Malaria is a disease caused by protozoan parasites. The parasites are transmitted from host to host by a mosquito vector.
The mosquito becomes infected with the protozoan parasite by feeding on the blood of an infected human. The malaria parasite enters the mosquito's gut and enters the gut wall where it reproduces. When the parasites leave the gut they enter the salivary glands of the mosquito and then infect another human host when the mosquito next feeds.
The malaria parasite results in approximately 250 million cases of fever and one million deaths every year.
A photograph of an adult female Aedes aegypti mosquito taking a blood meal. The mosquito is a vector of malaria.
Photograph by United States Department of Agriculture.
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