GlaxoSmithKline has announced that its investigational 8-aminoquinoline therapy tafenoquine has been shown to help prevent malaria relapses.
In partnership with the Medicines for Malaria Venture, the company has reported positive results from two phase III studies of tafenoquine, showing its effectiveness in the prevention of relapse of Plasmodium vivax malaria.
“GlaxoSmithKline has reported new clinical data showing how tafenoquine can reduce the risk of relapse in patients with Plasmodium vivax malaria.“
A single 300 mg dose of tafenoquine, when given alongside a three-day blood-stage chloroquine treatment, was shown to reduce the risk of relapse in patients with this form of malaria significantly more than placebo plus chloroquine.
The two phase III studies, DETECTIVE and GATHER, were conducted in malaria-endemic countries across South America, Asia and Africa, with nearly 800 patients enrolled in total.
Patrick Vallance, president of research and development at GlaxoSmithKline, said: "Being able to treat patients with a single dose of medicine would be an important step forward in ensuring efficacious treatment, thereby reducing the risk of relapse, particularly in areas with very limited healthcare infrastructure."
Plasmodium vivax is one of several species of parasite known to cause malaria, and has the ability to lie dormant in the liver and periodically reactivate, causing relapses weeks or even years after the initial infection.
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