Throughout history malaria has been a major killer, particularly in tropical countries. Over the past half century several highly effective anti-malarial drugs have been introduced and these have contributed to substantial reductions in mortality. The best of these was chloroquine, which was affordable, simple to take and well tolerated. But widespread use, and abuse, of chloroquine allowed malaria parasites to develop resistance and mortality rose as a consequence.
In the 1970s a remarkably effective plant-derived medicine — qinghaosu, or artemisinin — was developed in China. Artemisinin combination treatments, or ACTs, have now become accepted as the most rapidly and reliably effective anti-malarial drugs.… Seguir leyendo »