The fight against malaria may be entering its final phase. GloxoSmithKline is a step closer in getting approval for the first malaria vaccine. Malaria has been the scourge of Africa, and multiple non-profits have been battling the disease. A vaccine would change the entire landscape.
If the drug is approved, the World Health Organization would go through the safety protocols and possibly recommend the vaccine next year. The go ahead from the World Health Organization would be contingent on it getting approved.
GlaxoSmithKiline couldn’t be happier that they are on the cusp of one of the biggest vaccination programs in modern history. Dr. Sophie Biernaux talked about the implications the vaccine would have. “This is a key moment in GSK’s 30-year journey to develop RTS,S and brings us a step closer to making available the world’s first vaccine that can help protect children in Africa from malaria.”
In 2012, WHO figures put the number of cases of malaria at 207 million. 627,000 deaths resulted from patients contracting the disease. A vaccine program would work to eradicate the disease that has ravaged Africa.
Fatalities from Malaria are mostly confined to Africa, where a child dies every minute from the disease. If there was ever a need for a vaccine, Malaria certainly fits the bill. For now, the vaccine is in step one of the regulatory process, the EMA submission. This included data from over 16,000 children.
Hopefully bureaucratic red tape does not hinder getting the vaccine approved. Having a child die every minute in Africa from Malaria is unacceptable. Beating back the disease is a must for third world countries, and it looks today we are one step closer to having a real defense against it.