Researchers from the Walter and Eliza Hall
Institute, Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, University of Basel and
the Papua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research have developed a new
molecular technology which can make a huge difference to malaria control
methods and vaccine development.
This technique can precisely evaluate the risk of
infants in endemic countries developing clinical malaria and can help with prevention
strategies and vaccines.
The technique can aid in the understanding of how
anti-malarial vaccine and treatment strategies help bring down malaria.
Professor Ivo Mueller from the Walter and Eliza Hall
Institute said, "It was very clear that infection with new and genetically
different malaria parasites was the single biggest factor in determining the
risk of an infant becoming sick from malaria, more than any other factor
including age, the use of bed nets or the risk of transmission in the area. We
were actually surprised by how clear the correlation was."