Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

5/10/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Making insect immune to malaria parasite stops disease in tracks

Malaria, still a virulent problem in Southeast Asia and much of Africa, poses a threat to the populations there and abroad. Now, there is new hope on the horizon for battling the mosquito-borne illness: making mosquitoes resistant to the malaria-carrying parasite. While previous efforts have sought to make humans immune to the disease, to make the mosquito that carries the disease immune to malaria would halt the progress of the disease in its tracks.

Experts said this was a first, distant prospect for malaria control. The World Health Organization estimates that 220 million people are infected annually and 660,000 die.

Experts said this was a first, distant prospect for malaria control. The World Health Organization estimates that 220 million people are infected annually and 660,000 die.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

5/10/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Health

Keywords: Malaria, infection, Africa, Southeast Asia, mosquitoes


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - As malaria is spread between people by the insects, it's hoped that giving mosquitoes malaria immunity could reduce human cases.

Experts said this was a first, distant prospect for malaria control. The World Health Organization estimates that 220 million people are infected annually and 660,000 die.

Studying the Wolbachia bacterium, which commonly infects insects, scientists at Michigan State University noted that the disease passes only from females to their offspring. In some insects, the bug is exceptionally good at manipulating insects to boost the number of females for its own ends.

Wolbachia kills male embryos in some butterflies and ladybirds. It can also produce males that can breed only with infected females, and even allows some female wasps to give birth without mating.

Malaria-carrying Anopheles mosquitoes are not naturally plagued by Wolbachia. Laboratory studies proved that temporary infection made the insects immune to the malaria parasite.

The goal was to turn a temporary infection into one that would be passed on. Researchers found a strain of Wolbachia that could persist in one species of mosquito, Anopheles stephensi, for the entire length of the study - 34 generations.

Additional research in Australia has shown that a different strain of Wolbachia can prevent the spread of dengue fever by mosquitoes.

Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases said this study was a proof of concept that the same could be done for malaria.

"If you can get it to survive and proliferate in the environment of mosquitoes in malaria-stricken areas, this could conceivably have an important impact on the control of malaria.

"I think the potential for this is very important. The implementation will be the challenge."

Commenting on the study, Prof David Conway, of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, said: "It is interesting and is the first report of Wolbachia clearly replicating, but a number of things took away the punch."

Conway says that infected females produced fewer eggs than uninfected females, which meant the infection would struggle to spread in the real world.

He cautioned that it was in just one species, Anopheles stephensi, which carries malaria in the Middle East and South Asia. Anopheles gambiae, in Africa, he says is an even bigger problem.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for March 2015
Universal:
Scientists: That those involved in scientific research may serve the well-being of the whole human person.
Evangelization: Contribution of women: That the unique contribution of women to the life of the Church may be recognized always.


Rosaries, Crosses, Prayer Cards and more... by Catholic Shopping .com


Comments


More Health

HUNG OVER? Try the ancient Egyptian cure - of a garland of laurel leaves Watch

Image of Written in Greek, the cure advises stringing together the leaves of the Alexandrian Laurel and wearing it like a necklace.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

There may be a reason behind all those surviving artworks of drunken, ancient Roman revelers wearing garlands about their heads. In a stash of more than half a million documents unearthed in an ancient trash heap in the Egyptian town of Oxyrhynchus in 1896, the ... continue reading


ALTERING EMBRYOS: China becoming 'Wild West' in genetic research Watch

Image of Used in adult cells and animal models, the technique had previously never been used in connection with human embryos.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Critics warn that China is swiftly becoming the "Wild West" of genetic research. Researchers at the Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou have confirmed they had engineered embryos to modify the gene responsible for the fatal blood disorder thalassaemia. The team ... continue reading


Surgeon claims controversial head transplant will take less than an hour Watch

Image of Surgeon Sergio Canavero said that he would explain the procedure in depth at a neurosurgeons' conference this coming June 12.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Italian surgeon Sergio Canavero says that he can reattach a man's head on to a new body in less than an hour. Canavero says that the procedure is just the first step in a series of steps towards his ultimate aim of creating immortality. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


'If I Only Had a Brain': MRI technology gives an amazing inside look into a singing brain Watch

Image of

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Researchers from the Beckman Institute investigated how various muscles and other connected body parts work to allow us to speak and sing, and the changes that happen over time. Analyzing how the human voice works and the variations it undergoes at age, a former ... continue reading


Behind the heroic act: The heartbreaking story of the youngest organ donor in Britain Watch

Image of

By Hannah Raissa Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Teddy Houlston would have celebrated his first birthday this year with his family and twin brother. But he was not able to live for an entire day; baby Teddy was diagnosed with a condition called anencephaly within twelve weeks inside his mother's womb. Heartbreaking ... continue reading


Listeria outbreak in Blue Bell Creameries, causing them to recall all products, started in 2010 Watch

Image of According to CDC's investigation, they made comparisons with the patients dating back 2010 up to the current outbreak.

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Based on the investigation made by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the listeria outbreak in Blue Bell Creameries, that has caused them to recall all of their ice cream, started back in 2010. MUNTINLUPA, PHILIPPINES (Catholic Online) - The Blue Bell Creameries ... continue reading


Taking a multivitamin for your health? 'Healthy' multivitamins may increase risk for certain diseases by more than 50 percent Watch

Image of New research suggests that taking some commonly used multivitamins may actually be very harmful to your health.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Multivitamins have long been a staple of what many would call a "healthy" lifestyle, and the market for these pills is flooded with products that target every single demographic including post-menopausal women, teens, bodybuilders and diabetics. However, new ... continue reading


'Turbo-charging' immune system to kill all known cancers in development Watch

Image of Scientists at Imperial College London, who led the study, are now developing a gene therapy based on the protein and hope to begin human trials in three years.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A protein which "turbo-charges" the immune system, enabling it to fight off any cancer or virus, has been discovered by scientists. Described as a "game-changer" for cancer treatment, researchers at Imperial College in the United Kingdom have found a previously ... continue reading


Negative relationships really are unhealthy: New research shows high blood pressure linked to stressful relationships Watch

Image of

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Bad relationship status may cause physiological health deterioration. The research, conducted by a team from the University of Michigan, discovered men are more sensitive with regards to the stress levels of their wives or partners. These stress levels, from negative ... continue reading


Killer high heels cause long lasting body damage Watch

Image of

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Fashion is such a big thing, especially for women. These days, for you to belong to the "it-crowd," you have to be stylish and popular in your social media posts, or you constantly have to update your fashion blog with the latest trends in clothing, shoes, and ... continue reading


All Health News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Acts 4:8-12
8 Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, addressed ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 118:1, 8-9, 21-23, 26, 21, 29
1 Alleluia! Give thanks to Yahweh for he is good, for ... Read More

Gospel, John 10:11-18
11 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd lays ... Read More

Reading 2, First John 3:1-2
1 You must see what great love the Father has ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for April 26th, 2015 Image

St. Cletus
April 26: St. Cletus was the third bishop of Rome, and succeeded St. ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter