Plasmodium falciparum organisms surrounded by red blood cells
The UI research team, including Eric Oldfield (second from left) and Yonghui Zhang (far right)
A female mosquito probes for a meal (Photo: Shutterstock)
With malaria still responsible for millions of untimely deaths in more than 90 countries each year, the search for effective antimalarial drugs, vaccines and mosquito repellents continues to heat up. Recently, researchers at the University of Illinois (UI), led by chemistry professor Eric Oldfield, found that a chemically-altered form of a commonly prescribed osteoporosis drug can easily enter red blood cells and dispatch malaria parasites without harming the host (in this case, a mouse). That's potentially huge news for the countless thousands who continue to suffer from this recurrent, debilitating and all-too-often fatal disease.
Other Images from this Gallery