Substance in grapes may help treat malaria

Nov. 7, 2010 at 12:10 AM
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ATLANTA, Nov. 7 (UPI) -- Resveratrol -- a substance found in the skin of dark grapes -- may help treat malaria, U.S. researchers say.

Researchers at the National Institutes of Health say resveratrol, associated with anti-cancer and heart health benefits, may also improve survival chances of those with severe malaria.

The study finds treating parasite-infected red blood cells with resveratrol significantly reduced their ability to stick to the cells lining small blood vessels and reduces the probability of developing severe clinical manifestations of malaria.

The study suggests resveratrol can be used with anti-malarial chemotherapy to improve the survival chances of people with severe malaria.

"Our results demonstrate the possibility of a new therapy to treat severe malaria," Jordan A. Zuspann of the National Institutes of Health, says in a statement. "We hope that we have identified a way to ameliorate the severity of malaria in young African children."

The findings were presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene held in Atlanta.

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