Partner study description
In field-based studies, Rick Fairhurst and colleagues investigated patient responses to artemisinin combination therapies (ACTs), in three Cambodian provinces, where artemisinin resistance is entrenched (Pursat), emerging (Preah Vihear), or uncommon (Ratanakiri). They provided samples from this study with the aim to identify genetic markers of antimalarial drug resistance, use them in real time to define frontline treatments at the provincial level, and eliminate multidrug-resistant malaria in the Greater Mekong Subregion. All three sites provided Plasmodium falciparum samples, with Pursat additionally providing samples from patients presenting with Plasmodium vivax. In related laboratory-based studies, researchers aimed to elucidate the molecular mechanisms of P. falciparum artemisinin and partner-drug resistance, to develop point-of care diagnostics to identify drug-resistant parasites, and discover new compounds to treat drug-resistant malaria episodes. For P. vivax, they investigated whether red blood cell polymorphisms protected against P. vivax malaria, P. vivax-infected erythrocyte binding to monocytes, reticulocyte invasion, immune responses to candidate vaccine antigens, and efficacy of chloroquine against P. vivax malaria.