Newsday Tuesday: Malaria Vaccine Trial Shows Promise

By Global Moms Challenge

August 20, 2013

In honor of World Mosquito Day, which marks the discovery that female mosquitoes transmit malaria between humans, we’re highlighting the possibility of a vaccine to protect against malaria.

Malaria MosquitoMalaria is a disease caused by a single mosquito bite and kills hundreds of thousands of people every year—mostly in Africa, and mostly children under five years old.

In a clinical study, a new vaccine protected 12 out of 15 volunteers from contracting malaria. Though these results are encouraging, the trial needs to be facilitated on a larger scale to rate broader potential.

NPR reports that Dr. Anthony Fauci, leader of the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases, calls the findings “unprecedented.”

While other vaccines usually go into effect by using an antibody response, this vaccine, called PfSPZ, works differently by using a weakened form of the malaria parasite to trigger an immune response.

This is an important scientific achievement, and Rockville, Maryland-based company Sanaria, developer of PfSPZ, is working quickly to arrange larger-scale trials in Africa.

Take Action Challenge

Read and listen to the entire story on NPR and spread the buzz today, World Mosquito Day.

Want to take action to help protect families in Africa from malaria? You don’t have to be a scientist. Hundreds of thousands of people have joined the Nothing But Nets campaign to send millions of life-saving bed nets to families throughout Africa—go today to send a net and save a life.

malaria_vaccineImage: The vaccine contains whole malaria parasites (red) weakened by irradiation. Courtesy Stephen Hoffman/Sanaria Inc.

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