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New from MESA: Tracking our research efforts to eradicate malaria

November 20, 2014 - 18:00 -- MESA Alliance

Over the past decades, Research and Development has played a key role in driving the achievements made against malaria with the development of tools such as rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs), artemisinin-combination therapies (ACTs) and long-lasting insecticide-treated nets (LLINs). We have also made great progress in our capacity to disseminate the scientific information to the malaria community; open access journals, webs, blogs, twitter, emails, conferences, publications, etc. However, one of the questions that remained pending was, “is it possible to track all current research projects focused on malaria elimination and eradication?”

Are Artemisia annua plantations killing fields?

November 5, 2014 - 18:29 -- Pierre Lutgen

Artemisia annua has strong allelopathic properties as was documented by Mediplant for the high artemisinin hybrid. In other words the plant becomes invasive and inhibits the growth of other plants or cash crop on fields where Artemisia has been planted for the extraction of artemisinin by Bigpharma.

With WHO's blessing Keasling's synthetic artemisinin replaces the natural product: an economical disaster for African families who have invested all their meager resources in Artemisia annua plantations, lured by the promise of big profits.

World War 1 and Malaria

November 5, 2014 - 10:08 -- Anton Alexander

As this year is the centenary of the start of World War 1, perhaps readers may be interested to see how malaria may have changed the outcome of the war had the Turkish army managed to hang on after the last battle in 1918, as the British Army collapsed from malaria two weeks after that battle. See http://www.eradication-of-malaria.com/ww1-malaria.html This may be used to serve as a reminder to those who choose to ignore the disease and treat it casually.

Potassium in Artemisia plants, a key factor in malaria control?

October 14, 2014 - 06:54 -- Pierre Lutgen

 

 

Constant Tchandema and Pierre Lutgen

Potassium, the most abundant cation in the human body, regulates intracellular enzyme function and neuromuscular tissue excitability. Serum potassium is normally maintained within thenarrow range of 3.5 to 5.5 mEq/L.

OPEN ACCESS New Cochrane Review

October 13, 2014 - 09:23 -- Dee Walshe

Hello all,

Several recently published Cochrane Reviews from the Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group may of interest to Malaria World members:

Artemether for severe malaria (new review) http://ow.ly/CEOQi
Drugs for preventing malaria in pregnant women in endemic areas: any drug regimen versus placebo or no treatment (updated review) http://ow.ly/CEPri

Best wishes,
Dee

http://cidg.cochrane.org/our-reviews</p>

Webinar 'Evaluating antimalarial safety' from ACT consortium, Oct 7th 2014

September 30, 2014 - 14:07 -- MESA Alliance

Clinical trials are not suitable to identify rare, potentially serious adverse effects of drugs, or to define their safety in high risk populations.

Artemisinin-based combination therapies (or ACTs) are considered safe, but there are concerns over their potential to cause damage to parts of the brain. There is also a concern about their safety in patients infected with HIV. 

Pedro Alonso to replace Rob Newman at GMP

August 1, 2014 - 12:37 -- Clive Shiff

I am pleased to see that Pedro will take over the hard task that Rob Newman left. Rob was instrumental in bringing the Global Malaria Programme back to life, and now I would like to see it expand its influence. When one looks at the various malaria control operations in various countries and read the various blogs etc, it is apparent that there is a lack of coordination, and in most instances there are several agencies, donors, major players and national personalities operating.

YouTube film Science to accelerate us to malaria eradication

July 17, 2014 - 19:30 -- MESA Alliance
A great new science lecture is available on the MESA YouTube channel: 'Science to accelerate us to malaria eradication',  presented by Lee Hall at the Keystone Symposium 2014.
 
Lee presents some key concepts on the vibrant biomedical R&D agenda which we need to support progress towards global malaria eradication. In his lecture, he poses the question of how the changing epidemiology of malaria impacts on research and interventions and highlights five challenges:
 

Injectable artesunate: cure or killer?

June 27, 2014 - 13:16 -- Irene Teis

A document in Scientific American (June 2014) describes the activities of MVV Medecines for Malaria Ventures, a « non profit » organization (association sans but lucratif) located at Geneva. It is surprising to learn that they sell Artesunate in monotherapy for intravenous injection at high doses ; in cooperation with WHO and Médecins sans Frontières.

Review of 'what works' in elimination advocacy

June 19, 2014 - 18:55 -- MESA Alliance
Malaria Journal publishes an Open Access timely review of 'what works' in elimination advocacy. The authors identify 7 key advocacy elements for disease elimination:
 
  1. A global elimination plan, supported by international health bodies.
  2. Thorough costings and tools to support the business case.
  3. An approach that is positioned within a development framework.
  4. Core elimination advocacy messages.
  5. Provision of advocacy tools for partners.
  6. Extensive and effective community engagement.
  7. Strong partnerships

Prestigious NWO-Vidi grant to start a new malaria research group

June 3, 2014 - 11:37 -- Taco Kooij

Dear friends & colleagues,
I am extremely honoured, proud, and happy to announce that I have been awarded a prestigious Vidi grant from the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) to start my own independent malaria research lab in Nijmegen. Below follows a press release providing further details.
Taco

Publication: Planning meeting for operational research on malaria elimination. WHO Meeting report May 2014

June 2, 2014 - 15:50 -- MESA Alliance

Number of pages: 9
Publication date: 2014
Languages: English
WHO reference number: WHO/HTM/ GMP/2014.5

Main objectives: reviewing the malaria operational research landscape; identifying operational challenges, bottlenecks and priority research questions in the transition from malaria control towards elimination; and reaching agreement among the meeting participants on the next steps, roles and responsibilities.

malaria and local blogging

May 31, 2014 - 19:33 -- Cliff Landesman

Why is there so little blogging about malaria from a local perspective? Those who live in regions of endemic malaria are not writing about it. As a result, it is hard to follow progress in combating malaria in a particular region. For example, I have an interest in malaria in western Kenya. However, it is difficult to know what programs are in place there, who is involved, what progress has been made. I am willing to bet that there is not a single blog anywhere where people living in an endemic region talk about malaria.

En Francais - Do you see patients with cerebral malaria? ...Or know someone who does?

May 30, 2014 - 01:34 -- Lakshmi Swamy

------------- Enquête sur le diagnostic du neuropaludisme--------------------
Nous sommes un groupe de médecins de l'université Duke aux États-Unis et de l'Université de Liverpool au Royaume-Uni. Notre objectif étant de mieux comprendre comment les médecins parviennent à poser un diagnostic de neuropaludisme, nous avons réalisé une enquête à ce sujet.

Need for some effective coordination in malaria control interventions

May 19, 2014 - 17:31 -- Clive Shiff

Wherever malaria has been eliminated, success was likely to have been based on the interplay of a series of mechanisms. In the United States it may have coincided with the advent of residual insecticides, but there were a variety of factors associated with the success. These were seasonal changes, environmental factors, political decisions that affected where people could live, the advent of improved treatments and increase in wealth and improvement of living standards. The same can be said of Italy and much of Europe in the early part of the 20th Century.

Milk, the forgotten antimalarial

May 19, 2014 - 13:30 -- Pierre Lutgen

It all begins in 1952 with the work of the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (BG Maegraith et al, British Medical Journal, 1952, 1382-3). They found that in rats inoculated with Plasmodium berghei and living on a diet of milk there was a strong suppression of the growth of the parasites. This was valid for retail whole cow’s milk, reconstituted dried milk from different origins and human milk. Most rats on normal laboratory diet died in a few days.

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