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Malaria is a mosquito-borne disease caused by a parasite called Plasmodium - when infected mosquitoes bite the human body, the parasites multiply in the liver, and then infect red blood cells. Even though this potentially fatal disease can be prevented and cured, each year 350-500 million cases of malaria still occur worldwide, and over one million people die, most of them young children in Africa south of the Sahara, where one in every five (20%) childhood deaths is due to the effects of the disease.

Malaria is so common in Africa because a lack of resources and political instability have prevented the building of solid malaria control programs. Experts say an African child has on average between 1.6 and 5.4 episodes of malaria fever each year and according to the World Health Organization (WHO) as many as half of the world's population are at risk of malaria mainly in the world's poorest and most vulnerable countries and every 30 seconds a child dies from malaria.
Zika virus present in Americas prior to first identification in Brazil

Zika virus present in Americas prior to first identification in Brazil

The Zika virus was present in Haiti several months before the first Zika cases were identified in Brazil, according to new research by infectious-disease specialists at the University of Florida. [More]
New blood treatment technology could reduce malaria risk following blood transfusions

New blood treatment technology could reduce malaria risk following blood transfusions

Patients, especially children, who undergo blood transfusions in sub-Saharan Africa are at high risk of transfusion-transmitted malaria. A new trial, published in The Lancet today, suggests that treating donated blood with a new technology that combines UV radiation and vitamin B is safe and could minimise the risk of malaria infection following blood transfusions. [More]
Scientists discover Hobit, Blimp1 genes that fight disease-causing pathogens

Scientists discover Hobit, Blimp1 genes that fight disease-causing pathogens

Melbourne researchers have uncovered the genes responsible for the way the body fights infection at the point of 'invasion' - whether it's the skin, liver, lungs or the gut. [More]

Study: Global malaria elimination possible within a generation

Global malaria eradication is possible within a generation, but only with renewed focus, new tools and sufficient financial support, according to a paper published in The Lancet by the Global Health Group’s Malaria Elimination Initiative (MEI) at UC San Francisco. [More]
WHO outlines steps to close immunization gap across countries during World Immunization Week 2016

WHO outlines steps to close immunization gap across countries during World Immunization Week 2016

During World Immunization Week 2016, held 24-30 April, the World Health Organization highlights recent gains in immunization coverage, and outlines further steps countries can take to “Close the Immunization Gap” and meet global vaccination targets by 2020. [More]
WHO: Europe becomes first malaria-free region in the world

WHO: Europe becomes first malaria-free region in the world

The European Region is the first in the world to have achieved interruption of indigenous malaria transmission. The number of indigenous malaria cases dropped from 90 712 in 1995 to zero cases in 2015. [More]
Developing countries face health financing crisis due to low domestic investment, stagnating international aid

Developing countries face health financing crisis due to low domestic investment, stagnating international aid

Two major studies published in The Lancet reveal the health financing crisis facing developing countries as a result of low domestic investment and stagnating international aid, which could leave millions of people without access to even the most basic health services. [More]
Funding improves for maternal, child health compared to donor investments in HIV, TB and malaria

Funding improves for maternal, child health compared to donor investments in HIV, TB and malaria

Funding earmarked for improving maternal and child health in low- and middle-income countries has grown faster since 2010 than funding for HIV, TB, and malaria. [More]
Scientists find new way to defend against deadly malarial parasite

Scientists find new way to defend against deadly malarial parasite

The most dangerous malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, is responsible for nearly half a million deaths annually across Africa and Southeast Asia. Of increasing concern, this parasite is now developing resistance to common antimalarial drugs. [More]
Researchers develop novel method to store microfluidic devices for CD4 T cell testing

Researchers develop novel method to store microfluidic devices for CD4 T cell testing

Providing vital health care services to people in developing countries without reliable electricity, refrigeration and state-of-the-art medical equipment poses a number of challenges. Inspired by pregnancy tests, researchers from Florida Atlantic University, Stanford University, and Baskent University in Turkey, have developed a novel method to store microfluidic devices for CD4 T cell testing in extreme weather conditions for up to six months without refrigeration. [More]
Dual-acting hybrid drug could be a promising new weapon against drug-resistant malaria

Dual-acting hybrid drug could be a promising new weapon against drug-resistant malaria

A combination of artemisinin and another drug (artemisinin combination therapy, ACT) is currently the best malaria treatment recommended by the World Health Organization. [More]
Spending less than $5 per person could save millions of maternal, child lives every year

Spending less than $5 per person could save millions of maternal, child lives every year

By spending less than $5 per person on essential health care services such as contraception, medication for serious illnesses and nutritional supplements, millions of maternal and child lives could be saved every year, according to a new analysis led by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. [More]
Innovative HIV vaccine candidate generates protection against repeated AIDS virus exposures

Innovative HIV vaccine candidate generates protection against repeated AIDS virus exposures

Mymetics Corporation, a pioneer in the research and development of virosome-based vaccines to prevent transmission of human infectious diseases across mucosal membranes, announced today that its innovative HIV vaccine candidate has shown to generate significant protection in groups of twelve female monkeys against repeated AIDS virus exposures during part of the preclinical study. [More]
New extended-release pills could reduce dosage frequency of some drugs

New extended-release pills could reduce dosage frequency of some drugs

Researchers from MIT and Brigham and Women's Hospital have designed a new type of pill that, once swallowed, can attach to the lining of the gastrointestinal tract and slowly release its contents. The tablet is engineered so that one side adheres to tissue, while the other repels food and liquids that would otherwise pull it away from the attachment site. [More]
Researchers find pathway to prevent emergence of zoonosis into human population

Researchers find pathway to prevent emergence of zoonosis into human population

The parasite responsible for a form of malaria now spreading from macaques to humans in South Asia could evolve to infect humans more efficiently, a step towards enhanced transmission between humans, according to a new study from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. The researchers say that defining the means by which the Plasmodium knowlesi parasite invades red blood cells could lead to interventions to prevent the emergence of the zoonosis into the human population. [More]
Leading entrepreneurs, innovators to take part in Royal Society of Medicine's 12th Medical Innovations Summit

Leading entrepreneurs, innovators to take part in Royal Society of Medicine's 12th Medical Innovations Summit

A group of leading entrepreneurs and innovators will be gathering at the Royal Society of Medicine on Saturday 16 April to take part in the Society’s 12th Medical Innovations Summit. Providing a twice-yearly platform for the presentation and discussion of inspirational ideas and developments in the field of medicine and healthcare, the Summits encourage innovators at the very beginning of their careers, as well as established clinicians and academics. [More]
GHIT Fund invests in two innovative malaria eradication tools

GHIT Fund invests in two innovative malaria eradication tools

The Global Health Innovative Technology Fund (GHIT Fund) announced today that it’s investing US$1,383,785 in a pair of innovative malaria eradication tools—a vaccine that could block transmission of two species of the deadly disease and a rapid field test that can reveal a malaria infection in minutes. [More]
Putative male-determining gene discovery could help develop strategies to combat malaria

Putative male-determining gene discovery could help develop strategies to combat malaria

A group of scientists, including one from the University of California, Riverside, have discovered a long-hypothesized male determining gene in the mosquito species that carries malaria, laying the groundwork for the development of strategies that could help control the disease. [More]
New device can deliver diagnosis to patient in 30 minutes

New device can deliver diagnosis to patient in 30 minutes

When a person contracts a disease, it takes time to diagnose the symptoms. Cell culturing, immunoassay and a nucleic-acid based diagnostic cycle all take several days, if not a week to determine the results. Not only do sick patients suffer during this time period, the wait can also lead to unnecessary disease spreading and perhaps avoidable antibiotic use. [More]
Multiple combination therapies could prevent malaria resistance

Multiple combination therapies could prevent malaria resistance

In order to preserve first-line drugs for treating malaria, multiple combination therapies should be deployed within a population to prevent resistance from developing, according to Maciej Boni from the Centre for Tropical Medicine and Global Health, University of Oxford, UK, and colleagues in a Policy Forum article published in this week's PLOS Medicine. [More]
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