Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases
Dates of Research:
January 15, 2004 — December 31, 2007
Malaria is Africa’s largest and most persistent public health problem. More than 1 to 2 million African children under the age of 5 die of malaria every year, including 300,000 who are Nigerian. The rapid spread of a strain of malaria that is drug resistant is a major cause for the resurgence of malaria in most areas of the world that are already vulnerable to the disease. In the absence of an effective malaria vaccine, chemotherapy remains the mainstay for treatment and prevention of the disease. However, resistance to the most widely used, safest and most affordable antimalaria drug has increased the mortality and morbidity caused by the malaria parasite in African children. The goal of this study is to identify the early response of this drug resistance. This identification is critical for discovery of new drugs and for the development of strategies to prevent the emergence and spread of these drug resistant organisms. The success of this project will help to shape the future antimalaria drug policy in Nigeria.