A research has founded a vaccine that may give protection against malaria. Researchers at the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine's Center for Global Health & Diseases have found new evidence that a Duffy binding protein-based vaccine gives protection against malaria, reducing infection and disease rates.
This specific protein is an attractive candidate for a P. vivax vaccine, as it could reduce illness in malaria-prevalent regions. For the first time, researchers proved that infiltration invasion of human red blood cells by the malaria parasite could be prevented by these antibodies.
Unlike other types of malaria, a P. vivax infection relies solely upon on the single molecular interaction between the Duffy antigen on human red blood cells and the Duffy binding protein expressed by the parasite to establish the disease.
By interrupting the interaction of parasite binding to the red cell, the researchers have the potential to eliminate P. vivax malaria. By exploiting this required interaction, the study offers a clear path toward development of a P. vivax malaria vaccine.
"P. vivax is widely distributed throughout Asia, the South Pacific, parts of Africa and South America. However, the importance of developing a vaccine against vivax malaria to the American public is underscored by the fact that this form of malaria is transmitted in Afghanistan, Iraq and adjoining regions where our troops are stationed," said James W. Kazura, director of the Center for the Case Western Reserve University Center for Global Health and Diseases.
The research at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine is particularly encouraging because it offers one of the first feasible vaccine concepts to the most common form of malaria.
The study is published in the December issue of Public Library of Science Medicine.