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Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg. 2007 Feb;101(2):113-6. Epub 2006 Jun 12.

Antischistosomal efficacy of artesunate combination therapies administered as curative treatments for malaria attacks.

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  • 1Institut de Recherche pour le Développement, UR024, Dakar, Senegal and Montpellier, France.


Artesunate is a highly effective antimalarial and there is some evidence that it is also active against schistosome infections. We therefore investigated whether treatment with artesunate of acute malaria in Senegalese children had an impact on their level of infection with Schistosoma haematobium. Twenty-seven children who were entered into a clinical trial of antimalaria treatment were excreting S. haematobium eggs in their urine on the day of treatment. Fifteen children received a combination of a single dose of sulfadoxine/pyrimethamine together with three daily doses of artesunate (4 mg/kg); the remaining 12 children received three daily doses of amodiaquine and artesunate. The overall cure rate and reduction in the mean number of excreted eggs at 28 days post treatment were 92.6% and 94.5%, respectively. Our findings indicate that artesunate, in addition to being a very effective treatment for uncomplicated malaria, can also sharply reduce the S. haematobium loads harboured by pre-school African children.

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