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Discovery Will Lead to Life Saving Treatments for Pediatric Malaria

Child in crib being treated for malaria

Child Health Day, Oct. 5, 2015  

Malaria kills a child every minute. While medical researchers have successfully developed effective drugs to kill the malaria parasite, efforts to treat the effects of the disease have not been as successful. But that soon may change.

In a groundbreaking study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, Michigan State University’s Terrie Taylor and her team discovered what causes death in children with cerebral malaria, the deadliest form of the disease. Dr. Terrie Taylor takes vital signs check of baby in Malawi

“We discovered that some children with cerebral malaria develop massively swollen brains and those are the children who die,” Taylor said. Comparison brain scans

Taylor and her research team found that the brain becomes so swollen it is forced out through the bottom of the skull and compresses the brain stem. This pressure causes the children to stop breathing and die.

Read the full story and learn more about Dr. Taylor’s work on her website.

– Kim Ward via MSU Today

– Photos by Jim Peck, MSU

 

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