Is a malaria vaccine possible?

The first "sighting" of malarial mosquitoes in 20 years in the United States and two related cases of domestically acquired malaria (just outside of Washington, D.C.) highlight the need for better means of controlling this debilitating and persistent disease. The war against malaria rages around the world where almost one third of the global population is at risk of the disease. Malaria kills three children per minute, and some 300 to 500 million cases of malaria occur every year. As current tools against malaria are foiled, the disease keeps spreading, claiming more lives every day. It is now endemic in some 102 nations.

A press briefing this Friday, October 4 at 10:00 a.m. (via teleconference) will provide journalists with the latest information on the quest for a malaria vaccine--an effort that spans almost every continent and involves players as diverse as small biotechnology companies to large pharmaceutical companies to academic and public sector scientists.

WHAT: TELECONFERENCE (Call-in number 800-752-1361 or 1-415-217-0050 for callers from outside the U.S.-- please reference #09300085 or the "malaria teleconference." Remote replay will be available at 2:00 p.m. EST. The number to call for replay is: 800-677-6200; pin# is: 2408)

WHO: Dr. Regina Rabinovich, Director, Malaria Vaccine Initiative Dr. Filip Dubovsky, Chief Scientific Officer, Malaria Vaccine Initiative

WHEN: 10:00 a.m., Friday, October 4, 2002

Controlling malaria has become more and more challenging as the malaria parasite becomes resistant to drugs and as the mosquito that transmits the parasite develops insecticide resistance. In many countries where mosquitoes can breed in every rain-filled leaf and people can expect up to 500 infectious mosquito bites in a year, traditional means of keeping the disease at bay will make a difference but will not be sufficient. Protection through vaccination would add a crucial component to the malaria contr

Contact: Ellen Wilson
Burness Communications

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