GlaxoSmithKline develop first anti-malaria vaccine

GlaxoSmithKline, the renowned British pharmaceutical company, is now seeking approval for the first anti-malaria vaccine in the world. It has been reported that the scientists from GSK scientists have spent almost 3 decades on the development of the vaccine and are now hoping that it will be widely available across the world by 2016.

Hundreds of thousands are killed around the world every year by malaria, which is a mosquito-borne disease . While most of the anti-malaria medication currently available is highly effective, scientists believe that a vaccine that is widely available is the only way they can truly eradicate this disease once and for all.

In a trial conducted in Africa, the vaccine, known as ‘RTS,S’ almost halved the number of malaria cases in young children and reduced the number of cases in infants by approximately 25%. It was Africa’s largest clinical trial yet, involving almost 15,500 children across seven countries.

“A malaria vaccine has the potential to save hundreds of thousands of lives in the developing world,” said Chetan Chavda of UK-based travel health website, clinidirect.co.uk. “Anti-malaria tablets, mosquito nets and strong insect repellents containing DEET are all effective methods to protect against malaria, but a widely available vaccine could impact people’s lives enormously.”

The trial’s findings were presented at a medical meeting in Durban, South Africa and indicated that 18 months after being vaccinated, children aged five to 17 months had a 46% reduction in the risk of malaria.

If you’re travelling to a malaria-affected region, get an online anti-malaria consultation along with other essential travel health information at clinidirect.co.uk/travel-medicines.