Geekwire: University of Washington Initiative Awarded $9.3M to Fight Deadly Malaria Strains in India

By Clare McGrane

Viruses and parasites are constantly changing. That’s the reason last year’s flu shot isn’t as effective against this year’s flu — the virus has evolved to resist it.

The same is true for malaria, but unlike the flu, malaria is one of the most deadly parasites in the world, and it’s becoming resistant to the lifesaving drugs that can cure it.

NewsBeat: Common Malaria Meds Pose No Undue Risk in Early Pregnancy

Global team finds that artemesinin therapies are as safe as quinine for women in first trimester

By Sarah C.B. Guthrie 

Artemisinin combination therapies (ACTs), medications widely used against malaria, are safe to administer to women in their first trimester of pregnancy, according to research published today. ACTs had previously been recommended at that stage of pregnancy only in life-saving circumstances. 

The Conversation: What Africa Still Needs to Do to Eliminate Malaria

By Willis Simon Akhwale, Country Director for I-TECH Kenya

Malaria is one of the oldest and deadliest infectious diseases affecting man. It is an ancient and modern disease – descriptions of illnesses similar to malaria are found in ancient texts from China, India, the Middle East, Africa and Europe.

Malaria parasites have co-evolved – which involves genetic changes and adaptation – with people as their hosts over a period of four thousand years.

HS Newsbeat: How Close are Local Researchers to a Malaria Vaccine?

By Bobbi Nodell and Alex Murphy

As 400,000 people a year are still being killed by malaria, researchers in Seattle are fervently working on a vaccine.

How close are they?

Well, they have several hurdles left but in the next 10 years, there very well could be a malaria vaccine given enough funding, said researchers Stefan Kappe and Jim Kublin, who are working on a vaccine candidate at the Center for Infectious Disease Research (CID Research) in Seattle.

VOA News: Genetically Engineered Vaccine Prevents Malaria in Mice, Findings Show

By Jessica Berman

A genetically engineered malaria vaccine has been shown to prevent the disease in mice, researchers say. The findings offer hope of halting the illness in humans, as well as stopping transmission of the mosquito-borne disease.

Researchers at the Center for Infectious Disease Research (CIDR) at the University of Washington, in conjunction with the Fred Hutchison Cancer Research Center, have developed a vaccine that uses the entire malaria-causing parasite — called P. falciparum — to stimulate a protective immune response.

Hutch News: On The Path to a New-Generation Malaria Vaccine

By Mary Engel

Researchers may be one step closer to a truly effective malaria vaccine, a new study suggests. A genetically modified malaria parasite worked as designed in its first human clinical trial, causing neither malaria nor serious safety problems in the 10 people who volunteered to be infected. It also stimulated an immune response that holds out promise of a more protective vaccine than the single candidate now in pilot studies

EurekAlert: Why Some People May Not Respond to the Malaria Vaccine

Creating protective immunity against the early liver stage of malaria infection is feasible, but has been difficult to achieve in regions with high rates of malaria infection. Many current malaria vaccines target the pre-erythrocytic stage of infection in the liver, however in endemic regions, increased blood stage exposure is associated with decrease vaccine efficacy, challenging current malaria vaccine efforts. 

Reuters Africa: From Gene Editing to Death Traps, Seattle Scientists Innovate in Race to End Malaria

By Kieran Guilbert

When Kayode Ojo first fell sick with malaria as a young boy in Nigeria, his grandfather shunned modern medicine, venturing into the bush to search for herbs and plants to treat the disease.

Having succumbed to malaria a further 50 or more times in his life, the United States-based scientist, now in his forties, is determined that his research - to develop a drug to stop transmission from humans back to mosquitoes - will help to eradicate the deadly disease.

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