Malaria is an infection caused by protozoa of genus Plasmodium, considered the one associated with increasingly large outbreaks.
After more than four decades of basic research and clinical trials, the World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended the malaria vaccine RTS,S for widespread use among children living in malaria endemic areas. Pioneering studies using rodent malaria models directed by Ruth S. Nussenzweig at the New York University School of Medicine demonstrated in the late 1960s that immunization with attenuated sporozoites — the infective stage of Plasmodium — induces immune responses that protect against parasite infection.
Last month, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommended widespread use of RTS,S/AS01 vaccine to prevent malaria in young African children, noting its 30% reduction in deadly severe malaria.
The development of novel malaria vaccines and antimalarial drugs is limited partly by emerging challenges to conduct field trials in malaria endemic areas, including unknown effects of existing immunity and a reported fall in malaria incidence. As a result, Controlled Human Malaria Infection (CHMI) has become an important approach for accelerated development of malarial vaccines and drugs. We conducted a systematic review of the literature to establish aggregate evidence on the reproducibility of a malaria sporozoite challenge model.
RTS,S/AS01, the leading malaria vaccine has been recommended by the WHO for widespread immunization of children at risk. RTS,S/AS01-induced anti-CSP IgG antibodies are associated with the vaccine efficacy. Here, the long-term kinetics of RTS,S/AS01-induced antibodies was investigated.
No abstract available
There is a clear need for novel approaches to malaria vaccine development. We aimed to develop a genetically attenuated blood-stage vaccine and test its safety, infectivity, and immunogenicity in healthy volunteers. Our approach was to target the gene encoding the knob-associated histidine-rich protein (KAHRP), which is responsible for the assembly of knob structures at the infected erythrocyte surface. Knobs are required for correct display of the polymorphic adhesion ligand P. falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1), a key virulence determinant encoded by a repertoire of var genes.
Efforts to control and further reduce morbidity and mortality caused by Plasmodium falciparum infections in all age groups will be substantially strengthened by development of efficacious malaria vaccines in malaria pre-exposed populations.
Mathematical models are increasingly used to inform decisions throughout product development pathways from pre-clinical studies to country implementation of novel health interventions.
The RTS,S/AS01 malaria vaccine is currently being evaluated in a cluster-randomized pilot implementation programme in three African countries. This study seeks to identify whether vaccination could reach additional children who are at risk from malaria but do not currently have access to, or use, core malaria interventions.