World's first malaria vaccine Mosquirix to be tested in Africa

Francis Osborne
April 26, 2017

This is another reason why Ghana, Kenya, and Malawi have been chosen for the initial pilot, as these nations already have other extensive preventative programs in place, while at the same time still having a high burden of the disease present.

This is the first approved vaccine against malaria and, as BBC reports, it works by training the immune system to attack the malaria parasite spread by mosquito bites.

The injectable vaccine, called RTS, S, was developed to protect children from malaria, and the vaccine will be incorporated into a complementary malaria tool, which if proven effective will be added into WHO-recommended measures to prevent the disease. "These pilot projects will provide the evidence we need from real-life settings to make informed decisions on whether to deploy the vaccine on a wide scale", said Dr. Pedro Alonso, Director of the WHO Global Malaria Programme said in November 2016.

Global efforts in the last 15 years cut the death toll by 62 percent between 2000 and 2015.

Malaria remains one of the world's most stubborn health challenges, infecting more than 200 million people every year and killing about half a million. Between 2000 and 2015, the deaths associated with the disease decreased almost 62 percent, while there is a 21 percent reduction in the total number of cases.

World Health Organization said that despite progress in malaria prevention, the implementation across African nations is slow.

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That means Democrats would have to support it, and Republicans and Democrats have major differences when it comes to tax reform. He also thinks a lower corporate rate would unite the Trump White House's business-leaning and nationalistic wings.

It is understood that the vaccine will be tested on children between five to 17 months old to see whether its protective effects shown so far in clinical trials can hold up under real-life conditions.

Despite the undeniable progress medical science has made in treating infectious diseases, malaria has always stuck like a thorn in humanity's side.

In sub-Saharan Africa, however, about 43 percent of people are at risk for the disease. She trained with the GSK scientists who did much of the original research to develop the vaccine in its early days. Most malaria cases occur in such countries.

Sinnis was meeting with other malaria researchers to talk about the latest scientific advances in vaccine development.

This pilot program is being funded by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria, Unitaid, WHO and GSK. World Health Organization is working with the three countries to facilitate regulatory authorization of the vaccine for use in the pilots through the African Vaccine Regulatory Forum (AVAREF). As STAT News' Helen Branswell explains, that suggests the vaccine only delays malaria instead of actually preventing it.

The vaccine doesn't provide ideal protection: In the most recent clinical trial that ended in 2015, it was only stopped about 30% of malaria cases in infants, and 40% in toddlers.

Other reports by TheDailyFarc

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