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Even without drugs, nets or an understanding of what caused malaria, human bodies were still fighting against the parasite – and winning. from shutterstock.com

How our red blood cells keep evolving to fight malaria

Today, human populations carry heavy genetic marks from the war with malaria. And it is the red blood cell (erythrocyte) that mostly bears the scars.
Mefloquine’s chemical structure is based on one of the first malaria drugs, quinine, that comes from the bark of South America’s Cinchona tree. Cinchona seedlings being packaged for shipment to make quinine, 1943/NLM

Weekly Dose: mefloquine, an antimalarial drug made to win wars

Mefloquine was one of around 250,000 chemical compounds tested for malaria-killing activity in the 1960s by the United States military who needed to protect troops from malaria in the tropics.
Farmers beat the stalks of sweet wormwood trees to extract the leaves during harvesting in rural China, The plant contains artemisinin, the drug which won the 2015 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine. epa/Michael Reynolds

Nobel prize for malaria drug is crucial to control Africa’s epidemic

The drug partly responsible for more than halving the rate of malaria over the last 30 years and which won this year's Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine has a long history of use.

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