain a high diversity of anthropoid primates including three forms, in addition to C. lomamiensis, that are endemic to the area. We recommend the common name, lesula, for this new species, as it is the vernacular name used over most of its known range.

Concepts: Biodiversity, Ecology, Primate, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic, Rainforest, Central Africa, Congo River


Understanding the spatial clustering of Plasmodium falciparum populations can assist efforts to contain drug-resistant parasites and maintain the efficacy of future drugs. We sequenced single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the dihydropteroate synthase gene (dhps) associated with sulfadoxine resistance and 5 microsatellite loci flanking dhps in order to investigate the genetic backgrounds, genetic relatedness, and geographic clustering of falciparum parasites in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Resistant haplotypes were clustered into subpopulations: one in the northeast DRC, and the other in the balance of the DRC. Network and clonal lineage analyses of the flanking microsatellites indicate that geographically-distinct mutant dhps haplotypes derive from separate lineages. The DRC is therefore a watershed for haplotypes associated with sulfadoxine resistance. Given the importance of central Africa as a corridor for the spread of antimalarial resistance, the identification of the mechanisms of this transit can inform future policies to contain drug-resistant parasite strains.

Concepts: DNA, Gene, Genetics, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic, Population genetics, Central African Republic, Central Africa


Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) remains the most common cause of visual loss among subjects over 50 years of age in the developed world. The Irish Longitudinal study on Ageing (TILDA) is a population-based study of subjects aged 50 years or older, designed to investigate factors that influence ageing, and has enabled this investigation of the prevalence of AMD in the Republic of Ireland (ROI).

Concepts: United States, United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland, Republic, Ageing, Macular degeneration, Republic of China


Thirty years after the discovery of HIV-1, the early transmission, dissemination, and establishment of the virus in human populations remain unclear. Using statistical approaches applied to HIV-1 sequence data from central Africa, we show that from the 1920s Kinshasa (in what is now the Democratic Republic of Congo) was the focus of early transmission and the source of pre-1960 pandemic viruses elsewhere. Location and dating estimates were validated using the earliest HIV-1 archival sample, also from Kinshasa. The epidemic histories of HIV-1 group M and nonpandemic group O were similar until ~1960, after which group M underwent an epidemiological transition and outpaced regional population growth. Our results reconstruct the early dynamics of HIV-1 and emphasize the role of social changes and transport networks in the establishment of this virus in human populations.

Concepts: AIDS, Epidemiology, Infectious disease, Africa, Demography, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic, World population


Whenever epidemics of cholera occur, the global public health community is energized. Experts meet, guidelines for control are reviewed and reissued, and new and modified interventions are proposed and promoted. In the past two decades, these things happened after cholera appeared in Latin America in 1991, in the wake of the Rwandan genocide and the ensuing refugee crisis in Zaire (now Democratic Republic of Congo) in 1994, in Zimbabwe in 2008, and in October 2010, at the onset of the ongoing epidemic in Haiti (see article by Barzilay et al.). But even when it is not covered in the news . . .

Concepts: Epidemiology, United States, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic, United Nations, Rwanda, Rwandan Genocide, First Congo War


The Republic of Ireland (RoI) is the only European Country with a mandatory national legislation requiring artificial fluoridation of drinking water and has the highest per capita consumption of black tea in the world. Tea is a hyperaccumulator of fluoride and chronic fluoride intake is associated with multiple negative health outcomes. In this study, fifty four brands of the commercially available black tea bag products were purchased and the fluoride level in tea infusions tested by an ion-selective electrode method. The fluoride content in all brands tested ranged from 1.6 to 6.1 mg/L, with a mean value of 3.3 mg/L. According to our risk assessment it is evident that the general population in the RoI is at a high risk of chronic fluoride exposure and associated adverse health effects based on established reference values. We conclude that the culture of habitual tea drinking in the RoI indicates that the total cumulative dietary fluoride intake in the general population could readily exceed the levels known to cause chronic fluoride intoxication. Evidence suggests that excessive fluoride intake may be contributing to a wide range of adverse health effects. Therefore from a public health perspective, it would seem prudent and sensible that risk reduction measures be implemented to reduce the total body burden of fluoride in the population.

Concepts: European Union, United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland, Republic, Fluorine, Tea, Water fluoridation, Fluoride poisoning


This study uses data from the World Health Organization’s Study on Global Ageing and Adult Health (SAGE) to examine patterns of hypertension prevalence, awareness, treatment and control for people aged 50 years and over in China, Ghana, India, Mexico, the Russian Federation and South Africa.

Concepts: United States, Petroleum, Japan, Republic, Aging, Russia, International Monetary Fund, Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty


Over two-thirds of the world’s cancer deaths occur in economically developing countries; however, the societal costs of cancer have rarely been assessed in these settings. Our aim was to estimate the value of productivity lost in 2012 due to cancer-related premature mortality in the major developing economies of Brazil, the Russian Federation, India, China and South Africa (BRICS).

Concepts: Republic, India, Developing country, Brazil, Russia, Soviet Union, International Monetary Fund, BRIC


In a Perspective, Chris Beyrer and coauthors discuss the threat of HIV to health in the Russian Federation.

Concepts: United States, Republic, Russia, Federation, Caspian Sea, Federal subjects of Russia, Russians, Republics of the Soviet Union


BACKGROUND: Data on acute renal failure in complicated malaria in children in the Democratic Republic of Congo are sparse. The objective of this study was to document the profile of acute renal failure in severe malaria in admitted patients in pediatric hospitals from Kinshasa. METHODS: A prospective cohort study was conducted from January 2008 to December 2008 in children admitted in emergency units of five hospitals in Kinshasa for severe malaria. RESULTS: In our series, 378 children with severe malaria were included. There were 226 boys and 152 girls (sex ratio 1.49). One hundred and ninety four (194) of these patients were under 5years old. Acute renal failure was observed in 89 children (23.6%) and 87 of them had blackwater fever (BWF). This form of severe malaria was predominant in children older than 5 years. Quinine was the commonest antimalarial drug involved in the genesis of BWF. Dialysis was indicated in 23 children (24.0%) and was effective (acute peritoneal dialysis) in 21 patients. The death rate in children with ARF was 12.6% (n=87). Recovery of renal function was obtained by conservative treatment in the remained group. CONCLUSION: This study confirmed the emergence of BWF in seemed protected autochthon children older than 5years. BWF remained the leading cause of acute renal failure in complicated malaria among Congolese children in Kinshasa.

Concepts: Renal failure, Chronic kidney disease, Nephrology, Dialysis, Malaria, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic, Peritoneum