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BackgroundLight microscopy is often used for malaria diagnosis in the field. However, it is time-consuming and quality of the results depends heavily on the skill of microscopists. Automating malaria light microscopy is a promising solution, but it still remains a challenge and an active area of research. Current tools are often expensive and involve sophisticated hardware components, which makes it hard to deploy them in resource-limited areas.ResultsWe designed an Android mobile application called Malaria Screener, which makes smartphones an affordable yet effective solution for automated malaria light microscopy. The mobile app utilizes high-resolution cameras and computing power of modern smartphones to screen both thin and thick blood smear images for P. falciparum parasites. Malaria Screener combines image acquisition, smear image analysis, and result visualization in its slide screening process, and is equipped with a database to provide easy access to the acquired data.ConclusionMalaria Screener makes the screening process faster, more consistent, and less dependent on human expertise. The app is modular, allowing other research groups to integrate their methods and models for image processing and machine learning, while acquiring and analyzing their data.

Original publication

DOI

10.1186/s12879-020-05453-1

Type

Journal article

Journal

BMC infectious diseases

Publication Date

11/11/2020

Volume

20

Addresses

Lister Hill National Center for Biomedical Communications, National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD, 20894, USA.

Keywords

Humans, Plasmodium falciparum, Malaria, Falciparum, Microscopy, Mass Screening, Sensitivity and Specificity, Image Processing, Computer-Assisted, Software, Machine Learning, Smartphone, Data Accuracy