Malaria is an acute febrile illness caused by Plasmodium parasites. The parasites are spread to people through the bites of infected female mosquitoes. There are five different types of human-infecting Plasmodium; the deadliest are Plasmodium falciparum (mostly in Africa) and Plasmodium vivax (mainly in Asia and South America). Left untreated, malaria can progress to severe illness, and even to death.
Today, half of the global population is at risk of malaria. In 2020, there were an estimated 241 million cases of malaria worldwide – over 600,000 people died from the disease, with 95% of cases and deaths in Africa. Malaria strikes hardest among pregnant women and children in Sub-Saharan Africa. Children under five still account for about 80% of all malaria deaths worldwide.
Since 2000 and the global call for malaria eradication, progress has been made in the control of the disease. However, the significant increase in deaths from malaria observed during the Covid-19 pandemic - over 600,000 in 2020 compared to 400,000 in 2019 - and the associated political and economic disruptions are putting the latest progress in the fight against malaria at risk.
To beat malaria, we need to do more. The Covid-19 pandemic clearly showed the importance of stopping the spread of infections and demonstrated that prevention represents an effective intervention for mass epidemics. The same is true for malaria.
That is why current strategies need innovative approaches that focus on prevention and integrate new treatment options, vaccines and diagnostics to control and eliminate this deadly disease. That is also why we have defined a holistic approach aiming at preventing and fighting malaria.
As one against Malaria
As One Against Malaria, we have been engaged since 2015 in the battle against this disease, with the aim of developing and providing access to new drugs to prevent infection, test and treat patients and block the transmission of malaria from and to the mosquito. We are also committed to develop innovative technologies, implement research initiatives to strengthen the resilience of health systems in the world’s most vulnerable regions and define sustainable business models for innovative access paths to reach patients in need of our products.
Our integrated approach
As One Against Malaria, our Global Health Institute has developed an integrated approach to drive innovation through a number of projects leveraging our expertise. These projects are implemented together with our scientists and external partners, including from the National Malaria Control Programs in Africa. These initiatives also contribute to strengthening research capacity to make local health care systems more resilient, while creating sustainable businesses opportunities.
M5717 & Drug DiscoveryR&D activities for development of potential new antimalarialslearn more
PAVONThe Pan-African Vivax and Ovale Network on malarialearn more
Ghana Laboratory CapacityMicroscopy capacity building for healthcare workerslearn more
Our insect repellentPrevention from mosquito biteslearn more
Access to Clean WaterAccess to clean water for local healthcare centers and communities in AfricaLearn more