FDA OKs First New P Vivax Malaria Treatment in 60 Years

The FDA has approved, under Priority Review, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)’s tafenoquine (Krintafel), which is the first single-dose medicine for the prevention of Plasmodium vivax (P vivax) malaria relapse in patients over the age of 16 years who are receiving antimalarial therapy.

This article originally appeared on Contagion.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved, under Priority Review, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)’s tafenoquine (Krintafel), which is the first single-dose medicine for the prevention of Plasmodium vivax (P vivax) malaria relapse in patients over the age of 16 years who are receiving antimalarial therapy. This is the first drug to be approved for the treatment of P vivax in over 60 years.

“[The] approval of Krintafel, the first new treatment for Plasmodium vivax malaria in over 60 years, is a significant milestone for people living with this type of relapsing malaria.” Hal Barron, MD, chief scientific officer and president of research and development of GSK, said in the announcement, “Together with our partner, Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV), we believe Krintafel will be an important medicine for patients with malaria and contribute to the ongoing effort to eradicate this disease.”

Tafenoquine is an 8-aminoquinoline derivative with activity against all stages of the P vivax lifecycle, including hypnozoites. It was first synthesized by scientists at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research in 1978, and in 2008, GSK entered into a collaboration with MMV, to develop tafenoquine as an anti-relapse medicine.

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