Tags: malaria | cure | drug | single | dose

Researchers Hail Possible Cure for Malaria

Thursday, 30 Aug 2012 04:32 PM




Scientists say they have found a substance that appears to be a single-dose cure for malaria, one of the world’s deadliest diseases. If true, the new drug has the potential to save millions of lives.

Researchers at the University of Cape Town (UCT), South Africa say the compound referred to as MMV390048 is capable of defeating even resistant strains of the malaria parasite.

Early test results, according to UCT, show that the drug “displayed a complete cure of animals infected with malaria parasites in a single dose given orally, and thus has the potential to cure millions of people.”

Researchers said that MMV390048 not only “has the potential to become part of a single-dose cure for all strains of malaria, but might also be able to block transmission of the parasite from person to person.”

At a news conference announcing the finding, South Africa’s Minster of Science and Technology Naledi Pandor said, “This is a significant victory in the battle to alleviate the burden of disease in the subcontinent. Clearly the war on this disease is not yet won, but I am excited by the role that our excellent scientists have played in this milestone in finding a potential cure for malaria and possibly preventing its transmission.”

One of the lead researchers, Professor Kelly Chibale explained, “Our team is hopeful that the compound will emerge from rigorous testing as an extremely effective medicine for malaria – a disease that accounts for 24 percent of total child deaths in sub-Saharan Africa.”

According to the World Health Organization, half the world’s population, approximately 3.3 billion people are at risk from malaria, a mosquito-borne infectious disease which in 2010 alone caused an estimated 655,000 deaths around the world.

Clinical trials for MMV390048 are expected to begin in 2013.




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Thursday, 30 Aug 2012 04:32 PM
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