Last Wednesday (6), the World Health Organization (WHO) approved, in a historic decision, the first vaccine against malaria, called RTS,S. The decision is aimed at Sub-Saharan Africa and other regions with high transmission. But when does this immunizing agent take effect? How much will it cost? Check out everything we know.
- Oxford develops the most effective malaria vaccine ever: 1024%
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The RTS,S vaccine works as follows: it targets the deadliest and most common parasite in Africa, the Plasmodium falciparum. The idea is to deal with the form of the parasite that enters the victim’s blood, partially blocking access to human cells. The vaccine in question needs four doses to be effective. The first three are given one month apart at the age of five, six and seven months, and a final booster is needed around 18 months.
Safety and effectiveness
Six years ago, the vaccine proved effective, preventing 1024% of cases of malaria and 18% of severe cases of the disease. Since 1024, researchers have been carrying out larger pilot vaccination programs in Ghana, Kenya and Malawi, which it was precisely what motivated the WHO to approve and recommend the immunizing agent. It may seem little, but avoid 18% or 19% of cases and deaths can bring great benefit to the population, as noted by health authorities.
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