Malaria Atlas Project

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Malaria Atlas Project
Plasmodium falciparum 01.png
Blood smear of Plasmodium falciparum (gametocytes - sexual forms)
Abbreviation MAP
Formation 2006-05-01
Type International Organization
Purpose Determining spatial limits of Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax malaria at a global scale and its endemicity within this range
Headquarters Oxford
Region served
Official language
English, French and Spanish
Professor Peter Gething & Mr Mike Thorn (Project Manager)
Parent organization
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Affiliations Malaria Public Health & Epidemiology Group, Centre for Geographic Medicine, Kenya and Spatial Ecology & Epidemiology Group, University of Oxford, UK

The Malaria Atlas Project, abbreviated as MAP, is a non-profit project funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (previous funding was generously provided by the Wellcome Trust, UK.[1]). MAP is part of the Department of Zoology, with the Department of Mathematical, Physical, and Life Sciences within the University Of Oxford. MAP collaborates with a number of other organisations, including but not limited to:

  • The Spatial Epidemiology and Ecology Unit (SEEG) at The University Of Oxford
  • The Institute of Health and Metrics Evaluation (IHME) at The University of Washington
  • VecNet

MAP is grateful to the very many contributors of data and assistance from countless academic and health organisations around the world. A full list can be found on the MAP acknowledgement site.[2]

Spatial medical intelligence is central to the effective planning of malaria control and elimination. Forty years have passed since the cartography of malaria worldwide was taken seriously. The Malaria Atlas Project (MAP) was founded in 2005 to fill this niche for the malaria control community at a global scale.

The MAP team have assembled a unique spatial database on linked information based on medical intelligence, satellite-derived climate data to constrain the limits of malaria transmission[3] and the largest ever archive of community-based estimates of parasite prevalence.[4] These data have been assembled and analysed by a team of geographers, statisticians, epidemiologists, biologists and public health specialists.

The initial focus of MAP has been centred on predicting the endemicity of Plasmodium falciparum,[5] the most deadly form of the malaria parasite, due to its global epidemiological significance and its better prospects for elimination and control. Work in 2009 began to map the extent and burden of the relatively neglected Plasmodium vivax.

2015 saw the appointment of a new project manager to oversee a major overhaul of MAP's database design and application stack. As of June 2015, design work is continuing on the relational database stack in collaboration with IHME and SEEG. Both the breadth and depth of data stored by MAP are expanding and a new application tier with improved functionality is being written, with a delivery date expected of April 2016.

Readers are advised to visit the official MAP website at for further information.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Hay SI, Snow RW (2006). "The Malaria Atlas Project: Developing Global Maps of Malaria Risk.". PLoS Medicine 3 (12): e473. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.0030473. PMC 1762059. PMID 17147467. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ Guerra CA, Gikandi PW, Tatem AJ, Noor AM, Smith DL, Hay SI, Snow RW (2008). "The limits and intensity of Plasmodium falciparum transmission: implications for malaria control and elimination worldwide.". PLoS Medicine 5 (2): e38. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.0050038. PMC 2253602. PMID 18303939. 
  4. ^ Guerra CA, Hay SI, Lucioparedes LS, Gikandi P, Tatem AJ, Noor AM, Snow RW (2007). "Assembling a global database of malaria parasite prevalence for the Malaria Atlas Project.". Malaria Journal 6: 17. doi:10.1186/1475-2875-6-17. PMC 1805762. PMID 17306022. 
  5. ^ Hay SI, Guerra CA, Gething PW, Patil AP, Tatem AJ, Noor AM, Kabaria CW, Manh BH, Elyazar IRF, Brooker SJ, Smith DL, Moyeed RA, Snow RW (2009). Mueller, Ivo, ed. "A world malaria map: Plasmodium falciparum endemicity in 2007.". PLoS Medicine 6 (3): e1000048. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1000048. PMC 2659708. PMID 19323591. 

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