I've recently heard about someone living in MN who went to back to Africa to visit family and he came back with a case of malaria. This is exactly the situation advisors to the exhibition Disease Detectives highlighted as a growing problem. Did you know that if you've developed immunity to malaria you lose that immunity when you move away from a region where malaria is endemic?
Exciting news on the diagnostic front comes from Glasgow University where scientists have developed a new test to quickly diagnose malaria. Currently to diagnose malaria researchers look at a patients sample of blood under a microscope and look for signs of the parasite. You need to be highly trained to be good at diagnosing this way. The new procedure is not only faster and more accurate but it can tell if the parasite is resistant to the first line of drug treatment. Go to this link for an article from the university and this link for a BBC video about the new diagnostic technique. In Disease Detectives we highlighted another new diagnostic technique which can easily be used away from expensive labs called a rapid diagnostic test which uses a "dipstick" method to indicate if certain proteins from the parasite is in a patient's blood. We've highlighted two professionals working on the test on the Disease Detective's website. Find out information about Norman Moore and Sara Hallowell who both work on this rapid diagnostic test.
I wonder what is the best way to get these tests to the people who most need them?