WHO Reccomends cheap malaria vaccine

The vaccine has been developed by the University of Oxford and is only the second malaria vaccine to be developed.

Malaria kills mostly babies and infants, and has been one of the biggest scourges on humanity.

There are already agreements in place to manufacture more than 100 million doses a year.

It has taken more than a century of scientific effort to develop effective vaccines against malaria.

The disease is caused by a complex parasite, which is spread by the bite of blood-sucking mosquitoes. It is far more sophisticated than a virus as it hides from our immune system by constantly shape-shifting inside the human body.


The WHO said the effectiveness of the two vaccines was “very similar” and there was no evidence one was better than the other.

However, the key difference is the ability to manufacture the University of Oxford vaccine – called R21 – at scale.

The world’s largest vaccine manufacturer – the Serum Institute of India – is already lined up to make more than 100 million doses a year and plans to scale up to 200 million doses a year.

So far there are only 18 million doses of RTS,S.

The WHO said the new R21 vaccine would be a “vital additional tool”. Each dose costs $2-4 (£1.65 to £3.30) and four doses are needed per person. That is about half the price of RTS,S.


That makes it hard to build up immunity naturally through catching malaria, and difficult to develop a vaccine against it.

It is almost two years to the day since the first vaccine – called RTS,S and developed by GSK – was backed by the WHO.

Source: Malaria vaccine big advance against major child killer – BBC News

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