oa Central African Journal of Medicine - Malaria immunization - a Zimbabwean perspective

Volume 31, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 0008-9176



A great deal of activity is being focussed on the possibility of developing an effective vaccine for malaria. The initial interest displayed during the 1940's waned with the development of effective pesticides and chemotherapeutic agents. This recent resurgence has followed a number of setbacks. The problem has been one of developing resistance: of the vectors to the insecticides, of parasites to the drugs and� of people to the carrying out of the necessary control campaigns. No cheap and effective advance on DDT has been made and the spread of drug resistant strains through Asia and Africa has not been matched by the development of new drugs. Chloroquine resistant plasmodium falciparum has been reported in both Zambia and Malawi. It can only be a matter of time before such strains become established in Zimbabwe. Of the new drugs currently under examination only meflaquine, a quinine analogue, is at the stage of a clinical trial and even here it looks as though resistance may be a problem. Immunization would offer new hope against a disease which affects two hundred million people and causes two million deaths annually. The object of this review is to summarize the current state of research on malaria immunization and to add some Zimbabwean perspectives.

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