Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New treatment for severe malaria

29.09.2006
The most dangerous form of malaria is difficult to treat and claims two million lives a year. Now, researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden have developed a powerful new weapon against the disease.

Severe anaemia, respiratory problems and encephalopathy are common and life-threatening consequences of serious malaria infection. The diseases are caused when the malaria bacteria P.falciparium infects the red blood cells, which then accumulate in large amounts, blocking the flow of blood in the capillaries of the brain and other organs.

The reason that the blood cells conglomerate and lodge in the blood vessels is that once in the blood cell the parasite produces proteins that project from the surface of the cell and bind with receptors on other blood cells and on the vessel wall, and thus act like a glue. The challenge facing scientists has been to break these bonds so that the infected blood cells can be transported by the blood stream into the spleen and destroyed.

The research group, which is headed by Professor Mats Wahlgren, has now developed a substance that prevents infected blood cells from binding in this way. The substance also releases blood cells already bound. Using this method, scientists have been able to treat severe malaria in rats and primates effectively; it now remains to be seen whether these results can be replicated in people.

“There’s often a lack of ability to treat people suffering from severe malaria,” says Professor Wahlgren. “We’ve developed a substance that might be able to help these patients.”

Previously, an anti-coagulant called heparin was used in the treatment of severe malaria. Heparin was able to release the blood cells, but it was soon withdrawn when it was shown that the substance caused internal bleeding. The new substance is a development of heparin, and has the important difference of having no effect on normal blood coagulation.

The study, which is jointly financed by SIDA and Dilafor AB, is to be presented on 29 September in PLoS Pathogens.

For further information, please contact:

Professor Mats Wahlgren
Phone: +46-8-524 872 77, +46-70-556 12 46
Email: Mats.Wahlgren@ki.se
Postdoc Anna Vogt
Phonel: +46-8-457 25 09, +46-70-320 48 73
Email: Anna.Vogt@ki.se
KI press officer Katarina Sternudd
Phone: +46-8-524 838 95
Email: katarina.sternudd@ki.se

Katarina Sternudd | alfa
Further information:
http://www.ki.se

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Biofilm discovery suggests new way to prevent dangerous infections
23.05.2017 | University of Texas at Austin

nachricht Another reason to exercise: Burning bone fat -- a key to better bone health
19.05.2017 | University of North Carolina Health Care

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A quantum walk of photons

Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.

The quantum computer has fuelled the imagination of scientists for decades: It is based on fundamentally different phenomena than a conventional computer....

Im Focus: Turmoil in sluggish electrons’ existence

An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.

We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...

Im Focus: Wafer-thin Magnetic Materials Developed for Future Quantum Technologies

Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.

Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...

Im Focus: World's thinnest hologram paves path to new 3-D world

Nano-hologram paves way for integration of 3-D holography into everyday electronics

An Australian-Chinese research team has created the world's thinnest hologram, paving the way towards the integration of 3D holography into everyday...

Im Focus: Using graphene to create quantum bits

In the race to produce a quantum computer, a number of projects are seeking a way to create quantum bits -- or qubits -- that are stable, meaning they are not much affected by changes in their environment. This normally needs highly nonlinear non-dissipative elements capable of functioning at very low temperatures.

In pursuit of this goal, researchers at EPFL's Laboratory of Photonics and Quantum Measurements LPQM (STI/SB), have investigated a nonlinear graphene-based...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

AWK Aachen Machine Tool Colloquium 2017: Internet of Production for Agile Enterprises

23.05.2017 | Event News

Dortmund MST Conference presents Individualized Healthcare Solutions with micro and nanotechnology

22.05.2017 | Event News

Innovation 4.0: Shaping a humane fourth industrial revolution

17.05.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Devils Hole: Ancient Traces of Climate History

24.05.2017 | Earth Sciences

Discovery of a Key Regulatory Gene in Cardiac Valve Formation

24.05.2017 | Life Sciences

A CLOUD of possibilities: Finding new therapies by combining drugs

24.05.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>