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Breezy Explainer: All about Mosquirix, the first malaria vaccine to get WHO backing

Breezy Explainer: All about Mosquirix, the first malaria vaccine to get WHO backing

Mosquirix finished all the clinical trials and has a positive scientific green light from the European Medicines Agency (EMA). Here is all you need to know about the malaria vaccine, the first of its kind to get WHO backing.

Mosquirix gets an all ok from WHO

Mosquirix gets an all ok from WHO

Mosquirix or RTS, S/ASO1 (RTS.S), endorsed by the World Health Organisation as of Wednesday is the first malarial vaccine. The vaccine can significantly reduce malaria. Moreover, it was seen to control life-threatening malaria in trials on young African children. The vaccine targets malaria caused by Plasmodium falciparum, the most deadly parasite of the disease. The trials show that kids who received four doses in the trials have a 4 in 10 chance of preventing the disease.

The vaccine’s strategic use in areas with high malaria incidence during the transmission season can optimize the impact. It shows a high potential of reducing mortality. However, the vaccine is more effective when combined with other measures for malaria. Additionally, the vaccine is the first to be introduced by three national health ministries. Over 80,000 children in Malawi, Ghana, and Kenya have received the vaccination as a part of the pilot program.

Malaria vs the world

Malaria vs the world

The life-threatening disease spreads through female Anopheles mosquitos that carry the parasite. While the disease is curable and preventable, it is difficult to control as it spreads through the bite of infected mosquitoes. In 2019 alone, over 229 million cases of the disease arose across the world. Additionally, the number of malaria deaths was 409,000 in that year.

Across the world, children below the age of five are highly vulnerable. They account for about 67 percent of all malarial deaths. In 2019, India reported over 5.6 million cases compared to the 20 million cases in the next year. However, the new vaccine, in addition to the WHO’s malaria toolkit can help control outbreaks.