Malaria combination drug therapy for children

December 30, 2014
Credit: CDC

A drug combination of artemisinin-naphthoquine should be considered for the treatment of children with uncomplicated malaria in settings where multiple parasite species cause malaria according to Tim Davis from University of Western Australia, Fremantle, Australia and colleagues in new research published in this week's PLOS Medicine.

Malaria is a mosquito-borne parasitic disease that kills approximately 600,000 people every year. Several different parasite species cause malaria and in some settings, such as Papua New Guinea, two species, Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax, are responsible for the majority of malaria infections. However, the two species respond differently to currently available anti-malarial drugs.

The authors compared the current recommended therapy for uncomplicated malaria in children in Papua New Guinea, artemether-lumefantrine, with a different combination therapy, artemisinin-naphthoquine. Using a randomized, controlled trial study design including 186 children with Plasmodium falciparum infections and 47 children with Plasmodium vivax infections, the researchers found that artemisinin-naphthoquine was non-inferior to (no worse than) artemether-lumefantrine for treating Plasmodium falciparum (a difference of 2.2% [95% confidence interval ?3.0% to 8.4%] for reappearance of infection within 42 days) but was more effective for treating Plasmodium vivax (a difference 70.0% [95% confidence interval 40.9%-87.2%] for reappearance of infection within 42 days).

The authors conclude, "[t]he efficacy, tolerability, and safety of three daily doses of artemisinin-naphthoquine suggest that this regimen should be considered together with other currently available effective [artemisinin combination therapies] for treatment of uncomplicated malaria in [Papua New Guinea] and similar epidemiologic settings with transmission of multiple Plasmodium species."

Explore further: Blood pressure build-up from white blood cells may cause cerebral malaria death

More information: Laman M, Moore BR, Benjamin JM, Yadi G, Bona C, et al. (2014) Artemisinin-Naphthoquine versus Artemether-Lumefantrine for Uncomplicated Malaria in Papua New Guinean Children: An Open-Label Randomized Trial. PLoS Med 11(12): e1001773. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.1001773

Related Stories

Blood pressure build-up from white blood cells may cause cerebral malaria death

December 4, 2014
Intracranial hypertension—increased blood pressure inside the head—can predict a child's risk of death from malaria. A study published on December 4th in PLOS Pathogens reports that accumulation of white blood cells impairs ...

Southeast Asian ovalocytosis protects against P. vivax malaria

September 4, 2012
A multinational group of authors, led by Ivo Mueller from the Walter & Eliza Hall Institute, Australia and the Papua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, have found a strong association between Southeast Asian ovalocytosis, ...

Comparing antimalarial drugs and their effects over the Plasmodium lifecycle

February 21, 2012
In this week's PLoS Medicine, Michael Delves of Imperial College London, UK and colleagues compare the activity of 50 current and experimental antimalarials against liver, sexual blood, and mosquito stages of selected human ...

Malaria-infected cells may latch onto healthy blood cells for protection

November 5, 2014
The distinctive 'clumping' of blood cells that blocks vessels and causes tissue damage in malaria-infected patients is the focus of a multinational collaboration, which includes A*STAR researchers.

Combination drug treatment can cut malaria by 30 percent

April 2, 2012
Malaria infections among infants can be cut by up to 30 per cent when antimalarial drugs are given intermittently over a 12 month period, a three-year clinical trial in Papua New Guinea has shown.

Pyramax receives positive opinion from the EMA

February 21, 2012
Pyramax, a fixed-dose combination of pyronaridine and artesunate, becomes the first antimalarial to be granted a positive scientific opinion from the European Medicines Agency (EMA) under Article 58. This once daily, 3-day ...

Recommended for you

Two Group A Streptococcus genes linked to 'flesh-eating' bacterial infections

September 22, 2017
Group A Streptococcus bacteria cause a variety of illnesses that range from mild nuisances like strep throat to life-threatening conditions including pneumonia, toxic shock syndrome and the flesh-eating disease formally known ...

Ecosystem approach makes urinary tract infection more treatable

September 22, 2017
The biological term 'ecosystem' is not usually associated with urinary tract infections, but this should change according to Wageningen scientists.

Residents: Frontline defenders against antibiotic resistance?

September 22, 2017
Antibiotic resistance continues to grow around the world, with sometimes disastrous results. Some strains of bacteria no longer respond to any currently available antibiotic, making death by infections that were once easily ...

Individualized diets for irritable bowel syndrome better than placebo

September 21, 2017
Patients with irritable bowel syndrome who follow individualized diets based on food sensitivity testing experience fewer symptoms, say Yale researchers. Their study is among the first to provide scientific evidence for this ...

Superbug's spread to Vietnam threatens malaria control

September 21, 2017
A highly drug resistant malaria 'superbug' from western Cambodia is now present in southern Vietnam, leading to alarming failure rates for dihydroartemisinin (DHA)-piperaquine—Vietnam's national first-line malaria treatment, ...

A dose of 'wait-and-see' reduces unnecessary antibiotic use

September 21, 2017
Asking patients to take a 'wait-and-see' approach before having their antibiotic prescriptions filled significantly reduces unnecessary use, a University of Queensland study has shown.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.