Promising Malaria Drug carries a Striking Drawback: Blue Urine

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An Anopheles mosquito, which can carry malaria, in Mali during an experiment. A treatment in West Africa has been found to be effective against malaria however happens also to turn a patient’s urine blue.

Credit
Fabien Beilhe

Tests in West Africa have found that will a safe drug long used to treat urinary tract infections is usually also effective against malaria. however the medication has one disadvantage: This specific turns urine a vivid blue.

“This specific is usually something we need to solve, because This specific could stop people coming from using This specific,” said Teun Bousema, a microbiologist at Radboud University Medical Center from the Netherlands as well as an author of the study, which was published Tuesday from the Lancet Infectious Diseases.

Modern malaria treatments, based on the drug artemisinin, are still effective in Africa as well as save hundreds of thousands of lives each year. however scientists fear the parasites will develop resistance, as they have in Southeast Asia, as well as are seeking ways to kill them faster using cocktails of several drugs.

Methylene blue, a dye used to stain tissues viewed under a microscope, can be taken by tablet or injection, as well as is usually sometimes used to treat urethral infections as well as a hemoglobin disorder.

however the dye also kills the malaria parasites from the gametocyte stage, the point at which mosquitoes pick This specific up coming from human blood as well as pass This specific on to fresh victims.

Most malaria drugs do not target gametocytes, meaning that will someone may still spread the disease for a week or more after treatment.

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