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February 18 2017

thatsridicarus
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Starting a talkshow is hard.
Reposted bycomics comics

May 30 2014

thatsridicarus
npr:

Experimental Malaria Vaccine Blocks The Bad Guy's Exit

For the first time in decades, researchers trying to develop a vaccine for malaria have discovered a new target they can use to attack this deadly and common parasite.

Finding a target for attack is a far cry from having a vaccine. And the history of malaria vaccines is littered with hopeful ideas that didn’t pan out. Still, researchers in the field welcome this fresh approach.

Over the past four decades, researchers have developed about 100 potential vaccines for malaria. The best of the bunch is still only modestly successful in children, who are at greatest risk for the disease. The mosquito-borne parasite kills more than 600,000 children a year, mostly in Africa.

So Dr. Jonathan Kurtis, at the Rhode Island Hospital and Brown University, decided it was time for a fresh start. He had developed a severe case of malaria while he was an undergraduate studying abroad in Kenya. And he learned just how devastating this disease can be, not only killing young children but causing hundreds of millions of cases of debilitating illness every year.

Kurtis and his colleagues started with samples of blood that had been methodically collected from children in Tanzania by Drs. Michal Fried and Patrick Duffy at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Kurtis’ team carefully examined those samples to find small but crucial differences between children who got infected but didn’t fall seriously ill and children who developed a severe case of the disease.

"We’re finding the rare needle in a haystack," Kurtis says. "We’re finding the rare parasite protein that generates a protective immune response."

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