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Malaria is a vector-borne disease carried by the mosquito
Malaria is a vector-borne disease carried by the mosquito

Press Release - 19 March 2008

Free lecture in Bath: extracting the bite from malaria

Dr Alexei Lapkin from the University of Bath will be giving a talk to local people on new ways of extracting a natural antimalarial ‘wonder drug’ and its impact on developing countries at Bath Royal Literary & Scientific Institution (BRLSI) on Friday 28 March 2008 at 7.30pm.

Malaria is one of the world’s most widespread diseases, infecting hundreds of millions of people each year and causing about three million deaths.

The most effective drug against malaria is artemisin, which is extracted from the plant Sweet Wormwood. One drawback is that it is produced using hexane, a toxic and potentially explosive substance which damages the environment.

In this lecture, Dr Lapkin from the University’s Department of Chemical Engineering, will be discussing a project he is leading to explore new technologies that make the large-scale extraction of artemisin both cheaper and greener.

“Malaria is widespread in tropical and subtropical parts of the world. Each year, it causes disease in approximately 515 million people,” said Dr Lapkin.

“Our focus is on driving down the cost of extraction to help make this ‘wonder drug’ more readily available to the people who need it.”

The project is being co-ordinated by FSC Development Services Ltd and funded by Medicines for Malaria Venture.

Admission is £2 (£1 students/members) and tickets are available on the door. The BRLSI is located at 16-18 Queen Square, Bath, BA1 2HN. Doors open at 7pm

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