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Emergence of Indigenous Artemisinin-Resistant Plasmodium falciparum in Africa

By Sungano Mharakurwa Moderator | 01 May, 2017

After earlier treatment failure reports from the continent in February, the attached article documents artemisinin-resistant falciparum malaria in African. How ironic that as humanity celebrated the World Malaria Day with a bold "End malaria for good" theme, the most deadly malaria parasite appears to have been also exhibiting its own scary milestones. The threats of authochthonous African Plasmodium falciparum resistance to artemisinin do not seem geographically confined either (see https://malariaworld.org/blog/artemisinin-resistance-africa).
What can be done to nip this daunting menace in the bud? Is treatment only after confirmed diagnosis enough, or are more strategies urgently needed?



Sungano Mharakurwa Moderator Replied at 11:55 AM, 2 May 2017

One might that these are some of the challenges that were being pointed out by Prof. Shiff in the malaria eradication debate discussed earlier (Here again the attachment to that). My sense also is that at the recent Johns Hopkins Malaria Research Institute Vaccine Symposium, held on the World malaria Day, Prof Dyann Wirth in her talk really articulated the big picture like it is. The bottom line appears to be that whatever we throw at the malaria parasite, we are dealing with evolution, and refractory variants will be selected. Indeed that seems to have occurred, not only with drug resistance but even with PfHRP2-based RDTs, where so-called deleted parasite variants that evade detection, by showing a negative reading on RDT test, have emerged in multiple locations.

Attached resources:

Sungano Mharakurwa Moderator Replied at 12:25 PM, 2 May 2017

The first sentence opens as "One might add that these are some of the challenges..." Sorry for the typo.

Pierre Bush, PhD Moderator Replied at 9:30 PM, 3 May 2017

Thank you Sungano for these resources. It's a serious situation.

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