First Malaria Vaccine Approved by World Health Organization(W.H.O.): Basics Explained
The World Health Organization endorsed the first Malaria vaccine, the first step in a process that should lead to wide distribution in poor countries. The vaccine, called Mosquirix, is not just a first for malaria — it is the first developed for any parasitic disease. Parasites are much more complex than viruses or bacteria, and the quest for a malaria vaccine has been underway for a hundred years
LEARNING FROM HOME/ WITHOUT CLASSES/ BASICS
Malaria is a life-threatening disease caused by parasites that are transmitted to people through the bites of infected female Anopheles mosquitoes. Malaria is an acute febrile illness.
Malaria is caused by Plasmodium parasites. The parasites are spread to people through the bites of infected female Anopheles mosquitoes, called “malaria vectors.” There are 5 parasite species that cause malaria in humans, and 2 of these species – P. falciparum and P. vivax – pose the greatest threat.
- falciparum is the most prevalent malaria parasite on the African continent. It is responsible for most malaria-related deaths globally.
- vivax is the dominant malaria parasite in most countries outside of sub-Saharan Africa.
India has the highest malaria burden outside Africa. India’s health ministry has projected that India will be malaria-free by 2030. The health ministry has announced plans to ensure “zero indigenous cases and deaths due to malaria for 3 years,” in order to gain the malaria-free status by 2030.
In February 2016, India unveiled the National Framework for Malaria Elimination 2016-2030. It set specific targets for the years leading up to 2030, with phased targets based on the differing endemicity of malaria in different states.