23.01.2012

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Announcements / Press Releases

African football stars commit to fighting malaria as African Cup of Nations kicks off [UAM] — (English)
When the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations kicks off in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea, new Public Service Announcements (PSAs) will be aired throughout Africa to highlight the importance of malaria prevention and treatment for African children. Some of football's biggest stars and champions of "United Against Malaria" have lent their voice to this initiative...

RBM partners fight malaria on the football field [SARN, UAM] — (English)
Organizations from multiple constituencies of the RBM Partnership, including the private sector, foundations, NGOs and academia, joined forces ahead of the African Cup of Nations to hammer out strategies for using the popularity of football in the fight against malaria. Hosted by RBM's Southern African Regional Network, the event highlighted the unique role private sector partners can play in the United Against Malaria Initiative and in advocacy for effective malaria control...

RBM Board Chair Dr Victor Makwenge Kaput presents his New Year wishes to the malaria community in a video message [RBM] — (English)
Video Message...

WWARN and Sanofi agree data sharing collaboration. [WWARN News Release] — (English)
The WorldWide Antimalarial Resistance Network (WWARN) today announces that Sanofi has agreed to contribute data to WWARN's central database of information relating to antimalarial drug resistance, underlining their commitment to the global fight against malaria...

Anti-malaria drug synthesised with the help of oxygen and light [Max Planck Institute Press Release] — (English)
Researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces in Potsdam and the Freie Universität Berlin have developed a very simple process for the synthesis of artemisinin, the active ingredient that pharmaceutical companies could only obtain from plants up to now. The chemists use a waste product from current artemisinin production as their starting substance. This substance can also be produced biotechnologically in yeast, which the scientists convert into the active ingredient using a simple yet very ingenious method...

Unveiling malaria’s ‘cloak of invisibility’ [Walter and Eliza Hall Institute] — (English)
The discovery by researchers from the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of a molecule that is key to malaria’s ‘invisibility cloak’ will help to better understand how the parasite causes disease and escapes from the defences mounted by the immune system. The research team, led by Professor Alan Cowman from the institute’s Infection and Immunity division, has identified one of the crucial molecules that instructs the parasite to employ its invisibility cloak to hide from the immune system, and helps its offspring to remember how to ‘make’ the cloak...

Malaria Centre awarded grant to explore zoonotic malaria infection [ LSHTM Malaria Centre News Centre] — (English)
A major grant has been awarded to LSHTM researchers to investigate why an infection found only in monkeys appears to be increasingly affecting humans...

Notre Dame researchers report fundamental malaria discovery [University of Notre Dame Press Release] — (English)
A team of researchers led by Kasturi Haldar and Souvik Bhattacharjee of the University of Notre Dame’s Center for Rare and Neglected Diseases has made a fundamental discovery in understanding how malaria parasites cause deadly disease. The researchers show how parasites target proteins to the surface of the red blood cell that enables sticking to and blocking blood vessels. Strategies that prevent this host-targeting process will block disease...

Christina Anderskov Joins Bestnet A/S as Corporate Social Responsibility Manager Bestnet A/S Hires Nicolai Lund as Retail Sales Manager [Bestnet] — (English)
Bestnet A/S has announced that Christina Anderskov has joined the company in the position of Corporate Social Responsibility Manager. Anderskov joins Bestnet with a diverse background in CSR, business ethics and issues related to international relief and development...

In Rwanda, successfully fighting a resurgence of malaria [UNICEF News Release] — (English)
Across Rwanda, children are benefiting from faster malaria diagnosis, the widespread distribution of nets, and the diligence of hospital and health centre staffs determined to keep malaria in check...

RBM Launches Search for New Executive Director [RBM] — (English)
Application Deadline: 31 January 2012 ...

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Articles requiring subscription

Malaria Drugmakers See the Light [Science News] — (English)
Artemisinin, a crucial drug in the global fight against malaria, could soon become cheaper and easier to make, thanks to researchers who have found a better way to synthesize the compound...

Airlines should be legally required to warn travellers about malaria [BMJ 2012; 344 doi: 10.1136/bmj.e463] — (English)
All travel agents and airlines should be legally required to warn travellers about malaria if they sell flights or holidays to high risk regions, a specialist has said...

Production of amorphadiene in yeast, and its conversion to dihydroartemisinic acid, precursor to the antimalarial agent artemisinin [PNAS January 17, 2012 vol. 109 no. 3 E111-E118 10.1073/pnas.1110740109 ] — (English)
The strains and procedures described represent a complete process for production of semisynthetic artemisinin...

Enhancing humoral responses to a malaria antigen with nanoparticle vaccines that expand Tfh cells and promote germinal center induction [PNAS January 12, 2012 10.1073/pnas.1112648109] — (English)
NP vaccines may be a promising strategy to enhance the durability, breadth, and potency of humoral immunity by enhancing key elements of the B-cell response...

A DOC2 protein identified by mutational profiling is essential for apicomplexan parasite exocytosis [Science. 2012 Jan 13;335(6065):218-21] — (English)
xocytosis is essential to the lytic cycle of apicomplexan parasites and required for the pathogenesis of toxoplasmosis and malaria...

Identification of optimal epitopes for Plasmodium falciparum Rapid Diagnostic Tests that target histidine-rich proteins 2 and 3 [J Clin Microbiol. 2012 Jan 18] — (English)
This study informs selection of MABs to include in malaria RDTs as well as in the generation of improved MABs that should improve the performance of HRP-detecting malaria RDTs...

Comparative effects of vivax malaria, fever and diarrhoea on child growth [Int. J. Epidemiol. (2012) doi: 10.1093/ije/dyr190] — (English)
Disease control measures for vivax malaria and diarrhoeal disease have the potential to improve the growth of children in endemic areas...

Population Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics of Piperaquine in Children With Uncomplicated Falciparum Malaria [Clinical Pharmacology & Therapeutics (2012); doi:10.1038/clpt.2011.254] — (English)
The aim of this study was to describe the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic properties of piperaquine in 236 children with uncomplicated falciparum malaria in Burkina Faso...

Interactions of the Antimalarial Drug Methylene Blue with Methemoglobin and Heme Targets in Plasmodium falciparum: A Physico-Biochemical Study [Antioxid Redox Signal. 2012 Jan 18] — (English)
Our physico-biochemical study on MB and relevant hematin-containing targets was performed under quasi-physiological conditions...

A hybrid multi-stage protein vaccine induces protective immunity against murine malaria [Infect Immun. 2012 Jan 17] — (English)
These data support our strategy of using an array of autologous T helper epitopes to maximize the response to multi-stage malaria vaccines...

Plasmodium falciparum malaria in the low transmission Peruvian Amazon is associated with immunologic memory [Infect Immun. 2012 Jan 17] — (English)
After observing a more robust antibody response to MSP119, we evaluated the magnitude and longevity of IgG responses specific to this antigen in Peruvian adults and children before, during, and after P. falciparum infection...

Plasmodium macrophage migration inhibitory factor is necessary for efficient liver stage development [Infect Immun. 2012 Jan 17] — (English)
Combined, the data indicate that Plasmodium MIF is important for liver stage development in P. yoelii, where it is likely to play an intrinsic role in parasite development rather than modulating host immune responses to infection...

Population pharmacokinetics of dihydroartemisinin and piperaquine in pregnant and non-pregnant women with uncomplicated malaria [Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. doi:10.1128/AAC.05756-11] — (English)
The objective of this study was to evaluate the population pharmacokinetic properties of piperaquine and dihydroartemisinin in pregnant and non-pregnant women with uncomplicated malaria...

In Vitro and In Vivo Antimalarial Activity of T-2307, a Novel Arylamidine [Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2012 Jan 17] — (English)
Here we evaluated in vitro and in vivo antimalarial activity of T-2307...

A randomised, double-blind, placebo controlled trial of monthly versus second monthly dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine chemoprevention in adults at high risk of malaria [Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. doi:10.1128/AAC.05877-11] — (English)
Monthly dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine is safe and effective in the prevention of malaria in adult males living in an area endemic for P.vivax and multidrug-resistant P.falciparum...

Continuous-Flow Synthesis of the Anti-Malaria Drug Artemisinin [Angewandte ChemieDOI: 10.1002/anie.201107446] — (English)
Artemisinin combination treatments are the first-line drugs, but supplies are limited because artemisinin is obtained solely by extraction from Artemisia annua. A continuous-flow process that converts dihydroartemisinic acid into artemisinin (see scheme) is shown to be an inexpensive and scalable process that can ensure a steady, affordable supply of artemisinin...

Ruthenium(II) arene complexes with chelating chloroquine analogue ligands: Synthesis, characterization and in vitro antimalarial activity [Dalton Trans., 2012, DOI: 10.1039/C2DT12083F ] — (English)
A direct correlation between the D and HAIR50 properties cannot be made because of the relative structural diversity of the complexes, but it may be noted that these properties are enhanced upon complexation of the inactive ligand L3 to ruthenium, to give a metal complex (3) with promising antimalarial activity...

Antibodies against a Plasmodium falciparum antigen PfMSPDBL1 inhibit merozoite invasion into human erythrocytes [Vaccine. 2012 Jan 13] — (English)
Our results suggest that PfMSPDBL1 is a novel blood-stage malaria vaccine candidate...

Malaria in South Asia: Prevalence and control [Acta Tropica] — (English)
The "Malaria Evolution in South Asia" (MESA) program project is an International Center of Excellence for Malaria Research (ICEMR) sponsored by the US National Institutes of Health. This US-India collaborative project will study the origin of genetic diversity of malaria parasites and their selection in the Indian subcontinent...

Antiplasmodial Activity of Steroidal Chalcones: Evaluation of their Effect on Hemozoin Synthesis and the New Permeation Pathway of Plasmodium falciparum-Infected Erythrocyte Membrane [Chemical Biology & Drug Design DOI: 10.1111/j.1747-0285.2012.01323.x] — (English)
These observations suggest that steroidal chalcones with selective activity for the parasite may be considered as antimalarial leads for further optimization and preclinical study...

In Vitro Activity of Extract and Fractions of Natural Cocoa Powder on Plasmodium falciparum [J Med Food. 2012 Jan 16] — (English)
The aim of this work was to investigate the in vitro activity of natural cocoa powder on the growth of Plasmodium falciparum...

Assembly of the Eukaryotic PLP-Synthase Complex from Plasmodium and Activation of the Pdx1 Enzyme [Structure, Volume 20, Issue 1, 172-184, 11 January 2012 10.1016/j.str.2011.11.015] — (English)
The mutagenesis analysis allows defining the requirement for conservation of critical methionines, whereas there is also plasticity in ammonia tunnel construction as seen from comparison across different species...

Placental malaria is associated with attenuated CD4 T-cell responses to tuberculin PPD 12 months after BCG vaccination [BMC Infectious Diseases 2012, 12:6 doi:10.1186/1471-2334-12-] — (English)
Placental malaria was associated with reduced immune responses 12 months after immune challenge in infants apparently healthy at birth...