Issue Date: November 14, 2011
How Sickle Cell Mutation Mutes Malaria
The mutation that causes sickle cell anemia also prevents severe malaria, and researchers may have finally figured out why: The genetic tweak stymies the malaria parasite’s attempt to hijack transport machinery inside red blood cells (Science, DOI: 10.1126/science.1213775). The discovery could lead to new targets for malaria treatments.
In the 1940s, doctors noticed that patients with sickle cell anemia were more likely to survive a bout with malaria, but they were unable to find . . .
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