Learning from the Human Genome How Protective Immunity Against Malaria Works
Due to differences in their immune systems, individuals respond to malaria in different ways. While some die, others survive, and still others are infected without becoming ill. Understanding how and why some people naturally resist malaria may help lead to the development of an effective vaccine against the disease. Dr. Kwiatkowski is leading the Malaria Genomic Epidemiology Network, or MalariaGEN, an international partnership of malaria research groups. MalariaGEN partners in 20 countries, including in 14 countries where malaria is endemic, are combining genomic technology with large-scale epidemiological analyses to identify mechanisms of protective immunity against malaria in humans. Their ultimate goal is to guide the development of tools and markers to facilitate the design and testing of vaccines against malaria.