Research closes in on stopping malaria in its tracks

Research closes in on stopping malaria in its tracks

Assistant Professor of Biochemistry Maria Belen Cassera (center) is studying how to stop malaria transmission.

The parasites responsible for mosquito-borne infectious diseases, such as malaria, are increasingly resistant to current drugs.

In order to identify new drug targets, Assistant Professor of Biochemistry Maria Belen Cassera is conducting new research that examines the crucial time when malaria is transmitted — when reproductive cell precursors known as gametocytes develop. She wants to understand the role that specific metabolites called isoprenoids play in the early stages of development.

“This will allow us to design more efficient drugs to block malaria transmission, which is one of the key components for malaria elimination and eradication,” Cassera said.

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