Scientists Identify Protein That Speeds Malaria Growth

Scientists have figured out a protein called cyclin that helps in rapid growth of malaria within mosquitoes.

Professor Rita Tewari and Doctor Bill Wickstead with School of Life Sciences at the University of Nottingham have shed lights on the role of cyclin in malaria development.

With the discovery of how the infectious disease manages to grow rapidly, it is hoped new ways of treatment may be uncovered in near future. It is said if the growth and reproduction of Malaria can be slowed down, the immune system can have a better chance to fight off and defeat the disease.

Cyclins are found in humans, yeast, plants and several other organisms too. It helps in cell growth and cell division. However, very little is known about how the molecules worked in parasites.

In the latest study the researchers have found more cyclins present in malaria parasite compared to humans. Digging further they found it allowed the parasite cells to divide rapidly allowing it to grow and reproduce quickly, and hence to spread speedily among red blood cells.

The symptoms of malaria include fever, vomiting and headaches. If it goes untreated, it becomes life-threatening. It infects the blood and disrupts the blood flow to vital organs of human body.

About 207 million people contract the disease every year and up to 1.2 million die out of it. Treatment of malaria is very expensive and often requires life supporting equipment. This makes it out of reach for poor.