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World Malaria Day: EU Research

According to the World Health Organisation, in 2010, an estimated 219 million malaria cases occurred globally and the disease killed about 660 000 people, mostly children under five years of age.

Since 2002, the EU has invested more than €209 million in 87 projects carrying out research into the disease and how to control it. In addition, through its partnership with sub-Saharan Africa (the EDCTP initiative), the EU is supporting 32 clinical trials into new treatments with some €50 million.

Thanks to the efforts of the EU and international community, as well as governments and health-care providers in endemic countries, malaria deaths have fallen by 25% since the year 2000.

Press release: EU research project develops new malaria test tool

More background information: Contribution of EU research to fight against Malaria

Here are two examples of successful, EU-funded malaria-related research projects:

Photo of a tanzanian house fitted with eave tubes

The eaves of death for malaria mosquitoes

EU-funded researchers have developed three new tools to kill malaria-carrying mosquitoes. They are now working to bring their low-cost innovations to market quickly - a boost to the global battle against this deadly disease.

Blood-sucking mosquito © Shutterstock

Study finds protective shield fights malaria superinfection

Parasites responsible for triggering full—blown malaria initially travel to the liver, multiply and then flee and invade red blood cells. The common position for researchers is that parasites must feed on iron to grow. New research, however, points out that patients diagnosed with full—blown malaria could be protected against new infections following activation of a hormone ensuring that liver cells cannot feed on iron. The study, presented in the journal Nature Medicine, was partially supported through COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology), a programme backed by the EU's Research and Technological Development (RTD) Framework Programme. The discovery could lead to improved management and prevention methods of malaria.

 

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