The malaria vaccine reported today to reduce life-threatening cases of the parasitic disease among children in Mozambique is based on the pioneering research of Drs. Ruth and Victor Nussenzweig and their colleagues at NYU School of Medicine.
Ruth Nussenzweig, Doc en Med, Ph.D., the C.V. Starr Professor of Medical and Molecular Parasitology, and her husband, Victor Nussenzweig, M.D., Ph.D., the Hermann M. Biggs Professor of Preventive Medicine, have devoted decades of research to preventing one of the worlds biggest killers. Malaria afflicts hundreds of millions of people, causing up to 3 million deaths every year, mostly in sub-Saharan Africa. Many of its victims are young children.
In a study reported today of more than 2,000 children in Mozambique, the vaccine reduced life-threatening attacks of malaria by 58 percent, and reduced milder forms of the disease by 30 percent. The study is published in the October 16, 2004, issue of The Lancet, a medical journal. "This is really fantastic news," says Dr. Victor Nussenzweig. "It is the first time that a vaccine has been shown to protect against severe malaria, which is a major cause of death in children in Africa. It is not yet an ideal vaccine because it is expensive, requires three doses, and it isnt known yet how durable the vaccines protection will be, but it is a very big step forward."
Pamela McDonnell | EurekAlert!
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