Malaria drug could cut women’s risk of STIs

By Onche Odeh [ABUJA, NIGERIA] A drug used to combat malaria in pregnant women could also treat sexually transmitted infections (STIs), a study shows. Results of the study by researchers at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine found that sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine, a medicine recommended during antenatal care visit for intermittent preventive treatment (IPTp) of …

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Call to raise herbal medicine standards in Africa

By Ochieng’ Ogodo [ACCRA] Africa needs to develop standards to assure the safety and benefit of its herbal medicines, says Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, president of Mauritius. According to the World Health Organisation, 80 per cent of the world’s population depend on medicinal plants for their primary healthcare. Speaking during the Center for Pharmaceutical Advancement and Training …

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New Ebola vaccine under consideration for emergency use

By Esther Nakkazi [ANTWERP, BELGIUM] The next Ebola outbreak could have a prime-boost vaccine available, particularly for health workers and vulnerable communities on the front-line, a conference has heard. Prime-boost vaccination involves giving an initial dose to prime the immune system, followed by a booster dose at a later date with the goal of potentially …

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Kenyan & Tanzanian drug producers deserve a shot in the arm

Prof Samuel Wangwe, Policy Research for Development and Maureen Mackintosh, The Open University Despite major improvement in access to HIV/Aids and TB treatment most people living in Africa still lack access to reliable and appropriate medicines. They continue to struggle with the worst health status in the world. Why is this happening? What can be …

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Khat: its changing politics in Kenya & Somalia after UK ban

Neil Carrier, University of Oxford In 2014 the UK banned khat, the stimulant stems and leaves of the tree Catha edulis. In Kenya it is more commonly known as miraa or veve. This move brought to an end the weekly importation into London’s Heathrow of about 56 tonnes of the commodity. Most had been grown …

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