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Use Of Insecticide-Treated Bednets Linked To Local Resurgence Of Malaria, Study Says

“Insecticide-treated bednets, whose use is being widely promoted in Africa to combat malaria, may paradoxically be linked to local resurgence of the disease,” according to a study published in the Lancet on Thursday, the Independent reports. “Growing resistance to a common insecticide used against mosquitoes, combined with falling immunity among the population as transmission declined, appears to have triggered a rebound in the disease,” the news agency writes (Laurance, 8/18).

The study, led by Jean-Francois Trape of the Institute for Development Research in Dakar, Senegal, was based on observations in the central village of Dielmo in Senegal from August 2008 to August 2010, Agence France-Presse notes. “In a commentary, Joseph Keating and Thomas Eisele, specialists at Tulane University in New Orleans, cautioned against leaping to conclusions. … By itself, [the study] is not enough to confirm that the bednet program is flawed or that the same problems apply across Africa, the pair said,” AFP writes (8/17). 

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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.