Updated: Dec 15, 2021
The World Health Organization reports that Malaria is a leading cause of childhood illness and death in sub-Saharan Africa. One of the oldest and deadliest infectious diseases, Malaria kills hundreds of thousands each year, half of which are children under the age of five, and appeared unpreventable in countries with high incidences, until now.
At a historic moment in early October, after 30 years of development and collaboration between GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR), the WHO endorsed a Malaria vaccine called Mosquirix. The new vaccine is the first of its kind developed for any parasitic disease, providing a defense against Plasmodium falciparum, the deadliest of five malaria pathogens. Although the vaccine effect is modest (36%), it is better than nothing in high infection areas such as Africa.
As a leader in infectious disease, we are excited for this breakthrough in preventing parasitic diseases and improving overall public health.
Learn more about the vaccine and the next steps in making it accessible in the countries that need it most here.