Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Breakthrough malaria drug approved in India will take bite out of malaria, experts say

Date:
July 6, 2012
Source:
University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC)
Summary:
The new drug, SynriamTM, is considered a breakthrough, as traditional drugs are proving increasingly ineffective against the deadly malarial parasite because of acquired resistance to available drugs. Taken as a tablet once a day for three days, it’s more effective, cheaper, has fewer side effects and does not have to be taken with food.

A powerful new drug to treat malaria -- the invention of a University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Pharmacy researcher -- will help take the bite out of malaria. In the United States, a mosquito bite seems harmless, but in developing countries it means more than 655,000 deaths a year -- mostly in children.

The new drug, SynriamTM, is considered a breakthrough, as traditional drugs are proving increasingly ineffective against the deadly malarial parasite because of acquired resistance to available drugs. Taken as a tablet once a day for three days, it's more effective, cheaper, has fewer side effects and does not have to be taken with food.

From 2000 to 2010, Jonathan Vennerstrom, Ph.D., a professor at the UNMC College of Pharmacy, led an international team that created the drug compound that led to the development of SynriamTM. Developed by Ranbaxy Pharmaceuticals Limited, the medication now is approved for treatment in adults in India. The company also is working to create a children's formula and make the drug available in Africa, Asia and South America.

Dr. Vennerstrom and his team received more than $12 million in grants from Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV), a non-profit organization in Geneva, Switzerland. He has been studying malaria for more than 25 years. The research team included scientists at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute in Switzerland and Monash University in Australia. MMV receives about 60 percent of its funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

"With more than 200 million cases of malaria each year, the potential impact this drug could have on saving and improving lives worldwide is significant," Dr. Vennerstrom said. "That's been our goal and now we are at the finish line.

"We were very fortunate to receive the support for our project from MMV," he said. "It is always unpredictable whether or not a drug candidate will be successful."

Tim Wells, MMV's chief scientific officer, said the completion of a phase III study in Indian adults and the approval of the combination by the Indian regulators was a major milestone. "We look forward to more data from patients in Africa and from studies with children, since this is where the vast majority of the disease is," he said.

Courtney Fletcher, Pharm.D., dean of the UNMC College of Pharmacy, said another benefit of arterolane, the key component in the new drug invented by Dr. Vennerstrom, is it's a synthetic. "This is an importance advance in antimalaria drugs. Since it's a synthetic drug, it doesn't depend on the availability of a natural plant source like some other antimalarials, which also makes it less expensive."

Dr. Vennerstrom and his team also have developed a second drug candidate that might be even more superior than the first. It currently is being tested in phase II clinical trials by MMV in Bangkok, Thailand.

"This drug candidate seems to stay in the body longer, and therefore it may be possible to use a single dose instead of three doses," Dr. Vennerstrom said. "We all forget to take our medications from time to time, so compliance becomes much easier when you have a single-dose drug."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC). The original article was written by Vicky Cerino. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC). "Breakthrough malaria drug approved in India will take bite out of malaria, experts say." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 July 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/07/120706151902.htm>.
University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC). (2012, July 6). Breakthrough malaria drug approved in India will take bite out of malaria, experts say. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/07/120706151902.htm
University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC). "Breakthrough malaria drug approved in India will take bite out of malaria, experts say." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/07/120706151902.htm (accessed September 23, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Costs Keep Mounting

Ebola Costs Keep Mounting

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 23, 2014) The WHO has warned up to 20,000 people could be infected with Ebola over the next few weeks. As Sonia Legg reports, the implications for the West African countries suffering from the disease are huge. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Cases Could Reach 1.4 Million Within 4 Months

Ebola Cases Could Reach 1.4 Million Within 4 Months

Newsy (Sep. 23, 2014) Health officials warn that without further intervention, the number of Ebola cases in Liberia and Sierra Leone could reach 1.4 million by January. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Ebola Cases to Triple in Weeks Without Drastic Action

WHO: Ebola Cases to Triple in Weeks Without Drastic Action

AFP (Sep. 23, 2014) The number of Ebola infections will triple to 20,000 by November, soaring by thousands every week if efforts to stop the outbreak are not stepped up radically, the WHO warned in a study on Tuesday. Duration: 01:01 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
5 Ways Men Can Prevent Most Heart Attacks

5 Ways Men Can Prevent Most Heart Attacks

Newsy (Sep. 23, 2014) No surprise here: A recent study says men can reduce their risk of heart attack by maintaining a healthy lifestyle, which includes daily exercise. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins