Newswise — Eight healthy adults ranging from 20- to 37-years-old are taking part in a new study conducted by the Seattle Malaria Clinical Trials Center, or MCTC, run by Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and the Center for Infectious Disease Research.
Participants take either the experimental drug or a placebo, and neither the volunteers nor the researchers will know who took which until the trial is “unblinded” at the end of the study.
Specificially, they are infected with sporozoites — the infectious form of the malaria parasite ordinarily introduced into human blood by a mosquito’s bite.
And Fred Hutch’s Dr. Jim Kublin, the MCTC’s medical director, is one of the volunteers.
“As terrible and disruptive as Zika is to public health, the morbidity and mortality associated with malaria is much more severe,” Kublin said of the disease that kills more than 400,000 people a year, -- most of them young children in sub-Saharan Africa -- and sickens 214 million.
Kublin is available for comment about the test and about malaria.