SUGGESTIONS ON HOW TO SLOW THE RESISTANCE TREADMILL
This week WHO reiterated the fragility of the gains the world has made over the last decade through intense deployment of vector control in the fight against malaria. Reuters published an online article on the matter titled 'Insecticide resistance threatens malaria fight'. In it, WHO Director General, Margaret Chan, warns of the seriousness of the situation in Africa and India. Apparently, in ever more places the toolbox, filled with four classes of chemicals, is gradually emptying.
Sometimes you come across articles that blow your mind. You read them and feel your heartbeat increasing. Each sentence you finish makes you wonder more what is going on here. What the politics are, who's really behind it, and what the goal of it is....
Most of us that have worked in the field of malaria for a few decades have gone through periods where we suddenly noticed changes in drug policy. When chloroquine was replaced by sulfadoxine-pyremethamine as a first-line drug, later to be replaced by artemisinin combination therapies (ACTs).
But the world is now faced with a new challenge. That of preventing artemisinin resistance from escaping south-east Asia. Without anything to replace it (yet), this is a looming catastrophe, according to Joel Breman in an interview with TropIKA.net. It may still be confined to the Thai-Cambodia border, although nobody really nows have far it has spread.