World's First Malaria Vaccine 'Mosquirix' - Why is it a Breakthrough?
The Big StoryOctober 07, 2021
00:15:0513.85 MB

World's First Malaria Vaccine 'Mosquirix' - Why is it a Breakthrough?

Malaria has been prevalent long enough for it to be able to make it to a Bollywood song. But we finally have a breakthrough to be able to prevent this infectious parasitic disease, that has caused lakhs and lakhs of deaths worldwide, year after year.

On 6 October, the World Health Organisation recommended the world's first malaria vaccine — Mosquirix that has been developed by British pharmaceutical GlaxoSmithKline in 1987, for malaria prevention in children living in regions with moderate to high transmission of this disease.

Children under five, it has been found out, are the most susceptible to malaria. In 2019, they accounted for 67 percent (274 000) of all malaria deaths worldwide.

The WHO's recommendation for administering Mosquirix to children is based on the data of an ongoing pilot programme in Ghana, Kenya and Malawi that has been able to provide more than 2.3 million doses to over 8,00,000 children, since 2019.

The efficacy of the vaccine has been proven to be around 40 percent so basically it can prevent four out of ten cases of malaria. Sure, that's not foolproof but experts have a reason to believe that it is a remarkable development. 

The pilot drive found out that the vaccine is safe, it's cost effective, it improves health and can saves lives with good and equitable coverage that can be assured through routine immunization.

And, most importantly, this vaccine was found to be able to prevent three out ten cases of severe malaria.

But how does Mosquirix work? Why did it take so long to develop this vaccine? What will be the impact of scientific development in developing countries in Africa and also India where malaria infections are prevalent?

Tune in!

Host and Producer: Shorbori Purkayastha
Guest: Dr Ambarish Dutta, Associate Professor of epidemiology at the Indian Institute of Public Health, Bhubaneswar
Editor: Vaishali Sood

Music: Big Bang Fuzz


WHO Approves World’s First Malaria Vaccine: All You Need To Know

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