Scientists have made a major breakthrough in understanding how the parasite that causes malaria is able to multiply at such an alarming rate, which could be a vital clue in discovering how it has evolved, and how it can be stopped. For the first time, scientists have shown how certain molecules play an essential role in the rapid reproduction of parasite cells, which cause this deadly disease.
Scientists have identified a key molecule involved in the development of cerebral malaria, a deadly form of the tropical disease. The study identifies a potential drug target and way forward toward alleviating this condition for which few targeted treatments are available.
Thread-like parasitic worms cause millions of cases of canine heartworm each year, and more than 100 million cases of lymphatic filariasis, also known as elephantiasis, in humans. New research shows that ramping up the immune response of mosquitoes blocked their ability to transmit these harmful parasites.
Researchers have established how sugar is taken up by the malaria parasite, a discovery with the potential to improve the development of antimalarial drugs.
TP53 gene variant in people of African descent linked to iron overload, may improve malaria response
A rare, African-specific variant of the TP53 gene called P47S causes iron accumulation in macrophages and other cell types and is associated with poorer response to bacterial infections, along with markers of iron overload in African Americans. Macrophage iron accumulation disrupts their function, resulting in more severe bacterial infections.
3D microvessels have been created to observe how red blood cells transit ultra-small blood vessels. They squeeze single-file through microvessels to bring oxygen and nutrients. Red cells burdened with malaria stall, blocking the blood vessel. The platform is expected to have other uses in studies of how microvascular damage occurs in diabetes and sickle cell anemia. They might be further developed to supply blood circulation to organ repair patches or to 3D printed transplants.
A new study found that routinely giving the Zika vaccine to women of childbearing age could save money if the risk of Zika is around that of other mosquito-borne diseases like dengue and chikungunya.
Despite their reputation as blood-suckers, mosquitoes actually spent most of their time drinking nectar from flowers. Scientists have identified the chemical cues in flowers that stimulate mosquitoes' sense of smell and draw them in. Their findings show how cues from flowers can stimulate the mosquito brain as much as a warm-blooded host -- information that could help develop less toxic repellents and better traps.
Researchers have for the first time demonstrated what happens at the molecular level when two compounds known to inhibit crystal growth were combined, yielding new insights into malaria treatments and, more broadly, improving the process of drug development.
New technology employing single cell genome sequencing of the parasite that causes malaria has yielded some surprising results and helps pave the way for possible new intervention strategies for this deadly infectious disease.
Parasites in the genus Plasmodium, which cause malaria, are transmitted to humans through bites from infected mosquitoes. The parasites manage to acclimatize to these two completely different hosts because the plasticity of their genome enables them to adapt as necessary. Scientists decided to investigate the epigenetic mechanisms behind this plasticity, in particular DNA methylation. They identified molecules capable of inhibiting DNA methylation and effectively killing even the most resistant Plasmodium falciparum parasites.
Malaria parasites transform healthy red blood cells into rigid versions of themselves that clump together, hindering the transportation of oxygen. The infectious disease affects more than 200 million people across the world and causes nearly half a million deaths every year, according to the World Health Organization's 2018 report on malaria. Until now, however, researchers did not have a strong understanding of how the parasite so effectively infiltrated a system's red blood cells.
Researchers have identified a completely new mechanism by which mosquitoes that carry malaria are becoming resistant to insecticide.
When controlling mosquitoes that spread malaria, gene drives, which force genetic changes to proliferate in a population, are faster and more efficient than simply releasing mosquitoes that are immune to the parasite, according to a new study.
A new technology to produce safer 'hybrid' viruses at high volumes for use in vaccines and diagnostics for mosquito-borne diseases has been developed.
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.
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.
Scientists have found an effective and environmentally sustainable way to block the transmission of mosquito-borne dengue virus, in trials carried out in Malaysia.
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.
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.