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1940s blood samples reveal historical spread of malaria

Science Daily - December 2, 2019 - 17:46
DNA from 75-year old eradicated European malaria parasites uncovers the historical spread of one of the two most common forms of the disease, Plasmodium vivax, from Europe to the Americas during the colonial period, finds a new study.

New high-resolution images show how malaria parasites evade frontline drugs

Science Daily - November 27, 2019 - 21:14
The first-ever detailed images of a malaria protein, a known key modulator of drug resistance, show how the parasite evades antimalarials -- and may help scientists find ways to restore the drugs' potency.

Machine learning microscope adapts lighting to improve diagnosis

Science Daily - November 20, 2019 - 17:12
Engineers have developed a microscope that adapts its lighting angles, colors and patterns while teaching itself the optimal settings needed to complete a given diagnostic task. In the initial proof-of-concept study, the microscope simultaneously developed a lighting pattern and classification system that allowed it to quickly identify red blood cells infected by the malaria parasite more accurately than trained physicians and other machine learning approaches.

Malaria discovery could lead to better HIV and lupus treatments

Science Daily - November 20, 2019 - 12:07
A discovery about how the immune system responds to malaria infection could lead to better treatments for hepatitis C, HIV and lupus, say researchers. The research team showed, in laboratory models, that strong inflammatory signals caused by malaria infection activate molecules that trigger the production of highly potent antibodies to fight the disease.

Scientists and schoolkids find family soups have antimalarial properties

Science Daily - November 19, 2019 - 00:08
London schoolchildren have found -- with the help of scientists -- that some of their families' soup recipes have antimalarial properties.

Scientists close in on malaria vaccine

Science Daily - November 15, 2019 - 14:16
Scientists have taken another big step forward towards developing a vaccine that's effective against the most severe forms of malaria.

Mapping disease outbreaks in urban settings using mobile phone data

Science Daily - November 15, 2019 - 12:44
A new study into the interplay between mobility and the 2013 and 2014 dengue outbreaks in Singapore has uncovered a legal void around access to mobile phone data -- information that can prove vital in preventing the spread of infectious diseases.

Breakthrough in malaria research

Science Daily - November 14, 2019 - 16:59
Cell biologists have systematically investigated the genome of the malaria parasite Plasmodium throughout its life cycle in a large-scale experiment. The researchers were able to identify hundreds of targets that are urgently needed in drug and vaccine development to eradicate the disease.

Insulin can increase mosquitoes' immunity to West Nile virus

Science Daily - November 13, 2019 - 15:18
A discovery has the potential to inhibit the spread of West Nile virus as well as Zika and dengue viruses. The researchers demonstrated that mammalian insulin activated an antiviral immunity pathway in mosquitoes, increasing the insects' ability to suppress the viruses. Since mosquito bites are the most common way humans are infected with West Nile, stopping the virus among the insects would protect human health.

Scientists identify immune cells linked to malaria-induced anemia through autoantibody production

Science Daily - November 12, 2019 - 16:02
An autoimmune attack on uninfected red blood cells likely contributes to anemia -- a shortage of red blood cells -- in people with malaria.

How the Zika virus can spread

Science Daily - November 11, 2019 - 15:50
The spread of infectious diseases such as Zika depends on many different factors. Researchers were able to generate reliable maps for the transmission risk of the Zika virus in South America.

Mated female mosquitoes are more likely to transmit malaria parasites

Science Daily - November 7, 2019 - 21:07
Female mosquitoes that have mated are more likely to transmit malaria parasites than virgin females, according to a new study.

Research reveals how malaria parasite plans ahead, preparing blueprint to strike in humans

Science Daily - October 31, 2019 - 15:25
Within seconds after an infected mosquito bites, the malaria parasite navigates the host skin and blood vessels to invade the liver, where it will stay embedded until thousands of infected cells launch malaria's deadly blood-stage infection. Now, for the first time, a team describes how malaria Plasmodium parasites prepare for this journey. Researchers say this knowledge may help identify new strategies to block transmission of the parasite.

Malaria pathogen under the X-ray microscope

Science Daily - October 30, 2019 - 17:27
Malaria is one of the most threatening infectious diseases in the world. An international team has now been able to investigate malaria pathogens in red blood cells in vivo using the BESSY II X-ray microscope and the ALBA and ESRF synchrotron sources. The studies reveal the mechanisms used by active substances to attack the pathogen. This could contribute to improvement of treatment strategies and drugs.

Rhomboid protease in action

Science Daily - October 25, 2019 - 14:14
Rhomboid proteases are clinically relevant membrane proteins that play a key role in various diseases. Using solid-state NMR spectroscopy, researchers have now been able to watch rhomboid proteases in a native lipid environment at work. The obtained dynamic images will be useful for the development of new medication for diseases such as Parkinson's and malaria.

Immune reaction causes malaria organ damage

Science Daily - October 21, 2019 - 14:49
Immune cells can be the body's defenders and foes at the same time.

DEET gives humans an 'invisibilty cloak' to fend off mosquito bites

Science Daily - October 17, 2019 - 15:16
Since its invention during the Second World War for soldiers stationed in countries where malaria transmission rates were high, researchers have worked to pinpoint precisely how DEET actually affects mosquitoes.

Acaí berry extracts fight malaria in mice

Science Daily - October 16, 2019 - 16:46
Despite humanity's best efforts to eradicate malaria, the disease struck more than 200 million people in 2017, according to the World Health Organization. Worse yet, the parasite that causes malaria is developing resistance to many antimalarial drugs, including the mainstay, chloroquine. Researchers are actively searching for new treatments, and now, a group have found that acaí berry extracts can reduce parasites in the blood and prolong the survival of infected mice.

In Baltimore, lower income neighborhoods have bigger mosquitoes

Science Daily - October 16, 2019 - 13:49
Low-income urban neighborhoods not only have more mosquitoes, but they are larger-bodied, indicating that they could be more efficient at transmitting diseases. So reports investigating how socioeconomics influences mosquito-borne disease risk in Baltimore, Maryland.

Key uncertainties identified for models of mosquito distribution in the US

Science Daily - October 10, 2019 - 18:20
A computational analysis has identified key regions in the United States where model-based predictions of mosquito species distribution could be improved.

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