A malaria vaccine tested positive in its first human test, according to a study published in the scientific journal Clinical Infectious Diseases . The discovery must be fundamental to be able to introduce the vaccine on the market.
Researchers at the University of Copenhagen have worked for years in an attempt to develop a preparation that is capable of protecting against malaria associated with pregnancy and its possible effects on the fetus.
The results obtained through a phase 1 clinical test indicate that the vaccine can be safe for use in people, inducing the correct antibody response in the bloodstream.
In phase 2, the researchers intend, through a clinical trial, to verify whether the vaccine, in addition to being safe, is in fact effective in combating the parasite that causes malaria during pregnancy.
How could the vaccine be useful in pregnant women?
Malaria is an infection caused by protozoa, transmitted through the bite of mosquitoes of the genus Anopheles. The presence of the parasite in the body leads to the destruction of red blood cells (red blood cells) and consequent anemia .
In cases of malaria associated with pregnancy, when the mother is infected, the parasites can easily be transmitted to the fetus through the placenta. In this way, the vaccine could be an important preventive method to fight the disease.
The diagnosis during pregnancy can be difficult, since the parasites tend to deviate towards the placenta, instead of following the normal path. Thus, some blood tests may not be able to detect it.
Malaria has serious consequences for the health of the pregnant woman and the fetus. The risks of miscarriage and premature birth only increase with the development of the protozoan.
It is important to prevent yourself through individual protection measures, in order to avoid the bites of mosquitoes that transmit the disease.