Researchers have developed a new candidate for malaria vaccine with the help of algae-produced malaria parasite protein. Paired with an immune-boosting cocktail suitable for use in humans, the algae-produced protein generated antibodies in mice that nearly eliminated mosquito infection by the malaria parasite. Besides its effectiveness as a protein producer, algae is an advantageous tool for developing vaccines because it is cheap, easy and environmentally friendly.
Most malaria vaccine approaches are aimed at preventing humans from becoming infected when bitten by mosquitoes that carry the parasite. Our approach is to prevent transmission of the malaria parasite from infected humans to mosquitoes, The researchers turned to an algae to produce Pfs25, a protein found on the surface of the malaria parasite's reproductive cells. They believed that Pfs25 might block transmission of the parasite to the next host.