World Malaria Day 2015
To celebrate World Malaria Day 2015 NDM is officially launching an educational malaria app for Android users - the first game of its kind which tries to visualise the life cycle of the disease in 3D. NDM also spoke to Dr Sumi Biswas about her research on transmission blocking malaria vaccines - vaccines that will prevent malaria transmission on a wider scale, focusing on the community rather than the individual.
The Lifecycle of Malaria
NDM is pleased to announce the launch of our Malaria App 'The Life Cycle of Malaria'. In the process players learn about why mosquito bites itch, why pregnant women are more likely to be bitten, and how the parasite manages to survive.
The Life Cycle of Malaria game is an educational app aimed at 12 to 18 year old students. Players accumulate points and progress through the game by navigating obstacles and correctly answering questions about malaria. For example, while playing as the malaria parasite, game players dodge immune cells in the bloodstream to get to the liver to begin the next stage of the malaria infection. They lose a 'life' each time they bump into the immune cells, and after three goes, they have to start the level again.
By completing each level the player should gain an understanding of how mosquitoes ‘think’ and how they behave, and how malaria develops. One of the creator’s aims is that the game will be distributed in countries where malaria is common and enable users to learn about how to prevent the disease.
The game is completely free to download from the Google Play store.
Transmission Blocking Vaccines
This year’s World Health Organisation (WHO) World Malaria Day (on 25th April) has the theme of ‘Defeat Malaria’. Nearly half the world’s population is at risk of contracting the disease, and millions are affected by malaria every year. As part of the effort to defeat malaria, NDM researchers have been developing vaccines to fight the disease.
World Malaria Day across the Department
- Researchers from WWARN also feature in a a special supplement of The American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene about falsified and substandard medicines.
- Blog post from MalariaGEN about Keeping Pace with Changing Parasite Genetics.
- MalariaGEN: Pf3k Consortium releases data on more than 2,500 P. falciparum genomes.