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New Global Map Shows Difficult-To-Treat Malaria Strain Remains Prevalent In Asia, Latin America

“Declining malaria deaths in Africa and progress toward an effective malaria vaccine are raising hopes the disease will soon be eradicated worldwide,” but “researchers at the annual meeting of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, [on Monday] unveiled a new global malaria map that raises new concerns about the disease,” VOA News writes (Sinha, 12/5). The researchers from Britain’s Oxford University mapped the Plasmodium vivax malaria parasite, “which is often recurring and can be deadly,” and found it is “endemic in substantial parts of the world,” particularly in Asia and Latin America, Reuters writes (Kelland, 12/5).

“‘This map helps us understand just how difficult it is going to be to eradicate malaria,’ said Peter Gething of the … Malaria Atlas Project (MAP) team,” adding, “Unfortunately, the tools for fighting this type of malaria range from ineffective to non-existent,” an ASTMH press release states (12/5). “While not as deadly as the Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasite found in Africa, vivax is more common throughout the world, with an estimated 2.85 billion people at risk of infection, the researchers report,” according to UPI.com (12/5).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.