Diagnostic Technologies

DIAMETER: Diagnostics for malaria elimination toward eradication

Because the last malaria reservoirs may the hardest to detect

Press release — April 25, 2017. Alere launches the Alere™ Malaria Ag P.f, the first-ever rapid test to screen malaria infection in asymptomatic individuals

Finding the final cases

Precious Namakau – Community health worker 38 years old, 3 children, wearing cap and glasses, test and treat apron, and Phines Liyaii, 47 year old with 6 children, dark purple head scarf and sage blouse, outside Mandia community health post

New, highly sensitive diagnostics for malaria will help health workers to identify asymptomatic cases in communities where malaria is approaching elimination. PATH/G. Bienczycki

Many countries that have implemented successful malaria control programs are now close to achieving the goal of malaria elimination. In these areas, a significant portion of infected individuals have minimal or no symptoms but are still capable of transmitting malaria.

However, these cases may not be detected by existing rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs). As control programs increasingly lead to lower prevalence of malaria, diagnostic tools need to be able to detect cases in asymptomatic individuals so that these patients can be treated and the cycle of transmission halted. New, highly sensitive point-of-care tests are needed that can identify these final reservoirs of malaria in near-elimination settings.

Advancing more sensitive tools

PATH and our partners are working to catalyze and support the development, evaluation, commercialization, and implementation of new, highly sensitive RDTs for malaria.

PATH has supported the evaluation of a newly launched RDT for Plasmodium falciparum, the Alere™ Malaria Ag P.f. Currently, we’re conducting research into malaria biomarkers and evaluating several highly sensitive tests for malaria under development.

We use a rigorous approach to identify the most promising solutions to malaria diagnostic challenges in low-resource, near-elimination settings. Learn more about our work below.



View our DIAMETER publications on NCBI


Field work

PATH conducted field research in five countries representing the spectrum of malaria programs ranging from control to elimination. The findings were incorporated into target product profiles to ensure that improved diagnostic tests are informed by the needs of users and the contexts in which active infection detection is carried out.

Technology landscapes

To identify the most efficient and cost-effective solutions, PATH assessed existing and new diagnostic tools in the product development pipeline with an emphasis on those tools that are adept at identifying low-density malaria infections prevalent in elimination settings.



Gonzalo Domingo, Malaria Portfolio Leader


This project is supported by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.