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Your participation and support requested for promoting south-centred collaborations in vector-borne diseases

October 11, 2016 - 15:12 -- Gerry Killeen

Dear Colleagues

I have just posted the attached concept note entitled "Promoting south-centred collaborations in vector-borne diseases" on the extranet discussion board for the following UK-BBSRC funding mechanism to support networks in vector-borne disease (VBD) research:

Mathematical Models and Hypnozoites

September 24, 2016 - 12:49 -- Miles Markus

Are hypnozoites the only source of relapse-like, recurrent Plasmodium vivax malaria? They might not be. See explanation here. Until such time as the matter has been cleared up via research, perhaps it would be appropriate to avoid expressing theoretical mathematical analyses (that incorporate hypnozoites) too restrictively. Merely a suggestion.

Vivax and Non-vivax Malaria: Elimination-related Research Agenda Items

September 3, 2016 - 22:59 -- Miles Markus

The presumed hypnozoite reservoir is perceived to be a threat to the goal of eradicating human malaria. However, the same now applies to putative non-hypnozoite tissue stages as well, notably quiescent merozoites. Persistence of extra-vascular tissue merozoites in vivax malaria has on genetic grounds been suspected since 2011. So far, they have been parasitologically demonstrated in rodent malarial infections. There is no particular reason why they should not also occur in primate malaria of various kinds.

Problems with the Hypnozoite Theory of Relapse

July 24, 2016 - 00:12 -- Miles Markus

Speculative extrapolation from biological and genetic findings resulting from malarial research carried out in recent years, places in doubt aspects of the validity of the current concept of hypnozoite-mediated malarial relapse, entrenched though the hypothesis (usually stated by authors as a fact) is. A piece(s) of the puzzle might be missing.

Discussed in detail here

Elaborated upon further here

Malaria Elimination Dilemma

July 13, 2016 - 22:02 -- Miles Markus

A little waterbird (or was it a frog?) whispered in my ear. Aquatic organisms don’t want humans to destroy their habitats when trying to eliminate malaria. Draining of swamps, for example, would have negative consequences not only for mosquitoes but also for various other (innocent) creatures that live there. Where does this leave malariologists, so to speak? Just asking.

New paper on benefits of Ultrasound for higher yielding and purity of Artemisinin from Artemesia annua L.

June 13, 2016 - 11:48 -- Smain CHEMAT

New Method under ultrasound for rapid extraction and efficient purification of the antimalarial drug "Artemisinin" from medicinal plants.
Free download from Elsevier available till July 30th :

Plasmodium vivax: Drug-induced Dormancy?

May 12, 2016 - 13:28 -- Miles Markus

Early recurrences (which are often homologous) in treated Plasmodium vivax infections are usually considered to be hypnozoite-mediated relapses. Can such recurrences sometimes or frequently be, instead, recrudescences caused by reactivation of blood stages that became temporarily quiescent following drug exposure? The experimental background to this question is given here.

Primaquine Not "Working"

May 5, 2016 - 14:02 -- Miles Markus

Therapeutic failure of primaquine in cases of Plasmodium vivax malaria is often noted by clinicians. A newly recognized, possible cause of such treatment failure is the reactivation of viable dormant parasites that might be present in one or more extra-hepatic and extra-vascular sites. Administration of primaquine will not necessarily result in these stages being killed. Here is the link to where this drug-associated matter is discussed.

World Malaria Day 2016

April 25, 2016 - 09:21 -- Jean Viry-Babel

Every April 25th, people across the globe take part in a wide range of activities to raise awareness about Malaria.

For half the world, every day is malaria day, a day to keep up the fight against this deadly disease. With our Automated Malaria Diagnostic App, xRapid contributes to this fight alongside health workers in the field.

On this World Malaria Day, why not give us one click to help us #EndMalaria.

Vote for us on Virgin’s Startup Challenge.:

xRapid#Malaria wins Pistoia Alliance Challenge

April 22, 2016 - 14:01 -- Jean Viry-Babel

On April 19th, xRapid won the Audience Choice Award at the Pistoia Alliance Mini Startup Challenge.

“We are pleased that the members of the Pistoia Alliance were able to see the potential of the xRapid Automated Diagnostic App. This event has been a great platform to showcase our innovative technology in front of the pharmaceutical industry.” – Jean Viry-Babel, xRapid CEO

Was the Nobel prize for artemisinin a fatal error?

April 2, 2016 - 06:26 -- Irene Teis

In 2015 a Nobel Price was attributed to Youyou Tu, almost 50 years after a report describing artemisinin’s structure, pharmacology, and efficacy had been published in 1979 by the “Qinghaosu Anti-Malarial Coordinating Research Group,” where she was a member of.  Mr Huang Shuze, Deputy Minister of Health, stated in his 1981 summary report “Project 523 mobilized multiple departments ; thirty scientific research units and medical schools in 1975”.

Does Plasmodium malariae have a hypnozoite stage?

March 30, 2016 - 19:50 -- Miles Markus

COMMENT: For many years, it has traditionally been considered that Plasmodium malariae does not have a hypnozoite stage in its life cycle. Evidence for this has been thought to perhaps include the longevity of hepatocytes and what happens after inoculation of parasitized erythrocytes into the primate host (see hepatocyte and P. malariae sections, respectively). More recently, there have been suggestions that hypnozoites might, in fact, be present in the liver in P.

Palestine, Malaria and The last large-scale cavalry charge of WW1 in 1918

March 21, 2016 - 21:09 -- Anton Alexander

See Allenby's cavalry charge .
This extreme example is useful for those who wish to see the difference between durable malaria elimination and a temporary practical intervention in what was referred to as one of the most malarious countries in the world.

Research in progress: Evaluating Artemisinin-resistant Plasmodium falciparum malaria using the K13 propeller domain molecular biomarker

January 9, 2016 - 09:03 -- Olajoju Soniran

I want to share my research observations (on artemisinin resistance in Plasmodium falciparum) with malaria Professionals in this scientific community and welcome your candid comments.

I am a Ph.D student working on surveillance for artemisinin-resistant Plasmodium falciparum in dried blood spots sampled from Nigeria. I sequenced the K13 propeller domain at Macrogen using the PCR primers published in Nature Ariey 2014 titled 'A molecular marker of artemisinin resistant Plasmodium falciparum malaria'.

Is artemisinin monotherapy again allowed by WHO?

October 17, 2015 - 19:22 -- Irene Teis

The paper « Efficacy of a Novel Sublingual Spray Formulation of Artemether in African Children with Plasmodium falciparum Malaria » (Daryl Bendel et al.,Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. November 2015 vol. 59 no. 11 6930-6938) which was posted recently on www, raises this important question. The clinical trials were run by an Australian pharmaceutical company in Burkina Faso, Rwanda and Ghana

WHY WAS PALESTINE 'THE MOST PEACEFUL COUNTRY OF ANY IN THE MIDDLE EAST' 90 YEARS AGO? Probably because everyone there was so busy getting rid of malaria.

October 3, 2015 - 10:27 -- Anton Alexander

In view of the tragedy, the barbarity and shocking loss of life in Syria, I felt this may be a timely reminder about how malaria elimination was, and could still be, a huge inspiration to all mankind and an aid towards a calmer and more peaceful world.

The story behind a Bull Ent Res Paper

September 17, 2015 - 10:29 -- Derek Charlwood

Charlwood JD, Wilkes TJ. Studies on the age composition of Anopheles darlingi Root from Brazil. Bulletin of Entomological Research, 1979 67, 337-342.

Working on Anopheles darling with the great Tony Wilkes – perhaps best person that I know, and, apart from Gillies, certainly the best field entomologist that I have known. An enormous influence on yours truly, not just in terms of entomology and how to approach field work but how to approach life.

IBM and mosquito bednets.

August 10, 2015 - 19:49 -- Anton Alexander

When IBM dominated the computer world in the 1970s, an expression arose ‘No-one was ever fired for buying IBM’, even though competitors’ machines may have been more suitable for the task. Has a similar attitude now arisen towards bednets by those considering malaria elimination? Is the default position with regard to malaria elimination ‘No-one ever gets fired for buying mosquito bednets’? By 1970, Malaria was eliminated in North America and Europe. Were bednets extensively used there?

Has practical malaria-elimination in the field lost its way?

July 25, 2015 - 11:20 -- Anton Alexander

The quest for the anti-malaria ‘silver-bullet’/’magic-bullet’ drug or vaccine. Has this confused, distracted, mesmerised or misled the practical (cf theoretical lab-based) anti-malaria scientists?

Google’s definition of ‘Silver Bullet’ includes “ A simple remedy or a quick solution for a difficult problem”. Simple. Quick. And its definition of ‘Magic Bullet’ includes “A drug or treatment that cures a disease quickly and easily without producing bad effects”. Quickly. Easily.

Tomnod Teams up with UC San Francisco

July 22, 2015 - 20:53 -- William Shaw

Tomnod has teamed up with the University of California San Francisco's Malaria Elimination Initiative to develop a population map of Swaziland to assist in planning and implementing malaria elimination activities.

Tomnod uses DigitalGlobe satellite imagery to engage online volunteers to scan small portions of a large area. The volunteers scan the imagery and mark locations of interest to that particular survey. In this case the survey is looking for villages across Swaziland. When buildings are spotted by a volunteer in a polygon, that polygon is marked.

Durable Malaria Elimination – You can take a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink

May 26, 2015 - 13:39 -- Anton Alexander

On 7th August 2012, Bart Knols brought to our attention a lecture by Margaret Heffernan entitled ‘Dare to Disagree’, and which can be seen at . Margaret Heffernan spoke amongst other things about a scientist, Alice Stewart, who, in the 1950s, investigated and demonstrated the incidence of childhood cancer and its connection with the practice of X-raying pregnant women.

LLIN, new products and the impact of/ on insecticide resistance

May 7, 2015 - 14:28 -- Rune Bosselmann

LLIN, new products and the impact of/ on insecticide resistance

In the past 15 years malaria mortality and morbidity rates have been halved. This owes not least to insecticide based interventions and in particular the Long Lasting Insecticidal Net (LLIN).  In recent years, increased findings of insecticide resistance have caused serious concerns whether these advances are threatened, although how much and how to respond remain topics for discussion.

The advantage of a vested interest in malaria elimination.

April 15, 2015 - 06:01 -- Anton Alexander

This article will focus on the improved likelihood of a successful outcome where malaria elimination is conducted by scientists who live in the affected area. The blog by Alvaro Pemartin of 22nd January 2015 entitled "Column: Public health concerns (too) far away from home. Who cares?" is both instructive and fascinating. He showed statistics that revealed the global burden of swine flu, avian flu and ebola is far lower than the losses caused by malaria. He demonstrated that the media seems to overlook this point.

Comment for Malaria Action Plan GMAP2

April 4, 2015 - 19:21 -- Clive Shiff
As a comment to Bart's Blog, I would like to add our thoughts as requested by the Secretariat. The document was sent in before the deadline, so I hope it was read, and raises some thoughts. 
GMAP2 Document
Based on the consultative process so far (regional consultations, national and community level consultations, online survey responses, in-depth interviews, and a document review) seven areas where the GMAP2 document could usefully provide recommendations for action have been identified.