“Mosquirix,” a vaccine developped by the company GlaxoSmithKline to fight malaria, has recently been certified by The European Medicines Agency and could become the first of its kind to be distributed in Africa. The vaccine, which has been 30 years in the making, was developed specifically for African children. The scientists behind Mosquirix have also declared that it will be a non-profit vaccine. However, test results showed that the effectiveness of the vaccine hinges on the booster shot injected 20 months after the third dose, meaning that four separate shots would be necessary for the vaccine to work. Moreover, while the vaccine proved effective for children between 5-17 months, it did not yield as promising results for young babies. In this light, Professor Adrian Hill from Oxford University has commented that the vaccine may simply be “a building block towards much more effective malaria vaccines in years to come.” In October, the World Health Organization will make the final decision about whether or not the vaccine will be administered.
Contributor: May Huang