Trial suggests malaria sickness could be cut by 70%

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A new approach to protecting young African children from malaria could reduce deaths and illness from the disease by 70%, a study suggests.

Giving them vaccines before the worst season in addition to preventative drugs produced “very striking” results, London researchers say.

The trial followed 6,000 children aged under 17 months in Burkina Faso and Mali.

Most of the 400,000 deaths from malaria each year are in the under-fives.

And the mosquito-borne disease is still a major health issue in many parts of sub-Saharan Africa.

This trial, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, focused giving very young children a proven vaccine already in use and anti-malarial drugs at the time of year they are most vulnerable – often the rainy season (from June in Burkina Faso), when mosquitoes multiply.

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