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Researchers characterise the liver stage of Plasmodium vivax, and scientists discover that two chemicals can inhibit growth of Plasmodium infection.
Researchers in India have characterised the liver stage of Plasmodium vivax infection. When infecting different liver cell cultures with P. vivax sporozoites – the transmissible stage extracted from Anopheles stephensi mosquitoes – they could detect both large and small forms of vivax liver stage. Knowledge of how the parasite interacts with the liver, and why some parasites develop into hypnozoites (dormant forms of P. vivax) and how they relapse, is largely unknown but critical to inform future treatments, especially when drugs like primaquine face increasing levels of resistance.
Scientists have discovered that two chemicals – β-Hydroxy- and β-Aminophosphonate Acyclonucleoside – can inhibit the growth of P. falciparum infection in vitro and P. berghei infection in mice in vivo. With more research, the chemicals could become antimalarial drug candidates.
Image Credits: CDC/ Steven Glenn, Laboratory & Consultation Division 
Scientific Advisor: Elena Gómez-Díaz, Institute of Parasitology and Biomedicine, Spain