Novartis and Medicines for Malaria Venture to study new therapy

Pharmaceutical Company Product News

Novartis has announced the launch of a trial of a new treatment for malaria in partnership with the Medicines for Malaria Venture.

The organisations will ally to organise a patient trial for KAF156, a next-generation antimalarial compound that has been shown to have potential to treat drug-resistant strains of the malaria parasite.

“Novartis has allied with the Medicines for Malaria Venture to launch a patient trial for KAF156, a novel compound against multidrug-resistant malaria.“

This trial will test the efficacy of KAF156 in combination with a new, improved formulation of the existing antimalarial lumefantrine, with the first study centre already operational in Mali. It will be followed by 16 additional centres in nine African and Asian nations over the next few months.

The aim will be to assess multiple dosing combinations and dosing schedules of KAF156 and lumefantrine, including the feasibility of a single-dose therapy in adults, adolescents and children. Children will be prioritised for inclusion, as they are the most vulnerable to malaria.

Vas Narasimhan, global head of drug development and chief medical officer at Novartis, said: "With nearly half of the world's population at risk, malaria continues to be a major public health challenge. Developing new antimalarial medicines is critical to achieving malaria elimination."

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