This article deals with the terrible new threat to public health in Cambodia
similar post here
Don't start me on this...one of my pet peeves is the WHO's total inability to think out of the box!
The drug they use now comes from a plant in the daisy family that has been used to treat malaria for 2000 years with no resistance ever appearing. I find it highly significant resistance has only appeared after drug companies start making pills and injections containing semi-synthetic (ie patentable) derivatives of just one active molecule from plants.
Western scientists only "discovered" Artemisia annua in the 70s and all the research has focused on just one chemical from the plant... the one that they use in their drugs (artemisinin). They have completely ignored the fact that the plant contains a cocktail of anti-malarial chemicals which work in synergy. To me it's bloody obvious that the genetic mutation needed to get round just one molecule is going to be less that that needed to get round many all working in synergy. Plant chemistry is far more complex than any pill bigpharma can make.
Also, NGOs working in Africa have proved that simple herbal teas are extremely effective in treating malaria even though the WHO seems to think it's scientifically impossible for them to work. If they changed their attitude people could grow their own cure for free. No need to get to hospital in the rainy season, no risk of counterfeit drugs, no problem with corrupt officials, lower toxicity and very little chance of resistance developing. Instead they discourage this ...it seems they are afraid the plants will cause resistance to their drugs!
When that doctor in the article sayadian linked says there's no other cure in the pipeline what he means is that there's nothing conventional medecine can use. Another traditional remedy French scientists have been studying in French Guyana is as just as effective as artemisia annua. Problem is it only works if you use fresh young leaves ...bummer that, bigpharma can't make it into pills. Seems millions of people will have to die because of western trained doctors in the WHO and pharmaceutical interests.
Antimalarial drugs in the past have been semi sythetic derivatives of quinine ...which is only one of the anti-malarial compounds in cichona bark. Guess what, now that there is resistance to these drugs they are going back to using bark teas because THEY still work!
"Interestingly enough, natural quinine extracted from quinine bark and the use of natural bark tea and/or bark extracts are making a comeback in the management and treatment of malaria. Malaria strains have evolved which have developed a resistance to the synthesized quinine drugs. It was shown in early studies that an effective dose of natural quinine bark extract elicited the same antimalarial activity as an effective dose of the synthesized quinine drug. Scientists are now finding that these new strains of drug-resistant malaria can be treated effectively with natural quinine and/or quinine bark extracts. As evolving pathogens develop widespread resistance to our standard antibiotics, antivirals, and antimalarial drugs, it is of little wonder that the use of the natural medicine in quinine bark is being revisited, even by such giants as the World Health Organization."
"Plant chemistry is far more complex than any pill bigpharma can make."
Really? Strange that 500 years ago life spans were far shorter than today and death rates far higher.
"Big Pharma" is not your enemy. Individual cases notwithstanding health care now is FAR, FAR, FAR superior to what it was just 100 years ago.
Why do ppl still find fascination with hyped up hysteria (ala Joann Hari).
A factual account of what occurs on the ground, the possible causes to that situation, and a reasonable analysis of how it could be remedied would be much more informative.
Sadly, scare mongering to the uninformed sells media.
"Sadly, scare mongering to the uninformed sells media."
It does Bruce, but you don't have to listen to it. I watch the BBC, just to keep up on events. But their reporters are morons or trying to fear monger. Almost always, if there is any positive news, it will be followed with "But..." and then a description of how that good news could turn bad. In some circles, good news isn't even news.