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Malaria on the move as temps warm

Malaria is on the march to higher elevations as temperatures warm due to climate change, a trend that could increase the number of people sickened by the disease, researchers said Thursday. The study in the US journal Science was based on records from highland regions of Ethiopia and Colombia, raising concern about a potential spike in cases of the the mosquito-borne disease, which killed some 627,000 people in 2012.

Revealed: How malaria parasite beats top insecticides

Gene detectives on Tuesday said they had discovered how the parasite that causes malaria becomes resistant to DDT and to insecticides used in anti-malaria bednets. The secret lies in just one change in the DNA code on a single gene, they said. A singe mutation changes a normal gene for metabolism, known as GsTe2, into one that helps the mosquito break down the insecticide molecule so that it is no longer toxic. Insecticide resistance is a major worry in the fight against malaria.

Malaria: High risk focused in 10 African countries

Gains in fighting malaria in sub-Saharan Africa have left the highest risk for the disease concentrated in 10 countries, according to a study published on Wednesday by The Lancet medical journal. Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda, Ivory Coast, Mozambique, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Mali, Guinea and Togo together account for 87 percent of areas that have the highest prevalence of malaria, it said. The study assessed the effectiveness of the battle against malaria, which went into higher gear with the launch of the Roll Back Malaria initiative in 2000.

Malaria down but big challenges remain

The fight against malaria has saved 3.3 million lives worldwide since 2000 but the mosquito-borne disease still killed 627,000 people last year, mainly children in Africa, the World Health Organization said Wednesday. A shortage of funding and basic remedies such as bed nets mean that malaria is still a major threat, particularly in Africa and Southeast Asia, according to the WHO's Malaria Report 2013. "The fact that so many people are infected and dying from mosquito bites is one of the greatest tragedies of the 21st century," said WHO Director-General Margaret Chan.

WHO report shows major progress in fight against malaria

GENEVA, Dec. 11 (Xinhua) -- Global efforts to control and eliminate malaria have saved an estimated 3.3 million lives since 2000, but more needs to be done, said a report released Wednesday by the World Health Organization (WHO). The World Malaria Report 2013 showed that increased political commitment and expanded funding have helped to reduce incidence of malaria by 29 percent globally, and by 31 percent in Africa between 2000 and 2012.

Malaria deaths down but victory is far off

The fight against malaria has saved 3.3 million lives worldwide since 2000 but the mosquito-borne disease still killed 627,000 people last year, mainly children in Africa, health authorities said Wednesday. A shortage of funding and basic remedies like bed nets mean that malaria is still a major threat, particularly in Africa and southeast Asia, according to the World Health Organization's Malaria Report 2013.

Qantas steward with Parkinson's to sue over pesticide link

A former Qantas steward who believes he developed Parkinson's disease after repeated exposure to government-mandated pesticides sprayed in the cabin plans to sue Canberra, his lawyer said Monday. Brett Vollus, 52, worked for Australia's national carrier for 27 years as a flight attendant until his early-onset Parkinson's forced him to take redundancy in May this year. Vollus engaged a specialist lawyer, Tanya Segelov, to look into his case after the Sydney neurosurgeon who made his diagnosis told him he was seeing "a lot" of cabin crew.

Young international volunteers need better medical info

By Kathleen Raven NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - High school and college graduates who traveled to developing countries to volunteer suffered more illnesses and injuries than regular tourists, in a new German study. And not all of them got the best medical advice before leaving. About half of the 153 volunteers in the study visited a doctor or hospital during their stay. In comparison, only about eight to 10 percent of tourists in South America, Africa and Asia seek local medical attention, according to past research.

New target seen in war on malaria

Scientists on Wednesday said they had identified a new target in the parasite that causes malaria, a disease that causes more than a half a million deaths annually. Potential drugs can aim at a newly-discovered enzyme that the parasite uses to metabolise energy at every stage of its infection in humans, they said. The finding, published in the journal Nature, is important because only a tiny handful of weaknesses have been found that apply to every stage of the complex process by which the Plasmodium parasite grows and multiplies in the body.

China offers anti-malaria drugs to Chad

China offers anti-malaria drugs to Chad N'DJAMENA, Nov. 27 (Xinhua) -- China's ambassador to Chad Hu Zhiqiang on Tuesday handed over anti-malaria drugs worth over 680, 000 million U.S. dollars to Chad's national medicine agency. "This symbolizes the importance that our two presidents pay attention to the issue of health. I hope the cooperation between the two countries will be reinforced," Hu said.
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