WHO Presented Its Roadmap To Eradicate Malaria By 2030

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The World Health Organization (WHO) presented its roadmap for the development of new vaccines to submit at least 75 percent efficiency with the goal of eliminating the disease by 2030, at the conference of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene held in Washington (USA).

This new target is added to previously set target in 2006 when it was determined that the first vaccine against malaria by Plasmodium falciparum, the most deadly variant of the disease, should be authorized in sub-Saharan Africa for children under 5 years in 2015.

‘Vaccines are safe, effective and affordable that could play a key role in ending malaria,’ acknowledged Robert D. Newman, director of the Global Malaria Program of the United Nations agency, who nonetheless recognizes that despite of the research efforts ‘the global burden of disease remains unacceptably high’.

The latest figures from WHO indicates that malaria causes about 660,000 deaths a year and 219 million cases. Expansion and the controlling measures of the disease have reduced overall mortality by 26% in the last decade, and access to more effective vaccines could be an important complement to the current approach.

The WHO currently has posted 27 malaria vaccines in development. The more advanced ‘RTS, S/AS01’ with final results of phase III trials could be ready in 2015.

Depending on the final test results and the revision of the European Medicines Agency (EMA), WHO could recommend its use and subsequent prequalification to begin production in late 2015.

They have also stressed the importance of achieving funding to develop second-generation vaccines, as well as to protect and to eliminate disease, targeting types Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax.

‘New vaccines must show at least 75% efficacy against clinical malaria, so they can be used in all countries where the disease is endemic and 2030 should eradicate it’ acknowledged Jean-Marie Okwo Bele, director of Department of Immunization, Vaccines and Biologicals.

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