September 10, 2009
New anti-malaria drug shows promise
A new study in Bangladesh suggests tigecycline -- the first member of a new class of antibiotics -- might be effective against multi-drug-resistant malaria.
Researchers said tigecycline shows significant anti-malarial activity on its own and can be administered in combination with traditional anti-malarial drugs.
In the study, blood samples were collected from male and non-pregnant female patients in Bangladesh infected by P. falciparum. Patients who had received malaria drug therapy up to 30 days prior were excluded.
When tested, tigecycline showed one the highest activities of all antibiotics against P. falciparum. Additionally, tigecycline was up to 6 times more active than doxycycline, a drug often used to prevent malaria. However, when tigecycline was tested in conjunction with doxycycline, a significant activity correlation was noted.
The researchers from the Medical University of Vienna, the Malaria Research Initiative in Bandarban, Bangladesh; and the International Center for Diarrheal Disease Research, located in Dhaka, Bangladesh, report their findings in the journal Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy.