Researchers recently reported that a new malaria vaccine, PfSPZ, offered unprecedented protection in an early clinical trial. The researchers were quick to note that the findings are preliminary, but the results to date are promising. The vaccine, which contains attenuated sporozoites (the immature liver phase of the malaria parasite), was tested on 40 adult volunteers. The vaccine was administered intravenously to the volunteers, who were then exposed to mosquitoes infected with malaria. The vaccine was safe and well-tolerated, and offered dose-dependent, high-levels of protection.
The PfSPZ vaccine was developed by the Maryland-based American company, Sanaria, and was tested by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research and the Naval Medical Research Center.
Seder et al. Protection against malaria by intravenous immunization with a nonreplicating sporozoite vaccine. Science. 2013 Sep 20;341(6152):1359-65. doi: 10.1126/science.1241800. Epub 2013 Aug 8.
For more information, see:
Kaiser. Unconventional Vaccine Shows Promise Against Malaria. Science. 2013 Aug 9;341(6146):605. doi: 10.1126/science.341.6146.605.