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J Exp Biol. 2003 Nov;206(Pt 21):3803-8.

Rationale and plans for developing a non-replicating, metabolically active, radiation-attenuated Plasmodium falciparum sporozoite vaccine.

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1
Uniformed University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD 20814, USA.

Abstract

Annually, malaria causes >300 million clinical cases and 1 million deaths, is responsible for the loss of >1% of gross domestic product (GDP) in Africa and is a serious concern for travelers. An effective vaccine could have a dramatic impact on the disease. For 20 years, scientists have tried to develop modern, recombinant 'subunit' malaria vaccines. This has been difficult. In fact, there is only one recombinant protein vaccine on the market for any disease, and no vaccines based on synthetic peptides, recombinant viruses, recombinant bacteria or DNA plasmids. Most vaccines are based on attenuated or inactivated whole pathogens or material derived directly from the infectious agent. It is in that context that our recent report summarizing the protection of humans with attenuated Plasmodium falciparum (Pf) sporozoites produced at four different sites over 25 years is important. In studies utilizing live mosquitoes as the vaccine delivery mechanism, there was complete protection against malaria in 93% of volunteers (13/14) and 94% of challenges (33/35). Sanaria's goal is to develop and commercialize a non-replicating, metabolically active Pf sporozoite vaccine. Three practical questions must be addressed before manufacturing for clinical trials: (1) can one administer the vaccine by a route that is clinically practical; (2) can one produce adequate quantities of sporozoites; and (3) can sporozoites be produced with the physical characteristics that meet the regulatory, potency and safety requirements of regulatory authorities? Once these questions have been answered, Sanaria will demonstrate that the vaccine protects >90% of human recipients against experimental challenge with Pf sporozoites, can be produced with an efficiency that makes it economically feasible, and protects >90% of African infants and children from infection, and has severe morbidity and mortality. By producing a vaccine for travelers, Sanaria will provide the infrastructure, regulatory foundation and funds necessary to speed licensure, manufacturing and deployment of the vaccine for the infants and children who need it most.

PMID:
14506215
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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