A new article published in Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics reports on a study to establish the safety and immunogenicity of RTS,S/AS01 administered with and without antimalarial drugs in healthy Thai adult volunteers.
RTS,S/AS01 is currently the most advanced malaria vaccine but provides incomplete, short-term protection. It was developed for use within the expanded program on immunizations (EPI) for African children. Another use could be adding mass RTS,S/AS01 vaccination to the integrated malaria elimination strategy in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS), where multidrug-resistant P.falciparum strains have emerged and spread. Prior to evaluating RTS,S/AS01 in large-scale trials we assessed whether the vaccine, administered with and without antimalarial drugs, is safe and immunogenic in Asian populations. An open-label, randomized, controlled phase 2 trial was conducted in healthy, adult Thai volunteers. Seven vaccine regimens with and without antimalarial drugs (dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine plus a single low dose primaquine) were assessed. This study found that RTS,S/AS01 with and without dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine plus a single low dose primaquine was safe and immunogenic in a healthy, adult Asian population.