A discovery by an international team of researchers could facilitate the creation of a malaria vaccine that rapidly induces a targeted immune response and primes it to fight the disease upon infection. The finding appears in Immunity.
“What we discovered is that the antibodies needed to recruit other proteins in the blood, known as a complement, to help them to coat the malaria organism,” said James Beeson, head of the Burnet Centre for Biomedical Research in Melbourne. “By working together, these two things are a double-hit that stops malaria from infecting red blood cells.”
A vaccine could help prevent the 600,000 deaths malaria causes annually.