Nav: Home

Creating a new weapon in the fight against malaria

May 08, 2012

Over 200 million people contract malaria each year, and according to the World Health Organization, an estimated 655,000 people died from malaria in 2010. Malaria is caused by the parasite Plasmodium, which is transmitted to humans through mosquito bites. More effective control of malaria will require the development of new tools to prevent new infections. Wesley Van Voorhis at the University of Washington in Seattle and Oliver Billker at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute in Cambridge, England assembled an international research team to tackle the challenge of finding new ways to combat malaria. Their unique approach was to uncover a pathway that could block transmission of Plasmodium from humans to mosquitos, which represents a new strategy for controlling the spread of malaria. They discovered a new class of malaria transmission-blocking compounds that work by inhibiting a protein known as bumped kinase I. Bumped kinase I is required for Plasmodium to transition to sporozoites stage, the stage in its life cycle when it is infectious to mammals. In mosquitoes that fed on blood treated with the bumped kinase inhibitor, Plasmodium sporozoite formation was blocked. The research team showed preclinical data in mice indicating that bumped kinase inhibitors are safe and well tolerated. Their results show that bumped kinase inhibitors target a new life cycle stage in Plasmodium, and suggest that these compounds merit further development as a new therapy for malaria control.
-end-
TITLE:

Transmission of malaria to mosquitoes blocked by bumped kinase inhibitors

AUTHOR CONTACT:

Kayode K. Ojo

University of Washington, Seattle, , USA

Phone: 206 543 0821; E-mail: ojo67kk@u.washington.edu

View this article at: http://www.jci.org/articles/view/61822?key=bd73a892f008d6fa9cae

JCI Journals

Related Malaria Articles:

Could there be a 'social vaccine' for malaria?
Malaria is a global killer and a world health concern.
Transgenic plants against malaria
Scientists have discovered a gene that allows to double the production of artemisinin in the Artemisia annua plant.
Fighting malaria through metabolism
EPFL scientists have fully modeled the metabolism of the deadliest malaria parasite.
Should we commit to eradicate malaria worldwide?
Should we commit to eradicate malaria worldwide, asks a debate article published by The BMJ today?
Investigational malaria vaccine shows considerable protection in adults in malaria season
An investigational malaria vaccine given intravenously was well-tolerated and protected a significant proportion of healthy adults against infection with Plasmodium falciparum malaria -- the deadliest form of the disease -- for the duration of the malaria season, according to new findings published in the Feb.
More Malaria News and Malaria Current Events

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Teaching For Better Humans
More than test scores or good grades — what do kids need to prepare them for the future? This hour, guest host Manoush Zomorodi and TED speakers explore how to help children grow into better humans, in and out of the classroom. Guests include educators Olympia Della Flora and Liz Kleinrock, psychologist Thomas Curran, and writer Jacqueline Woodson.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#534 Bacteria are Coming for Your OJ
What makes breakfast, breakfast? Well, according to every movie and TV show we've ever seen, a big glass of orange juice is basically required. But our morning grapefruit might be in danger. Why? Citrus greening, a bacteria carried by a bug, has infected 90% of the citrus groves in Florida. It's coming for your OJ. We'll talk with University of Maryland plant virologist Anne Simon about ways to stop the citrus killer, and with science writer and journalist Maryn McKenna about why throwing antibiotics at the problem is probably not the solution. Related links: A Review of the Citrus Greening...