First proven malaria vaccine rolled out in Africa — but doubts linger

The RTS,S vaccine is up to 40% effective at preventing malaria in young children.

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When health workers in Malawi began rolling out the first vaccine proven to protect against malaria, it was a moment 32 years — and more than US$700 million — in the making.

The country began giving the vaccine, called RTS,S, to children under age two on 23 April. Soon Ghana and Kenya will join in, as part of a large-scale pilot programme backed by the World Health Organization (WHO). The effort could immunize more than one million children by 2023 — a welcome boost in the fight against malaria, which kills an average of 1,200 people worldwide per day. The vast majority are children in Africa.

By: Amy Maxmen/Nature News

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