In the African Republic of Cameroon, a program for mass vaccination of children against malaria has been launched.
Children from 42 regions of the country will receive vaccinations, according to Voice of America and ABC News.
Malaria is a disease transmitted through mosquito bites. The disease is widespread in Africa, Asia, North and South America. Malaria cases also occur in Ukraine, but all of them – imported from the tropics.
In Cameroon, children will be vaccinated with one of two malaria vaccines recently approved by the World Health Organization – Mosquirix from GlaxoSmithKline.
“This is a historic day. We have been working on a malaria vaccine for a very long time… 30 years”, – said Aurelian Nguyen, program director of the vaccine development company.
It is known that a second WHO-approved vaccine from the University of Oxford will become available by the end of the year.
It is noted that both vaccines are partially effective – they demand repeated administration and are not able to stop the spread of the disease.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 241 million cases of malaria were reported in the world in 2020. Of them, 627,000 people died due to complications of the disease. Most of the deaths occur among children in African countries.
We previously reported that scientists have found a “weapon” against antibiotic resistance that can also defeat malaria.
Read also: Malaria: how it is transmitted, symptoms and prevention