Accelerated regime of preventative drugs shines light on Malaria treatment

COTE D’IVOIRE – Malaria infection and deaths could be avoided by more than half a million young children thanks to an accelerated regime of preventative drugs being rolled in four African countries, global health agency Unitaid, has said. The intervention, known as the Intermittent Preventive Treatment of malaria in infants-plus (IPTi+), builds upon a World Health Organization (WHO) recommended strategy that uses the antimalarial sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine to prevent malaria in children under one year old. “In its current regimen of IPTi, the protection offered to infants only goes up to one…

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Kenya contemplates expanded use of recently approved Malaria vaccine

KENYA – The Ministry of Health in Kenya has announced plans to roll out the first ever approved vaccine against malaria to various parts of the Country. The government has said consultations are ongoing with experts and advisory bodies to make considerations on the expanded use of the Malaria vaccine known as RTS,S based on in-country morbidity data and regulatory provisions. WHO recommended wider use of the vaccine across sub Saharan Africa and other regions earlier this week, following a review of malaria vaccine data generated from the pilot and…

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”Breakthrough” GSK malaria vaccine gets WHO approval for use in children in Africa

AFRICA – The World Health Organisation (WHO) has approved a ‘historic’ breakthrough vaccine against malaria that is set to save tens of thousands of lives in Africa and other developing countries. Developed by pharmaceuticals major GSK, the RTS,S/AS01 vaccine has received a rare approval to help manage the world’s leading killer of children under five and vulnerable people such as pregnant mothers. The recommendation by the WHO is based on results from an ongoing pilot programme in Ghana, Kenya and Malawi that has reached more than 800,000 children since 2019,  providing…

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MMV signals win with novel ganaplacide/lumefantrine combination in children with malaria

AFRICA – Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV) in partnership with global drug manufacturing giant Novartis, have reported positive phase 2b study results for novel non-artemisinin combination to treat uncomplicated malaria. The study which was conducted in children below the age of 12 involved the use of ganaplacide/lumefantrine combination therapy and provides support for continued development of the combination. “The world needs a diversified pipeline of anti-malarial medicines, especially as we are faced with emerging resistance to current treatments,” said Sujata Vaidyanathan, Head Global Health Development Unit, Novartis. Malaria, the oldest…

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USA grants Mozambique government US$800,000 to further Malaria research

MOZAMBIQUE – The U.S. Government, through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), has provided an US$800,000 grant to the Centro de Investigação em Saúde de Manhiça (CISM) for malaria and maternal and child health research. The grant will fund studies on the effectiveness of the pneumococcal vaccine and anti-malaria medicines and treatments. USAID, CISM and the Mozambican Ministry of Health (MISAU) collaborated to identify these topics as critical to improving malaria and maternal and child health care in Mozambique. USAID support will allow CISM to gather the most…

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Covid-19 pandemic sets back fight against HIV, TB, Malaria globally

SWITZERLAND – The COVID-19 pandemic had a devastating impact on the fight against HIV, tuberculosis (TB) and malaria in 2020, according to a new report released by the Global Fund. Burnet Institute Director and CEO Professor Brendan Crabb AC said a key lesson from the report is the urgent need for more COVID-19 vaccines in developing countries to alleviate pressure on their health systems. “The big issue is that these diseases – pandemics of the past for us – are linked to struggling health systems in countries very close to…

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Nigeria’s Emzor, Mangalam ink deal to manufacture APIs in Africa

NIGERIA – Emzor pharmaceuticals, a leading manufacturer of medicines in Nigeria, has signed an agreement with India’s Mangalam Drugs & Organics Limited, to locally manufacture and distribute Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (APIs) for the treatment and prevention of malaria. The arrangement includes an API technology transfer and licensing agreement which establishes a co-development basis for manufacturing APIs for the treatment of malaria which continues to be a leading cause of death on the African continent. This will lead to the development of a world class API manufacturing facility in full compliance…

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GSK-made malaria vaccine could save millions of children in Africa

AFRICA – A “game-changing” malaria vaccine developed by British researchers is poised to save the lives of millions of children in Africa after trial results beat all expectations. The jab, developed by the Brentford-based pharmaceutical company GSK, was found to reduce the rate of severe malaria by 70% in a study involving nearly 6,000 children aged between five and 17 months in Burkina Faso and Mali. However, the medical cocktail must be taken in the run-up to the rainy season. Malaria mainly affects children and young people, killing more than…

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Global Fund and Tanzania sign new US$112 million grant to support COVID-19 response

TANZANIA – Tanzania’s partnership with Global Fund has yielded a US$112 million deal to fight the COVID-19 crisis and accelerate the end of the epidemics of HIV, TB and malaria while building resilient and sustainable systems for health. The funds, channeled through the Global Fund’s COVID-19 Response Mechanism, will help Tanzania procure medical oxygen, increase access to COVID-19 diagnostics, protect health workers with personal protective equipment (PPE) This money will also help mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on HIV, TB and malaria services, strengthen health systems, particularly laboratory and surveillance…

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Africa CDC raises alarm over continent’s infectious diseases outbreaks

AFRICA – Africa is facing a syndemics, a combination of emerging infectious diseases, which are increasing the continents disease burden, the Africa Centers for Disease Control has announced. Dr john Nkengasong, Director, Africa CDC, said that despite dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic, the continent is at risk due to these infectious diseases. “The African continent as a whole is facing what we call a syndemics; a combination of emerging infectious diseases. We are dealing with this pandemic, but there will be another pandemic. “Syndemics are exacerbating the disease burden across…

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