Scientists from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and their colleagues at the Institut de Recherche en Sciences de la Santé in Burkina Faso and the University of Bamako in Mali have published results from a phase 3 trial that involved the world’s first and only malaria vaccine.
The vaccine, RTS,S/AS01E (GlaxoSmithKline), was the first vaccine ever shown to significantly reduce malaria in children. It is being administered in a pilot program in three African countries — Ghana, Kenya, and Malawi. Approximately 2.1 million doses of the vaccine have been provided and more than 750,000 children have received their first vaccine dose through the pilot programme where malaria risks occur year-round
“This represents a potential breakthrough for how the world’s first malaria vaccine could be used in a new way to save children’s lives,” said Ashley Birkett, PhD, director of PATH’s Malaria Vaccine Initiative.
“The evidence from Burkina Faso and Mali suggests that in areas with highly seasonal malaria, using the RTS,S vaccine just prior to the peak transmission season in combination with current malaria control interventions, could have a major impact.”