A Malaria vaccine that contains live parasites has been found 100% effective when taken alongside 86p antiviral tablets, a small study has found. Six volunteers given the jab in combination with a course of chloroquine were fully protected against the disease three months later.
This method is known as chemoprophylaxis vaccination which gives immunity against two very different strains of the mosquito-borne parasite. Experts said the results were unprecedented and gave hope that it could be used to shield against the five different types of circulating the world.Despite over a dozen vaccines being in development for Malaria, which kills more than 400,000 people a year globally, there is no approved jab. The disease is caused by Plasmodium parasites that are transmitted to people through the bites of mosquitoes and are most common in Africa.
In 2019, nearly half of the world’s population was at risk of Malaria. Most cases occur in sub-Saharan Africa, but South-East Asia, Eastern Mediterranean, Western Pacific and Americas are also at risk. The groups at highest risk include infants, children under the age of five, pregnant women and patients with HIV/AIDS, as well as non-immune migrants and mobile populations.