Saturday April 20, 2019

World Malaria Day 2015: A look at the numbers

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malaria

By NewsGram Staff Writer

Malaria inflicts great socio-economic burden on humanity, and with six other diseases (diarrhea, HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, measles, hepatitis B and pneumonia), narrates 85% of global infectious disease burden.

The vector borne disease affects pregnant women and children mainly. Last year, 1.07 million total malaria cases were registered in India which killed 535 people, the data of National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme suggested.

On the occasion of World Malaria Day 2015, NewsGram is offering its readers a few takeaways from World Malaria Report 2014. Here’s a glimpse:

  • Globally, an estimated 3.3 billion people in 97 countries and territories are at risk of malaria, and 1.2 billion are at high risk.
  • Malaria is concentrated in low-income and lower income countries. Within these countries, the most severely affected communities are those that are the poorest and most marginalized.
  • In sub-Saharan Africa, average infection prevalence in children aged 2–10 years dropped from 26% in 2000 to 14% in 2013, a relative decline of 46%.
  • In 2013, there were an estimated 198 million cases of malaria (uncertainty range: 124–283 million) and 584,000 malaria deaths globally.
  • Malaria incidence rates are estimated to have fallen by 30% globally between 2000 and 2013, while estimated mortality rates fell by 47%.
  • Fifty-eight countries are projected to achieve >75% reductions in malaria mortality rates by 2015.
  • Some 4.3 million fewer malaria deaths are estimated to have occurred between 2001 and 2013 than would have been the case had mortality rates remained unchanged since 2000.

Next Story

Novel Experimental Vaccine Offering Hope Against Malaria

A year later, the vaccinated non-human primates still had immunity against malaria, while eight control animals that were not vaccinated did not

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Malaria, Vaccines
This new type of bed net can help prevent malaria: Lancet. (VOA)

An experimental new malaria vaccine is offering potentially long-lasting immunity against the persistent parasite that sickens hundreds of millions of people each year, a study suggests.

Most vaccines are designed to encourage the human body to respond to invading, disease-causing pathogens by creating antibodies that disable those pathogens.

However, the new vaccine takes a different approach by using a weakened form of a common herpes virus – cytomegalovirus, or CMV – that infects most people without causing the disease.

This new vaccine reduced the malaria-causing parasite’s release from the liver and into the blood of infected rhesus macaques by 75 to 80 per cent, reported the paper published in the journal PLOS ONE.

“The problem with most vaccines is that their effectiveness is often short-lived,” said lead author Klaus Fruh, professor at the Oregon Health and Science University in the US.

More people die of malaria than anything else in the world.
More people die of malaria than anything else in the world.

“Our cytomegalovirus-based vaccine platform can create and keep immunity for life. With further research and development, it could offer a lifetime of protection against malaria,” Fruh added.

Malaria is a serious and sometimes fatal disease caused by Plasmodium parasites, which are spread to humans through mosquito bites.

It can cause high fevers, shaking chills, flu-like illness and, in the worst cases, death.

Worldwide, 216 million people were infected with malaria in 2016, leading to 445,000 deaths.

Fruh and his team weaved tiny bits of their target pathogen into CMV, which is already being used in vaccines being developed to battle HIV and tuberculosis.

Those who receive the resulting, re-engineered CMV vaccine produce memory T-cells that can search for and destroy pathogen-infected cells.

A health service worker takes a blood sample for a malaria test in Dajabon, Dominican Republic, on the border with Haiti, Oct. 6, 2009. A test that doesn't require a needle or blood has won the Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation
A health service worker takes a blood sample for a malaria test in Dajabon, Dominican Republic, on the border with Haiti, Oct. 6, 2009. A test that doesn’t require a needle or blood has won the Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation, VOA

The team developed two different versions of their CMV-based malaria vaccine while using four different proteins made by the Plasmodium parasite.

The resulting vaccines delayed the parasite’s appearance in the blood of 16 infected and vaccinated rhesus macaques by eliminating between 75 and 80 per cent of parasites from the liver.

Also Read- Deficiency of Zinc May up Hypertension

A year later, the vaccinated non-human primates still had immunity against malaria, while eight control animals that were not vaccinated did not.

The CMV vaccine platform has been licensed by San Francisco-based Vir Biotechnology, which plans to lead a human clinical trial for a CMV-based HIV vaccine in 2019.  (IANS)