KEGS Biology Blog

Monday 7th January Section 2
January 7, 2013, 7:25 pm
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Malaria and Malaria homework


15 Comments so far
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Article explains concerns that it seems almost impossible that we will find a vaccine for malaria soon because the parasite which causes it is such a genetically complex organism and evolves so rapidly that it can quickly become resistant to a single vaccine. Also states that an estimated two million people die of malaria each year, mostly infants, and includes information of when the parasite became resistant to certain drugs and in what regions this resistance started, as well as suggesting when the parasite originated.

Comment by gautammenon1

Researchers are close to developing a vaccine that can protect children from the effects of malaria. It has to be administered in 3 doses.

Comment by yuansun

A wide – scale African trial in malarial endemic countries such as Gabon, Burkina Faso, Malawi, Ghana, Kenya, has shown the severe risks of malaria cut in half by vaccine. 15,460 babies and young children made up one of the largest research trials in to the malarial vaccine as 800, 000 lives are taken every year – mainly children under 5 are most at risk. GlaxoSmithKline the UK pharmaceutical company have claimed that if a vaccine is produced that it will be sold only just over the cost price. The vaccine would need to be incorporated in to the infant immunisation schedule. The World Health Organisation stated that the vaccine would need to be used in conjunction with bed nets and insecticide spraying of homes. Severe malaria that affects the brain and the kidney that can be fatal was reduced as malaria occurred in fewer and less serious bouts however 20% of side effects were seen.

Comment by helenquah

The route all strains of the most deadly malaria parasite use to enter red blood cells has been identified by researchers

There is still no approved vaccine against malaria. Large scale trials of the most advanced prototype – RTS,S – showed it halved the risk of getting malaria.

This had completely block invasion using multiple different methods, using antibodies targeting this interaction we could stop all invasion of red blood cells.

The team at the Sanger Institute discovered that “basigin”, a receptor on the surface on red blood cells, and “PfRh5”, a protein on the parasite, were crucial.

Comment by nisithadissanayake

Describes the scientific breakthrough in the path of researching for the malaria vaccine. Details the actual difficulty of targeting parasites, specifically malaria and the fact that any vaccine would have to work in minutes to target the parasite as it moves so quickly into the liver.
Also talks about the science of the mechanism of the vaccine; instead of antibodies to kill the parasite, scientists used T-cells which can identify the parasite infected liver cells, meaning that the parasite could be killed even when it hid in the liver.

Comment by mehleen

Article talks about how two large medical research based companies are collating their findings to try and make a breakthrough in providing a vaccine for malaria. The U.S. researchers say “a vaccine based on genetically engineered DNA could induce an immune response in humans to protect against malaria parasite infection”.They are trying to implement “an innovative vaccine delivery technology called electroporation” which creates temporary pores in a cell membrane, allowing uptake of the synthetic DNA that then causes the cell to produce proteins mimicking the presence of the malaria pathogen.

Comment by jakepalmer1
Article about potential malaria vaccine after a promising clinical trial involving 45 children in Burkina Faso. Shown that those who recieved the vaccine had incidence of disease which was three to four times lower than those who didn’t. Key protein MSP3 is thought to produce antibodies that kill the parasite – protein is unique and doesn’t change between different strands of plasmodium parasite – ideal for vaccine. Other possible vaccine is RTS,S but this could be more expensive.

Comment by candicetam

The article explains how some Oxford researchers have discovered a new approach to the malaria vaccine by finding the route in which the parasite uses to enter the blood.
The vaccine has worked on all strains of parasites, and the researchers are going to start trials on animals and people

Comment by spencerfinch

Simon Draper researches Malaria and he talks about why it’s so difficult to find a vaccine for the disease. 1 because the parasit which causes it is highly evolved and is a master of disguise(in the body) and 2 because actually making a working vaccine is hard. a vaccine comprises of an inactive form of the organism (parasite in this case) but it’s hard to even grow a parasite in a lab.
He talks about a malarial achillles heel- this is the idea that the parasite uses an essential pathway to get into the red blood cell and his group’s shown that antibodies against this pathway can neutalise this process and these antibodies work on all strains of the parasite.
Also the malaria parasite genome which has over 5 thousand different genes is being looked at and experimented upon to see if a vaccine could be produced.. at the moment only 10-15 have been called vaccine candidates so it’s highly possible something useful lies in the others that havent been tested yet.

Comment by halima101

Testing of a developed malaria vaccine, it talks about a trial being done on 15460 children ranging from 6 weeks to 17 months old. The results show that the vaccine is has a 50% eficacy rate against malaria and an only slightly lower 45% eficacy rate against severe malaria.

However the vaccine only has a 31% eficacy rate for all age groups against severe malaria.

Another question raised is how long term this eficacy is

Comment by bensubhani

An article describing how the pharmaceutical giant GSK have developed the first ever vaccine for a parasitic infection, which could mean a new step in vaccine creation for multi phased pathogens. The article focuses around the new results showing thousands of infants and childrens given the vaccine seem to have been malaria protected and with no adverse side effects.

Comment by jaimieclifford

The articles is about an america company called inovio pharmaceuticals that are trying to develop malaria vaccine. They are going to start trials in 2014 on 30 volunteers that have been exposed to the malarial parasite.
The trial will include two arms. The first will incorporate three antigens shown previously to protect against the Plasmodium falciparum strain of malaria.

Comment by hinalipatel

Article describes how recent malaria vaccine has been proven to be effective against all strains of the malaria parasite (Plasmodium). Targeting the route of the parasite into the red blood cells, the Oxford research team hopes to eradicate malaria. Other researchers postulate that that the 50% success rate of ‘RTS,S’ is not good enough, and suggest that attacking the crucial protein ‘PfRh5’ and a single receptor on the outside of the red blood cell will result in a similar effect on all malaria strains. If safety tests prove positive, the article says clinical trials in patients may be in effect within 2-3 years.

Comment by alexgurton
Although not specifically about a vaccine for malaria, the article details a study by Janet Fang suggests that wiping out all mosquitoes would only have temporary effects on the environments where they are important, at which point they would be replaced with an organism which could be far worse than the mosquito we see today because the mosquito does not “occupy an unassailable niche in the environment,”

Comment by matthewbesley

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