Every year, malaria infects around 400 million people. To make it worse, similar with HIV AIDS, there’s currently no vaccine for malaria. Malaria spreads through mosquito bites, specifically from the Anopheles species.
In what could be deemed as progress in the fight against malaria, researchers from the John Hopkins University have genetically engineered malaria resistant mosquitoes. Interesting excerpt from the article:
Starting with the same number of resistant and nonresistant mosquitoes, they found that after nine generations the resistant type made up 70 percent of the population – raising the possibility of replacing regular mosquitoes with resistant ones that don’t spread disease.
I find that this method of combating the disease to be an interesting approach towards rectifying the problem. So far, mainstream R&D on malaria are focused more towards developing vaccines and other form of treatment. By shifting the focus to the vector agents themselves, this research might provide the breakthrough malaria sufferers have been hoping for.