Injections may take the bite out of malaria studies
From: Bridget M. Kuehn, MSJ. JAMA. 2012;308(22):2325. doi:10.1001/jama.2012.105690.
Studies of experimental malaria interventions have long relied on a tried-and-true method of causing malaria infections in healthy volunteers by subjecting them to bites from mosquitos infected with Plasmodium falciparum parasites. But results from a preliminary study presented at the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene in November suggest that injections of purified cryopreserved P. falciparum sporozoites may also do the trick.
Added by Robert ten Hove:
The P. falciparum lifecycle continues when sporozoites enter the bloodstream and infect livercells. Obtaining these sporozoites, Anopheles mosquitos need to be grown in a strictly controlled cultivation chamber. The mosquitoes are exposed to infected blood, before they are fed on the study-participants. Using cryopreserved sporozoites, these cultivation procedures are something of the past. Whats more, study-participants can be exposed to well defined number of sporozoites.