Anti-malarial drug resistance a major challenge: World Malaria Day (25 April)

World Malaria Day, 25 April
[हिंदी] According to the World Health Organization (WHO), anti-malarial drug resistance is a major public health problem which hinders the control of malaria. Resistance of Plasmodium falciparum to choloroquine, the cheapest and the most used drug, is spreading in almost all the endemic countries. Resistance to the combination of sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine which was already present in South America and in South-East Asia is now emerging in East Africa.

According to the WHO, the problem of antimalarial drug resistance is aggravated by the existence of cross resistance among drugs belonging to the same chemical family.

According to the WHO, in 2009, about 3.3 billion people - half of the world's population - were at risk of malaria. Although malaria is preventable and curable, every year, this leads to about 250 million malaria cases and nearly 800 thousand deaths. In Africa a child dies every 45 seconds of Malaria, the disease accounts for 20% of all childhood deaths. People living in the poorest countries are the most vulnerable.

Malaria is a life-threatening disease caused by parasites that are transmitted to people through the bites of infected mosquitoes.

Malaria can decrease gross domestic product by as much as 1.3% in countries with high disease rates.

According to the Roll Back Malaria (RBM) Partnership, reducing the impact of malaria is key to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals, agreed by every United Nations Member State. These include not only combating the disease itself, but also goals related to women's and children's rights and health, access to education and the reduction of extreme poverty.

Published in:
Citizen News Service (CNS), India/Thailand 
Wikio, California, U.S.A.
The States Times, Jammu & Kashmir
Elites TV, California, USA


  1. 800,000 deaths a year is stunning. I can't believe we're still struggling this much against an age-old disease. Africa needs all the help it can get in order to combat Malaria.

  2. "For the study, the scientists, including Volkman, Dyann Wirth, and co-first author Daria Van Tyne of HSPH and the Broad, co-first author Danny Park and Pardis Sabeti of the Broad and Harvard University, and Daniel Neafsey and Stephen Schaffner of the Broad, analyzed the DNA of 57 parasites from the three continents, using a high-density genome-wide array that examines more than 17,000 mutations. They also measured the parasites’ responses to 13 antimalarial drugs.

    The scientists examined diversity of the parasite to identify 20 rapidly evolving loci in the genome, and then carried out a genome-wide association study (GWAS) to identify genetic variants that correlated with or are associated with the drug-resistance trait. These genetic variants are necessarily enriched in the drug-resistant, but not drug-sensitive parasites, allowing the researchers to home in on the candidate genes that are involved in modulating drug responses. That search netted 11 genes implicated in drug resistance – one previously known and others discovered for the first time.

    Van Tyne pursued one of the novel genes, PF10_0355, for follow-up functional testing. She used an experimental technique that introduced extra copies of the gene from a resistant parasite into a drug-sensitive one, and found that the formerly sensitive parasite was now rendered more resistant to three standard antimalarial agents."